Melonfarmers.co.uk

 Gay News

 2009: April-June

  Home  US Film Cuts
  Index  World  Nutters
  Forum  Media Liberty
   Info      
   UK      


30th June   

Comment: Straight Hype...

Oh my god! I agree with the BBFC
Link Here

Bruno film poster With Bruno, Bruno, Bruno. What can you say? The BBFC have said its gonna have to be 18, Universal (the distributor) have said Waaaa Waaaa Waaa. Why? Money. That's all. What else would you expect from an American company? The almighty dollar is in trouble on the shores of Blighty. However, I'm inclined to agree with the BBFC on this one. Anything to do with gay sex or homosexual references is always going to be taboo. Certain people will automatically dismiss this film as Fucking faggots, Fuck 'em . Everyone knows a man that won't watch Priscilla : Queen of the Dessert, because it has Fucking faggots in it. Even though, during that whole film we're only told the trio are gay / female performers, we never actually see anything, not even an onscreen kiss. Even the kiddie fiddling uncle had his scene severely edited by the director, as it lowered the overall comedic tone of the movie.

The thing is with Bruno , its getting exactly what it set out to get, adverse publicity, public outcry, and massive media interest. All of which will sell tickets, DVD's etc. For entertainers like Sacha Baron Cohen, this is probably the highest accolade he could receive. These people don't set out to offend, they just push the envelope in a way only they can, and their aware that this boundary pushing WILL upset, WILL offend, but will ultimately buy another storey for their houses.

I really don't think the BBFC should be blamed for their decision. They've done their job, so they're happy (as are their peers). The films uncut (although it is the slightly tainted U.S. print, but, small price) so I'm happy, in fact the only people who aren't happy, are the money grabbers at Universal. Why though? surely the film will make its money on DVD? where it will be seen by a majority of under 18's anyway. Did Borat break the box office? No. As for Ali G's transition to the big screen i don't remember that being up to Forrest Gumps takings. So I think it's safe to say, that Universal are just spoilt children that want ice cream before dinner. They know they're going to get the cash, they just want it NOW. If Universal had a brain they'd release the full uncut version in the U.K. (the BBFC would pass it as an 18), and advertise the hell out of the fact that the Brits have one up on their (supposedly) free brothers across the pond. But alas, no. They'll realise that just in time for the DVD.

 

30th June   

Texas Bar Raid...

Courthouse protest at police over reaction during gay bar raid
Link Here  full story: Texas Gay Bar Raid...Police overreact during gay bar raid

Texas state seal About 18 hours after officers with the Fort Worth Police Department and agents with the Texas Alcoholic Beverages Commission raided a Fort Worth gay bar, about 150 to 200 people gathered on the steps of the Tarrant County Courthouse in downtown Fort Worth Sunday night, June 28, to protest the raid.

Sources have said that seven people were arrested in the raid although witnesses at the scene said many more people were handcuffed with zip ties and taken out of the bar.

One man was in the intensive care unit at Fort Worth's JPS Hospital with bleeding in his brain after officers threw him to the ground and used zip-ties to handcuff him.

The raid happened on the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall rebellion.

Joel Burns, Fort Worth's first and only openly gay City Council member said: As elected representatives of the city of Fort Worth, we are calling for an immediate and thorough investigation of the actions of the city of Fort Worth police and Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission in relation to the incident at the Rainbow Lounge earlier this morning.

Lisa Thomas, Burns' appointee to the city's Human Relations Commission, also spoke at the rally, as did Todd Camp and Chuck Potter, two men who were at the bar when the raid happened and who were the primary organizers of Sunday's two rallies.

Camp, referring to eyewitness accounts of the raid and to photographs that Potter took as the raid was occurring, said at the rally that evidence demonstrates that the Fort Worth Police Department and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commissioner over-reacted and used excessive, perhaps brutal force … .

Fort Worth police released a statement to several mainstream media outlets saying that Rainbow Lounge was one of three bars targeted by six Fort Worth police officers and two TABC agents and a supervisor.

The statement said that nine people were arrested at the first two bars — the Rosedale Saloon and Cowboy Palace, both on Rosedale Avenue — and that another seven people were arrested at Rainbow Lounge.

The statement also said that an extremely intoxicated patron made sexually explicit movements toward the police supervisor and that person was arrested for public intoxication.

 

29th June   

Update: Law Review...

Gay rights supporters protest in India in support of decriminalisation
Link Here  full story: Gay Freedom in India...India considers the legality of gay sex

India flag Hundreds of gay rights supporters waved flags and danced during marches in India calling for the decriminalisation of homosexuality.

The protests took place in the cities of Chennai and Bangalore and the capital New Delhi yesterday. The New Delhi parade passed near the Delhi High Court, which is reviewing a law that prohibits gay sex, and can punish it with up to ten years in prison.

Law minister Veerappa Moily said he would meet two other ministers to discuss changing the country's anti-homosexuality laws.

 

29th June   

Councillor with a Religious Disability...

Barmouth councillor suspended over religious inspired anti gay comments
Link Here

Barmouth A councillor has been disqualified for a year after referring to homosexuality as a notorious disability. Bill Pritchard, who was a town councillor in Barmouth, Gwynedd, wrote to an assembly government minister, referring to two men in a local development. He described homosexuality as a demon which can be driven out.

An adjudication panel of the public service ombudsman for Wales found he breached the council's code of conduct.

After the hearing in Dolgellau, Pritchard, an evangelical Methodist, said he was not sorry and stood by his views that homosexuality was a disability.

The hearing was told that the complainant - referred to only as Mr Smith - had found the comments grossly homophobic.

Giving evidence, Pritchard said he did not like to condemn people but preferred to rescue them into the church.

He was asked by the panel whether he accepted homosexual people might be offended by the term disability.

He replied: It is definitely a disability rather than a sin. He went on to add: I respect them as someone who is struggling with a disability as I would with someone in a wheelchair.

Pritchard was judged to have breached the code of conduct on two counts - one that he brought the council into disrepute and the second that as a councillor he must show respect and consideration for others.

 

28th June   

Updated: Gay Censorship...

Lithuania's parliament pass bill banning gay information from public places
Link Here  full story: Gay Censorship in Lithuania...Parliament passes law banning gay info

Lithuania President Valdas Adamkus should veto a proposed law passed by Lithuania's parliament that would ban references to gay, lesbian, and bisexual relations in public places, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to the president.

The Law on the Protection of Minors against the Detrimental Effect of Public Information would ban all materials that agitate for homosexual, bisexual and polygamous relations from schools or other public places where they can be seen by youth, on the grounds that they have a detrimental effect on the development of minors. Lithuania's Seimas (Parliament) passed the law on June 16, 2009, by a vote of 67 of the 74 members of parliament present and sent it to the president, who has 10 days to decide whether to sign or veto it.

What were the lawmakers thinking when they passed this homophobic law? said Boris Dittrich, advocacy director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Program at Human Rights Watch: Depriving young people of information they need to decide about their lives and protect their health is a regressive and dangerous move, and amounts to censorship.

Lithuania is a member of the European Union, which is founded on the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the rule of law. The country is also a member of the Council of Europe, and in 1995 ratified the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Article 10 of the convention states that: Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include the freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers.

Update: Presidential Veto

28th June 2009. Based on article from pinknews.co.uk

The President of Lithuania has vetoed a new law that would have banned materials that agitate for gay relationships from schools.

Human Rights Watch said sources in the eastern European country had confirmed that President Adamkus vetoed the Law on Protection of Minors against the Detrimental Effect of Public Information.

The country's parliament has the option of over-riding the Presidential veto.

It is my duty as an elected member of the European Parliament to act strongly against grave attempts to diminish human rights of EU citizens, said Michael Cashman, president of the European Parliament's all-party Intergroup on LGBT rights: This new law is a spit in the face of the European values. To limit freedom of expression based on homophobia is a clear breach of EU's fundamental rights and principles.

 

28th June   

Updated: Less Pink...

The Pink Paper ends print version in favour of an online presence
Link Here

Pink Paper After 20 years fighting for the cause, The 'Pink Paper withdraws to the web. The leading newspaper of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transexual (LGBT) community, is to cease printing, dedicating itself to an online presence only.

Newly installed editor Tris Reid-Smith says the move is a necessary response to the sharp downturn in advertising, especially in property and recruitment classifieds on which the paper has long depended. Circulation has fallen to 60,000 per month, still an enviable figure for a specialist title. Reid-Smith hopes print production can resume once the recession is over, but does the demise of Britain's only national gay newspaper indicate a wider trend across the gay media, reflecting a decline in the demand for single issue publications?

Reid-Smith, who also edits the Gay Times , a monthly glossy, says he doesn't believe there has been a drop in demand. Advertising has dropped off but the demand from the readers is still there. Millivres Prowler, proprietor of The Pink Paper and Gay Times , also owns a number of gay lifestyle shops, selling books, films, clothing and jewellery: We certainly haven't noticed a decline in spending in the recession.

Leading activist Peter Tatchell sees the demise of the Pink Paper as a blow to the liberation movement. We still need a newspaper dedicated to fighting for gay issues. The Pink Paper picks up a lot of stories that aren't covered by the national media. The brutal homophobic murder of Michael Causer in Liverpool last year was virtually ignored by the press, which is odd because they gave extensive coverage to the racist killing of Anthony Walker in the same city. The Pink Paper is the only national newspaper dedicated to news of importance to the LGBT community.

 

21st June   

Raiding Party...

Saudi police in mass arrest of Philippines gay men
Link Here

Saudi flag Saudi Arabian police are reported to have arrested 71 foreigners accused of homosexuality in the capital Riyadh. According to a report in the Arab daily, al-Quds al-Arabi, police raided a party and arrested the group.

Several residents are reported to have snitched to police about people who were doing things that did not conform with Islamic sharia law.

When police arrived they reportedly found people wearing indecent clothes and conducting themselves in an indecent manner. Seventy Filipinos and one Yemeni were arrested by police.

Philippines embassy Vice Consul Roussel Reyes told AFP that: They had alcohol and some were dressed up like women .

Both drinking and cross-dressing are forbidden under Saudi Arabia's conservative Islam-based sharia laws, and both could bring up to six months in prison and lashes.

None were charged with homosexual acts, a much more serious charge under Saudi law, Reyes said. The men have all been released to their employers while formal charges are drawn up, he added.

 

18th June   

Update: Gerbils and G-Strings...

More gay support for the hype for Brüno
Link Here

Bruno film poster No doubt about it—Sacha Baron Cohen uses every negative gay stereotype you could possibly imagine in his portrayal of Brüno , his Austrian fashion journalist alter ego.

He's a flamboyant limp-wristed queen who has wild sex, dresses in barely-there S&M ensembles and has never met a Swarovski crystal he doesn't like.

Is it any wonder that a big portion of gay Hollywood finds parts of the upcoming Brüno movie more offensive than humorous?

GLAAD, the gay media watchdog group, is so concerned about Cohen's depiction of homosexuality in the flick that it asked Universal Pictures, the studio releasing Brüno , to include a message of support for gay rights and tolerance from Cohen at the end of the movie. The request was denied.

One scene includes Brüno and a sexual partner tied up in chains in a hotel room, wearing nothing but G-strings. Also in the room? A tarp on the wall is dirtied with fecal stains and there are gerbils in a dresser drawer, according to Hollywood blog The Wrap.

Robinson said GLAAD is also concerned about a scene in which Brüno appears on a talk show to discuss his adoption of an African baby. They asked that a photo shown during the bit showing a baby sitting in the same hot tub where two men are having sex be cut.

Universal has promised that GLAAD can see the movie another time before its July 7 debut, Robinson said. A rep for the studio declined to comment about the possibility of a future screening.

 

14th June   

Update: A Queer Message...

Bruno winds up the US gay lobby
Link Here

Bruno film poster With impeccable timing, Sacha Baron Cohen has found a fresh collection of minority groups to take offence at his work.

A month before the release of his latest satirical movie, Bruno , the British comedian has provoked noisy complaints from America's gay rights lobby about the alleged excesses of his new alter ego: a flamboyantly homosexual fashion journalist from Austria called Bruno. The character, who spends the film wearing mesh vests, zebra-skin underwear and leather S&M gear, is supposed to send-up the ignorance and intolerance of real-life individuals he meets during a filmed journey across the US. However, he has instead been accused of promoting gay stereotypes.

Rashad Robinson, of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation said: Sacha Baron Cohen's well-meaning attempt at satire is problematic in many places and outright offensive in others.

Ms Robinson is particularly troubled by a scene in which Bruno appears on a TV chat-show brandishing an adopted child dressed in a T-shirt with the logo "gay-by." He boasts to the seemingly-conservative studio audience that the infant is proving a highly-effective man magnet. Also near the knuckle are scenes in which Baron Cohen's character attempts to seduce the former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul (who storms out of the room muttering about queers ) and takes lessons in how to fight off predatory homosexuals from a martial arts instructor.

Gay rights groups are concerned that US audiences will fail to appreciate Baron Cohen's irony and instead leave the cinema with their homophobia reinforced. Human Rights Campaign, the largest gay lobbying organisation in the US, has even called for filmgoers to be instructed about the message they should draw from the film, which follows TV presenter Bruno's efforts to be cured of his homosexuality in order to re-launch his career.

Universal Pictures, which financed the project, issued a statement this week saying that Bruno uses provocative comedy to powerfully shed light on the absurdity of many kinds of intolerance and ignorance, including homophobia. By placing himself in radical and risky situations, Sacha Baron Cohen forces both the people Bruno meets and the audience itself to challenge their own stereotypes, preconceptions and discomforts. We believe the overwhelming majority of the audience will understand and appreciate the film's unarguably positive intentions.

 

11th June   

Limited Pride...

China restricts its first mainland gay pride event
Link Here

The Laramie Project DVD Chinese officials are taking steps to censor parts of China's first Gay Pride, the BBC reported.

Shanghai Pride is mainland China's first large-scale Gay Pride celebration but it does not include a march or parade. Instead organizers are holding a series of cultural events to take place at privately-owned venues.

But that's not stopping the Chinese government from banning certain events. Officials have ordered certain owners to cancel events or face severe consequences.

At ShanghaiPride.com, the event's official website, a blog post simply titled Sorry alerts readers that the film screening of the lesbian-themed Lost in You has been canceled.

The BBC reports that a second event appears to be in trouble. Officials have targeted the staging of T he Laramie Project for closure. The play reconstructs the gruesome 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, the University of Wyoming student beaten, shackled to a post and left to die in a field by two men he had met in a gay bar.

Other events to be held throughout the week, art exhibits, food events and panel discussions, appear to remain on track. The official Gay Pride party takes place Saturday, June 13.

 

30th May   

Morally Harmful...

Religious morality TV to be restricted to late night slots
Link Here

Brazil Christian TV programmes that mention the Bible’s position on homosexual conduct face being banned from daytime viewing by the Brazilian government.

The government has already proposed that a notice should be broadcast before such Christian programmes, warning viewers that the shows are not recommended for people under the age of 18.

Brazil’s Justice Secretary told a newspaper there that while such programmes would be restricted to after 11pm: the ideal is that they not be shown at any time.

Nutter campaigner Julio Severo said: Catholic radio and TV shows now run the risk of being rated as ‘morally harmful,’ ‘homophobic’ and ‘unsuitable for children and teens’.

If the policy is carried out in accordance with Brazilian President Luiz Lula’s definition of homophobia , the new restrictions will effectively ban public statements on television that identify homosexual behaviour as sinful or unhealthy.

President Lula is also seeking to pass an anti-homophobia law that would ban any public criticism of homosexuals or homosexual behaviour. He recently reiterated his commitment to criminalise words or acts that are offensive to homosexuality.

 

27th May   

Petitioning against Anti-Gay Law...

Lebanon's Helem is the only gay association in the Arab world
Link Here

Lebanon flag The Lebanese gay movement has come out into the open to protest against the law which punishes unnatural sexual relations with up to a year in jail.

Helem (Dream), which is the only gay association in the Arab world, is shortly to organise a petition to try and have the anti-gay law removed from the statute book.

Rabih, one of Helem's coordinations, recently promoted a public discussion on the subject in a central Beirut theatre. The event marked an occasion for free expression by Beirut's gay community, who covered the Babel theatre's wall with anti-discriminatory messages, such as: I am not a gay, I am a human being who loves cinema, music and men ; 'the government has nothing to do with our bedrooms' ; or in our country it is normal to see men carrying a gun in their hand, but it is considered abnormal to see men holding each other's hands.

 

21st May   

Whispers of Secrets and Dignity...

Gay bar takes over from closed lap dancing bar in Kilkenny
Link Here

Kilkenny A few months after the lap-dancing club Whispers and then Secrets closed in Parliament Street, Kilkenny's first gay bar will open in the same premises.

Dignity 2 - the sister bar to Dignity in Waterford - will open to the public on Friday May 29.

Kilkenny is currently the only city or major town without a gay bar in Ireland.

 

17th May   

Updated: Destroying the Morality of Intolerance...

Moscow bans gay parade coinciding with Eurovision Song Contest
Link Here

Russia flag A gay parade planned to coincide with the Eurovision Song Contest, hosted by the Russian capital, has been banned by Moscow because it will destroy morals , a spokesman for the city's Mayor said.

The Moscow government is saying: Moscow has never had gay parades and it never will, said Mayor Yuri Luzhkov's spokesman, Sergei Tsoi. Not only do they destroy morals within our society, but they consciously provoke disorder.

Parade organiser Nikolai Alekseyev said the event would take place: This is our right and it is guaranteed by the constitution. No official, including the Moscow Mayor, has the right to violate it.

But Mr Luzhkov's spokesman said any attempts to hold an unsanctioned gay parade would be toughly stopped by law enforcement agencies in accordance with the law.

Update: Tatchell Arrested

17th May 2009. See article from independent.co.uk

Riot police in Moscow ruthlessly broke up a peaceful gay rights protest, at times using violence to detain the participants. The city authorities had banned the march, timed to coincide with the supposedly gay-friendly Eurovision Song Contest, but around 30 activists decided to protest anyway, changing the venue at the last minute.

They gathered near Moscow's main university, chanting slogans and unveiling banners protesting against homophobia in Russian society. Most of the demonstrators, including the organiser, Nikolai Alexeev, and British gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, were bundled into police vans and driven away. The city's mayor has previously referred to gays as Satanists and the authorities claimed the march had been banned to prevent moral degradation.

Tatchell was released without charge in the afternoon after the British Embassy requested consular access to him, but most of the other participants in the gay demonstration were still being held by police.

 

17th May   

Updated: Fagged Out...

Rumour of an end of campaigning by the Westboro Baptists
Link Here  full story: Westboro Baptists...Reprehensible nutters hate gays and soliders

"God hates you" poster A cryptic blog post on the Westboro Baptist Church’s website hints that their mission is coming to an end:

BECAUSE IT’S ALMOST TIME TO LEAVE…THAT’S WHY DUMMY!

We are particularly urgent about it, because the time is shortly to come when we will grant you your wicked wish, Doomed america!

Let us see how that is shortly now to play out, my angry little sodomite-loving friends. It’s about time for us to leave this place.

When we’re done, we will leave your filthy land and be placed safely out of the reach of the horror that will then land upon you swiftly and certainly – in one hour.

We pray it to be any day now, for the promises of our God are sure and certain. We finished our job in Napa County – one of the few we have left – and then went to tell the Saints of our God-blessed exploits and our joy.

We gotta go, peeps! We gotta go! And when we do, it’s time for this filthy nation to receive of all the plagues that your Creator has promised. The reason there is such urgency in those words … such passion in the irresistible call from our Saviour, Husband, and Friend … is because when that time comes for this rebellious nation – which is spiritually called Babylon and has become literally Babylon by the inexplicable and forcible snatching of that Mesopotamian land where ancient Babylon sat – it is going to be very fast and very violent, such that all mankind is utterly and simply amazed. Check out the words, fools … it’s all about the words!


Westboro recently lost a massive lawsuit and are bordering on bankruptcy. Their protests have resulted in a backlash from parties well beyond gays and lesbians. Their dynamic leader Fred Phelps is in bad health and some claim near death. Now they want to end their mission and go be with God.

Update: Should We Ignore Them

17th May 2009. See article from blog.beliefnet.com . Thanks to Alan

The Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka Kansas is at it again. This time the target is Jews.

Combining ancient and contemporary forms of anti-Semitism, they continue their traditional combination of hate-mongering and apocalyptic doom. But with only 71 members, I really wonder if it even makes sense to pay them any attention at all. What do you say?

Should groups like this be covered? Are we better off ignoring them? Is that something that decent people can afford to do?

Wherein lies the proper balance between the necessary monitoring of hate-groups and turning such monitoring into a lucrative fear-mongering business of its own?

 

16th May   

At Odds with Moral Norms...

Riga's mayor bans gay parade on moral grounds
Link Here

Latvia flag Authorities in the Latvian capital of Riga say 'security concerns' have caused them to reverse a decision to allow a gay parade this Saturday.

Riga's picket and parade commission decided to ban the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender march which was expected to draw hundreds from seveal Baltic nations, the Baltic Times newspaper reported Friday.

Andris Grinbergs, director of the Riga city council, said the gay parade is at odds with moral and legal norms and along with a majority of the council agreed it would be a public security threat, the daily said.

 

16th May   

Mandate to Close...

Internet puts pay to US gay magazines
Link Here

Mandate mag US-based publishing company Mavety Media Group had decided to stop producing long-running gay porn magazines Mandate, Torso, Honcho, Playguy and Inches .

The titles were hugely successful in a pre-internet era. The earliest gay magazines in the stable contained a mixture of articles and nude photos of men, but gradually the articles were dropped in favour of more graphic photospreads.

Mavety's flagship straight title Juggs will apparently continue publication.

Popular gay blog Boyculture says today: The need for a printed magazine became lesser and lesser in the age of the Internet, where every fantasy is a click away.

 

6th May   

Give it a Rest...

Body of Senegal gay man dug up to remove it from muslim cemetery
Link Here

Senegal flag The body of a man believed to be homosexual has twice been dug up from a Muslim cemetery in Senegal.

The man, in his 30s, was first buried on Saturday before residents of the western town of Thies dug up his body and left it near his grave, police say.

His family then reburied him, but he was once more exhumed by people who did not want him buried there. His body was dumped outside the family house.

A police officer told the AFP news agency that the body was eventually buried away from the cemetery. The state-owned Le Soleil newspaper reports that it was buried within the grounds of the family home.

 

1st May   

Gay Hate Legislation...

Burundi criminalises homosexuality
Link Here

Burundi flag New legislation, promulgated last week in Burundi by President Nkurunziza, which abolishes the death penalty but outlaws homosexuality, is both a cause for celebration and disappointment.

On the one hand the new Criminal Code abolishes the death penalty and makes torture, genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity punishable offences. But, on the other hand, those found guilty of engaging in consensual same-sex relations risk imprisonment of two to three years and a fine of 50,000 to 100,000 Burundian francs (42 to 84 US dollars).

Amnesty International’s Africa Programme Director, Erwin van der Borght, welcomed the abolition of the death penalty in Burundi but said: this good news is undermined by the government's decision to criminalize homosexuality, in violation of Burundi's obligations under international and regional human rights law. It also flies in the face of Burundi's constitution, which guarantees the right to privacy.

This new legislative provision could result in the imprisonment of people solely for their actual or imputed sexual orientation, including for private sexual relations between consenting adults.

Health organizations in Burundi have said that the new legislation may also limit the effectiveness of their work to curb HIV/AIDS. They have stated that the current amendment undermines attempts to ensure that people have access to voluntary counselling and testing, to information about prevention of infection and access to treatment where needed.

 

29th April   

Have I Got Nutters for You...

Nutter calls the police in over ill-judged jest on Have I Got the News For You
Link Here

Have I Got News For You DVD The Metropolitan Police have received a complaint from George Hargreaves, the leader of The Christian Party over a jest on Have I Got News For You

Openly gay Tory MP Alan Duncan has weighed in on the Miss California gay marriage row.

Miss California Carrie Prejean had been asked by blogger Perez Hilton her thoughts on gay marriage at the Miss America contest last week. She replied: I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman."

Appearing on BBC comedy news quiz, Alan Duncan called her a silly bitch. I don't agree with her at all. A few minutes later he added: If you read that Miss California has been murdered, you will know it was me, won't you?

Fellow guest Katy Brand appeared shocked by the comment, saying: That's a hell of a statement to be making on camera there, Alan.

The complainant George Hargreaves said: How can we stop gun and knife crime when the man who thinks he will be the next Home Secretary makes death threats?

Duncan said yesterday: Of course it was in jest. It is a comedy show after all. I'm sure Miss Prejean's very beautiful and that if we were to meet we would love each other. I have no plans to kill her. I'll send her a box of chocolates - unpoisoned.

 

29th April   

Update: They Will be Fish Food...

Senegal lynch mobs assemble to murder freed gays
Link Here

Senegal flag A mob gathered near a mosque outside Dakar. They were there to hunt down and kill nine men accused of homosexual acts.

Earlier this week the nine Senegalese AIDS activists were freed from eight-year-prison terms for alleged homosexual acts, but they went into hiding because of death threats from Muslim religious leaders and the general population.

The homosexuals will not escape lynching. They will be fish food, Dakar newspaper L'Observeur quoted a local youth leader as saying.

Gay men will never be free in Senegal. They expose us all to danger, said Imam Mbaye Niang, a prominent religious leader and member of parliament: The judges should understand that Senegalese people need to protect their children, their families from homosexuality.

In Senegal homosexual acts are punishable by fines and up to five years in prison. In January, the nine men received the harshest sentence yet for such an offense in Senegal, getting the maximum of five years and an additional three for criminal conspiracy.

Though widely supported in Senegal, the conviction was condemned by international human rights groups and foreign governments, most notably France.

A Dakar appeals court overturned that decision Monday, citing violations of legal protocol.

Acting on an anonymous tip, police had arrested the men at the home of a prominent gay activist. But the police did not have a search warrant, nor did they catch the men in the act, which is required by the Senegalese law prohibiting indecent acts against nature. The judge hearing the appeal therefore declared their convictions null and void.

In our society, homosexuality will never be accepted, Imam Niang said: Our religion forbids it, so we can never accept it, even if it is accepted everywhere else in the world.”

 

27th April   

Update: Nonsensical Anti-Gay Protest...

Westboro Baptists meet their match at Walt Whitman High School
Link Here  full story: Westboro Baptists...Reprehensible nutters hate gays and soliders

"God hates you" poster The Westboro Baptist 'Church' of Topeka, Kansas is notorious for its tasteless and frequently nonsensical anti-gay protests.

However, the Westboro protesters may have overreached when they attempted to picket Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, MD, because it is named after the nineteenth century poet who many biographers believe to have been either homosexual or bisexual.

Whitman sophomores Ryan Hauck and Amar Mukunda set up a Facebook group to generate support for the counter-protest through which more than 600 students have committed to attend.

As it happened, the turnout far exceeded Mukunda's expectation of a couple of hundred. The Washington Post reports that faculty had spun the event into an interdisciplinary lesson. English teachers spent the day teaching Whitman's verse. Social studies teachers led a unit on tolerance. Math teachers fanned through the crowd, attempting a head count.

Although the handful of picketers initially had the street to themselves, that changed dramatically when school was dismissed at 2:10 and five hundred students marched out, chanting the school name alternating with Go home!

LGBT group Driving Equality had even set up a Phelps-a-Thon webpage, promising, For every minute the 'God Hates Fags' clan is protesting, we will be collecting donations for the Walt Whitman High School gay/straight alliance. ... You can pledge any amount you chose, whether it be $0.25, $0.50, $1, or even $2 for every minute they protest. ... After the event, we will send Phelps a thank you card, telling him how much money he raised for LGBT equality.

 

22nd April   

Update: The Writing is on the Wall...

Iraqi vigilantes terrorise gays in Baghdad
Link Here  full story: Gay Vigilantes in Iraq...Iraq and its muderous anti-gay vigilantes

Iraq flag Threatening fliers have been posted around the impoverished Shiite enclave of Sadr City in eastern Baghdad targeting homosexuals, according to residents.

If you don't cease your perverted acts, you will get your fair punishment,
read the warnings, which were posted on walls on a variety of streets around the neighborhood.

On some were scrawled the names of two or three local men suspected of being gay. The fliers were signed by a previously unknown group calling itself the Platoons of Righteousness.

In addition, graffiti reading we will get you, puppies -- a derogatory Iraqi term for gays -- was sprayed on walls in red paint.

Residents said the fliers and graffiti were removed after a few hours, though it wasn't clear by whom.

Police said the bodies of three slain men who were suspected of being gay were found earlier this month in Sadr City, and news reports say at least 25 homosexual men have been murdered in Baghdad over the last two months.

Is this Horror for Real?

22nd April 2009. Based on article from towleroad.com Thanks to Alan

The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission writes: The following is a translation of a story from Alarabiya, a UAE-based media network, which was published on its Arabic website a few hours ago. While IGLHRC has not verified all of the allegations, many are consistent with patterns of human rights violations being reported from within the country:

A prominent Iraqi human rights activist says that Iraqi militia have deployed a painful form of torture against homosexuals by closing their anuses using Iranian gum. ... Yina Mohammad told Alarabiya.net that: Iraqi militias have deployed an unprecedented form of torture against homosexuals by using a very strong glue that will close their anus.

According to her, the new substance is known as the American hum, which is an Iranian-manufactured glue that if applied to the skin, sticks to it and can only be removed by surgery. After they glue the anuses of homosexuals, they give them a drink that causes diarrhea. Since the anus is closed, the diarrhea causes death. Videos of this form of torture are being distributed on mobile cellphones in Iraq.

According to this human rights activist, for the past 3 weeks a crackdown on homosexuals has been going on based on a religious decree that demands their death; dozens have been targeted. She says that the persecution of homosexuals is not confined to the Shiite clerics. Some Sunni leaders have also declared the death penalty for sodomy on satellite channels.

 

18th April   

No Bottle...

Samoa censor bans the award winning film Milk
Link Here

Milk DVD The Samoa Censor Board has banned the movie Milk from playing in Samoa

The movie is based on the life of gay activist Harvey Milk, and was rejected by the Censor Board after it was presented by one of the local movie stores for approval.

Principal Censor Leiataua Niuapu Faaui confirmed the board had rejected the application, and the movie would not be distributed in movie stores in Samoa. He declined to give a reason.

Eteuati Junior Esau, General Manager of Movies4U, the largest chain of movie stores in the country said: I really just want a reason why, because my customers are demanding this movie.

Esau says he does not understand why the movie has been banned, since it had great reviews, won numerous awards and is based on a true story.

Ken Moala, a well known Human Rights Activist in Samoa, says banning the movie is uncalled for: I do not think it should be banned. It is basically a documentary about the human endeavour to conquer something that people tend to discriminate against.

 

18th April   

Cleansing Utrecht...

Muslims hounding out gays from their neighbourhoods
Link Here

Netherlands A transsexual woman from the Utrecht district of Zuilen has moved house as a result of bullying by a group of about 30 young Moroccans.

Earlier, two lesbian couples left Zuilen because they no longer felt safe there. Utrecht Mayor Aleid Wolfsen said the situation was extremely regrettable.

Last year, the city council took a series of measures to prevent this type of incident, including CCTV supervision and so-called 'street coaches', Moroccan parents appointed to tackle problem youths about their conduct.

 

13th April   

Gay and De-listed...

Amazon.com hides away gay books that it deems adult
Link Here

Amazon.com logo Amazon.com recently de-listed gay and lesbian titles from its sales ranking system it deemed adult , raising the ire of some who characterize the move as online censorship.

Author Mark R. Probst wrote on his blog Sunday that he noticed the change a few days ago:

On Amazon.com two days ago, mysteriously, the sales rankings disappeared from two newly-released high profile gay romance books: Transgressions by Erastes and False Colors by Alex Beecroft. Everybody was perplexed. Was it a glitch of some sort? The very next day HUNDREDS of gay and lesbian books simultaneously lost their sales rankings, including my book The Filly . There was buzz, What's going on? Does Amazon have some sort of campaign to suppress the visibility of gay books?

Probst, the author of a novel with gay characters in the Old West, said he was perplexed by the move and used his status as a publisher to contact Amazon for an explanation. He said he received the following response from an Amazon Advantage service representative:

In consideration of our entire customer base, we exclude "adult" material from appearing in some searches and best seller lists. Since these lists are generated using sales ranks, adult materials must also be excluded from that feature.

Of course, being delisted from the rankings doesn't mean that the book giant has stopped selling the title; it just means that the title won't show up with a public sales ranking or in the best-seller lists--often a factor in how shoppers make their purchases.

 

10th April   

Mer-gay...

Gay interpretation of Dvorak opera winds up a few Greeks
Link Here

Rusulka DVD Dvorák’s opera Mermaid was played in Athens in the beginning of March. It stirred up people’s feelings and provoked an unexpected scandal. It happened over a kiss between two men and because of the half naked mermaids at the end of the show, which the director, Marion Wasserman added for the good development of the act.

Mostly it was the kiss, which made the orchestra musicians in the National Opera House to make a list against Wasserman, because she not only changed the libretto but she gave the main character a homosexual orientation, because of which we have officially filed a complaint to the police.

The young French woman Marion Wasserman found herself in the eye of the storm and had to defend her decision for the brave creative decision.

Meanwhile, the Greek gay association found a convenient occasion to storm out in the opera hall, where Mermaid was played. Its members entertained one part of the audience but irritated the rest, who jumped from their seats, in order to try and defend their right to see the performance without being disturbed by calls for sexual tolerance.

Marion Wasserman left the country bewildered. Her version of Mermaid will be played in France this upcoming season, where she hopes her interpretation will be understood and will not provoke similar reactions as the ones in Greece.

 

9th April   

Update: The Dark Ages...

Six men shot in Iraq for being gay
Link Here  full story: Gay Vigilantes in Iraq...Iraq and its muderous anti-gay vigilantes

Iraq flag Six gay men were shot dead by members of their tribe in two separate incidents in the past 10 days, an official with Iraq's Interior ministry said.

In the most recent attack, two men were killed in Sadr City area of Baghdad after they were disowned by relatives, the official said.

The shootings came after a tribal meeting was held and the members decided to go after the victims.

On March 26, four additional men were fatally shot in the same city, the official said, adding that the victims had also been disowned by their relatives.

Witnesses told CNN that a Sadr City cafe, which was a popular gathering spot for gays, was also set on fire.

 

7th April   

Ridiculed Religion...

Mormon leader tells members not to be discouraged by mass ridicule after opposition to gay marriage
Link Here

Utah state seal Mormon church President Thomas S. Monsonn has told members not to be discouraged by those who may malign or ridicule the church as it seeks to uphold its moral values in a changing world.

His remarks at a conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are a tacit reminder of the negative backlash Mormons felt since last fall when the church worked with a coalition of groups to successfully ban gay marriage in California.

Many gay marriage advocates turned their anger toward the Mormon church, picketing outside church temples nationwide. In Utah, more than 3,000 staged a protest march outside the Salt Lake City temple after Proposition 8 was passed by California voters in November. A local church meeting house was vandalized and envelopes filled with white powder were sent anonymously to church headquarters.

Mormons hold traditional marriage as a sacred institution and a critical part of God's plan for humanity. Homosexual sex is considered a sin, but gays are welcome in the church and can maintain church callings if they remain celibate.

 

2nd April   

Transphobia...

Complaints about jokes targeting Moving Wallpaper lady boy
Link Here

Moving Wallpaper DVD Ofcom has received more than 50 complaints about an episode of ITV comedy Moving Wallpaper over alleged transphobia.

The complaints focus on an episode aired on 20th March, in which trans character Georgina was mocked by other characters.

Viewers complained that she was the subject of a barrage of taunts such as She’s a walking GM crop, it’s not natural and her identity was derided by the other characters, who referred to her as it and 'joking' about her hairy hands, stubbly face and Adam's apple.

A Facebook group of 424 members is encouraging viewers to complain to Ofcom, arguing that production company Kudos blatantly flouted official guidelines in order to use a transsexual character as the butt of cruelty.

The show's broadcast has inspired Ryan Combs to create a group called Trans Media Watch , which serves to acknowledge transphobic rhetoric where it exists and call people to action to fight against harmful representations of trans people and trans lives.

In response to a letter of complaint, an ITV spokesperson apologised, saying: It is never our intention to upset or to offend our viewers but obviously for you on this occasion we got it completely wrong. The episode did highlight, in a comedic way, the prejudice suffered by many, and I should like to mention that positive comments were made by the characters of Gillian and Kelly in defence of Georgina to counter those made by Jonathan Pope.

 

1st April   

To the Last Man...

GAYVN Award winners
Link Here

To the last man DVD Raging Stallion's To the Last Man swept the 2009 GAYVN Awards Saturday night at the Castro Theatre in San Francisco, taking 13 honors including Best Picture, Best Director (Chris Ward, Ben Leon and Tony Dimarco), Best Actor (Ricky Sinz) and Best Screenplay (Dimarco). The film's Scott Tanner tied for Best Supporting Actor with Endgame's Trevor Knight.

Other big winners included Ralph Woods (Best Actor - Foreign Release) for Bel Ami's French Kiss , Brent Corrigan (Best Bottom), Ricky Sinz (Best Top), Barrett Long (Best Cum-Shot), Jackson Wild (Best Newcomer), Tober Brandt (Best Fetish Performer) and Lucas Kazan's Italians and Other Strangers (Best Foreign Release). Chi Chi LaRue was awarded the first Trailblazer Award for her three-decades-long career. Porn legend Gino Colbert inducted Dink Flamingo, Michael Lucas, TJ Paris, Dean Phoenix, Jack Simmons, Phil St. John and Chris Steele into the Hall of Fame and bestowed the Lifetime Achievement Award up on Roger Earl.