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washingtonblade.com - volume 42, issue 5 - february 4, 2011

washingtonblade.com - volume 42, issue 5 - february 4, 2011

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Egypt Riots, Maryland Gay Marriage, Obama ENDA, Barbara Bush for Marriage, Gay News, Gay Entertainment, Gay Nightlife, Gay Arts
Egypt Riots, Maryland Gay Marriage, Obama ENDA, Barbara Bush for Marriage, Gay News, Gay Entertainment, Gay Nightlife, Gay Arts

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Published by: Washington Blade Newspaper on Feb 03, 2011
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Lt. Gov. Brown, GOP senator announce support for bill
By LOU CHIBBARO JR.lchibbaro@washblade.com
 In his first public remarks on same-sex marriage, Maryland Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown told the Wash-ington Blade Wednesday that he supports marriage equality for lesbians and gays and favors the ap-proval of a same-sex marriage bill pending in the Maryland Legislature.LGBT activists believe Brown, a Prince George’s County Democrat who is considered a potentialcandidate for governor in 2014, could play a key role in defending the marriage bill against a voterreferendum in 2012 if the legislature passes it this year, as most political observers expect.“I have always believed that all Marylanders should have an equality of rights and responsibilitiesand that includes marriage equality,” he said in an exclusive interview.“So regardless of gender, we should be able to choose who it is that we are going to marry andhopefully spend the rest of our lives with. And so I’m supportive of that,” he said.Brown said he has friends and acquaintances who are in same-sex relationships and he has seenfirst-hand how they are “successfully raising children,” a development that has helped shape his viewson the marriage issue.Brown’s expression of support for the marriage bill came on the same day that Republican State
nationalnews
Activists press Obamato issue executiveorder barring LGBTworkplace bias.
PAGE 4
politicalnews
Robert Gibbs dodgesquestions aboutObama’s 1996 supportfor marriage. Again.
PAGE 8
the lgbtq community news source
 washingtonblade.com • vol. 42, issue 05 • february 4, 2011 • Still sharp after 40 years
Activists hopeful ‘revolution’ willimprove conditions for LGBT citizens
 
By LOU CHIBBARO JR.lchibbaro@washblade.com
 A large number of LGBT Egyptians have joined the massive streetprotests in Cairo and other cities and are in full solidarity with calls forthe ouster of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and the creation ofa new democratic government in Egypt, according to a gay humanrights activist.Scott Long, former LGBT coordinator for Human Rights Watch, aninternational human rights group, said he has been in contact with gayEgyptians over the past week.Many have informed him that LGBT people are among the hun-dreds of thousands who have assembled in Cairo’s Tahrir Square todemand an end to what they view as an oppressive government thathas persecuted a diverse segment of the population, including gays,lesbians and transgender people.“There are LGBT people marching and joining the protests, not asLGBT people,” Long said. “They’re not marching under a rainbow flag.But certainly friends of mine are out there.”Long said at least two gay men he knows were arrested in the firststreet protest in Cairo on Jan. 25 — not for being gay but on a chargeof disturbing the peace. Authorities arrested protesters on that charge
Big boost for marriage in Md.
Gays in Egypt join anti-gov’t protests
sports
agenda
Area football fans make plans for Super Bowl Sunday.
PAGE 31 Continues on page 12 Continues on page 14
diningagenda
From sushi to pizza, our picks for romantic Valentine’s restaurants.
PAGE 22
foreveryoung
DJ Tracy Young,who spins at Cobalttonight, talks music,breakups & Kim Zolciak.
PAGE 19
Human rights activists are hopeful that a Democratic Egypt would bring improvements for the country’s LGBT residents,who have been targeted by government raids. Violence escalated this week as President Mubarak refused to step down.
Photo courtesy of Real Estate Radio USA
 
obituary
William Johnson, 73
William ‘B.J.’ Johnson, 73, a business-man who operated adult entertainmentclubs in D.C. and Virginia in the 1970sand 1980s, including the Lone Star gaybar, died Jan. 5 at Holy Cross Hospital inSilver Spring, Md., o complications rombladder cancer and heart disease.Johnson, who was gay, was known inthe gay community as the owner o theLone Star, a club at 9th and E Streets,N.W. that eatured nude emale dancersto a largely straight clientele during theday. Johnson operated the club as a gaybar at night that eatured nude maledancers.Shirley Dearolph, a riend who workedas a bartender at the Lone Star and otherclubs owned by Johnson, said he boughtthe Lone Star rom the U.S. governmentin 1978 in an auction ater the IRS seizedthe club rom its previous owner. Accord-ing to news reports, the previous owner,a ederal employee, had been convictedo embezzling money rom the govern-ment or the purpose o buying the club.“At the time he bought it there werejust the go-go girls in the day,” Dearolphsaid. “It closed at 8 o’clock because mosto the customers worked or the govern-ment and nobody stayed out late.”According to Dearolph, within a ewweeks o taking control o the Lone Star,Johnson opened it at night and hiredmale strippers, becoming the city’s sec-ond club to oer nude male dancers to agay clientele.The Chesapeake House, a gay barlocated three blocks north at 9th and HStreets, N.W., began eaturing male strip-pers a year or two earlier, Dearolph said.Beore buying the Lone Star, Johnsonestablished a name or himsel in 1976as the rst person in the nation’s capitalto oer totally nude emale strippers at anightclub he bought in the city’s then redlight district on 14th Street, N.W., calledBenny’s Rebel Room.Dearolph said that during that sameperiod in the 1970s Johnson bought ThisIs It, another emale burlesque nightclubin the inamous 14th Street strip betweenH and K streets, N.W. Around that sametime Johnson bought Ziggie’s, a bur-lesque club in Arlington, Va., which alsoeatured emale strippers.In the late 1970s, two gay bathhousesand a gay adult bookstore opened on the14th Street strip near Johnson’s night-clubs. Possibly anticipating what wasto come in the mid-1980s, Johnson soldBenny’s and This is It in 1978 at the peako their popularity but at a time when civ-ic activists began to complain about theadult businesses.Noting they were located in the hearto downtown Washington and less thanthree blocks rom the White House, realestate developers and some D.C. gov-ernment ocials joined orces to “cleanup” the area. By 1986, most o the 14thStreet adult clubs had closed, with somehaving their licenses revoked or allegedliquor law violations.“He was a good businessman,”Dearolph said. “He sold This Is It andBenny’s around 1978 and bought theLone Star. He kept the Lone Star until wehad to close it in 1986 when they weredoing the development down there.”Similar to the 14th Street strip, theLone Star and other bars and clubsalong 9th St., N.W., including the Chesa-peake House and the gay bar Louie’s,were displace by upscale high-rise ocebuildings.Johnson was born in Laurel, Md., andspent much o his early years on his par-ents’ arm in nearby Spencerville. He re-ceived a bachelor’s degree rom the Uni-versity o Maryland, College Park, andbegan his career as a teacher. He laterspent “many years as a successul busi-nessman, owning a number o success-ul businesses, including several bar es-tablishments,” according to a statementreleased by amily members at the timeo his death.At a Jan. 10 memorial service, riendssaid Johnson lived or many years in atownhouse he owned in D.C. on CapitolHill while spending time at the arm andarmhouse in Spencerville he later inher-ited rom his parents.“It was his pride and joy,” saidDearolph. “He didn’t grow crops andraise animals. He kept it manicured andbeautiul. It was his showcase.”In addition to Dearolph, one o John-son’s closest riends and associates,Johnson is survived by his nieces, Deb-orah Clark and Donna Dunn; his great-nephew, Glenn Edens, Jr; great-niecesLisa Edens and Ashley Crisp; and onegreat-great nephew, William ChaseRezmer.At the time o his uneral, amily mem-bers requested that in lieu o fowers, do-nations be made to the William ‘BJ’ John-son Memorial und at the American HeartAssociation and the American CancerSociety.
LOU CHIBBARO JR.
LOCALNEWS
2 washingtonblade.com • february 4, 2011
An ad campaign for a new effort aimed at curbing HIV rates among black gay men in D.C.
Black gay men launch HIV testing campaign
Ten black gay men with HIV kicked o an “unprecedented citywide eort” inJanuary to prevent the spread o HIV in D.C. among black men who have sex withmen through a new, ederally unded project organized by the National Associationo People With AIDS.The Bayard Rustin Community Mobilization Project is a coalition o community-based AIDS groups, aith-based and academic institutions, and the D.C. Depart-ment o Health that is determined to address an alarmingly high HIV prevalencerate among black gay men in the District, according to a NAPWA spokesperson.“We call these 10 men the rst ‘HIV testing advocates,’ and we empower them tospeak at bars and restaurants, churches, community orums — really any opportu-nity at which they can reach the community, educate them about HIV and testing,and change behavior,” said NAPWA spokesperson David Sheon.A brochure describing the project says it is named ater black civil rights strate-gist Bayard Rustin, an adviser to amed civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.and the lead organizer or King’s 1963 civil rights march on Washington.Rustin, who was gay, died in 1987 at a time when his sexual orientation was notwidely known outside civil rights group circles. He became an advocate or gayrights causes in the latter part o his lie, prompting LGBT activists to view him as arole model or civil rights organizing.Some o the Rustin Project’s HIV testing advocates as well as organizers o theproject will be greeting the community at a booth on Saturday, Feb. 5, during aNational Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day event hosted by the Metropolitan Com-munity Church o Washington at 474 Ridge St., N.W. The event is sponsored by theD.C. AIDS service group Food & Friends.The Rustin Project is hosting its own community orum to discuss its HIV preven-tion eorts targeting black men who have sex with men on Feb. 14 at the BarbaraJordan Conerence Center located at the Kaiser Family Foundation oces, 1330 GSt., N.W. The event is open to the public.The most recent data on HIV prevalence in D.C. highlight the need or the RustinProject, organizers say. Among the 16,513 people living with HIV/AIDS in D.C. as o2008, 40 percent, or 6,722, contracted HIV through male-to-male sex. Among thatgroup, 4,091, or 60 percent, are Arican American, the data show.
LOU CHIBBARO JR.
 
Virginia closes AIDS drug program for new patients
In a little-noticed development, the Virginia Department o Health in Decemberclosed its AIDS Drug Assistance Program, or ADAP, to new enrollments except orpregnant women, children 18 years old or younger and people receiving treatmentor an AIDS-related inection.The department said it was also planning to remove rom the program approxi-mately 760 clients, with the aim o helping them obtain needed AIDS medicationsthrough other programs, including short-term drug programs oered by pharma-ceutical companies that manuacture the drugs.Dr. Karen Remley, Virginia’s health commissioner, said in a statement issuedin December that the ADAP cutbacks were due to an unprecedented increase inenrollment in the Virginia ADAP program and increased costs or the drugs.ADAP is part o the ederal Ryan White CARE Act program in which states andthe ederal government share the cost o paying or lie-saving AIDS drugs to low-income people who lack health insurance coverage.AIDS activists have called on Congress and the White House to push or anincreased share o ederal unding or ADAP, saying the national recession hascurtailed revenue in many states, orcing them to cut back on their ADAP budgets.“Virginia ADAP will continue to serve more than 3,000 clients who will remain inthe program,” a state health department statement says. “No interruption in carewill occur or any ADAP clients.”As o late January, D.C. and Maryland have not put in place any cutbacks in ser-vice or their ADAPs. Unlike many states, D.C. and Maryland do not have a waitinglist or new ADAP patients.
LOU CHIBBARO JR.
 
february 4, 2011 • washingtonblade.com 3

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