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Thursday, August 22, 2013

On the Voices of Dance Music and Those Protesting Russia's Current Anti-LGBT Laws

When last we visited the Billboard dance/club chart, gentle readers, Cher was in 10th place with "Woman's World" after taking that song to the numero uno spot. Well, guess what? This week, "Woman's World" bounces back to # 8! Nice going, fer Cher!

Kylie Minogue's twirling her "Skirt" to second place this Billboard week ending August 31, possibly werq'n that thing to trounce Avicii from the top perch next go-round. Plumb's "Need You Now" is up at # 4 with Pet Shop Boys' "Vocal" right behind in the fifth position. Depeche Mode's "Soothe My Soul" plummets to 13th place after weeks of a strong showing peaking last time at #7.

The new remixes of Yoko Ono's "Walking on Thin Ice" are up at # 18 this week, a leap from the 22nd spot. Lady Bunny shows no sign of stopping as "Take Me Up High" edges up to # 23 from # 25 last week, right behind Inaya Day and Dj Escape's "Make Some Noise" at # 22. The latter song has been charting for 12 weeks and peaked at fourth place. And Cazwell enters with Luciana by his side with "Guess What," now in the Top 25 (at # 24), up from # 28 and after a mere four weeks on Billboard.

Meanwhile, the voice of Wentworth Miller was heard around the world this week as the British-born, Brooklyn raised, Princeton educated actor/writer publicly disclosed he is gay in a letter declining an invitation to be a guest of honor at the St Petersburg International Film Festival in protest against Russia's recent anti-gay laws. The 6'1" star of tv's "Prison Break" notified the festival: "I am deeply troubled by the current attitude toward and treatment of gay men and women by the Russian government. The situation is in no way acceptable, and I cannot in good conscience participate in a celebratory occasion hosted by a country where people like myself are being systematically denied their basic right to live and love openly."

It's not just about the vodka anymore! However, the ban in gay bars across America continues against imported Russia vodka. Today, out-and-proud singer Colton Ford posted on Facebook: So I'm sure everyone is aware of the situation going down right now in Russia. Unbelievable that we're still dealing with this kind of bs, but unfortunately we are. The Winter Olympics should be moved to another location that doesn't discriminate against anyone because of their sexual orientation, or anything else for that matter!! Now we're looking at the Miss Universe pageant being hosted in Moscow amid this widespread crackdown by the Russian government against LGBT Russians and pro-equality supporters.

Adapting some of the language of the Human Rights Campaign, he continued: Rather than lend Russia any credibility during the widely-watched competition, join me in calling on Donald Trump, a co-producer of the show, to immediately move the pageant to a country that upholds basic human rights for all. Add your name to this letter to Donald! 

Within Russia, there has been recent acts of defiance and opposition, like Russian athletes Kseniya Ryzhova and Tatyana Firova sharing a kiss on the winners' podium at Luzhniki stadium in Moscow last weekend. 

Prominent people in the international community have also called upon the Olympics Committe to move the Winter Olympics out of Russia. Last week, American President Barack Obama told reporters, however, that he did not think that a U.S. boycott of the games would be fair to the athletes who have trained for years to participate in them.

"One of the things I'm really looking forward to is maybe some gay and lesbian athletes bringing home the gold or silver or bronze, which I think would go a long way in rejecting the kind of attitudes that we're seeing there," the President said. "And if Russia doesn't have gay or lesbian athletes, then that would probably make their team weaker."

So, head to the dancefloor and shake, shake, shake your booties to the beat. Unite! Music will bring us together.

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