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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Psychic Says (re Hillary Clinton)

   Psychic says Philly DNC
        Won’t trump Chicago’s historic 1968 convention when
   Jean Genet hung out with Norman Mailer
   When Huey Newton looked “sexy” in a big wicker chair
   When Angela Davis spoke French, & Susan Sontag & Jane Fonda hightailed it to Hanoi.
      Psychic says 2016 DNC
                     Will not be a convention but a coronation
          Hillary in a chariot roaring into Wells Fargo 
         To thunderous applause, clamor & cowbells.
          The placards will read:
      No human is illegal;
     Islamic fanaticism does not exist
    You want to enforce immigration laws, you’re a racist
    I hate Fox News
   You’re a racist, I’m a racist, we are all racists & we should all die  

   Psychic sees Hillary in Goldman Sachs makeup & a blue pants suit when she mounts          the podium, blowing kisses
  As Bill does the retiree shuffle an all too common sight at the casino luncheon buffet
       Beware, however, of some unrest from assorted protest groups
    FDR Park social justice warriors with blue hair & bandit Lone Ranger masks will remind us that Hillary’s election was always in the cards
     (Yes but even Trump said the system was rigged against Bernie…) 
 Psychic says Hillary will be inaugurated &
   The Sanderites will retreat to form another political base that in four years will also fail to send one of their own to the White House.
  Psychic sees a honeymoon phase where Hillary can do no wrong
  Psychic sees the honeymoon luster morphing into a grey patina 
  Psychic says Bill will restart love affairs with interns & female bicycle messengers as Hillary agonizes over whether to triple power punch upstart internationals like Vladimir Putin. 
   Psychic says there will be a war with Russia & we know what that means: the end of career options for everywhere.
  Psychic apologies for being so negative
   Psychic says in Hillary’s second year there will calls for her impeachment from the Wallmart mainstream, even as

     Attorney General Loretta Lynch jump starts her campaign to get Americans to show ISIS the love
      In Lynch meditation rooms Americans will slip into Yoga pants, sit cross legged on rubber mats, and send love vibrations to foreign and domestic terrorists.
      Stop all beheadings with hugs! 
    “Slowly breathe in and out. Picture a bearded ISIS terrorist then release the love energy.  Imagine them dropping all thoughts of bombs then watch as they place their hands in yours…..Show them the love!”
 Psychic says new world order will be up and running.
 Psychic says that after Donald Trump’s November loss, he will retire like Howard Hughes to a penthouse suite atop a large Las Vegas casino. There never will be a wall.  Prophet says the feeling of relief after Trump’s defeat will last five minuses because   Hillary’s dragons will surface.
 Psychic says very few will be counting their political blessings. 
  Psychic  says the system is rigged.  @copyright TFN 2016

Monday, July 25, 2016

                                             ICON Magazine Theater July 2016

    The Secret Garden (by Marsha Norman and Lucy Simon and directed by Matt Pfeiffer) packed them at the Arden, proof of the popularity of fantasy escapism, But does this musical really work? The story of ten year old Mary Lennox (Bailey Ryon), a cantankerous girl who is sent to live with her wealthy Uncle Archibald (Jeffrey Coon) after cholera claims her parents, Rose (Sarah Gliko) and Albert (James Stabp), has the perfect Disney ingredients: a haunted mansion, a secret garden, and a spoiled prince type, the shut-in son of Uncle Archibald, little Colin (Hudson Orfe), who thinks he’s growing a hunchback.  Mary’s life in the mansion is monitored by the strict house mistress, Mrs. Medlock, played to the dour hilt by Sally Mercer. Life changes for Mary when she discovers the key to the garden and Colin’s “off limits” bedchamber, where Archibald has him locked up because of his eerie resemblance to his deceased wife. While Ryon is believable as the contrarian Mary, her saucy attitude is so coquettish and unchildlike that even her technical polish— every line is delivered with robotic perfection—comes across as creepy. The story ends on a happy note when Mary manages to bring Colin back to health, proving that when misery meets misery, good things sometimes happen.   

   Playwright Lucas Hnath’s marvelous Hillary and Clinton at the Suzanne Roberts Theater closed out PTC’s 2015-16 season. While this satiric look at gender and power within the Clinton marriage is supposed to take place in an alternate universe, most everything that happens onstage would seem real to Clinton watchers. The washed out ex-prez (John Procaccino) is presented as a tired, bored-to-death retiree offering to help his wife (Alice M. Gatling) win the 2008 New Hampshire primary. Tension builds as the complex intricacies of their marriage surface. Hillary refuses Bill’s help campaigning but she’s conflicted, deferring to her mega-mouth, Bill-hating campaign manager Mark, adequately played by Todd Cerveris.  Gatling as Hillary is completely believable: she shows the right amount of stubbornness and independence while segueing into more vulnerable emotions, such as when she collapses on the hotel room bed after hearing that she won New Hampshire because Bill secretly campaigned for her.  Procassino’s Clinton captures the spirit of a man who has climbed life’s highest peak but who is now aimlessly wandering around the mountain’s base. The play is a potpourri of Hillary witticisms and Bill philosophizing,  the best being the latter’s admonition that Hillary needs to appear less cold and show the public just how warm and fuzzy she is on the inside.   

What was playwright Young Jean Lee thinking when she wrote Straight White Men (Interact Theatre Company)? The play’s title indicates she was thinking about race but only in a labeling sense, since the four men, Ed (Dan Kern) and his three sons, Jake (Tim Dugan), Drew (Kevin Meehan) and Matt (Steven Rishard) who celebrate Christmas together, are all white. The play’s straight label is also a misnomer because for race or sexuality to be framed this way there should be thematic follow up. The family banter that Lee creates might as well have been lifted from the movie, Animal House. All these immature sons do is slap one another around and dive into the furniture while laughing at their own jokes. The highpoint occurs when Matt bursts into tears, causing Drew to exclaim, “Is Matt gay?”  Of course he’s not gay; he’s just a depressed white straight guy, nothing that more diving into furniture and a dose of psychotropic drugs won’t cure. Inappropriate audience laughter throughout the performance got me thinking that it wasn’t Matt who needed psychotherapy, but the audience.   


  Sister Act at The Walnut Street Theatre might seem like a tired has been, but not this Riverside Theatre production, directed by Bernard Havard.  Here’s Broadway at its finest, an intense over the top razzle dazzle cacophony of song and dance that’s much funnier and better than the Whoopi Goldberg original. Havard gives it a Philadelphia setting, so we hear names Like Cardinal Krol and the Philadelphia Police Department. Dan’yelle Williamson as Deloris Van Cartier, the racy girl who goes undercover at Holy Angels Convent, has the talent of a Diana Ross, and the numerous singing and dancing nuns are as polished as The Rockettes at Rockefeller Center.              

Friday, July 8, 2016

When Howard Hughes Met My Grandfather

    I’m standing on Aramingo Avenue waiting for a bus when a guy passing on a bicycle skids to a stop in front of me. The stranger takes off his helmet and introduces himself: Anthony Campuzano, a Pew Fellow artist with work in the Philadelphia Museum of Art and PAFA. He also tells me that he grew up in my grandfather’s house at 40 W. Albemarle Street in Lansdowne.  
  I do a double take and check to see if I’ve been struck by lightning.
   My grandfather, Frank V. Nickels was a Philadelphia architect of some note (his papers are archived at the Athenaeum of Philadelphia). He designed the house at 40 W.  Albermarle Street sometime in the early 1920s and sold the mansion to the Campuzano family shortly before his death in 1985. The mansion was a place I visited many times as a child. I can still recall its Old World charm: the museum style oil paintings, wall tapestries, hand carved Chinese furniture, a Steinway piano, shelves of books and an immense bust of Dante Alighieri on the high living room fireplace.      
   Anthony tells me he’s been trying to track me down for a while because he wants me to contribute to an exhibit, Beyond Cold Polished Stones, by artists with ties to Lansdowne, currently at the 20/20 House. I agree to send him photos of my grandmother in the living room of 40 West as well an original poem and some items related to my grandfather’s architectural practice.
     At the exhibit’s opening reception, I learn that one of the legends of 20th Century America visited my grandfather sometime in 1936 or ’37. The occasion was the negotiation of land rights for the proposed building of Nazareth Hospital in Northeast Philadelphia.
  Because my grandfather was hired by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to design Nazareth, he was asked to try to get an agreement of sale from the owner of the land. Without land rights, the hospital could not be built. 
   The owner of the land was the 6’4” tall Hollywood playboy and movie producer, Howard Hughes, who had made a name for himself in 1928 when his comedy, “Two Arabian Knights,” won an Oscar.  Hughes had also co-directed the 1930 film, “Hell’s Angels,” a film about WWI combat pilots starring Jean Harlow. Hughes’ inherited family wealth enabled him to buy all the combat planes used in the film. A natural daredevil and pilot himself, Hughes took part in the filmed combat dog fights in which 3 pilots died.  

    As Hollywood’s most eligible bachelor, the handsome Hughes had had affairs with Katherine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Joan Crawford, Rita Hayworth and many others. In later years he had the habit of collecting beautiful women with movie star aspirations. It was his habit to put them up in apartments or small houses while paying their rent and daily expenses. Initially Hughes may have shown a romantic interest in these women but over time this interest would wane. Hughes was content to call them once a month as he continued to send them checks, sometimes for years. He was also attracted to male stars like Cary Grant and Randolph Scott but this part of his life was kept secret, given the tenor of the times.  In 1939, two years after his meeting with my grandfather, he flew around the world and was honored with a ticker tape parade in New York City.
   Let’s go back to 1937 when Hughes piloted his own plane to New York and then to Philadelphia’s Northeast Airport where my grandparents stood waiting for him on the tarmac. My grandmother, Pauline Clavey Nickels, a former opera singer from Wilmington, was probably wearing one of her big hats, and no doubt Frank was dressed in his herringbone best.

      When Hughes arrived, pleasantries were exchanged, and then the group went off to a meeting near the grounds of the proposed hospital. What was said then can only be imagined. No doubt Frank and Pauline were a little star struck, especially when Hughes accepted Frank’s offer to go back to 40 West so that he could have a look at his proposed hospital design.  
   I wonder if the group had lunch on the way to the mansion. Did Pauline ask about Rita Hayworth, or did Hughes inquire about the stern bust of Dante on Frank’s mantelpiece? Did Hughes let it slip that in two years he planned an around the world solo flight? What I do know is that both Howard Hughes and Frank Nickels were eccentrics (although grandfather was not mad), so I’m sure there was an instant bond.
   Frank, one of four brothers and a sister, was born in 1891 to William Bartholomew and Dorothy G. Nickels of Roxborough. As a young man he was already setting his own style: he had a penchant for getting his shirts dry cleaned and then carrying them on hangers on various local trolleys. In 1914, he graduated from Drexel with a diploma in architecture and after that he established architectural offices in Center City at 15 S. 21st Street, 225 S. Sydenham Street and later in the Land Title Building.  His concentration was industrial and commercial projects, as well as schools and churches for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and in the Reading area.

     Several years ago I had an opportunity to tour two of his buildings, 1521 Spruce Street and the Frances Plaza Apartments at 19th and Lombard Streets.  For many years Frank partnered with architect C.J. Mitchell, whose papers are also archived at the Athenaeum. Frank split with Mitchell when the latter challenged him in a bid to design a school for Saint Philomena School in Lansdowne. Somebody who knew grandfather told me that he never spoke to CJ again. 
     Frank and Pauline Nickels raised three children, Frank, Thomas C (my father), and Joan in the Albemarle mansion. Frank’s bonsai garden behind the mansion was so famous that local Cub Scout Packs would organize tours of the space.
   Both Hughes and Nickels were basically shy men with loner tendencies. My grandfather was not a joiner. As far as I know he never was a member of the Philadelphia AIA or the “must do” T Square Club, unlike CJ Mitchell who was a member of both. Both men had a difficult time controlling their tempers.
       At eight years of age while staying overnight at the mansion I was kissing my grandparents goodnight when grandfather suddenly pulled me close because he smelled something on my neck. That ‘something’ was grandmother’s talcum powder that I’d dusted myself with after my evening bath. Grandfather sat me down in a high backed medieval looking chair and proceeded to scold me for being “a sissy.” I didn’t know what a sissy was; I just knew that I liked talcum powder. I had never seen grandfather angry before. The event was so traumatic I was never able to rekindle an interest in talcum powder after that.
   When grandfather and Hughes met at 40 West, it’s possible that they reviewed the Nazareth plans in the dining room at the long table for 16 situated under a chandelier.  Grandfather’s drafting room was on the second floor overlooking the bonsai garden and carriage house, so perhaps he and Hughes retired there as Pauline played a few bars of Chopin on the Steinway downstairs.
   “Frank, I like your plans for Nazareth, I really do,” I can imagine Hughes saying. “The design is modern with a touch of art deco and I like the way the building meets the sky. There’s something about your design that reminds me of aviation. I’ll tell you what, Frank. I’m going to give the Archdiocese of Philadelphia this land for free. You can tell them that down at the Chancery…Now I’m going to fly off to one of my kept women on the west coast.”
     The truth is, Hughes admired the hospital plans so much he gifted the land to the Archdiocese at zero cost. Perhaps they sealed the deal with a drink, a toast of port or a round of straight up Manhattans whipped up by Pauline at the cocktail bar.
    Grandfather must have told this story at Sunday dinner parties or at Thanksgiving and Christmas years after Hughes had become a recluse, living as a hermit on top of the Desert Inn Hotel Casino in Las Vegas or jetting around the world to hole up in other darkened hotel rooms with his ten inch long fingernails, and long gray hair and beard resembling the monks on Mt. Athos.  
   What is amazing to me, however, is that not long after Hughes’ visit to 40 West he opened the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. But before that, in 1935, he designed the H1 Silver Bullet, the world’s fastest racing airplane noted for its sleek modern look. As I checked out images of the H1, I couldn’t help but think how the plane eerily reminded me of Nazareth Hospital. How can a plane remind anyone of a hospital? Well, I can only conclude by saying that the plane had a sleek modern look that conjured up the “feeling” of art deco.


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Some Thoughts on Orlando

    It’s hard to know what you or I would do if confronted with a gunman in a crowded nightclub. Any decision about where to run or hide would be a complete game of chance. Predicting the trail of a killer, where he will turn and shoot next, would be impossible to gage, so in the end we’d only have our instincts, hoping against hope that where we chose to hide would be the one place the killer would not look.
   In many horrifying accounts of mass murders, there are always reports of people who pretend to be dead in order to fool the killer. But pretending to be dead takes a certain amount of risk. You pick a spot and you stay there, immobile, until the killer passes over you but one false move and it’s over.  
   If you run and hide in a bathroom, as many in Orlando’s Pulse nightclub did on the night of the killings, you risk penning yourself in a corner with no way out, hoping somehow that the killer will forget to check the stall where you are hiding. Since bathrooms generally only have one exit, this solution isn’t a good one. When a shooter is shooting there’s no time to debate the pitfalls of various hiding place. 
   Of course, if you had a gun, you might get lucky and pick off the killer but a revolver is no match for the Sig Sauer MCX-semi automatic assault rife that killer Omar Mateen used in his slaughter of 50 gay people and the maiming of 50 more in Orlando’s Pulse.  
        When Mateen began the shooting at Pulse he knew he’d be encountering people at a vulnerable time: at the end of a long drinking night when individual responses would be staggered or slow. As news reports indicate, as the shots rang out, patrons assumed they were a component of the music, a DJ improvisation. During the Paris massacre in 2015 at the Eagles of death Metal concert at the Bataclan, concert goers at first thought that the opening gunfire from the terrorists was fireworks or pyrotechnics. It took a couple of minutes before reality set in. By the end of that slaughter, 130 people had been killed, the largest public massacre death count in France since World War II. 
  The massacre in Orlando got me thinking of a lot of things. I thought of the big gay dance clubs I used to frequent with their erotically charged reverely and music, of jam packed dance floors where thoughts of violence and death were as far away as the Arctic Circle.
  I also thought of sudden death, and why it is that some say that it is the worst kind of death because it takes us unaware without time to pray, meditate or say good-bye to loved ones.   
   St Nicodemus the Hagiorite, an Orthodox saint who died in 1801, wrote that “death shows up like an unexpected thief and we do not know how or when he will visit us. He may appear today, at this hour, at this very moment and you, who woke up feeling fine, will not last until the evening, while you, who have reached the evening, may not wake up…Therefore, my brother, take heed and tell yourself: “If I die suddenly, what will become of the wretched old me? What would be my benefit even if I enjoy all the pleasures of the world?”
   The massacre also made me think of what a (now deceased) friend of mine was fond of saying: “Line them up and mow them down” whenever he talked about his political enemies. He was talking about mowing down members of the religious right, bigots who preached hate in the name of Christ, bigots who should not really call themselves Christian.  “Line them up and mow them down” had an offbeat forbidden ring to it although my friend was far from violent. Saying this for him was a kind of catharsis or personal exorcism.  

    I used to repeat my friend’s line myself line when feeling especially exasperated by certain groups of ignorant people.  Line them up and mow them down.  I’d laugh while saying this to offset the horrible sound of it. After Orlando, however, I’m through saying anything remotely like this again. 
   The aftermath of Orlando set off a series of political fights, of liberal vs. conservative, gun righters vs. 2nd amendment advocates, Trump vs. Sanders and Clinton supporters. Orlando hadn’t been in the news for five minutes before certain people started blaming Christians for the slaughter. The reason? Because two or three crazy ministers announced that they supported the jihadist Marteen who murdered 50 gay men and women at Pulse. Blaming Christians for Orlando is as absurd as blaming Tony Orlando and Dawn for the floods in Paris
    We also saw the antigun folks call for a ban on assault weapons as if banning assault weapons would make terrorism disappear. Jihadists, however, can just as easily don a suicide belt or “recycle” household items like gasoline or kerosene into fatal weapons.

  Assault weapons like the Sig Sauer MCX, however, do not belong on the open marketplace. Even Ronald Reagan (a man I do not admire) advocated their banishment except in the hands of the military. Assault weapons do not belong in the dens and kitchen cabinets of ordinary Americans.
    Next up was the Facebook wars over the Orlando massacre. These battles were disheartening to observe, mainly because of the polarizing opinions there.
    Some said that the massacre was caused by the easy access of assault weapons, while others blamed homophobia or radical Islam. It was the rare, intelligent commentator who put the blame on all three.   
     God forbid that a card carrying progressive should admit that Fox News might be right when it comes to fighting radical Islam. Just because Fox News is wrong 90 per cent of the time doesn’t mean it can’t score a bull’s eye on one or two issues. Neither the right nor the left are infallible sources when it comes to political solutions.  
     MSNBC, Buzzflash, Alternet and Salon. Com, all progressive news outlets, might be clueless when it comes to President Obma’s or western Europe’s immigration policies, but these sources get my vote every time when it comes to their opposition to tampering with Social Security and programs for the poor.
    Sadly, the “mow them down” mentality resigns supreme in America. The vitriol against Trump on Facebook is so thick that one can easily imagine an anti-Trumper edging towards violence.
  Obama haters are just as ferocious in their obsessive rage. Some of these postings on Facebook express the wish that some disastrous event would come along and end the Obama presidency. 
   As for the Omar Marteen, since the massacre it has come out that he was a frequent visitor to Pulse. There have even been reports that he picked men up there despite his marriage to Noor Salman. Gays are all too familiar with this type of man, the downlow covert guy who lives one life on the outside and a gay one on the inside. As I used to tell people, the numbers of men who live this way are far more numerous than the ordinary person could imagine. It is, in many ways, America’s biggest secret.
   While there’s nothing wrong with a healthy, questioning curious sexuality, in some men this secret life has adverse effects, especially when they hate themselves for what they’re doing.

     This rage, this self hatred of course might at any moment coalesce into violence, especially when fueled by religious fanaticism.
  This is why men who have nagging, persistent secret homosexual thoughts and fantasies they wish to get rid of are the ones who often lash out at gay men who feel comfortable in their own skin. In plain terms, the man who is always yelling “faggot” is somebody to watch out for and take note of. More often than not, this man is fighting repressed homosexual desires and putting on a show so that his friends and family will not suspect his secret desires.
   I experienced this on a Septa bus recently when a passenger, a male, lashed out at me as I pulled the cord for my bus stop. Perhaps I glanced at him too long when I boarded the bus at Front and Girard, but is this any reason to get upset?
    Whatever the reason, he yelled “pervert” as I got off the bus, then said it again. He wasn’t carrying a gun or a knife but he might have well been.
                  I gave him the finger, although even after I got off the bus he was still making hostile gestures through the window.  This fanatic would not stop.
                  He wasn’t Middle Eastern; he was just your run of the mill neighborhood dude in black athletic shorts… with a very bad attitude.  

Thursday, June 2, 2016

The Regressive 'New' Left

   While attending a recent lecture at the Catholic Historical Society, I spoke with a woman professor of religion at Temple University who told me about a book she had just published.

    Since we were both authors scheduled to speak at the Society, we talked for a while before our conversation turned to what it was like to teach college students in 2016. That’s a big subject given the atmosphere on many college campuses.

   That atmosphere is very much like a police state in which certain words and ideas are not allowed a place at the table. Guest speakers with opinions outside the current accepted academic norm—a left of center social justice worldview- are treated as heretical that should be denied a voice. 

    Professors teaching today have to weigh every word uttered in a classroom for fear that it may offend a few students. In the old days, if a student was offended by something a teacher said, they took it on the chin or marked it up as a difference in opinion. Today a college professor risks reprimand from school administrators if the words or ideas they express in class make just one or two students feel “uncomfortable.” 
   I asked the professor what it was like to have to walk on egg shells when she speaks before her class.  “Do you introduce so called controversial topics with trigger warning alerts?”

    She answered in the affirmative, adding that whenever she was about to speak about something that might make a student feel uncomfortable, she used the words ‘trigger warning’ before doing so. I thought about this for a moment, picturing a hundred red flag interruptions, like a series of red flags strung along I-95.   

     Let’s say our professor wanted to talk about the nation’s rape laws. In that case she’d have to announce “Trigger warning, rape,” before proceeding. This gives anyone in the class who felt an emotional connection to rape a chance to leave, cover their ears with their hands, or suck on a binkie to temper their discomfort. Of course, the few objecting students could also quit college altogether and go home to the ultimate safe space, Mommy and Daddy’s house, but not many would opt to do this.

    Many other topics besides rape would also “require” the professor to issue a trigger warning. 

   “It must be exhausting,” I told her. Much to my surprise, she seemed to defend the trigger warning system although she did hint that there were certain aspects of the system that were less than fortunate. But she didn’t come out and condemn it outright, which was disappointing.   

    In this new world of student pampering, there are also what are termed, microaggressions. 

Microaggressions are defined as “subtle but offensive comments or actions directed at a minority or other nondominant groups that is often unintentional.” In other words, better put a filter in that mouth of yours before speaking. And watch those jokes. A microaggression can also be as benign sounding as, “Where are you from?” or “Where were you born?” This is how crazy the new college world has become.
    The professor’s trigger warning system even extended into her teaching of religion. I got a sense of this when she told me that her students had congratulated her on her universal teaching methods in which it was impossible to detect any sort of bias in her presentations. In other words, the students could not tell whether she was Catholic, atheist, Baptist, Muslim or a Mormon. I don’t know about you, but I would rather that professors offer some hint or at least a story or two about their own religious beliefs. This would greatly enhance any discussion on religion. I have to wonder if the professor’s going to great lengths to appear neutral or non-committal when it came to her personal beliefs didn’t have its roots in a trigger-based fear more than a yearning to appear neutral. What’s wrong with a professor sharing personal religious views in order to highlight a discussion on what people believe? Nothing, unless of course saying you’re Catholic, Baptist or Jewish might set off trigger alerts from that odd, unhappy atheist student in the back row.

    As someone who came of age during the leftist revolutions of the late 1960s and early 1970s, I know first hand how hard the fight for free speech was fought. My generation protested the war in Vietnam and the draft. We witnessed the shutting down or censorship of editors and writers from underground and alternative newspapers.  We campaigned against unlawful arrests, the freedom to read banned books and poems like Allen Ginsberg’s Howl. We hated censorship of any kind and never advocated that Vietnam War proponents be banned from public discourse. Who among us would have thought that 50 years down the line it would be the descendents of the 1960s left progressives (now called regressive leftists) who would become the chieftains of cultural authoritarianism?
    Take the case of conservative pundit, Breitbart journalist Milo Yiannopoulos. The 32 year old Yiannopoulos has made an international reputation as a gay man “with the wrong opinions.” This Donald Trump-loving, anti-feminist, and proudly promiscuous gay man (he’s against gay marriage but encourages heterosexuals not to abandon the venerable institution) once told interviewer Dave Rubin that if he could take a pill that would change him into a straight man, he’d do it. Despite the positive changes in society when it comes to the acceptance of homosexuality, Yiannopoulos believes that it is still easier to be straight. When you are gay you are not allowed to say things like this, even though Yiannopoulos is on record as saying that gay people are Mother Nature’s special creation. “Gay people are one of the groups that Mother Nature has given license to go wild. That’s why so many great artists, authors and inventors have been gay, because gays have the ability to push further than ordinary people can.” 

   Yiannopoulos, who is Catholic, is currently bringing his “Dangerous Faggot Tour” to 60 US college campuses where he is cheered by mostly straight university students who love his cultural libertarianism, and who don’t mind it at all when he mentions his interest in black penises. 

    “The regressive left believes that words have the power that they don’t have,” he tells audiences.

    He is demonized by groups like Black Lives Matter, feminists and more than a few hard core LGBTQ ideologues.  

      His talks at colleges are often interrupted by so called social justice warriors, feminists and regressive leftists who want opposing ideas to be snuffed out. Some of these SJW’s wear masks that mimic the masks of bank robbers in the 19th century.  

    Yiannopoulos has problems with modern third wave feminism with its emphasis on man hating, man spreading while these same feminist groups ignore the real oppression of women in Middle Eastern countries. Modern feminism, he says, never comments on the brutal treatment of women in the Middle East because they are afraid of charges of Islamphobia.

    Yiannopoulos insists there’s no wage cap difference between men and women, citing studies done by the American Enterprise Institute. “The wage gap is a feminist myth that will not die,” he says. 

    To me, Yiannopoulos seems like the reincarnation of Oscar Wilde, especially with his flamboyant, outrageous mannerism and his UK accent. He’s a bit of a showman to be sure, but he’s smart and many of his views are spot on. 

   Another “freedom of speech” conservative speaker, the Canadian born Libertarian commentator Lauren Southern, also lectures and debates at college campuses while confronting armies of SJW’s who want to snuff out free speech. 

    Southern has been thrown out of Amber Rose Slut Walk demonstrations because she dares to raise pertinent questions like, “Do you really think that we live in a rape culture?” Just asking the question is reason enough for organizers to call the police. Southern was also once covered in piss in Vancouver when she dared to announce that there were only “two genders.” This was decried as hate speech by the people wearing those cowardly 19th century bank robber face masks.  

   What I’ve presented here is a short look at America’s new culture war. We will see ample proof of this during the national political conventions this summer, when violence, unrest and total anarchy will take the spotlight.
     But this violence will not come from those “crazy” Trump supporters, but—mark my words-- from social justice warriors (in masks) hot on the warpath.    


Sunday, May 29, 2016

My Kate Banford Comedy routine as Mr. Nickels, a high school principal who tells his students that the prom will not happen until the student murderer of other students is caught. At Vox Populi, 319 N. 11th Street, Philadelphia, Saturday, May 28, 2016.