New City’s Latest Thrusts Would-Be Reagan Assassin John Hinckley Jr.
Into the Spotlight

Self-Portrait of a Madman: A Polaroid of John Hinkley used at trial. Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Self-Portrait of a Madman: A Polaroid of John Hinckley used at trial.
Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

When John Hinckley Jr. pulled the trigger six times on March 30, 1981, he was trying to kill then-president Ronald Reagan. But his real motivation was fame. Ironically, since being found not guilty by reason of insanity in 1982, Hinckley has faded from public view. But now a new play from Philadelphia playwright Ginger Dayle thrusts the would-be assassin into the spotlight.

The show, which opens on March 6th at the Adrienne, is the first major creative endeavor to center solely on Hinckley, a schizophrenic who these days divides his time between a psychiatric hospital and his parents’ home in Virginia. Dayle began the project in 2007 as a graduate student at Villanova and resurrected it to close out New City Stage Company’s presidential-themed season.

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NMAJH and NCC Are #OpenInPHL and Free on President’s Day

If you’re lucky enough to have the day off you may want to take the opportunity to check out some of our local museums that you’ve always been meaning to get to. Here are two welcoming guests with a special free day of admission for President’s Day. They’re especially great options if you’re looking for something to do with kids.

george washington

NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AMERICAN JEWISH HISTORY: Family-friendly interactive tours, arts and crafts activities and story times make up NMAJH’s day of celebrations. A rarely seen original letter written by George Washington to the Jewish Community of Newport, R.I., will also be pulled out of storage to be put on display especially for President’s Day. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., free, National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 S. Independence Mall East,

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Romney: Gay Families Are Not Right

Mitt Romney may be flip flopping all over the place when it comes to healthcare, foreign policy and the economy, but he’s stayed on point when it comes to LGBT issues – and just how much he opposes equality. Here’s what Mittens had to say about same-sex couples and families in 2008 – and why he’s worked against amending birth certificates for LGBT families and their kids in Massachusetts:

Vick Will Slide On First Run Of The Year For Obama

Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid and quarterback Michael VickMichael Vick is still on a high after learning that the President of the United States is hip to his game and wants the QB to start sliding this season.

In true campaign form, Vick vowed he would change and made a promise to President Obama.

“I was stunned. I didn’t believe it. It was awesome, though,” said Vick of being recognized by the most powerful man in the world. “You think to yourself, ‘Yo, man, he’s got a point.’ If he says it then I’ve got to do it, so the first run of the year I’ll slide and he’ll know it was for him.”

Nnamdi Asomugha, a big player in charitable circles, met with the President this offseason. Asked if he had any football advice, Asomugha on Wednesday revealed that Obama wants Vick to start protecting himself. He is not the first.

“I get it from my teammates, I get it from my mom, I get from friends, I get it from Andy, I get it from the President,” said Vick.

Vick has never met Obama, but wants to and knows winning the Super Bowl would give him that opportunity.

“That may be my opportunity to meet him. It’s something to pray for, something to work for,” he said. “It’s not going to  be easy, that’s the one thing we do know. And I acknowledge that. That’s why I come out here each and every day and put in as much effort as I can to try and be better than the day before.”

Since the President is handing out advice on football, does Vick have any advice for him?

“Nah, we’ll try and convert him over to an Eagles fan,” said Vick of Obama, who is a Bears fan. “We’ll see if we can make him an Eagles fan after this season.”

You can follow Tim McManus on Twitter and email him at

Dan Savage Drops F-Bomb

When gay conservative group GOProud endorsed Mitt Romney in the presidential election, columnist Dan Savage had some harsh words. But one word in particular drew the ire from LGBT advocates. “The GOP’s house faggots grab their ankles, right on cue,” he wrote. “Pathetic.”

But is it really okay to use the F-word, even if it is coming from one gay person to the next?

Here’s what inspired the statement: “GOProud is prepared to commit significant resources to help make Mitt Romney the next President of the United States,” says Lisa De Pasquale, interim chair of the GOProud Board of Directors and the former director of the Conservative Political Action Committee.

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It’s About Time, Mr. President

Jane Velez-Mitchell (courtesy of HLN)

My first reaction to President Obama saying he now supports gay marriage was: Whew, finally. He’s the first U.S. president to take that stand. It’s historic and it’s about time. Americans have grown up debating and pondering this issue. A recent Gallup poll shows more Americans support gay marriage than oppose it. Even many Republicans like former Vice President Dick Cheney think same-sex marriage should be legal. His stance is the result of his own personal connection to the issue – his daughter is gay – but I’ll take it.

This was the next natural step in the long journey towards ending discrimination based on sexual orientation. We’ve gotten rid of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy without any negative repercussions. And, the states that do currently allow gay marriage have seen only more business for wedding caterers.

Still, I have to ask: Could the President have done even more? His new stance is amazing in the symbolism department. But what does it accomplish in the real world?

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Obama on Same-Sex Marriage

It may take some time before many of us will fully realize the significance of President Obama’s “coming out,” as it were, in favor of same-sex marriage yesterday. And while today religious leaders condemn him, and the GOP are already using it against him, he made history. And we are incredibly proud that we have a leader who is willing to do what is right, rather than what may be politically savvy. Let’s remember that this November when we head to the polls to re-elect the first president in history to say out loud and proud that he supports marriage equality in America.

“At a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me, personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married,” the president said. “When I think about those soldiers or airmen or Marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that ‘Don’t ask, Don’t tell’ is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.”

Check it out:

Gay Romney Spokesman Resigns

One of Mitt Romney’s top spokesmen Richard Grenell has resigned from the campaign as of late yesterday, reports the Washington Post. His departure comes just two weeks after being hired by Romney, who’s expected to be the GOP frontrunner for president.

Up until now, the foreign policy spokesman was criticized by both the left (for controversial tweets about Democratic women like Michelle Obama – the account has since been deleted) and by the right, most notably, for being openly gay during a conservative campaign that has proven to be in opposition of LGBT rights.

Family Research Council‘s (FRC) Tony Perkins, former FRC president Gary Bauer and American Family Association‘s Bryan Fischer all voiced criticism of Grenell when Romney hired him. Fischer even went on the record to say that Grenell posed a national security risk during a radio show. He theorizes that because of Grenell’s homosexuality, he must have hundreds, if not thousands, of “random, frequent and anonymous sexual encounters and that becomes a significant issue when we’re talking about appointing somebody to a post as sensitive as a spokesman for national security and foreign policy.”

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What We Love: Mitt ‘N Match

As the GOP presidential campaign heats up, with expected frontrunners Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum duking it out to be on top, the HRC has come up with Mitt ‘N Match, a funny way to get serious about the former Massachusetts governor’s varied opinions on LGBT issues over the years. As he panders to hardcore conservatives during the campaign nowadays, HRC actually digs up a few inconsistencies between what he’s saying today (gays are bad) compared to how he legislated in the past (hey, to each his own).

In fact, Romney has flip flopped so many times on everything from being out in the military to workplace discrimination, that Mitt ‘N Match puts it into perspective by dressing and redressing the man who wants to oust Obama from the White House (magical underpants not included).

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