artstoddardap.jpgRuben Studdard Marries in Alabama
Former “American Idol” Ruben Studdard has married Surata Zuri McCants at a church in a suburb of Birmingham, Alabama. But there was no singing during the 30-minute ceremony — just an exchange of vows, prayers and music provided by a string ensemble. A reporter from The Birmingham News attended the ceremony. The groom, nicknamed the “Velvet Teddy Bear” on “Idol” for his big frame and sonorous voice, wore a black tuxedo with white bow tie for Saturday’s ceremony. His bride wore a white and ivory wedding gown. Alabama will be their home as the 29-year-old-singer gets set to release a new album later this year. (Continue Reading…)

Brooklyn Realtor Won’t Serve Blacks: Lawsuit
A Brooklyn real estate agency systematically denied service to black people — going so far as to ask on the phone whether one prospective renter was Jewish — according to a federal lawsuit filed Thursday. he pattern of blatant racial discrimination the suit alleges first came to light in April 2007, when Vanessa Lee, 43, called Bais Seller Real Estate in Midwood looking for a $1,250 Ocean Parkway two-bedroom rental. Lee, who is black, was told by a representative that a “nice” listing was available, the suit alleges — and then was asked if she was Jewish. After responding “no,” Lee waited for a promised call-back that never came. (Continue Reading…)

Pastor Who Officiated at Jenna Bush Wedding Launches Pro-Obama Website
The Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell, leader of the largest Methodist congregation in the country, launched a website yesterday titled “James Dobson Does Not Speak For Me.” The site is a jab at Dobson, a stalwart of the religious right who this week called Sen. Barack Obama’s interpretation of the Bible in a 2006 speech distorted “to fit [Obama’s] own world view, his own confused theology.” Caldwell’s site launched a day after Dobson’s Focus on the Family radio program aired a harsh assessment of Obama’s speech on faith and public policy and encourages readers to sign a statement declaring that Dobson does not represent them. “I think it’s a crime and a shame that Senator Obama has had to explain the fact that he’s a Christian,” Caldwell said in a recent interview. “Criticize his politics. Criticize his stance on whatever, but don’t question his faith. Never in the history of American politics has someone said that he is a Christian and someone came back to say, ‘No you’re not.'” (Continue Reading…)

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