SHOCK: Equality California Disinvites Dustin Lance Black (So They Could Invite Perez Hilton)

Above is the speech Dustin Lance Black gave this morning at Equality California’s Harvey Milk Day session, just before volunteers headed out to canvas the Los Angeles area to remind residents why gay rights are important and stuff. Shortly after the speech, EQCA dis-invited Black from tonight’s party at Sharon Osbourne’s estate. Because, Queerty has learned, they wanted gay stain Perez Hilton there instead.

It goes without question that Black has been EQCA’s biggest advocate and (unofficial) public face. More than executive director Geoff Kors ever will be. The Academy Award-winning screenwriter has lobbied on EQCA’s behalf and lent his name to their efforts and email blasts, as he’s done other groups. But rather than acknowledge Black’s record in working with (and defending to critics) the organization by including him at Sharon and Kelly Osbourne’s soiree (event page on Facebook here), where EQCA will earn $150-2,500 per head, they opted to invite Perez Hilton — and told Black not to come.

Why? Because Hilton and Black aren’t exactly friends, which can be tied back to the X-rated sex photos of Black that Hilton published last year. (This website also reported on them.) We’re told EQCA wanted to avoid any drama the confrontation might create, and chose the fauxtivist over Black. Ahem: Everyone remembers it was Black who wrote a little movie about Harvey Milk, right?

(Black refused to comment on what transpired between he and EQCA, but confirms he was asked not to go to this afternoon’s event. We reached out to EQCA’s media contact and have yet to hear back. Update below.)

It’s an interesting choice to outsiders, since plenty of regular gay Americans and activists would agree Hilton is actually bad for gay rights and isn’t the example of Gays Doing Good anyone should push forward. While Hilton (real name: Mario Armando Lavandeira) invoked a spirited post-Carrie Prejean debate about gay marriage, his willingness to throw around the word “faggot” as an insult has turned off many. But not Kors’ EQCA, which sees the publicity opportunity involved in bringing Hilton to the Osbournes party.

For his part, Black tells Queerty he’s still got a speech to deliver — and instead of giving it at the Osbournes’ party, he’ll be doing it later tonight at Madame Tussaud on Hollywood Boulevard. “For me, this is such a great day, I’m going to focus on the other stuff going on tonight,” Black says, like a pro.

UPDATE: EQCA sends us a statement from Kors. Turns out, Hilton didn’t even go to the event, so they lost both high-profile guests: “Yesterday, for the first ever Harvey Milk Day, LGBT people and our allies celebrated Milk’s legacy across the state. We appreciate that there are lots of differences within our community, but this day for recognizing Milk’s legacy is bigger than any of us. We didn’t disinvite Dustin Lance Black from EQCA’s Harvey Milk Day event held at the home of Sharon and Kelly Osborne. We invited him to every one of our Harvey Milk Day events and really appreciate his joining us to kick off a door-to-door canvass in Los Angeles in the morning, speaking at Los Angeles City Hall with the City Council and Mayor on Friday, and working for weeks to help us make our statewide field effort a big success. He also lobbied with us to pass the bill creating Harvey Milk Day. Without his advocacy efforts and his historic screenplay Milk, we’re sure the Governor would never have signed the bill. We did let Black know that Perez Hilton might be attending the event as a guest of the Osbornes out of courtesy, as we know that there is tension between them (of which the Osbornes were not aware). Hilton was also on the media lists for other organizations’ Harvey Milk Day events. We would never disinvite anyone from our events, and our Harvey Milk Day events were open to the press. Hilton did not attend the event. We did let Black know that Hilton wasn’t coming, and he sent me a text saying that he didn’t think he could make it to the event before it ended. We would never disinvite someone from an event who has done as much for the LGBT community as Black has. We’re incredibly impressed with Black’s advocacy for LGBT rights and hope to continue working with him in the future. He is a great champion for our community. Harvey Milk Day is now over, but we must keep ourselves focused on the real work at hand: moving people to support marriage equality, electing 100% pro-equality candidates and passing legislation to secure LGBT rights.”

UPDATE: Here’s Black’s speech at Madame Tussaud (via):

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  • Ian

    This organization are back stabbing fools. Perez always leaves a foul sensation for me whenever I am exposed to this online trash-rag monger, and if EQ CA is shows such utter lack of PR skills in bringing him in over Lance Black then I know to never bother to give any $$$ to them, as it would no doubt be wasted from their general incompetence.


    I hate to get all cynical here and toss a sideways glance at EQ CA, but do you think that maybe they are trying to curry favor with someone who is possibly gonna be worth 20 million dollars??? (yes idiot investors with millions still exist)

  • A Columbus Guy

    I think if I was attending I would ask for my $ back and give it to a different equality charity.

  • Mike

    This is ridiculous. I CAN NOT stand Perez Hilton. Come to think of it, who in their right mind would date him or befriend him? He’s ugly on the inside and out. Another reason why I hate LA.

  • Jason

    Shame on you EQCA and Sharon and Kelly Osbourne. This makes me ill! I hope this isn’t true …

  • David

    I guess EQCA likes to go “low quality.” Perez is a stain for sure.

  • kabukiscarab

    THis is why gay rights get no where people who care and want to up lift there brothers and sisters in the struggle are competing with Trash like Perez Hilton the worst of lispy pretension fags on the planet. Garbage utter garbage

  • Mac McNeill

    This type of thing why I have given up on us getting anywhere in my lifetime. It’s situations like this that messes the whole process up.

  • Tylertime

    They are both stains on the gay community for different reasons. There wasn’t anyone else they could have invited? Ellen & Portia? T.R. Knight? Neil Patrick Harris? Melissa Etheridge? Rosie?

  • jeffree

    EQ CA goofed bigtime.
    Perez Hilton makes my skin crawl due to his constant belittling of lgb celebs who dont meet his standards, his love of off the wall feuds & constant self promotion.DLB aint no saint, sure, but he contributes where he can.

    Sharon Osborne? A celebrity in her own mind……

  • trickstertara

    What on Earth do the Osbournes have to do with gay rights? Big Numbers, Slow Moving Gay Activism(TM) has become all about deep pockets and celebrity ass-kissing. Disgusting.

  • Rikard

    Mario has been in need of rehabilitation for a long time now. He made a name for himself literaly by picking fights with celebrities. The fact that he is a bitchy, shallow, vindictive queer is either irrelevent, or reinforces negetive gay stereotypes, Either way, how charming of DLB to graciously give ground, avoid confilct and allow Mario to appear in a responsible, pro community place and hopefuly benefit from the honor.

  • jeffree

    Quick question for you: what have you done for LGBT rights lately? you better bruh up on difficult acronyms like DADT, ENDA & DOMA before you will be taken seriously.

    I know Italian more than Spanish of course, but Mario’s family name is dang close (two letters) to the word LAUNDROMAT in Italian.

    Perhaps Mario needs to SUPPORT the LG community instead of looking after his own need to be bleached, folded & fluffed ?!!!?

  • jeffree

    ooopsy: i meant BRUSH UP

  • Bill Perdue

    Are there any questions about how or why ECQA let Obama and the right defeat same sex marriage in 2008?

    ECQA = HRC = DNC = disaster

  • Joe

    @Tylertime: you’ve got to be kidding, right? “They are both a stain”???? You just said Dustin and Perez are equally stained??? Please explain how you came to this conclusion… I love to see the machinations of feeble logic

  • Qjersey

    Hilton’s site always has the most nasty and homophobic remarks posted in the comments sections.



  • ossurworld

    At Equality Cali, some pigs are more equal than others.


    Leave Perez Hilton alone. We need all the soldiers we can amass-past transgressions and personal foibles must be forgiven for the greater purpose. A deep pocketed one is even better! The enemy persecutes us indiscriminately and we mustn’t indulge her by doing the same within our own ranks because frankly…….we are low in numbers.

  • jake

    @Qjersey you would think perez would do some policing around his site to keep the hate at bay, but i guess he just cares about page views.

  • fredo777

    I don’t really have anything against Perez or Dustin, but I must say that I think this was a ridiculous decision on their part.

  • Bianca

    Does anyone know what time Dustin Lance Black will be giving his speech at Madame Tussauds? I live right by there and want to go hear him speak


    @jeffree: That may explain why he is so into airing people’s dirty laundry………. :-p

  • Jason_Activist

    GetEQUAL is organizing the takeover of the Movement. Dustin Black is welcome to join us. Millions of people are rising up and DEMANDING our human rights. We are very close to being free.

    Louder. Bolder. Stronger.

    Demand – 24/7

  • Felix

    How is perezhilton.com different from Queerty?

  • jeffree

    @Jason_Activist: AndrewW: I love your new sock puppet!! Not too convincing he uses the same vocab & typography as you, Brian NYC and the other 6 I’ve identified so far! The only difference is that he is FOR everything you are against, thus hes your mirror opposite!! That way you can have arguments with your sockpuppets!

  • alan brickman

    A promoter of “Gay shame” gets to speak instead….no wonder equal rights aren’t happening anytime soon…

  • alan brickman

    run for gov’t…it’s the only way to make change happen…

  • Jason_Activist

    @jeffree: wtf? Were you in the streets? Were you demanding? Some people have the courage to do somehting.

  • Michael Joseph Cuneo

    Wow. Is Equality California trying to become the next HRC? Worthless, money-grubbing, “celebrity” asskissers? I can’t wait to respond strongly to the next email I get from Equality California crying for money. Suffice it to say they’re getting more than a simple “no.”

  • Bee

    DLB is a great guy. Perez Hilton? An ugly, vacuous, vindictive little backstabber who is is willing to destroy anyone if it helps him be the center of attention. How can someone who spitefully outs others be considered a positive member of the gay community?

    As for the Osbournes besides Ozzy, whatever have they done to deserve the title of “celebrity”? Birds of a feather. DLB has already done more then the three of them put together will ever amount to, nude pics or no. I don’t see why anyone would even want to speak to Perez. He would stab his own mother in the back for attention.

  • Ben

    Mario/Perez….is BAD for the GAYS.

  • Jason

    “This country is going straight to hell.”

  • thedarkchariot

    w. t. f?

    Really? Also, the irony of disinviting Dustin Lance Black on a day meant to celebrate Harvey Milk. Cheese and crackers, who would ever choose Perez Hilton over Dustin Lance Black?

  • Mr.Jones

    I do not care for either one. DLB also has his stains. He is no saint, and frankly, I don’t want him as a spokesperson. Hilton is the scum. Now, how about a REAL hero? How about Dan Choi?

  • Jimmi

    Very sad.

  • Bee

    @thedarkchariot: Just shows there are complete idiots running the show.
    “Hmm, who should we invite to our party to celebrate Harvey Milk? That nice guy who wrote an oscar winning screenplay about him, and gives talks to college students?”
    “No don’t be stupid. We should invite that fat guy who spends his time trying to bring down men who won’t sleep with him or women who don’t want to hang out with him. He’s a complete role model to the gay community.”
    “Yes. What the hell was I thinking?”

  • jj

    honestly at least perez only has naked pictures, dustin lance isnt a very good role model seeing that he has pictures barebacking.

  • craigers

    I do believe Equality California just lost their moral authority to lead the fight for gay rights in California, and that is obviously a good thing. With idiotic leaders like this it is no wonder California voted against gay marriage.

  • Kyle412

    I don’t find Perez or Dustin Bareback positive role models. If this is the best we can come up with as we fight for equality we might as well throw in the towel.

  • ewe

    If Black refuses to comment i will do the same.

  • rolph

    I was at Madame Tussaud’s last night. Dustin Lance Black spoke. Great speech. He is a very talented speaker. Very passionate. Everyone was moved by what he said. It was a great event to mark the first Harvey Milk Day. Besides Dustin, Bruce Cohen and Dan Jinks the MILK movie co producers spoke, Stewart Milk, Bruce Vilanche, and several others. A great event attended by hundreds. A great turnout.

  • Jason_Activist

    We should PROTEST EQCA. They are arragant like HRC.

  • Markles

    Um, yeah, one more reason I say “fuck EQCA.” We were ardent supporters for years. Today we wouldn’t give them a penny even if Geoff Kors personally came to the door asking for a donation.

  • bobby

    i dont get why everyone hates on eqca and say they don’t do anything. they were having canvasses throughout the state on HMD. dustin lance black and other elected officials spoke at the los angeles event. black had to go to the gay mens choir event and the hollywood event that evening anyways.

  • Cassandra


    “i dont get why everyone hates on eqca and say they don’t do anything. they were having canvasses throughout the state on HMD”

    EQCA wasted a significant lead in California going into the Prop 8 campaign.

    Despite the experience of every other human rights campaign, despite Harvey Milk’s admonition, and that of just about every other civil rights leader, EQCA chose to avoid humanizing their case against Prop 8, and presented a gay free, idea based campaign that completely failed to sway voters – repeating the mistake made, (by some of the same “leaders”) with Prop 22.

    In the heat of the campaign, several key “leaders” took extended vacations, rather than even attempt to correct the mistakes in their battle plan.

    They took the advice of an outside consulting firm with no stake in the campaign, over the advice of everyone who had run successful campaigns to defeat anti-gay legislation.

    And in doing all of the above, they siphoned enormous amounts of money that could have been used by other people to fight Prop 8.

    From that money, Kors and his team were paid six figure salaries, for throwing the campaign. They got paid enough to effectively shelter themselves from the financial consequences of being denied civil marriage.

    After the campaign, Kors and company first refused to meet with GLBTQ Californians in local ‘town hall’ meetings, denied any culpability, avoided any transparency, and in press releases and personal behavior, sent the message that they were not, in their opinion, accountable to average gay Californians – those who weren’t millionaires.

    Now they are trying to siphon more money out of the community to fund not our civil equality, but their lifestyle choice of long vacations and incompetency.

  • Ian

    @Cassandra: EQCA is starting to sound like the perfect reflection at the CA state level of the self-serving, only caring about schmoozing with the rich and powerful, indifference of the national HRC.

  • Jamie

    really? let’s focus on harvey milk
    one man gave his life knowing that might be the price of our equality
    and another’s bruised ego detracts from the importance of that
    come on-tell me our community values achievement over gossip

  • Lonnie

    I do not understand why more lgbt rights activists do not turn their backs and start protesting groups like HRC and EQCA. There was a time when we could at least say they vaguely were in support of lgbt equality someday. Now, it seems their conservatism and absolute, uncritical support for the “political process” (ie vote for Democrats and don’t rock the boat) is standing in the way of our equality (eg HRC providing almost a buffer for criticism of the Obama administration; EQCA’s work against the Repeal Prop 8 initiative). That’s why I think we need to be a lot more cautious about throwing the term “we” and the phrase “we need to come together” around. Who is this “we”? And exactly who is on our side? Ordinary lgbt activists have a lot more in common with immigrant rights activists than we do with Joe Solomonese or Geoffrey Kors. We can’t work with leaders and groups who act time and time again against our interests. We can’t progress as a movement when we’re dragging the dead weight of Gay Inc.’s baggage. We need to repeat this over and over until it’s drilled into our heads: No one will give us equality. We’re gonna have to fight for it ourselves. And we can’t do it alone. We have to reach out to everyone who’s facing discrimination and oppression.

  • fredo777

    Am I the only one who thinks that the update on this issue deserves to be its own separate article/post?

  • Michael

    The Osbournes are wondeful people. Geoff Kors and Equality California are money grubbing freaks who could care less about equal rights. They care very much about social standind and press.

    Please stop supporting Gay,Inc. EQ/CA is a business, a bad one.

  • Daniel

    I think Dustin Lance Black is cool, and we know he is actually gay. The other one just seems to leech off the fame of the Paris Hilton name by picking a confusingly-similar sounding faux name, the same tactic rightwing hate groups have done since the 70’s with their group names – a variation on an already established name.

  • Chal

    What do you expect in California?

  • Chal

    And another thing: EQCA mishandled the No-on-8 campaign here in CA. They are timid, allbeit well-intentioned, ditzes. The CA gay community deserves better.

  • Joe

    @SSCHIEFRSHA: We are not low in numbers, we have plenty. But people like PH turn off those who would otherwise support us. He is NOT what I want to see at the front of the pack when I see EQCA Marching or lobbying for our rights. Can you imagine the [email protected] in D.C. if he were ever to go and fight for us?

    We would be higher in numbers if people like PH were not given a legitimate platform to spew their ignorance.

  • Oscar

    One is into gossip, the other into barebacking. I will pass, thanks.

  • sfsilver

    Everyone’s panties are all in a bunch but you should also know that Dustin Lance Black has been rather famously vindictive about the whole being exposed bare backing thing. He has black listed (Dustin Lance Black-listed?) online media outlets that posted the story and images and that had honest dialogue about it that didn’t condemn Hilton or did anything to defend Hilton’s role in the “scandal”. I admire Black and everything he’s done with his fame and talent, but he’s been a little bitchy about this issue and it wouldn’t surprise me at all to find out that this issue is really about him and his reaction to finding out that Hilton might be there. I don’t think Hilton would have given two shits about it. Why would he?

  • sfsilver

    What should anger everyone is EQCA having any sort of Harvey Milk day event at all. Their failed leadership in the Prop 8 battle was directly because they IGNORED everything that Harvey stood for and taught us about how to win a proposition battle or any political fight. They purposefully silenced gay voices int he campaign, relied almost entirely on allies as the face of our issue, did little or no face-to-face door-to-door contact in areas where the fight was going to be hardest, and ignored the most powerful tool, our own stories.

    I heard Kors quoting Milk on NPR about the power of being out of the closet on issues and just rolled my eyes.

    I think EQCA has a value in our movement, but they have no credibility when it comes to Milk’s legacy.

  • Steve in Colorado

    “gay stain Perez Hilton”
    That’s funny.

    Who is running EQCA, Samantha Jones? They sound like a social snake pit, which is too bad.

    Shame that Dustin’s numerous efforts AND his presence at the event seem not to be of greater importance to HARVEY MILK DAY than tabloid tactics. Perez puts the BLAH in BLAHG.

  • Scoop

    I thought that Perez Hilton was lactose intolerant. What’s he doing then consuming even more publicity through “Milk”?

  • KevMusic

    I love all of these saints sitting around passing judgement on Dustin for activity he engaged in while in a relationship. But beyond that, his sex life is his private business and would’ve remained so had it not been for the douche bag ex looking to make a quick buck off of Dustin’s celebrity. Celebrity which he uses to push for the equal rights of all in the community, including his detractors. But I’ve got an idea. If any of you have a problem with Dustin being a voice for the gay community, how about instead of sitting on your fat asses belittling him, you step up to the plate and do the same or more. Yeah, I didn’t think so.

  • Cheryl Wright = ZZZ's (John From England)

    Stupid people.

    Gays need to get a grip about people having sex without condoms IN relationships!

    By going on and on about why EVERY gay regardless of the fact they are in a relationship NEEDS to wear condoms, proves the right wing christians about why we should NEVER be trusted as parents.

    Your sanctimonious BS ruins it for the whole cause because you’re too single minded and narcissistic.

  • Dawson

    @Joe: Some people believe (right or wrong) that because DLB was shown having unsafe sex (with a boyfriend he had been exclusive with for many months at the time) that he must be showing a bad example for the gay community. Rather these people have “safe” sex with multiple people but use condoms or not remains to be seen, and of course even if they did its all alright because they use a condom as compared to having sex with only one partner you actually know (and know the status of) without using a condom.

  • Dawson

    @alan brickman: Sad, but true…

    Most of those that run for government run with the ideals to make a change. Most of those that are elected to government attempt to make a change to no avail. Most of those that remain in government become corporate and lobbyist shills doing and saying anything to get reelected. DNC has a huge history, present and future of playing both sides of the fence in order to stay in power, and most of the time all they really manage to do is alienate their original supporters.

    So, in conclusion, politics is a dirty business, and half the time no matter who you vote into office you still won’t see them accomplish anything you voted them into office to do.

  • ossurworld

    The latest damage control from Orwell’s version of EQwakCali is too little too late.

  • fredo777

    I am also over the whole judgmental thing where Black is concerned.

  • Aaron

    Private life or not, it is hypocritical to preach safe sex and then turn around and do the exact opposite. Being in a relationship while doing it is completely irrelevant. Preaching something and doing the exact opposite is the very definition of hypocritical, any way you slice it. Perhaps this is one of the reasons he was disinvited. But, still, choosing that douche Perez? No, absolutely not!

  • bieber fan site

    After seeing all his fukin pic, I picture Dustin Lance Black as amateur porn star

  • JonathanHasHadIt

    @fredo777: Nobody asked you dude.


    As far as I’m concerned EQ CA has just lost all creditability, their no different then HRC. They have become a group of suits and bow ties just out for the money not the cause.

  • Drake in L.A.

    Perez Hilton is one of the least socially redeeming humans on the planet. Dustin Lance Black is a self-righteous hack of a writer. And Sharon Osbourne is a vapid fame whore. I’m not taking sides on this one. Maybe they’ll all kill each other?

Comments are closed.