Connect with us

Entertainment

Taylor Swift Donates to Tennessee LGBT Group

Taylor Swift donated $113,000 to an LGBT rights group in Tennessee. The group is specifically fighting several bills that are currently floating in various stages of the state’s government and that will impact the rights of the LGBT community. Taylor’s Donation Pop star Taylor Swift donated $113,000 dollars on Monday to an LGBT rights group […]

Published

on

  • Taylor Swift donated $113,000 to an LGBT rights group in Tennessee.
  • The group is specifically fighting several bills that are currently floating in various stages of the state’s government and that will impact the rights of the LGBT community.

Taylor’s Donation

Pop star Taylor Swift donated $113,000 dollars on Monday to an LGBT rights group in Tennesse.

Swift’s donation was given to the Tennessee Equality Project, which fights to stop anti-LGBT legislation from passing within the state, and aims to educate the community on equality.

TEP’s Executive Director, Chris Sanders, posted news of Swift’s charitable contribution to Facebook. He thanked her for being a long-time ally and said, “she sees our struggle in Tennessee and continues to add her voice with so many good people.”

With his post, he also shared a hand-written letter Swift addressed to him, where she said she was “inspired” by TEP’s work, specifically noting their stance against the “Slate of Hate.”

Anti-LGBT Bills in Tennessee

The “Slate of Hate” Swift mentions in her letter refers to a series of bills proposed in Tennessee’s General Assembly that could negatively impact the LGBT community. TEP created “The People’s Petition Against the Slate of Hate” to fight against them.

These bills include HB1152 and HB836, which both aim to allow adoption agencies to deny services based on religious beliefs, which TEP called “state-sanctioned discrimination.”

The slate also includes HB1369, which is known as “The Tennessee Natural Marriage Defense Act.” This act defines natural marriage as between a man and a woman and allows courts to void the 2015 Supreme Court ruling that effectively legalized gay marriage.

There are also two pieces of legislation that TEP specifically believes will target the transgender community. The first being HB1151, which is an amendment to the state’s indecent exposure rules that expand it to specifically include incidents in restrooms, fitting rooms, and locker rooms. The TEP called this bill a “devious attempt to criminalize transgender and gender nonconforming people” in these settings.

Then there is also HB1274, which some refer to as the “bathroom bill.” This would require the state’s Attorney General to defend schools that mandate that students and faculty use the bathroom of their “biological sex.” This bill also just passed through Tennesee’s House on Monday.

TEP released a statement on these bills, that was also backed by over 100 religious leaders in the state, ranging from pastors to rabbis.

“As residents of Tennessee, we oppose these bills in the Tennessee General Assembly,” the statement reads. “They promote discrimination rather than justice and demean the worth of LGBTQ people in our state.  We call on people of good will to join us in speaking out for basic fairness.”

Reactions to Swift’s Donation

The “Shake it Off” singer’s donation trended online, and was met with positivity.

Ellen Degeneres tweeted her praise.

The Human Rights Campaign thanked her for supporting their “incredible partners.”

Taylor’s Past Political Actions

This hefty donation is not Swift’s first jump into Tennessee politics. Back in October, she made a long post on Instagram about her choice to use her voice for politics and endorsed Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen.

Photo via Instagram, @taylorswift

She also encouraged her followers to head to Vote.org to register before the upcoming midterms, which lead to a surge of registrations. The site said they received 65,000 new registrations in the 24 hours after she posted, which is more than they received throughout the whole month of August.

See what others are saying: (Tennessean) (The Hollywood Reporter) (Jezebel)

Entertainment

Justin Bieber Apologizes After Supporting Morgan Wallen’s Music

Published

on

Bieber said he had no idea the country star had recently faced backlash for using a racial slur.


Justin Bieber Apologizes

Singer Justin Bieber apologized on Wednesday after sharing support for music from embattled country singer Morgan Wallen.

In February, Wallen was caught saying the n-word on a video circulated by TMZ. He was subsequently dropped from major country radio stations and suspended by his label. Still, he has managed to have a successful year so far, and his album — “Dangerous: The Double Album” — has spent months at the top of the carts.

Bieber posted on his Instagram story this week that he was listening to “Dangerous” and said he loved the album. He ended up deleting that post after fans called him out. Bieber later explained that he was unaware of Wallen’s recent controversy. 

Source: Instagram @justinbieber

“I had no idea that the guy’s music I posted was recently found saying racist comments, as you know I don’t support or tolerate any sort of racism or deicrimination,” he wrote on his Instagram story. “I had no idea, I sincerely apologize to anyone I offended.” 

Bieber Addresses Previous Controversies

The “Sorry” singer then addressed backlash he previously faced for a similar reason. Two videos surfaced in 2014 depicting Bieber using racial slurs when he was younger. In the first, he was 15-years-old and told a racist joke using the n-word. Bieber was 14-years-old in the second video, where he made a racist parody of his song “One Less Lonely Girl” that likewise included the n-word. He apologized for both at the time and brought them up again on Wednesday in hopes others could learn from his mistakes. 

Source: Instagram @justinbieber

“When I was a kid, I was incredibly ignorant and said some very hurtful racist jokes that were clearly not funny,” he wrote. “I hurt a lot of people, especially the Black people in my life but was fortunate enough to have had them educate me on the horrifying origin of the N-word. This brings those painful memories back up, I will always take ownership for my ignorance and my past because I know I am not that person.

He added that even though he has already apologized for these remarks, he believes it is important “to bring this up to hopefully educate people who may be ignorant to the topic of racism and how hurtful it is.”

He added that he has a lot left to learn but is thankful for the patience he has received, particularly from the Black community.

Read more: (Entertainment Weekly) (Complex) (The Hollywood Reporter)

Continue Reading

Entertainment

Selena Gomez Slams “The Good Fight” for Kidney Transplant Joke

Published

on

The singer said the reference to her transplant was “tasteless” and encouraged writers to call out these kinds of jokes so they don’t make it on air.


Selena Gomez Addresses Joke About Kidney Transplant

Singer and actress Selena Gomez slammed a recent episode of “The Good Fight” Tuesday after it made a joke about her 2017 kidney transplant. 

In one scene of the Paramount+ show, a group of characters brainstorm jokes and then start discussing what subjects are out of bounds. They ultimately agree that necrophilia, autism, and “Selena Gomez’s Kidney transplant” are not to be mentioned. 

This led to swift backlash online from people who thought the series was making light of Gomez’s health struggles. Many argued on Twitter that the singer’s battle with Lupus is no laughing matter, prompting Gomez to join the conversation herself. 

“I am not sure how writing jokes about organ transplants for television shows has become a thing but sadly it has apparently,” she wrote. “I hope in the next writer’s room when one of these tasteless jokes are presented it’s called out immediately and doesn’t make it on air.”

Gomez also encouraged people to register as organ donors if they are able to do so. 

A source close to the production of “The Good Fight,” however, told Variety that some of the anger is being taken out of context.

“If you watch the episode in full, the reference to Selena Gomez is part of a discussion the characters are having about topics that are not okay to make fun of and the idea of cancel culture and being canceled for telling a bad joke,” the source explained. “The reference is that Selena Gomez’s transplant is not something you can joke about.”

Previous Joke in “Saved by the Bell”

Still, some believe that by referencing Gomez’s kidney transplant as something you can’t joke about, the show was in turn making a joke about it. 

This is not the first time a show has made headlines for making a quip about Gomez’s procedure. In 2020, a scene from Peacock’s “Saved by the Bell” reboot was removed because it included several characters talking about the situation. In the scene, characters were asking if several people, including Gomez’s ex-boyfriend Justin Bieber and singer Demi Lovato, were secretly Gomez’s organ donor. At one point “Does Selena Gomez even have a kidney?” is written on a school hallway. 

Gomez’s friend Francia Raisa gave her the kidney in an act Gomez previously described as “the ultimate gift and sacrifice.” NBC ended up apologizing for the scene, claiming they had no “intention to make light of Selena’s health.” The network also donated to The Selena Gomez Fund for Lupus Research at the University of Southern California. 

After the apology, Raisa slammed the joke in “Saved by the Bell” as offensive and dismissive to organ donors. She made no specific remarks about the joke in “The Good Fight” but retweeted Gomez’s posts on the matter. 

See what others are saying: (Variety) (Entertainment Weekly) (People)

Continue Reading

Entertainment

Disney Eviscerates Scarlett Johansson’s “Black Widow” Lawsuit as “Callous,” but Report Suggests Emma Stone and Emily Blunt May Follow Her Lead

Published

on

“There is no merit whatsoever to this filing,” the company said in an uncharacteristically blunt statement that was heavily criticized online. 


Johansson/Disney Lawsuit Gets Bitter

Disney has described a recent lawsuit from “Black Widow” actress Scarlett Johansson as “sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic,” but Johansson may have just unleashed what is to become an even bigger legal challenge for the House of Mouse. 

At the center of this dispute, Johansson alleges she lost $50 million because Disney opted for a dual streaming/theater release of “Black Widow,” which debuted in theaters and for $30 on Disney+ with Premier Access earlier this month. 

According to Johansson’s suit, her contract with Disney — which was negotiated prior to any hint of a pandemic — stipulated that “Black Widow” would see an exclusive theater release. Notably, the actress also said her contractual bonuses were tied to the movie’s box office performance, which is an extremely common practice with films featuring A-list celebrities.

Of course, when the pandemic hit — like many other industries — movies were upended. Pandemic-related changes meant that despite having an initial release date of May 2020, Marvel fans wouldn’t get a chance to see “Black Widow” for over a year. 

Still, Johansson said she tried to contact Disney to renegotiate her contract prior to the film’s ultimate release, but she claims the company was unresponsive. 

On Thursday, she then filed a complaint with the Los Angeles County Superior Court, with her attorney arguing that “Disney has enjoyed the benefits of having one of Hollywood’s top actresses promote its wholly owned subscription service at no additional cost to Disney, and with the intended effect of taking money out of that actress’ own pocket.”

Later Thursday, Disney claimed that it has “fully complied” with Johansson’s contract and that the streamed release of the film “has significantly enhanced her ability to earn additional compensation on top of the $20M she has received to date.”

“There is no merit whatsoever to this filing,” the company said in its uncharacteristically blunt statement.

Are Emma Stone and Emily Blunt Next?

Speaking of blunt, it was reported Friday that both Emily Blunt and Emma Stone may also file lawsuits against Disney’s dual streaming release of their films. 

In fact, according to an exclusive newsletter run by former Hollywood Reporter Editor Matt Belloni, Stone “is said to be weighing her options” over the dual release of “Cruella” in May. Meanwhile, he suggested Blunt could also take action or speak out following this weekend’s release of “Jungle Cruise.”

Belloni went on to describe Disney as “notoriously difficult to deal with” regarding such matters and claimed that many have simply been waiting for someone powerful enough to speak out. 

Disney Criticized for Its Response

Much of the public perception of the situation has led to overwhelming support for Johansson’s camp. Online, a slew of people lambasted Disney’s response, with many calling it a deflection. 

See what others are saying: (ScreenRant) (Newsweek) (Variety)

Continue Reading