One small step for gay rights, one giant leap for awkwardness.
With the botched Iowa caucuses and the many inaccuracies of Trump's State of the Union address, it's safe to say this week in politics has been particularly chaotic.
Above all, there's one bit of candidate-related information that has me especially disturbed. It's a photo of Pete Buttigieg kissing his husband. I know there are a multitude of issues that should warrant my concern—like, why are we using untested mobile apps during one of the most important primary elections in American history?—but take a look for yourself, and maybe you'll understand why this graceless smooch has me losing sleep.
even straight men kiss each other with more passion u psychopath have you ever seen an italian https://t.co/bXc7KEXJa6— The Öcalan Respecter 🌾 (@The Öcalan Respecter 🌾)1580875944.0
Don't get me wrong: It's absolutely incredible that, fewer than five years after gay marriage was legalized nationwide, a quite popular presidential candidate is able to freely and safely kiss his husband in public without risking major loss in support (except for this very stupid lady who wanted to rescind her vote for Buttigieg after learning he has a same-sex partner). What perturbs me about it is the sheer awkwardness of the kiss and the fact that their mouths don't even touch. Sure, maybe they were just trying to play it safe—you know, in regards to the notably homophobic administration we're living under—but it looks like they just straight-up missed. This is how the actors playing Maria and Captain Von Trapp in my middle school production of The Sound of Music stage kissed. This is how sexless 80-year-olds kiss. This is not how a 38-year-old who's been married for fewer than two years should kiss.
But then again, are we shocked? Buttigieg is notably inelegant, from his slightly uncomfortable paraphrasing of Lizzo to his absolutely unsightly method of eating a cinnamon bun. Not chicken wings. A cinnamon bun.
timely reminder that Pete isn’t eating chicken wings in this photo. it’s a Cinnabon that he’s torn up into little p… https://t.co/RMpgWVBTv8— illy bocean (@illy bocean)1580868648.0
At least Mayor Pete seems happy in his marriage, however perplexing it may appear.
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Yesterday, the NFL announced that its Super Bowl halftime show performers will not be participating in the traditional press conference preceding this year's Super Bowl, making it clear that Maroon 5 has no interest in having participating in any sort of productive or difficult conversation concerning their decision to go on with the show.
Yesterday, the NFL announced that its Super Bowl halftime show performers will not be participating in the traditional press conference preceding this year's Super Bowl, making it clear that Maroon 5 has no interest in having any sort of productive or difficult conversation concerning their decision to go on with the show.
The band has been under fire for refusing to back out of the Super Bowl's halftime slot, even though several other acts—including Rihanna and Cardi B—have turned down the gig in support of Colin Kaepernick, the player who made waves for kneeling during the National Anthem in 2016. He subsequently opted out of his contract and was not picked up, and is now suing the NFL for collusion against him.
Image via sportslogo.net
Maroon 5 has not had much to say regarding these issues, and it looks like they are hoping to take the stage on Sunday with as little friction as possible. "As it is about music," the NFL stated, in explanation of their decision to cancel the press conference, "the artists will let their show do the talking."
But the Super Bowl halftime show has never just been about music. It's one of television's most watched half hours, with viewers in the hundreds of millions each year, and whoever performs has the chance to make a massive cultural statement. On the other hand, Maroon 5 as a unit has never been particularly full of depth or nuance. Should we have expected more from them? Or are they the band America deserves?
Photo via TMZ
Maroon 5 aren't alone; Travis Scott has also been the subject of criticisms for his decision to perform alongside them. However, he made the NFL donate $500,000 to Dream Corps in exchange for agreeing to perform. "I back anyone who takes a stand for what they believe in," he said. "I know being an artist that it's in my power to inspire. So before confirming the Super Bowl Halftime performance, I made sure to partner with the NFL on this important donation." Maroon 5 also made a $500,000 donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters of America in partnership with the NFL and Interscope Records—on the same day the conference's cancellation was announced.
Cancel press conferences all you want, but you can't cancel the internet, for better or for worse. A change.org petition asking the band to pull out of the show has 111,800 signatures and counting as of Wednesday. "Until the league changes their policy and support players' constitutional right to protest, no artists should agree to work with the NFL," the petition reads. "The band has a chance to stand on the right side of history. If they don't, they will be remembered for choosing to side with the NFL over its players."
Eden Arielle Gordon is a writer and musician from New York City.
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The newly passed "BTS Law" allows K-pop stars to defer mandatory military service.
This week South Korea's National Assembly passed a law that is sure to have BTS ARMY cheering them on.
Generally speaking, all South Korean men are required to spend at least 18 months enlisted in the military, with the final cut-off for entry at age 28. But the new legislation — informally referred to as "The BTS Law" — will allow K-pop stars who meet certain requirements to defer until the age of 30.
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"I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot."
Academy Award-nominated actor Elliot Page has come out as transgender.
Page, known for his roles in films like Juno, Whip It, and Inception, announced his coming out in a social media post today. "Hi friends, I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot," he wrote. "I feel lucky to be writing this. To be here. To have arrived at this place in my life."
Every year, Spotify listeners win out over devotees to other streaming platforms when they unveil their Spotify Wrapped playlists — a data driven analysis of what the year sounded like.
And while this year's personal Spotify Wrapped summaries are still loading, Spotify just released their data for their most streamed global music and podcasts of the year.
Announced the week following the Grammy nominations, Spotify Wrapped feels like vindication for artists who were snubbed by the awards committee, like The Weeknd and Halsey.
The summary also analyzed trends of when and how people were listening to content, noting increased popularity in nostalgia-themed playlists and work-from-home-themed playlists. Spotify users were understandably playing music from home more, which even caused an uptick in streaming music from gaming consoles. Listeners also tuned obsessively into wellness podcasts like never before.
After months of on and off again speculation, Rihanna and A$AP Rocky seem to be dating.
Obviously, this is good news if it's true. Can you imagine? For the coordinating outfits alone, I need it.