Thursday, March 31, 2022

Feminine Differential - Sweetheart Neckline


Fashion Magazine:

The sweetheart neckline gets its name for resembling the curves at the top of a heart. It’s also a particularly flattering detail that accentuates and frames not only a woman’s decolletage but the also the much admired collarbone. Come wedding or awards season, it’s the fastest way to get pulses racing.

 I saw the above SWEETHEART NECKLINE PONTE TOP on the Boston Proper site.  It looked super cute on the model wearing EMBELLISHED ANKLE JEANS I remembered that I have a pair of Macys' blue matching Waist Trousers (cropped and pull-on) so maybe?  White jeans may be the best choice, however, I will check out the match when the top arrives.   Sometimes you cannot be sure of the color until the item arrives. Overall, I think the look is cute and feminine. 

Boston Proper



Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Timothée Chalamet - Fashion Icon

Bare-chested Timothée Chalamet wows Oscars in Louis Vuitton womenswear

Timothée Chalamet bolstered his reputation as one of Hollywood's boldest dressers by showing up to the Oscars in Louis Vuitton womenswear. 

The star wowed onlookers at Hollywood's Dolby Theatre on Sunday evening in an embroidered lace jacket and high-waisted pants from the label's Spring-Summer 2022 collection. He then put his own spin on the gender-fluid outfit with a sparkling necklace and a pair of black boots.But it wasn't just what Chalamet wore that set social media alight, it was what he didn't: a shirt.

Bare-chested beneath his black blazer, the actor had fans swooning online. "Timothée Chalamet is basically a rockstar right?" wrote one Twitter user, with another joking: "I'd like to thank whoever made this outfit, Timothée Chalamet's parents, and God."
Standout looks from the Oscars 2022 red carpet

The 26-year-old star -- who featured in two movies nominated in this year's Best Picture category, "Dune" and "Don't Look Up" -- is known for his daring red carpet fashion. Recent award ceremonies have seen him named on "best dressed" lists thanks to his use of bright colors, sharp tailoring and elevated streetwear.

Timothée Chalamet
He also regularly looks to Louis Vuitton for the biggest occasions, not least the 2019 Golden Globes, where he wore a sparkling harness that went viral and sparked a menswear trend in the process.

Though the Academy Awards are known for comparatively restrained fashion, Chalamet has previously used Hollywood's biggest night to make statements -- like the all-white Berluti suit he wore to 2018's ceremony. Two years later, his hybrid blue Prada tracksuit-suit became one of the night's most talked about menswear looks after it drew online comparisons to various uniformed workers, from a paramedic to a parking valet.

Timothée Chalamet's daring red carpet evolution
The actor was one of several male stars to take an adventurous approach on this year's red carpet. Daniel Kaluuya and "The Power of the Dog" star Kodi Smit-McPhee were among those to eschew conventional black-tie with brightly colored suits.


Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Jessica Chastain's Powerful Speech

Jessica Chastain WINS OSCAR and Gives Powerful Speech


Sunday's Oscar ceremony provided some unscripted action drama, however best of all was Jessica Chastain acceptance speech. Watch the Youtube below.   

Jessica Chastain shared a powerful message in her Oscars acceptance speech. The "The Eyes of Tammy Faye" star won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her portrayal of late televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker. Jessica said of Tammy:

I'm inspired by her compassion and I see it as a guiding principle that leads us forward." She added, "For any of you out there who do in fact feel hopeless or alone, I just not you to know you are unconditionally loved for the uniqueness that is you.


Monday, March 28, 2022

LGBTQ Ukrainians Fear Human Rights Abuses



Kyiv, Ukraine – Some LGBTQ people in Ukraine are fearing targeted human rights abuses if Russia occupies the country.

"That would mean a direct threat to me and especially, well, to me and to the person I love," Iulia, an 18-year-old law student, told CBS News. She is training to be a lawyer in Kharkiv, an eastern city that could be a primary target for Russia if it launches a wider invasion of the country. She wants to use her degree to fight for LGBTQ rights in Ukraine.

LGBTQ+ activists march in the Ukrainian
 capital during Kyiv Pride 2021

"In Russia, LGBTQ people are persecuted," she said. "If we imagine that Russia occupies all of the Ukraine or just a big part of the country, they won't allow us to exist peacefully and to fight for our rights as we are able to do that in Ukraine right now."

Russia formally banned same-sex marriage in 2021 — even though it hadn't been allowed there anyway — and it passed a law against so-called "gay propaganda" in 2013, which made it illegal to equate same-sex and heterosexual relationships or promote gay rights.

"Ukraine is a European country. We have a 10-year history of Pride marches, and as you know, in Russia, the situation is like opposite," Edward Reese, project assistant for Kyiv Pride, told CBS News. "We have totally different paths. ... We see the changes in people's thoughts about human rights, LGBTQ, feminism and so on. ... So definitely we don't want anything connected to Russia … and we won't have them."

Iulia said that while Ukraine still has a long way to go, it was making real progress in terms of acceptance of LGBTQ people.

"We still have a lot of things to do about our rights and our freedoms, but in Ukraine, you can fully express yourself," Ilulia told CBS News, explaining that although Ukraine doesn't allow same-sex marriage either, she believes it is only a few years away. 

"It's much more safer than in Russia, believe me. It's much easier," she said.

A 33-year-old freelance illustrator based in Kyiv, also named Ilulia, told CBS News that she doesn't believe Russia will carry out a complete invasion all of Ukraine, because she believes the Ukrainian army will stand strong.

"I'm a bit panicking, but like just a bit. I'm very confident in our army. A lot of Ukrainians are donating now to our army, not just financially but also donating blood," she said.

If Russia did take over the country, which she says would be the worst-case scenario, "I would try not to be caught, basically because, you know, even my Twitter profile, it's enough for them to imprison me. And imprisonment is the best thing that could happen to me in this situation."

Reese, of Kyiv Pride, said that the LGBTQ community in Ukraine was organizing to support the army to fight against any Russian threat. The group even recently offered a first-aid course to its members to be able to help if necessary.

"We have fear, because it's natural, but we don't panic. We donate to the army. I know that like yesterday, the fund to support Ukrainian army, which is helping our army, has reached a maximum in its history for donations. And the Kyiv Pride also posted the call to donate, and I know that LGBT people did it. And I myself donated also for the medical battalions," Reese said. 

"We actually don't believe that it will happen, but if it happens, I'm sure that many of the LGBTQ people and me, myself, we won't flee the country and we will fight and destroy it."

Iulia from Kharkiv said that despite the Russian threat, she was hopeful about the future for Ukraine and for its LGBTQ community.

"When this whole story is finished, and when Russia is done with terrorizing us, I think that we will soon legalize same-sex marriage. I think it must be about to happen," she said. " And yes, I think that I will have a very, very good and comfortable future living in Ukraine as an LGBTQ person."

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Friday, March 25, 2022

I Love A Success Story - Casil McArthur

 For The Modeling Industry, The Future Is Transgender

Before Casil McArthur caught the eyes of industry heavyweights, he was held up in Colorado, exploring his gender through cosplay. McArthur considered the form of fantasy dress up to be one of the only outlets he had to explore, and get comfortable with, his gender identity. "It takes a lot of hard work, a lot of dedication — a lot of late night conversations with yourself," he says, admitting he didn't like himself before transitioning.

"I had no energy, no drive. I felt like I was a black hole. I had pretty bad gender dysphoria up until I was able to get my top surgery done, even though I had been on hormones for a good amount of time leading up to then." Last year, photographer Collier Schorr shot him for Italian Vogue, pre-surgery, which led to a 16-page spread with Steven Meisel in W, a campaign for Kenneth Cole, stints on the Coach and Marc Jacobs runways at New York Fashion Week, and more. "I've always been comfortable in front of the camera, but that weight on my chest caused massive insecurity no matter what I did."

Upon his entry to the fashion industry, he was met with another identity challenge: Would he model openly as a transgender man? Or did he even have to? "Because I started modeling so young (at 10 years old), there was no point in hiding that part of me going into male modeling. It was out there already," he maintains. But McArthur was hesitant, not wanting to be seen as a transgender model, and thus separated from his peers. "I just wanted to be a male model. I was scared to be seen as a trans man." His concerns with his outer appearance are valid, considering the physical requirements for male models, too — and, at one point, McArthur thought transitioning would mean the end of his career. Being open about his gender allowed him to pursue his dream without the fear of being outed, being made to fit in a gender that wasn't his, or the ultimate trap: being typecast.

Casil McArthur - Gap Launches ‘Bridging the Gap,’
 a Film Celebrating American Optimism

"Being open about my gender in the industry, I don't have anxieties over people finding out I am trans. It forces me to love myself as a trans person and to see the beauty in this experience. It helps me realize that this is completely normal, and every trans individual deserves to feel normal about themselves," he says. Sentiments like this are frequent on his Instagram, where McArthur often calls on the industry for radical improvements to the way it regards transgender models. "We are not modeling being transgender. We are modeling the clothing, the art, the fashion, and so many other things that are not focused on our gender. Your gender can't hold you back."

Thursday, March 24, 2022

The Art Of Crossdressing


Crossdressing is an art. It is a choice and a lifestyle execution which enables a blurring of gender aesthetics. The video presents Divyaroop Ananda, a proud cross dresser unveiling his amazing sensibilities vis-a-vis clothes and other accoutrements. Ace photographer Sandeep Dhopate's 

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Dinner At The Farm

My Meetup "Women's Group" had an wonderful dinner at a
Kai Kai Farm, Monday March 21.  "Farm-to-Table" is not new, but is becoming the new catch phrase for restaurants that are near farms. This especially works here in South Florida where much of the nations US grown vegetables and produce thrive during the winter and early spring season.  Local restaurant chefs' have agreements with the farms and the relationship benefits all.  

Our MeetUp Group with 
Executive Chef Joanie Moore
"Essentially farm-to-table means harnessing the produce and livestock of locally grown farmers and ranchers; to put it simply, buying local. Most produce loses its nutrients within 24 hours of harvesting.


On Monday evening Executive Chef, Joanie Moore, provided a delicious dinner for our meetup group of nine and about 40 others at the farm. We ate at Kai Kai Farm's large open screened dining hall. There were larges screens where we could watch as the chef prepared our dinner in a demonstration/teaching setting.  We learned new cooking techniques and enjoy this creative meal together where questions were answered during the class.

Kai Kai Farm it a beautiful farm on 40 acres in the heartland of western Martin County.  Bordered by picturesque pastures and towering eucalyptus trees the rows run long with beans, broccoli, brussel sprouts and 80 other varieties of grown-in-the-ground artisanal vegetables. The dining hall is country-chic.

We had our on own table together and what a fun evening with an intelligent, interesting group of women.  I hope we do it again soon. 

My outfit for the evening
(Maybe a little overdressed for the farm) 

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Florida and Texas Can't Outlaw My Family

Claire McCully

Opinion by Claire McCully

Featured on CNN

March 15, 2022

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently defended a bill his opponents call a "don't say gay bill" by claiming that this law prohibits "sexual instruction in grades pre-K through three," and then followed that with the question of "how many parents want their kindergartners to have transgenderism or something injected into classroom instruction?"

As a parent -- and a trans mother, daughter and sister -- I have an honest answer to DeSantis' disingenuous question.

People like DeSantis, Paxton and Abbott want to stigmatize the mere knowledge, acceptance and inclusion of transgender and gay people. And as seen most horrifically in Texas, they even seek to criminalize parents who are doing their best to support and care for their children.

To be clear: as a trans woman, I am not an emblem of liberal ideology. Nor does my mere existence or presence equate to "sexual instruction" or an effort to "promote a lifestyle." 

I didn't choose to be trans. I am not a victim of abuse or grooming. I am not confused or need a basic lesson in biological facts. I just happened to be born into conflict with my assigned gender.

I am simply another human being and another parent at the local public school. I pack my son lunch and drive him to the bus stop in the morning. I help him with his homework when he gets home. We say our prayers before dinner, and I read a bedtime story to him and his older brother each night.

Protest in front of Florida State
Senator Ileana Garcia's office
And like any other parent, I expect my family to be welcomed and accepted by others at the school. And of course, this acceptance might be more likely if some of the children's stories read in classrooms feature two dads, two moms or even a trans mom.

If there isn't an absolute ban on representing families like my own in the classroom, there is a good chance that more than a few of my son's classmates won't grow up having unreasonable fears about LGBTQ people. And even better, they might be less likely to shame or bully my son for having a parent who is a bit different. After all, understanding is a great antidote to ignorance and its toxic side effects: fear and hatred.

In fact, I am a good example of how trans people are clearly not products of ideology or social contagion. My parents, both Reagan Republicans, raised me in the same way that they raised their four other sons. They expected that my gender identity would agree with my assigned gender and that I would grow into a man. For them, that outcome must have seemed as certain as the sun rising the next morning.

Despite all of that, even in my earliest childhood memories, I remember my certainty that I should have been born a girl. And without any knowledge of other people who felt the same way, I was left painfully alone and isolated with this overwhelming dilemma.

There is so much more to read in the well written opinion piece.

Claire McCully is a writer and professor of English in Nevada

Monday, March 21, 2022

Feminine Differential - Chambray Blue


From Proper Cloth:

While chambray and denim are often confused for one another, they’re not exactly the same fabric. A chambray is a plain weave fabric woven with a colored yarn in the warp and a white yarn in the weft. Like chambray, denim is made with a colored yarn in the warp and white in the weft, but is woven in a twill construction. The chambray’s warp and weft threads will alternate one over the other, while denim’s warp thread will go over two threads in the weft before going under one. Typically, you will notice a lighter color to the underside of a denim fabric, whereas the underside of chambray will appear much more similar to its face side. 

The above items were added recently and make for a great feminine (soft) casual differential.  

The top is Tommy Behamma's Chambray Montauk 3/4-Sleeve.  I got it during their 25% off weekend. The color is called "Light Storm Wash" and is a beautiful medium blue.  Plus as described above, the material is not heavy; soft. I love the gathered sleeves because I almost always push my sleeves up to the embow. I so  dislike long sleeve anything.  

The pants are Chico's Brigitte Slim Ankle Pants in Alabaster [white].  Chico's is part of Soma and I do get a great employee discount. Chico's describes these with a " Hidden Fit technology that shapes your style for a figure-trimming fit".  They are high rise and hit well above the belly button that smoothes the front when pulled up. I have come to like the pull on style and it's form fitting front and back fit; both flattering and feminine.  

The pumps are ancient, Banana Republic suede.   

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Rhonda's Political Week In Review 3-20-2022

AP: The [California] bill  is meant to help parents in other states who risk being criminally prosecuted for supporting their children’s access to gender-affirming procedures and other health care.

 Florida Politics: The "Make America Florida" political action committee was registered with the Federal Elections Commission on April 2.

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Friday, March 18, 2022

High School Boys Wearing Dresses to School

Get suspended for being a 'distraction'

By: Kerry Justich June 5, 2018

Rodney Dimasso

It’s no secret that high schoolers are often pushing the boundaries of their school’s rules when it comes to pulling pranks, skipping classes, and even dressing in a way that challenges dress codes. For these two senior boys, however, testing the limits of their dress code might not have been their intention when they showed up to school wearing dresses. Yet the outfits, which were completely within Melissa High School‘s regulations, still got them in trouble with the principal.

Chris Swkyert, 17, and Rodney Dimasso, 18, both attend the public high school in Melissa, Texas, where they decided to wear dresses one day during their last month of classes. And although they thought that it was a pretty innocent act, it ended up landing them two days worth of in-school suspension.

“I just wore the dress because I wanted to,” Dimasso tells Yahoo Lifestyle of the black sleeveless dress he wore. “I was walking down the hallway and the principal told me to follow him. When I went into his office, he was asking me why I wore the dress, and I told him because I wanted to. He said it’s a distraction and told me I am going to have two days of in-school suspension.”

While in the principal’s office, the student attempted to argue his way out of the punishment, by pointing out that his wardrobe wasn’t actually breaking any of the school’s rules. In fact, the school’s dress code specifies that “Shorts and skirts must be no shorter than 3 inches above the knee on any side.” Dimasso ensures that his dress met that standard, and he was even wearing shorts underneath.

The student wasn’t provided an opportunity to change his clothing before receiving disciplinary action.

Both Dimasso and Swykert said that the incident caused a disruption at school, with other students becoming vocal about how they felt the punishment was unfair. It wasn’t until another student tweeted about it that it got even more attention.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Shopping My Closet for A MB Event


This month's Mercedes Club event was a breakfast at a local diner and a visit to a car storage facility. There are times when I become numb to the excesses I see in-and-around Palm Beach with high end shopping, restaurants, and mansions. However, this event was "an over-the-top moment!"

K2 is a 30,000 sq ft open wearhouse/storage facility for collectors of high end exotic / rare classic cars. This air conditioned facility provides full services from brokerage, storage, maintenance, detailing and pick-up / delivery. Individual vehicles that we saw ranged in value for 3 million plus, (multiples of this execotic car, silver, red, and orange) to a pristine 64 Mustang convertible. And everything in between. Of special interest was a Gullwing SL Mercedes AMG that was brought up to the front just for us. 

Although many of the cars were museum or race quality, we were to assume that many were driven on the road for fun and pleasure. All but the race cars had license plates. Likely a summer storage place while their owners summer in the Hamptons or Westchester.  

Our Group Photo - This gives some feeling for the size of the building 

The outfit of the day included a recent Tommy Bahama Palm Tree Crew Sweater and Chico's  Striped Denim Ankle Jeggings,  My closet "fun find" were the Coach Kori Signature Jacquard Denim Wedges and matching Coach purse. These had to be at least 15 years old and worked well with the outfit of the day. The wedge sandals (4" with 3/4 platform) were comfortable for an on-my-feet morning. I am sure worn only once before. Note to self: Some investment pieces never go out of style.  

Another fun "Escape" morning.



Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Feminine Differential - Pants - A Woman's Prospective

I wore men's pants for a day and, frankly, women get a raw deal

By Melissa Singer
December 12, 2019

Every so often, I like to conduct a fashion experiment. Like the time I thought I could be a "mum" jeans convert but ended up giving them to charity after two very unsatisfying wears.

More recently, I interviewed the designer of a popular menswear brand about women shopping across the aisle, and decided to do a little gonzo journalism by picking up a pair of tailored suit pants.

First, there was the store visit. The staff were expecting me, so that eliminated the, "Are you shopping for your boyfriend?" question. Then there was finding the right style to suit my petite-with-hips-and-a-bum size 8 frame.

The smallest size was a 28, a few inches larger than I wear in jeans, but to my surprise, the alterations person only needed to cinch them in about 1.5 centimetres. Of course, she needed to shorten them by about six inches so I could wear them with sneakers or a modest heel.

It was the first time I wore them to work that I had a revelation. I seemingly glided from house to tram to office, feeling like I wasn't wearing pants at all. There was no "swoosh swoosh" of the fabric and the pockets – the pockets! – they were roomy enough for my Myki and my phone. And then it hit me: I realised why men appear to move through the world with more ease, and it has nothing to do with the patriarchy (OK, maybe just a little). It's because their pants are more comfortable.

I had to learn more, so I contacted tailor Julie Goodwin to ask why, when it comes to pants, are women getting such a raw deal?

"Mainstream fashion has short-changed women when it comes to all forms of tailoring … even the quality of the materials are not as good," Goodwin tells me.

There are several key areas where men's and women's pants differ and, most often, women are the losers.

One of the most obvious points of difference is in the crotch area, to allow for men's extra ... parts. "The tendency is to make the leg look longer in a ladies’ pant by making the crotch shorter but that sacrifices a little comfort," Goodwin says. "Women can be obsessed with wearing the smallest size possible but the secret to a really comfortable pant is to size up."

Women can wear their pants anywhere from the "natural waist" (think your I'm a Little Teapot tilt point) to the hip, whereas men's pants tend to fall on the "trouser waist", which is lower. Goodwin's advice to women experimenting with men's pants is to buy for your hip size and have them altered. "Women’s pants off the rack are not made to be altered," she says. "It’s a tradition that menswear is made with alterations in mind – the seam at back is easily opened and accessible. We don't do that for ladies, we make them suffer. That’s ridiculous because as women, our body shapes are more varied."

A 2018 article in The Guardian by Chelsea Summers called out clothing manufacturers for sexism when it comes to pockets. She quoted research that found the average men's jean pocket was 23 centimetres deep, versus 14 centimetres for women. "Functioning pockets make women very excited," Summers wrote. "This is a sentence that shouldn’t need to be written in 2018. Women are busy, and we need to carry our stuff with the same ease as men do."

Goodwin says that because historically women have carried handbags, men's pants have been made with far more generous pockets, and they are often of higher quality in terms of fabric and finish. "When you're talking about the high street it’s just stinginess, it’s extra effort," Goodwin says.

So there you have it. Men's pants don't just seem better than women's pants, they very often are. And with all that extra depth in the pockets, I might even soon lose the handbag, too.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Body Heat - A Tribute to William Hurt

This weekend brought sad news that we lost a great American actor

“It is with great sadness that the Hurt family mourns the passing of William Hurt, beloved father and Oscar winning actor, on March 13, 2022, one week before his 72nd birthday,” his son wrote. “He died peacefully, among family, of natural causes...." 

William Hurt, an Oscar winner for Kiss of the Spider Woman who often played a quiet intellectual in his early acting roles but later took more strident turns in science fiction and Marvel films, died today, a week before his 72nd birthday. 

In pictures: William Hurt's 40 years of films

Kathleen Turner and William Hurt 
Body Heat 1981

Hurt and Kathleen Turner stared in one of my absolute favorite movies.  The year 1981 and I was on a business trip in Texas.  Watching a purchased movie in my hotel room was something I almost never did. However,  I was bored that evening and rented "Body Heat".  Sounded interesting; billed as an erotic thriller.  

That it was. The chemistry between Turner and Hurt, well, was HOT.  What made it interesting was it was mostly filmed in Lake Worth, next town below Palm Beach, with scenes at a home in Manalapan that I knew.  Many of the places I recognized including the Lake Worth Pier. 

There were many scenes that talked about the South Florida summer heat. Turner and Hurt cooled down the best way they could including a bath tub scene with ice.  Unforgettable!      

There are several lines from the movie that are unforgettable as well - Matty Walker to Ned: "You aren't too bright. I like that in a man."  At the end Ned finally got the full understanding of what has happen and he describes Matty as "Relentless".  

The film launched Turner's and Hurt's career. Also many others including Ted Danson and Mickey Rourke.  Empire magazine cited the film in 1995 and named Turner as one of the "100 Sexiest Stars in Film History.  In my book #1.

Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a 98% approval rating based on 42 reviews, and an average rating of 8.10/10. The site's consensus states, "Made from classic noir ingredients and flavored with a heaping helping of steamy modern spice, Body Heat more than lives up to its evocative title".

William Hurt will be missed as an actor, who had a remarkable career and remained active up until the end. For me he will always be the unforgettable "I finally figured it out in the end", Ned Racine. 

The movie also had a haunting sound track by John Barry that I enjoy from time-to-time.  

JOHN BARRY 'Body Heat' Original Main Title 1981

Monday, March 14, 2022

Tyranny Has Triumphed

Because Real Courage is Rare.

Definition of tyranny from Merriam-Webster: nond - 1: an act or the pattern of harsh, cruel, and unfair control over other people   2: a government in which all power is in the hands of a single ruler [party].

Ready to Die? Why Most People Flunk the Zelenskyy Test.


In his bid for international support for Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has found a good line, and he knows it.

This might be the last time you see me alive 

He told European leaders in a conference call, shortly after his country was invaded. He repeated the words a few days later as he pleaded with House and Senate members for more U.S. assistance.

Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Zelenskyy’s warning of his imminent demise is powerful for two reasons. One is that it is self-evidently credible. The Ukrainian president’s public willingness to court death to defend his country is probably now his best protection against death. Zelenskyy’s new stature — suddenly, he is likely the free world’s most admired person — has increased the costs Russian President Vladimir Putin will pay if Zelenskyy is killed during the Ukraine invasion. But no one, least of all Zelenskyy, can have much confidence that Putin cares about those costs.

The fact that Zelenskyy — joined by vast numbers of his fellow Ukrainians — is willing to sacrifice everything makes him a clarifying agent in the great contest of the age, between free societies and despotic ones. For the past generation, liberal democracy and individual freedom have been defeated by tyranny in multiple arenas. The reasons are diverse, but unified by a common truth: Most people, on most occasions, aren’t willing to follow the Ukrainian example


Even in the United States, the notion of people risking personal fortunes in defense of ideals can seem rather remote. The person currently most hailed as courageous in American politics right now is Rep. Liz Cheney. The Zelenskyy example reminds us that what Cheney is risking with her criticism of Donald Trump is the loss of her Wyoming congressional seat, in favor of a new career of board seats and speaking engagements and TV network contributor contracts. That is far more nerve than nearly all of her colleagues in the Republican caucus, which includes many people who share her views privately but are afraid to share them publicly.

... it’s becoming impossible to avoid the Zelenskyy test: What are you willing to sacrifice in the name of your ideals?


My Note: A lesson for us as we stand up to the the Republican zealots that are attempting to extinguish our rights and make us invisible.

Sunday, March 13, 2022

Rhonda's Political Week In Review 3-13-2022

FLORIDA—Governor Ron DeSantis has come under harsh criticism for bullying a group of kids by forcing them to make their own choices and do whatever they want. The college kids were just minding their own business, wearing masks as instructed when DeSantis rudely offered to let them consider other options. 

This is from a "Team DeSantis" sponsored article: 

“Take those masks off right now, or keep them on—just do whatever you want! Hey, you're an American and America is a free country! You do you, man!” said a scary and imposing Governor DeSantis, intimidating the kids and leaving them with no choice but to choose whatever they wanted. 

My Note: Unless they want to discuss LGBTQ issues at school.  

My point of reference: In Russia Putin has banned using the term "war" when making reference to Putin’s War. The law envisages sentences of up to three years. What is the penalty going to be for saying "Gay"?  

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Friday, March 11, 2022

Appearing In Public Dressed Outside Your Birth Gender, Outlawed.

What are you going to do if cross-dressing is outlawed? 

Masquerade Laws Revived to Target LGBTQ

A police officer arrests a male cross-dresser
 in a ball gown, circa 1940.

Laws criminalizing cross-dressing spread like wildfire around the United States in the mid-19th century. New York’s, dating back to 1845, was one of the oldest. It declared it a crime to have your “face painted, discolored, covered, or concealed, or [be] otherwise disguised… [while] in a road or public highway.” 

The state originally intended the law to punish rural farmers, who had taken to dressing like Native Americans to fight off tax collectors. But as scholar William N. Eskridge, Jr. recounts in his encyclopedic book Gaylaw, “by the beginning of the 20 century, gender inappropriateness… was increasingly considered a sickness and public offense.”

Existing laws against costumed dress, even if they didn’t specifically mention cross dressing—collectively referred to as “masquerade laws”—were increasingly pressed into service around the country to punish gender variance.

When he was found guilty and sentenced to three years in a reformatory, the judge made it clear that despite the new charge, he was being punished for his dress. “No girl would dress in men’s clothing unless she is twisted in her moral viewpoint,” the magistrate proclaimed from the bench, according to a September 3, 1913 article in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.


Think it can not happen?  THINK AGAIN!

According to CNN: 150+ anti-LGBT proposals:

A separate CNN analysis by Giselle Rhoden includes a map of more than 150 anti-LGBT bills introduced at the state level so far this legislative session. They range from restricting access to gender-affirming health care for minors to excluding transgender children from athletics. Some examples:

  • A Georgia bill similar to Florida's bill restricting discussion of LGBT topics.
  • An Idaho bill that could punish medical personnel who provide gender-affirming health care and parents who agree for their children to receive such care with up to life in prison.
  • A new executive order issued by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to launch child abuse investigations into parents seeking gender-affirming medical treatment for trans children.
  • An Iowa ban on transgender women and girls taking part in girls' sports at public schools.
  • A Tennessee ban on any discussion, textbook or instructional materials on "LGBT issues or lifestyle" in public schools.
  • An Oklahoma proposal to ban some public school libraries from keeping books about "the study of sex, sexual preferences, sexual activity, sexual perversion, sex-based classifications, sexual identity, or gender identity or books that are of a sexual nature that a reasonable parent or legal guardian would want to know of or approve of prior to their child being exposed to it."
All these proposals make it harder for certain Americans to be who they are, which is counter to the idea of parental rights or individual freedoms.

Many men dressed as women were locked up on charges of masquerading and indecent exposure at the National Variety Artists' Exotic Carnival and Ball held at the Manhattan Center in 1962. Police and detectives herded the costumed guests into police wagons in front of the ball. 

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Flagler Museum Season 2022 - Impressive Finally


Tuesday evening (3/8/22) The Palm Beach Flagler Museum wrapped up its' 2022 music series. I have talked about the series many times and have been a supporter from its inception. Palm Beach has many events that are geared to the South Florida winter season that provides entertainment for our seasonal "Snow Birds". The Music Series is one of the cultural highlights of the season.

The Music Series is a well-kept local secret as well.   

I mentioned in a post last week that the Museum tried something different this year, jazz. It was a roaring success in my opinion and I hope this becomes a permanent addition. I was talking with the Museum Director after the concert and she asked, "You want me to have a Jazz Series, don't you?"  "Why not", was my answer.   

Here is the description of last evening's six artist ensemble:

This distinguished faculty group from the Frost School of Music’s Department of Studio Music and Jazz (MSJ) includes multi-Grammy® Award winners, Guggenheim Fellows, MacArthur “genius grant” winners, celebrated recording artists and more; the prominence that the members of this group have achieved reflects the high standing achieved by the Frost School of Music’s acclaimed jazz program. Collectively, members of this group have recorded nearly 100 albums. The performance will include original compositions and arrangements by the ensemble members.

The Frost MSJ Faculty Sextet

Brian Lynch, trumpet
Etienne Charles, trumpet
Marcus Strickland, saxophone 
Martin Bejerano, piano
Charles Bergeron, bass
Dafnis Prieto, drums

The six accomplished jazz artists played six of their original recorded works.  During the six pieces each member was featured playing a mini-solo, showcasing the depth of their piece and individual talent. The all music professor ensemble has amazing camaraderie and stage presence. Incredible talent was showcased.   

What I like best about jazz is that the on-stage group seems to be having as much fun as the audience. That was certainly on display at this concert. Fun was shared all around.  Thank you Flagler Museum for this amazing concert and Music Series 2022.  

Frost School of Music’s Department of Studio Music and Jazz Ensemble
In the middle is Roe Green, The Music Series underwriter.