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Wayne Self
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Activist playwright Wayne Self is a Huffington Post blogger, GLAAD media partner and composer.
Activist playwright Wayne Self is a Huffington Post blogger, GLAAD media partner and composer.

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Justice Kennedy's words will echo through the ages.

#LoveWins #JusticeKennedy
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About to be interviewed by Mark Alain on 102.3 FM WHIV! It will be a live interview at 6pm, and will re-air at various times. Tune in if you can!
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CAST
Buddy - Martin Smith
Adam - Ryan Paul Johnson
Mitch - Rick Rowan
Louis - Donovan Derrick
Jean - Adam Trouard
Inez - Stephanie Broussard
Marcy - Justin David
Reginald - Andre Guillory Jr.
Agneau - Eddie Richard
Uncle - Skip Woods

DIRECTED BY
Gina Baronne
Martin Smith

PRODUCED BY
Ted A. Richard
The Riveters
PhotoPhotoPhotoPhotoPhoto
Upstairs 2015: Acadiana Pride (Lafayette, LA)
18 Photos - View album
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Dammit, people! If you care about Louisiana at all, as a resident, native, or visitor, why aren't you listening? Forget the Supreme Court and same-sex marriage, #Louisiana folks, the fight of our lifetime is on our doorstep. Who cares if we can all get gay married, if we can’t go anywhere as a couple without the prospect of being denied service--even essential services--all over the state?

But that’s exactly what could happen, and soon! In the New York Times just this week, Louisiana Governor #BobbyJindal has given his total support to a bill #HB707 that will make it perfectly legal in my home state to refuse service to gays and lesbians under the guise of “religious freedom”.

Do you think it won’t affect you because it’s just about wedding cake? It's not. This bill will give any bigot in the state who claims to be “Christian” --the clerk at the hospital, the waitress at the restaurant, the lady who turns on your cable--legal standing if they refuse service to you because of your stance on same sex marriage.

Do you think, as a straight person, that it won’t matter to you? Never mind your gay and lesbian friends who will suffer, but you live in a state where the economy depends on tourism and the movie industry. See what happened to Indiana? If that doesn't persuade you, how about the precedent that businesses can refuse service based on religious objections--a precedent that threatens to bring us back to Jim Crow?

Do you think someone will swoop in and stop this? They won’t. The bill has the support of well-organized, well funded, right-wingers and the governor of the state. Socially progressive companies like Apple and Google have no stake in Louisiana. The courts have already ruled that, in some cases, companies can set policy based on religion, and the U.S. Supreme Court is filled with conservatives. There will be a boycott, to be sure, but that will hurt the state economy. Does it really have to come to that?

Are you a Republican? Don’t care. The libertarian case for this bill is deeply flawed, relying as it does on the assumption that minorities can just find services elsewhere, when in fact businesses could actually benefit from touting their denial of service, and the Christian case is anti-Christ, going against the actual words and actions of Jesus Christ in Mark 7:25-30, where Jesus Christ himself decided not to refuse service to someone someone his religion obliged him to disdain.

Or do you just think it’s hopeless, so why waste time fighting it? I understand how that feels, believe me, but it’s not hopeless. Not yet. We have a chance to kill this bill in committee, before it ever comes to a vote that our side would almost surely lose.

Do I sound shrill? Have I lost my winking progressive cool John Stewart wryness? Am I not being clever enough to hold your attention? Fuck it. You're an adult. It's time to do adult things.

Here are the committee members and their phone numbers. Please, please call them and tell them not to set Louisiana back 50 years with a bill that would hurt the economy and promote cruelty to your gay and lesbian neighbors.

Neil C. Abramson (D) 504-275-8051
Nancy Landry (R) 337-262-2252
Joseph Bouie (D) 504-286-1033
John Bel Edwards (D) 985-748-2245
Randal L. Gaines (D) 985-652-1228
Raymond E. Garofalo (R) 504-277-4729
Cameron Henry (R) 504-838-5433
Mike Huval (R) 337-332-3331
Patrick O. Jefferson (D) 318-927-2519
Mike Johnson (R) 318-741-2790
Gregory A. Miller (R) 985-764-9991
Clay Schexnayder (R) 225-472-6016
Alfred C. Williams (D) 225-382-3243
Chuck Kleckley (R) 337-475-3016
Walt Leger III (D) 504-556-9970

The government of Louisiana has made it abundantly clear that gays and lesbians aren't wanted in the state. And, despite my love of the place and nearly everything in it, I’m getting more and more inclined to let them have it. But my folks still live in Louisiana and they are getting older. I need to be able to go see them. I need to maybe help them with things without the chance of some jerk denying me service at the gas station, the doctor’s office, the hardware store.

Look, we’re all very busy with our own thing that we're doing, but if and when this bill becomes law, and I’m finally forced to choose between my love of the state and my love of basic dignity for all human beings, I want to be able to say I did all I could to stop this thing. Don’t you?

It’s important to me, and it should be important enough to you that you will help. So either jump on the phone, or you can go ahead and jump on that unfriend button.
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Louisiana friends, there is a bill in the Louisiana Legislature (#HB707) that will allow businesses or individuals to discriminate against you if they have "sincere religious convictions" about it!

This is exactly the sort of thing we dramatized in #UpstairsMusical and exactly the sort of thing we have to stand up against!

#EqualityLouisiana (EQLA) is hosting a series of Town Hall meetings to let you know what you can do. There are meetings in #Lafayette, #LakeCharles, #BatonRouge, #Monroe and #Shreveport TONIGHT!

Please attend if you possibly can. This is too important to let slide.
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Congratulations to the cast and crew of #UpstairsMusical in Lafayette for finishing up a fabulous run! I hope you are all very proud, because you deserve to be. I know you worked hard and sacrificed a lot to tell this story, and I am honored and humbled by your efforts. Onward and upward, fellow travelers!

Martin Smith as BUDDY
Ryan-Paul Johnson as ADAM
Stephanie Broussard as INEZ
Donovan Derrick as LOUIS
Adam Trouard as JEAN
Rick Rowan as MITCH
Justin David as MARCY
Andre Guillory Jr. as REGINALD
Edward Eddie Richard as AGNEAU
Skip Woods as UNCLE

Produced by The Riveters & Ted A Richard
Staged at Cité Des Arts during Acadiana PRIDE

Written and composed by Wayne Self
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Bobby Jindal's Louisiana doesn't want gays in it. For me, this is easy to see, but hard to say. My partner I were born and raised there, and we have ties of family, friends, and community in Louisiana that run deep and proud.
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Here's the gorgeous and talented cast of Upstairs at the 2014 West Village Musical Theatre Festival after a great Saturday night show! 

For more about Upstairs and the true story on which it is based, visit www.upstairsmusical.com or www.wayneself.com

Come see us on June 20 (6pm) 21 (8pm) 26 (7pm) 29 (12pm)

ADAM: Zack Krajnyak
AGNEAU: Nick Ritacco
BUDDY: Josh Schwartz
UNCLE: Brandon Grimes
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Facebook banned Del Shores last week. They have since reversed the decision, but it's time for Facebook to answer some pointed questions. 
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