Michelle Shocked responds to backlash


Michelle Shocked is responding to the flood of criticism she sparked earlier this week with what’s been described as her anti-gay tirade during a recent performance in San Francisco, saying she does not oppose gay marriage.

During her concert Sunday, audience members reported that she said, “When they stop Prop 8 and force priests at gunpoint to marry guys, it will be the downfall of civilization and Jesus will come back.” She subsequently told the crowd, “You can go on Twitter and say ‘Michelle Shocked says God hates [epithet for gays].”

It was on Twitter that Shocked’s response to the episode has been unfolding.

To a fan’s question of “What are you up to?” on her Twitter account, Shocked replied, “Just my usual troublemaking, at the expense of dear friends who trust me, even when I appear to be gay-bashing.”

She also tweeted, “I’m neither against a woman’s right to choose nor gay marriage. Am a fundamentalist tho.”

Scorsese urges NY to preserve Bowery


Famed director Martin Scorsese wants New York’s mean streets to keep some of their grittiness.

The “Gangs of New York” director has joined an effort to curb redevelopment of the Bowery. That’s the former skid row near where Scorsese grew up.

Scorsese wrote to New York City Planning Commission Chairwoman Amanda Burden last week. He praises the neighborhood’s grittiness, ambience and vivid atmosphere.

Scorsese is backing a plan that would limit the height of new development on the east side of the Bowery to eight stories. The plan also calls for preserving several historic buildings.

Steven Tyler Act stalls in Hawaii


The future is looking bleak for a celebrity- privacy bill in Hawaii known as the Steven Tyler Act.

The proposal pushed by the Aerosmith lead singer would allow people to sue others who take photos or videos of their private moments. But after sailing through the Senate earlier this month after personal testimony from Tyler at a February hearing, the bill is missing deadlines in the state House, and key lawmakers say they won’t push it through.

Rep. Angus McKelvey of Maui, the chairman of the first of three House committees the bill needs to pass to get to the House floor, said he won’t have a hearing for the bill.

“There is zero support for that legislation in the House of Representatives,” McKelvey, chairman of the consumer-protection committee, told The Associated Press. “To say there is absolutely zero support would be an understatement.”

Koppel criticizes NBC for shuffling ‘Rock’


Veteran newsman Ted Koppel says NBC hasn’t done Brian Williams any favors by shuffling the newsmagazine “Rock Center” around its schedule.

Koppel, the former host of “Nightline,” has a story on “Rock Center” on Friday about minors held in solitary confinement in adult prisons. Koppel does about four or five stories a year for the newsmagazine.

Now on Fridays, the show has been on four different nights since it debuted on Halloween 2011.

Koppel said just when people figure out when the show is on, it’s moved. He said Williams deserves more support.

Vindicator wire services

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