After GLAAD criticism, ABC pulls 'Work It' two episodes in
ABC's "Bosom Buddies"-type comedy, "Work It," was criticized by GLAAD -- and now it's cancelled.
January 16th, 2012
03:29 PM ET

After GLAAD criticism, ABC pulls 'Work It' two episodes in

(CNN) - Although GLAAD probably would have preferred that ABC's new comedy "Work It" had never made it to air at all, the network has canceled the comedy after just two episodes, reports the New York Times.

Even ahead of its premiere, the sitcom, which focused on two men who dress as women in a last-ditch attempt to find work in a difficult economy, was met with negative reactions. Aside from looking like a knock-off of "Bosom Buddies," organizations such as GLAAD didn't find the premise funny.

"During a period in which the transgender community now routinely finds itself in the cultural crosshairs, the timing couldn't be worse for a show based on the notion that men dressed as women is inherently funny," the organization said in a blog post on its site before "Work It" premiered.

Read the full story on CNN's Marquee blog

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Filed under: Gender • How we live • Pop culture • Women
Opinion: How bystanders can protect kids from bullying
EricJames Borges, a gay teen from California who made an "It Gets Better" video last month, killed himself last week.
January 16th, 2012
02:39 PM ET

Opinion: How bystanders can protect kids from bullying

Editors Note: David M. Hall, Ph.D., is the author of “BullyShield,” an iPhone and Droid app. He is he author of the book “Allies at Work: Creating a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Inclusive Work Environment.”  Hall teaches high school students as well as graduate courses on LGBT issues and bullying prevention. His website is www.davidmhall.com and he is on twitter @drdavidmhall

By David M. Hall, Special to CNN

(CNN) - When EricJames Borges was in college, he said, his mother performed an exorcism over him to “cure” him of being gay. He recalled reaching a breaking point in high school when he was assaulted in class while a teacher was present. He said that verbal and physical assaults, which included being spit on, occurred on a daily basis.

Borges' personal pain was evident in the "It Gets Better" video he published in December, when his disposition and mood seem to provide a window into the ways he was tormented. In an effort to help vulnerable LGBT teens, he volunteered for The Trevor Project, an LGBT suicide-prevention organization.

Last week, Borges committed suicide.

In coverage of this tragic story, much attention has been paid to the fact that through his work with The Trevor Project, he knew what counseling resources were at his disposal, though he didn't manage to access them. However, little attention has been paid to what bystanders could have done at a more formative time in his life. Allies and bystanders could have protected Borges from years of isolation and the devastating feelings that accompany it.

The voice of one bystander can stop bullying. Sadly, the collective sound of bystander silence often speaks much louder, providing bullies with unspoken approval. The result of bystander silence is often that bullying intensifies.


King's final message: Poverty is a civil rights battle
Thousands gathered at the end of the Poor People March, on June 19, 1968, in Washington D.C.
January 16th, 2012
01:51 PM ET

King's final message: Poverty is a civil rights battle

Editor's note: See CNN's complete coverage of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

By Stephanie Siek, CNN

(CNN) - On Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, some will volunteer, some will attend celebrations of his life and legacy, some will do nothing at all. "I have a dream," the title of King's best known speech, will be repeated countless times, along with well-known stories about his  commitment to nonviolence, his letters from a Birmingham jail, his marches against segregation and the bullet that ended his life on April 4, 1968.

But few will remember how King lived his last birthday, as he turned 39 on January 15, 1968.

According to accounts of the day retold by Jesse Jackson and Martin Luther King III, King spent the day working on a campaign that he hoped would force Washington and the American public to acknowledge and resolve the problem of poverty for people of all races, religions and backgrounds in the United States. The Poor People's Campaign was the agenda for the day, with a short break for birthday cake.

While King's dream, the march on Washington and fight against segregation are well-known to children and adults now, fewer are aware that King spent the last months of his life fighting poverty.

When he died in Memphis, he was there to support fair wages and union representation for Memphis sanitation workers.

Rebecca Burns, who wrote about King's last days, death, and burial in "Burial for a King," said King's antiwar and anti-poverty legacy are overshadowed in part because their solutions are more elusive.

"It’s a much more complex issue – it's not, pardon my choice of words, as black and white as voting rights or where you sit on a bus," Burns said. "It’s harder to talk about that in sound bites."


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Filed under: Black in America • Community • Discrimination • Economy • Education • History • How we live • Race • Social justice • Who we are
Engage: Day of service commemorates Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Martin Luther King Jr. Day is said to be a "day on," not a "day off."
January 16th, 2012
11:07 AM ET

Engage: Day of service commemorates Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Engage with news and opinions from around the web about under-reported stories from undercovered communities.

MLK Jr. day of service: The other holiday - The Christian Science Monitor (Complete coverage from CNN)

Blackmark-it.com, a deals website, gives discounts at black-owned businesses - Chicago Sun-Times

Juan Williams on racial politics in 2012 - The Hill

Asian-American veteran: The difference between hazing and discipline in the Army - The New York Times

Gurbaksh Chahal went from bullied kid and high school dropout to young multi-millionaire - Entrepreneur/MSN.com

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Filed under: Engage
January 16th, 2012
12:01 AM ET

Martin Luther King Jr. Day coverage: Can memorial capture King's complexity?

(CNN) - Of course a memorial to Martin Luther King Jr. was going to be controversial.

The man himself was controversial, notes LaSalle University sociology professor Charles Gallagher. King - bound up with issues of racial and economic inequality that spotlight America's worst sins - is a "Rorschach test," Gallagher says, that people see in King what they want to see.

Still, few of the organizers of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial in Washington may have expected that every little detail would be so scrutinized, criticism that has continued right up to the first Martin Luther King Jr. Day since it opened last fall.

Late Friday, the Department of Interior - which has jurisdiction over the memorial - announced a quotation in the memorial's King sculpture would be changed. This action followed months of complaints about the language of the quotation, which had been paraphrased from a passage in a King sermon.

Read the full story and more Martin Luther King Jr. Day coverage from CNN.

King's final message: Poverty is a civil rights battle - CNN's In America blog

First family honors King with service project - CNN's 1600 Report blog

Day of service marks King's birthday - CNN

What did King think about gay people - CNN's Belief blog

Remembering MLK at his home church - CNN Photos

Boy Scout prepares to lay wreath at MLK statue in San Antonio - CNN iReport

Occupiers march for MLK - CNN iReport

Washington ceremony marks MLK's birthday - CNN

King in his own words - Time Photos

Memories of an icon: What six of Kings' friends will never forget - CNN Presents interactive

Students take on 'I have a dream' - CNN video

MLK memorial quote to be corrected - CNN

MLK, born at just the right time - CNN Opinion

Donna Brazile: For King, the right to vote was sacred - CNN Opinion

Remembering Dr. King - CNN's Schools of Thought blog

Interfaith cooperation on campus and the legacy of MLK - CNN's Schools of Thought blog

Atlantans use art to carry on legacy - CNN Video