Hasidic Men Accused of Gay Attack

20110705-shomrimEarlier this month it was reported that a large group of Hasidic men accosted Taj Peterson as he returned from a bar in Brooklyn. They allegedly attacked him while using homophobic slurs, this attack was witnessed by multiple people who took photos of both the perpetrators and their vehicles. Peterson Suffered from a fractured eye socket, a torn retina, blood clotting as well as cuts and bruises.

Even with all of the eye witness accounts and photos the investigation, in the publics opinion, seems to be stalled. Witness to the crime also allege that the men looked like members of a police group, which may be the unofficial volunteer patrol of the Shomrim. The NYPD is investigating this as a hate crime, and with the long recorded tensions between the Hasidic and black community, caution may be slowing the public release of information, as this is an important investigation to the Brooklyn community

Hot 97’s Mr. Cee Issues Safe Sex PSA After Male-Prostitution Arrest

by Amanda Andries

On Friday, popular New York City radio personality DJ Mr. Cee (whose real name is Calvin LeBrun) issued a PSA for The Aids Healthcare Foundation promoting the benefits of safe sex. This comes after Cee’s arrest a week ago for allegedly soliciting sex from an undercover male officer posing as a prostitute.

“I can honestly say I have an addiction and that’s something I’m going to have to deal with as I move forward in my life,” said Cee in the PSA.  “Everybody is not living a righteous lifestyle out there. Even myself. What I wanted to do today is to talk about the importance of safe sex, talk about the importance of using a condom, just talking about the importance of being healthy in your life as far as taking an HIV test.”

Cee, who is also known as “The Finisher,” reportedly didn’t get time to finish, when he was arrested for trying to pick-up the male undercover cop on May 4 in the Bedstuy area in Brooklyn.  He has been charged with patronizing a prostitute in the third degree. Cee also has at least one prior conviction— stemming from charges after he was arrested in 2011 when Police found him receiving oral sex from a male prostitute named “Brook-Lyne.”

Hot 97’s program director Ebro Darden and some of the stations most popular deejays refer to Mr. Cee as “family,” and conducted an intense on-air interview with Cee, to give him a chance to explain his recurring “situation.”

“I have an addiction to getting the quickie,” Mr. Cee said to Ebro. “I am not gay.”

In the interview, Cee also said that he fully supports the gay community and  claims that the officer who approached him was a female not a male.

Since Cee’s arrest Twitter has been abuzz with commentary from Cee’s fans and haters:

“@QtipTheAbstract “Never be ashamed to be who you are just be honest with yourself.”

@RikkiMartinez “I’d like to thank Mister Cee for all he’s done for our genre & culture. Remember who brought you Biggie before you ridicule the man Hip Hop.”

@Aqua174 “Straight people think Mister Cee is buggin. Gay people think Mr. Cee is buggin. L’s all around.”

@claudiajordan “Dang! Not again Mister Cee. Can’t be an accident if it’s a habit.. just saying!”

@Who_Is_Walter “Mister Cee said if I am Lying I’m flying but it is my Choice to Fly when I lie. Gone Head Mister Cee. Tell them to mind their business!”

@LL_Cool_D “Wow Mister Cee’s interview was crazy and he def a liar he an undercover brother just say it bro it’s not that serious.”

@Momsmadeeasy “Addicted to prostitution???? Jesus take the wheel! Mister Cee I wish you wud have thought this out better. #speechless.”

Charlamange the God, a rival radio personality on competing station Power 105  dissed Cee by naming him the “Donkey of The Day.”

If Cee decides to come out of the closet and make hip-hop history, as Jason Collins did recently for sports, remains to be Cee-n…

Same-sex Marriage To Become Legal In NY

For many same-sex couples, the long wait for marriage to be legal in New York, just may be a dream come true. Or so they hope.

Earlier this month, Governor David Paterson has introduced a bill legalizing same-sex marriage in New York. A bill, that was passed two years ago, but didn’t make it through the Senate majority leaders.

However, this year, most Democratic Senate majority leaders support the bill. In a press conference held last week, Paterson grabbed the bull by the horns and said he was going to Albany to completely support the bill and see that it gets passed.

The New York Times reported that “32 votes are needed, and Democrats say about 25 of their 32 members now support it.”

To some, this may seem like Paterson is vying for some pats on the back for taking this on. But, this isn’t the first time he has fought for same-sex rights. In 2002, “Paterson led Democrats in rounding up enough votes to pass the law prohibiting discrimination against gays and lesbians,” the NY Times wrote.

Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Senator Chuck Schumer have pronounced that they, too, are on board and in support of same-sex marriage.

Same-sex marriage is legal in the states of Connecticut,Vermont, Massachusetts and recently, Iowa. Currently, New Hampshire is fighting for a same-sex marriage ballot.

Inspiring Change in the LGBT Community

Last week, Mayor Bloomberg said he was going to push for the state legislature to allow gay marriage in New York.

Coincidentally, Bloomberg chose to make the announcement at a gala dinner hosted by the LGBT Center. Could he be doing it to make himself look better? Possibly. You can’t put anything past the man, after all. Sen. Chuck Schumer has claimed he is on board as well.

In other news, what may be groundbreaking for New York – the board of health has changed its policy on birth certificates for lesbian couples. The names of married lesbian couples are now able to put both of their names on the birth certificates of a child, whereas before, only one name was allowed on the certificate and the other parent had to file through a long process to adopt the child, 365Gay.com wrote.

However, though this may be a great improvement to the LGBT community of New York, male couples are still unable to put both names on the birth certificates of newborn children and must go through the adoption process for one of the parents.

LGBT Gentrification

The haven to most queer youth has often been at Pier 45 by Christopher Street. But with ongoing reconstruction at Pier 40, organizations have been seeking some kind of center for the LGBT community who occupies the street corners and benches until late hours of the night (even in the coldest of seasons).

New York Times reported that members of Fierce have requested the center, in which their request will more than likely be denied due to the hard times in the economy.

Gay Community Weary About Relationship With Manhattan DA Who is Set to Retire

With Manhattan DA Robert Morgenthau retiring at the end of this year, he has the gay community up in arms about getting answers to their ill-fated questions. GayCityNews reported last week that he hasn’t been quite the problem solver in the gay community. Morgenthau has recently been called out by the community on the arrests made on gay men in Manhattan video stores that the LGBT community has looked at as false.

But the LGBT community won’t stop until they get answers. Even if Morgenthau is gone by this year’s end.

Not all of the issues concerning the LGBT community have ended up in major losses, though. “In 2001, his office won the conviction of Daniel Oliveira in the 1997 killings of Angel Roman and Roger Brooks. Oliveira is serving a life sentence. In 2007, Morgenthau’s office obtained guilty pleas from the four men who assaulted performer Kevin Aviance in the East Village in 2006,” GayCityNews reporter Duncan Osbourne wrote.

However, in some cases concerning the community, Morgenthau’s handling of the issues weren’t up to par with what people expected. For instance, in the case of one of the four lesbians who were involved in a fight three years ago, Renata Hill was convicted of gang assault and now faces a new trial in which Morgenthau has helped with.

Though Morgenthau’s career has been seen as a success for the most part, his relationship with the LGBT community hasn’t been very transparent. Clarence Patton, head of the Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project (AVP) argued in the article that Morgenthau’s treatment of some of the issues in the community has led to question the liability the DA has had in really bringing the right people to justice.

Suspects Nailed in Anti-Gay Killing

The anti-gay hate killing of Jose O. Sucuzhanay in Dec. 2008 has finally started to come to a close, with police having nabbed two suspects in the killing.

GayCityNews reported that city officials went over the details in the case, and what led up to Sucuzhanay’s face-off with his alleged killer, Keith Phoenix.

Though Phoenix says he has nothing against gay people, his defense comes across as really weak. He claimed to have seen Sucuzhanay with a gun, leading a  threatened Phoenix to “defend himself.”

It seems as though  the media and police officials want us to take into account that Phoenix and friend Hakim Scott allegedly beat Sucuzhanay and his brother to a pulp and then continued on their route to the Bronx, where a video camera filmed them at a toll booth laughing and carrying on as though they didn’t know they just killed someone. Should this video matter? This also reminds me so much of the murder of Nixzmary Brown – which involved a surveillance video of her siblings and parents (everyone but her) in Target in the Atlantic Center Mall.