A book on Mahatma Gandhi has been banned by the government in his native state of Gujarat.
The book by Joseph Lelyveld contains evidence that India's independence hero had a homosexual relationship. Early reviews in the US and UK suggest that
Gandhi was depicted as sometimes racist and that he had an intimate relationship with a German man named Hermann Kallenbach.
Chief Minister Narendra Modi said that its contents were perverse and defamed the icon of non-violence . Modi
accused the author of displaying a perverted mentality in writing the book, which he said had hurt the sentiments of masses of people: This publication defames the Mahatma and there is rising anger not only in Gujarat but in the entire country.
Gujarat's state assembly voted unanimously to ban Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India , even though it has not yet been released in India.
Lelyveld has denied writing that Gandhi was a bisexual, saying
his work had been taken out of context.
Boys On Film goes down under to bring a fresh batch of
funny and touching tales courtesy of our Aussie and Kiwi cousins, while from the USA and Hawaii to Singapore via Korea several more stories of men falling in love round out the collection.
Rising stars Xavier Samuel
and Callan McAuliffe put their own twist on traditional coming out fables in Craig Boreham s second contribution to the Boys On Film library, Drowning and the Berlin Film Festival Crystal Bear winner, Franswa Sharl.
Lady GaGa's song Born This Way - which celebrates people who live alternative lifestyles, and includes the line no matter gay, straight, or bi/ Lesbian, transgendered life /I'm on the right track baby - has been removed by a number of
radio stations after officials deemed it inappropriate for Malaysia.
A spokesperson for the country's Amp Radio said: The particular lyrics in Born This Way may be considered as offensive when viewed against Malaysia's social and religious
observances. The issue of being gay, lesbian or bisexual is still considered as a 'taboo' by general Malaysians.
Lady Gaga said she picked the track as the lead single from her second album because of its strong message, adding she hoped it
could become an anthem for her generation.
Elton John has said: That was the gay anthem. This is the new gay anthem.
Lady GaGa has called for her fans in Malaysia to protest about her pro-gay lyrics being banned in their country. She said that she specifically put pro-gay lyrics on the song because she disagrees with exactly the type of censoring happening
to her song:
You must do everything you can if you want to be liberated by your society. You must not stop, you must protest- peacefully. I don't believe in violence. I don't believe in negativity. There is no
reason to be derogatory. You just need to keep fighting for what you believe in.
Ever since Apple set themselves up to be moral censors then there was a danger of being caught up in moral conflicts. The latest example perhaps shows where conflicts can arise that simply would not occur in an uncensored system.
International claims to be the world's largest Christian ministry dealing with homosexual issues. It has a website featuring lots of anti-gay sentiment that surely reinforces the general religious perception that being gay is a sin. However, it does not
call for anything in the way of violence, nor is it threatening, nor is it likely to fall under any gay hatred legislation.
But as soon as it branches out from its tolerated and legal website into the world of Apple apps, it opens itself up for
censorship, just because a moral censor has previously established a private moral test.
The LGBT rights group Truth Wins Out has established a petition on Change.org:
Exodus International, the notorious
ex-gay organization, has just released an iPhone app that, according to its website, is designed to be a useful resource for men, women, parents, students, and ministry leaders. The Exodus website further boasts that its app received a 4+
rating from Apple, meaning that it contains no objectionable content.
No objectionable content? We beg to differ. Exodus' message is hateful and bigoted. They claim to offer freedom from homosexuality through
the power of Jesus Christ and use scare tactics, misinformation, stereotypes and distortions of LGBT life to recruit clients. They endorse the use of so-called reparative therapy to change the sexual orientation of their clients,
despite the fact that this form of therapy has been rejected by every major professional medical organization including the American Psychological Association, the American Medical Association, and the American Counseling Association. But
reparative therapy isn't just bad medicine -- it's also very damaging to the self-esteem and mental health of its victims.
Apple doesn't allow racist or anti-Semitic apps in its app store, yet it gives the
green light to an app targeting vulnerable LGBT youth with the message that their sexual orientation is a sin that will make your heart sick and a counterfeit. This is a double standard that has the potential for devastating consequences.
Apple needs to be told, loud and clear, that this is unacceptable. Stand with Truth Wins Out -- demand that the iTunes store stop supporting homophobia and remove the Exodus app.
the petition has attracted about 26,000 signatures.
There's no such measure of support levels for Exodus International but surely being a major example of a US christian group suggests that it has massive support too.
Perhaps Exodus is
justified in its concern that Apple is in danger of failing to meet the diverse needs of their customer base by denying them access to all viewpoints regarding sexuality.
Update: Apple chooses gay rights over
christian anti-gay nonsense and free speech
Apple appears to have pulled an iPhone and iPad app promising freedom from homosexuality through the power of Jesus after coming under fire from gay rights activists.
More than 146,000 people signed a petition calling on Apple to remove
the so-called gay cure app backed by Exodus International, a Christian group that describes itself as the world's largest worldwide ministry to those struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction.
The app has been on sale since
February 15 but was last night no longer available. Apple has yet to comment on the furore that the app sparked.
The World Wrestling Entertainment organization certainly provides some fun entertainment even if it does little to resemble the actual sport of wrestling.
As part of the entertainment in one of the WWE's weekly broadcasts, someone thought it would
make a great storyline to have wrestler John Cena and the Rock have a feud. The Rock is also known as Dwayne Johnson.
In earlier times, he was a WWE champion before he launched a movie career. In the past few weeks, he's resurfaced in the
WWE, when viewers were told he would be the guest host for next month's WrestleMania show.
As part of the 'feud', Cena and Johnson exchanged diatribes. At one point, Cena chided Johnson for playing a fairy -- the literal kind -- in one of his
movies. Just don't go racing to Witch Mountain, Rock, 'cause your mountain is Brokeback, Cena said.
Cena, or the guys who wrote his rap for the storyline, was trying to say that Johnson isn't really a tough guy because he's gay.
course, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation would have no truck with such talk. The organization protested, and WWE honchos couldn't cave in quickly enough. They issued this apology:
WWE takes this issue very seriously, and has
already spoken with our talent about these incidents. We are taking steps and working with GLAAD to ensure that our fans know that WWE is against bullying or discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. We strongly value our fans in the lesbian,
gay, bisexual and transgender community, and apologize to them for these incidents.
And of course the story was picked up for the US press, resulting in lots of free publicity for a throw away diatribe of publicity seeking and meaningless
minor insult. As if anyone took a single word of WWE hype seriously.
Boy meets boy. Boy falls in love with boy. Boy has a sex-change procedure in a misguided attempt to please his lover. Boy regrets his decision, moves back to hometown and falls in love with a girl.
The plot of ...Dalam Botol ( ...In a
Bottle ), Malaysia's first feature film with gay lead characters, is causing a stir in the Muslim-majority country, where consensual sodomy is illegal and depictions of homosexuality in pop culture are taboo.
The film opens next Thursday and
will screen in 52 cinemas. It has already provoked the ire of religious organisations. The youth wing leader of the conservative Pan-Malaysian Islamic party (PAS) called it a shocking attempt to promote gay culture.
The film has found
little resonance with the country's handful of gay activists, who have joined the religious authorities in criticising the film, although for very different reasons.
Malaysia's film censorship rules require gay and transgendered characters to
regret their actions and learn from supposed mistakes, guidelines to which ...Dalam Botol had to conform in order to receive screening permission.
Alex who blogs anonymously about gay issues said that while the film's groundbreaking
depiction of gay characters could be seen as a sign of progress, he worried it would reinforce stereotypes in Malaysian culture: The ending is very negative. Having the main character regret being gay and falling in love with a woman is not going to
help our image problem here.
This is not the Brokeback Mountain of Malaysia. It presents LGBT people as depressed and confused, said Yuki Choe, a transsexual activist in Kuala Lumpur. Malaysian society is trying to shame us.
But whether we like it or not, this is a Muslim country, and it's difficult to be open about your sexuality here.
Even politically correct bureaucrats can't work out the rules to the game of easy offence
Limey the rules are very clear:
1) Gender issues are the actual top priority 2) Gender discrimination on grounds of religion is actually
unacceptable, BUT this must never be ADMITTED 3) Religious issues are actually considered on their merits, BUT one has to speak as if religion has TOP priority 4) Racial issues are now mostly passé, except where religions stir things up
5) Rule breaches are punished by a designated period in the sin bin requiring endless profuse meaningless apology
The Government's equality agency has said sorry for a remark that implied Christian moral values are like an infection that could harm children.
The taxpayer-funded Equality and Human Rights Commission had warned that children could be infected
by the moral views of Christian foster parents who oppose homosexual behaviour.
The remark was published in legal paperwork prepared by Karon Monaghan QC for a court case involving a Christian couple struggling to be approved as foster
But now the Commission has issued an apology. It also attempted to distance itself from the suggestion that sexual orientation rights take precedence over religious rights.
The remarks related to a court case involving Eunice and
Owen Johns, who say they have been effectively blocked by Derby City Council from fostering because of their Christian beliefs about homosexual behaviour.
A statement was published yesterday on the Equality Commission's website. It reads:
Earlier this week the case of Johns v Derby City Council, in which the Commission had intervened, attracted some attention.
Unfortunately a mistake within our legal submission led
to an inference that we did not intend and which was misconstrued as suggesting that the Commission equates Christian moral views with an infection.
This oversight was caused by a drafting error in our submissions to
the court. This should have been picked up in our internal clearance process for the legal documentation and does not represent the position of the Commission in any way.
Furthermore, the Commission entirely rejects
any view (as reported in the media) that rights in relation to sexual orientation 'take precedence' over religious rights.
The Commission has written to Mr and Mrs Johns to apologise.
A Christian couple opposed to homosexuality have lost a court battle over their right to become foster carers.
Eunice and Owen Johns said the city council did
not want them to look after children because of their traditional views. They claim they were doomed not to be approved due to their opinions. Eunice Johns said: All we were not willing to do was to tell a small child that the practice of
homosexuality was a good thing
The Pentecostal Christian couple had applied to Derby City Council to be respite carers. They withdrew their application after a social worker expressed concerns when they said they could not tell a child a
homosexual lifestyle was acceptable.
At the High Court, they asked judges to rule that their faith should not be a bar to them becoming carers, and the law should protect their Christian values.
But Lord Justice Munby and Mr Justice Beatson
ruled that laws protecting people from discrimination because of their sexual orientation should take precedence over the right not to be discriminated against on religious grounds. They said that if children were placed with carers who objected
to homosexuality and same-sex relationships, there may well be a conflict with the local authority's duty to 'safeguard and promote the welfare' of looked-after children .
Should we protect Children from being infected with Christianity?
So argued the Equality and
Human Rights Commission in the case of Johns v Derby using the word infected ; an argument implicitly accepted by the Court who held that the views of Christian foster carers on sexual morality could be inimical to the welfare of children
in care. The Commission has now said it was an error to have used this term but did not retract this statement when I raised it in court.
It is a very pertinent question to ask especially in light of the fact that I have reluctantly advised
the Johns not to appeal; such an appeal would normally be expected but now, in my opinion, futile - a waste of resources. The Courts are so set against religious freedom for Christians that an appeal is likely to only make matters worse.
Surely a slap on the wrist is enough to note that gay discrimination is now no longer tolerated, even by the religious. There is no need to persecute those
who just happen to have been made an example of. It seems wise that those that secured a small victory for fair play have been prevented from becoming the villains of the piece.
A gay couple who successfully sued the Christian owners of a hotel who refused them a bed are withdrawing a claim for more compensation.
Taxpayer-funded lawyers for the gay couple, Steven Preddy and Martyn Hallthen, submitted documents to the
Court of Appeal claiming the religious beliefs of Mr and Mrs Bull should have been disregarded, calling for the damages to be increased.
But the Equality and Human Rights Commission, which is representing Preddy and Hall said the cross appeal was
an error of judgment by its legal team and was being withdrawn: I would like to confirm that public money will not be spent funding a claim for increased damages in this case.
Christian Institute spokesman Mike Judge said: We are
pleased that the Commission has seen sense and withdrawn their demand for a stiffer penalty against Mr and Mrs Bull. However, this U-turn has come only after negative publicity.
An unenforceable, unconstitutional law that makes gay and lesbian sex a criminal act will remain on the books in Kansas for the time being.
A Republican and a Democrat on Kansas' House Judiciary Committee removed the provision addressing gay sex
from a clean-up bill, claiming it was unnecessary. It's a tempest in a teapot, Rep. Lance Kinzer told the Topeka Capital-Journal: I don't think it would make any difference. The statute is unenforceable.
Gay rights activists
were outraged and are planning a March on the Capitol building on March 17. The endorsement of an unconstitutional statute that's used to threaten and discriminate against law-abiding Kansas citizens is an outrage, Kansas Equality Coalition
chairman Thomas Wittsaid.
Gay campaigners of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC) have filed an FCC complaint against the Spanish-language television talk show Jose Luis Sin Censura ( Jose Luis
The show is produced by the California-based Liberman Broadcasting and airs in Los Angeles on KRCA, channel 62.
The groups claimed in a statement that the show routinely features indecent, profane, and obscene material,
offensive language, nudity, and on-air verbal and physical attacks against women as well as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people .
The show often prompts guests and audience members to engage in verbal and even physical
attacks, especially against people perceived to be LGBT. Many episodes showed the audience standing and shouting anti-gay epithets and profanity at guests, the groups said.
It is extremely disturbing to see a show like José Luis
Sin Censura air this violent language with impunity and without any regard for the safety of our community, GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios said: At a time when LGBT youth and adults face harassment and violence, it is unacceptable for media
to fuel such a climate of intolerance about our community.
GLAAD has also launched an online petition against the show.
A US web hosting provider BlueHost has taken down a US-based Christian website that blamed the recent New Zealand earthquake on gays and lesbians.
The US-based ChristchurchQuake.Net claims the quake was the vengeful act of God, punishing
homosexuals for their lifestyles and actions. They wrote:
Do we really want to tempt fate and risk another quake? The morning of the Christchurch earthquake was the opening of 'Gay Ski Week'. The highlight of the
week was a party featuring two of NZ's ugliest and butchest lesbians as the main event in Queenstown. Squadrons of imports were to have been brought in for the week --- from Sydney's now booming gay and lesbian area around Oxford St, between the CBD and
Thousands of angry Internet users emailed and sent complaint letters to BlueHost regarding the website, which was then taken down.
An anti-gay pastor who has staged protests against New Orleans' Southern Decadence Festival, calling the predominantly gay event perversion, has been arrested for allegedly masturbating in a park adjacent to a children's playground.
Rev. Grant Storms was arrested for obscenity after two witnesses told police they saw him touching himself while watching children on the playground.
Storms claims he was urinating in a bottle on his lunch break: I had my hands in my pants, but
I was not exposed.
A self-proclaimed Christian patriot, Storms is especially known for arming followers with bullhorns, Bibles and picket signs to protest Southern Decadence, an annual three-day gay festival.
In 2003, Storms
grabbed national attention with his failed attempts to shut down what Southern Decadence organizer Chuck Robinson called a peaceful festival that celebrates gay and alternative lifestyles. Storms called the event nasty and depraved.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission is examining whether gay-only guesthouses breach new laws designed to prevent people being treated unfairly in the provision of goods or services.
Last month, Christian owners of a guesthouse in
Cornwall became the first to be found guilty of discrimination under equality laws after they refused to let a homosexual couple stay in a double room, in a legal action supported by the EHRC.
Now, the watchdog says it must establish an objective balance
by considering if gays-only accommodation also defies the legislation.
John Bellamy who runs a homosexual hotel in Bournemouth for men only, said that the new legislation could result in the closure of exclusively gay guesthouses. While he
said he welcomed the new equality laws for tackling discrimination, he added that it had come at a price . I knew we'd get this as the new legislation is a double-edged sword, said Bellamy, who runs Hamilton Hall, which advertises that clothing is optional
at the hotel. We've been campaigning for this law for years so that everyone is equal, but it could spell the end of gay-only resorts.
Mike Saqui has been livening up his New Forest hotel by writing fun, comical messages on a sandwich board outside his building.
But the latest in the series caused nutter 'uproar' in his village with a sign saying: Poofters welcome here .
Mike Saqui, owner of The Penny Farthing Hotel, meant the sign to be a pointed reference to the case where a Cornish B&B owner refused to let in gay couples.
Chairman councillor Mark Rolle told the parish council meeting this week that
he had been offended by the slogans. He said: There have been some amusing signs occasionally. But last weekend I found one that incensed me. The realms of decency were overstepped - we could be branded a village of bigots.
councillors disagreed. Leonard Cornell said: It's not offensive, it's a fact. On its website it is listed as gay friendly.
This is a just a storm in a teacup and the parish council has
overreacted. I've been writing fun, comical messages on the A-board for the last 10 years and no harm is meant by them. We have a small minded parish council who have their knickers in a twist and I just want to get on running a business. This is the
political correctness culture gone mad. The latest message is not homophobic, we welcome gays, lesbians or whoever.
After we did receive a complaint and I took the board in - and then I received complaints from people
saying 'don't let the naysayers win.
I can't believe the police were sent round to have a word either, it's a ridiculous waste of their time. A few bad apples on the parish council will not stop me writing my messages.
The Supreme Court has said it would start the process to test the constitutional validity of Delhi High Court's decision to decriminalize same gender consensual sex between adults on April 19.
This is in response to over a dozen petitions and
applications challenging the HC's July 2, 2009 verdict, which said police could not arrest adult members of the LGBT community under Section 377 of IPC.
However, it rejected one Suresh Kumar Koushal's plea to include the Army, Navy and IAF as
parties. Koushal claimed the armed forces had clarified that they would not legalize same-gender sexual relationship.
To fast-track the hearing and cut out lengthy arguments from counsel on the issue, it asked all parties to file their written
submissions within eight weeks.
The court had earlier entertained a host of appeals against the HC verdict but refused to grant interim stay on its operation.
Evangelical minister and television personality Charles McVety says he is the victim of political censorship and intends to take legal action after Crossroads Television System permanently cancelled his show this week.
The tension between
the reverend and the Christian broadcaster began in December, when the TV censors of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council said Crossroads broke their rules when McVety made disparaging on-air remarks about gays.
A station spokeswoman,
meanwhile, denied the cancellation of Word TV was a consequence of bowing to political pressure. Rather, it was based on the show's lack of compliance with the CTS code of ethics, Carolyn Innis said.
In December's ruling, the council
said McVety's description of Toronto's gay pride parade as a sex parade, as well as his characterization of gay events as malevolent, insidious and conspiratorial, were in breach of the standards.
His show was initially pulled from
the air but the station let him back the following week on condition that the TV company could pre-vet the show. But on Sunday night, any viewers tuning in to see McVety were instead met with a notice alerting them that the show had been cancelled.
Five men have been charged with stirring up gender hatred for handing out leaflets outside a mosque suggesting that gay people should be executed.
It is the first time that anyone has been prosecuted for an offence of inciting hatred on the
grounds of sexual orientation.
The men are accused of handing out a leaflet entitled The Death Penalty? in Derby. The leaflets, which were also pushed through letterboxes, are understood to have called for homosexuals to be executed.
Sue Hemming, a lawyer for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: The charges relate to the distribution of a leaflet, 'The Death Penalty?', outside the Jamia Mosque in Derby in July 2010 and through letterboxes during the same month. This is the
first-ever prosecution for this offence and it is the result of close working between the Crown Prosecution Service and Derbyshire Police.
The Attorney General, Dominic Grieve QC MP, is allowing this prosecution to proceed.
A U.S. supermarket has sparked 'outrage' after it covered with a family shield a magazine showing a picture of Elton John, his husband and their newborn baby.
The Arkansas store deemed the image of the gay couple and their child, on the
front of Us Weekly, to be offensive.
Staff say complaints from shoppers prompted them to cover the magazine with an opaque cover as used for pornographic magazines.
The Harps grocery chain store in Mountain Home, Arkansas also wrapped lthe
magazine in a protective plastic shield to stop youngsters flicking through it.
Only the very top of the magazine was visible, with the cover reading: Family shield. To protect young Harps shoppers.
The move sparked 'outrage' among
representatives from GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). On its blog, a GLAAD spokesman said the shield should never have been put up in the first place , adding: Obviously, someone felt that shoppers should not have to look
at this smiling, happy couple and their newborn baby.
And after receiving a plethora of complaints, the store management have now un-censored the magazine.
He was a brave and fiercely committed activist who led the Ugandan struggle for gay rights for more than a decade. David Kato went to jail for his beliefs, and to court, winning his greatest victory three weeks ago against a newspaper that had called for
him to be hanged.
But now he appeared to have paid the ultimate price: he had been battered to death with a hammer in his home in Kampala.
As distraught family and friends gathered at the scene, police said they had arrested a man hired to
drive for Kato and were pursuing another male suspect seen leaving the house. A police spokesman said the motive appeared to be robbery.
But given the fierce anti-gay campaigns launched in recent years by some religious leaders and journalists, as
well as politicians who drafted laws to have gay people locked up for life or even executed, there are inevitable questions as to whether Kato was killed because of his sexuality.
A Ugandan man has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for the murder of gay rights activist David Kato.
Sidney Nsubuga Enoch admitted to killing Kato with a
hammer. But he was only convicted of second-degree murder, having claimed that he acted in self-defense. Enoch told the court Kato was making sexual advances, and that he had no choice but to kill him.
The European Parliament has called on Lithuania's Parliament to reject a proposed law that would punish public promotion of homosexual relations with a fine of up to $3,900.
The Euro Parliament also called on Lithuania to review existing
laws that ban gay information from any place where a minor could possibly see it, censor mentions of sexual orientation in advertising, and exclude gay protections from the nation's educational equal-opportunity policy.
co-president of the European Parliament's Intergroup on LGBT Rights, said: We need to educate people -- including children and youth -- about the different forms of sexuality that have always existed in every culture, everywhere in the world,
including in Lithuania. Hiding facts from young people generates fearful attitudes, prejudice and hate, something Europeans stand united against.
The new Christian Democrat candidate for the state seat of Sydney has pledged to end the city's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.
At a meeting with the press in the lead-up a State Election, self-confessed reformed sex addict Peter Madden said
ending the Mardi Gras was one of his main objectives.
Where once it was about rights, it now stands for violence and drunkenness, Madden said. Adding that it had become the worst day of the year for teenage binge drinking, a major
problem facing the city.
Introducing Madden, Christian Democrat leader Fred Nile claimed his personal experience and desire to clean up Kings Cross made him the best candidate for the seat.
Madden said he was molested from the age of nine
until 17 by an older female family member. The experience had left him with a seven-year sexual addiction: I was driven by sexual lust and pornography and for a season I visited prostitutes .
He said prostitution was out of control in
Sydney and that tolerance, particularly by State Sydney Independent MP and Lord Mayor Clover Moore and the Greens had lead to hyper-tolerance : This in turn leads to anarchy .
Presumably this issue is being debated at the highest echelons of western churches. Their views on homosexuality are becoming simply unacceptable to much of
modern society. Should they modify their 'god given' rules, or should they continue to alienate large swathes of supporters, or even potential members? In a time when public sympathies for the church are rapidly declining, then surely they will have to
opt to change their ways a little.
Two Christian hotel owners have been ordered to pay damages for refusing a bed to a gay couple .
Peter and Hazelmary Bull whinged that Christianity had been pushed to the margins of society, and added: Some people are more equal than others.
They spoke out after a landmark court decision awarded £1,800 each to civil partners Martyn Hall and Steven Preddy, who were denied a double room under the Bulls' policy of allowing only married couples to share a bed in the hotel that is also
their home. Victory:
Judge Andrew Rutherford said that in the past 50 years social attitudes had changed. He concluded that the Bulls discriminate on the basis of marital status : There is no material difference between marriage and a
civil partnership. If that is right, then upon what basis do the defendants draw a distinction if it is not on sexual orientation? The only conclusion which can be drawn is that the refusal to allow [the claimants] to occupy the double room which they
had booked was because of their sexual orientation and that this is direct discrimination.
His likening of civil partnership to marriage may lead to a long legal battle if the Bulls appeal.
There was a suggestion during the trial that
the hoteliers had been set up as part of a campaign against discrimination. But the judge said he could see no evidence of such a sting operation and added that damages would have been greatly reduced if that was so. He said: There was a suggestion in
the course of the case, and indeed in some newspaper reports prior to the case, that the defendants were "set up" by the claimants with the assistance of an organisation such as Stonewall. If this were true then, while it would not of itself
defeat a discrimination claim, it would very materially affect the issue of damages.
Canada's TV censor (CRTC) has ordered the country's radio censor (CBSC) to reconsider its ban on the Dire Straits song Money For Nothing .
The TV and radio censor had decided that Money For Nothing should not air on the Canadian
The CBSC's decision has elicited a strong public reaction and created uncertainty for private radio stations across the country, the CRTC said in its decision. The TV censor said it has received around 250 letters from
Canadians since the CBSC decision, most of which opposed the ruling and have been passed on to the broadcast censor.
The ruling that a British pop song which hasn't aired widely on the radio for a quarter-century, and which questioned MTV's
star-making machinery with apparent irony, has struck a chord among Canadians quick to criticize political correctness and the Nanny State.
The CRTC was also apparently forced to respond to the censorship debate after a host of radio stations in
the last week defied the CBSC decision and aired the original version of Money For Nothing unedited.
When the first editions of gay magazine Fun arrived at his stand in New Delhi, Ram Naresh displayed it discreetly to avoid giving offence -- but customers have ensured every month is a sell-out.
The glossy publication, launched in July,
combines pictures of young models posing in underwear with articles on what to wear on a swingers' date, explicit sexual problems, and the latest cars and gadgets.
We consistently run out of copies, said Naresh. I will have to order more
as there's enough of an audience for magazines like these.
Gay sex was legalised in 2009 and there are now at least eight print and online magazines aimed at lesbians and gays in India.
These include Jiah (Heart), an Internet
publication started last year. Jiah , which is staffed by volunteers, steers clear of nude photograph spreads and bedroom fantasies in favour of poetry and gay-friendly travel guides.
On 20th January, a Christian counsellor will be summoned before a Professional Conduct Panel for giving therapy to a homosexual man who pretended to be a Christian wishing to stop practising homosexuality.
Lesley Pilkington, a counsellor with over
20 years of experience, is defending herself against a formal complaint by Patrick Strudwick, a gay journalist who secretly recorded two therapy sessions with her by strapping a recording device under his clothing. Strudwick published an account of the
sessions in The Independent and has since received the award of journalist of the year by the gay-rights organisation Stonewall.
The journalist met Lesley at a Christian conference and told Lesley that he wanted to leave his homosexual lifestyle
and wanted help to change. Lesley confirmed that she would be happy to meet with him but only within a Christian counselling context. Shortly after the conference, and still acting undercover, the journalist contacted Lesley and said that he thought they
were on the same wavelength and asked to meet with her.
Throughout the two therapy sessions, Patrick repeatedly told Lesley that he wanted to leave his homosexual lifestyle, that it had become meaningless to him and that he wanted to change.
However, after the sessions, he lodged a complaint to the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy alleging that Lesley had failed to respect the fixed nature of his homosexuality.
Those offering counselling for men and women
wanting to change their homosexual behaviour have been increasingly targeted by the gay lobbies who do not accept that people can change their behaviour.
However, in 2006, the gay rights activist Peter Tatchell wrote in the Guardian: Much as I
would love to go along with the fashionable "born gay" consensus (it would be very politically convenient), I can't. The evidence does not support the idea that sexuality is a fixed biological given.
Lesley is being supported by the
Christian Legal Centre.
The Canadian music censor is being defiant after a wave of criticism over its decision to ban the nation-wide broadcast of an uncut Dire Straits song containing the word faggot.
Ronald Cohen, the national chair of the Canadian Broadcast
Standards Council (CBSC), told QMI Agency he sees nothing wrong with the fact one person was able to stop every private radio station across Canada from playing the popular 1985 song Money for Nothing.
The number of complaints is
irrelevant, Cohen claimed: Everybody is on our back about it (but) I think it was absolutely the right decision. This was a word that has no place today on the airwaves.
Cohen is unconcerned that the public was shut out from CBSC's
deliberations and sees no problems with the fact that neither broadcasters nor Canadians have any avenues to appeal the decision. If there was an appeal process, it would be cumbersome, he said.
Dire Straits' keyboardist Guy Fletcher joined
a chorus of fans on his website calling the ruling outrageous and the council's decision hilarious for having missed the point of the band's song about homophobia. What a waste of paper, he wrote of the decision.
Caledonia Civil Liberties Association's David Eby called the CBSC's decision very patronizing and suggested the federal broadcast censor, the CRTC, should take over its functions to ensure some public oversight: It is difficult for us to
understand how this private body can have such a profound influence on what Canadians see and hear without any accountability .
The CBSC has been the private broadcasters' self-regulator since 1990, when they decided they didn't want the
federal regulator to oversee their content. Although neither body has the power to levy fines or stop the broadcast of any songs (even those banned), the CRTC can revoke television or radio licences or refuse to renew them when they are about to lapse.
The Dire Straits song, Money For Nothing, has been banned from Canadian radio because it is deemed homophobic.
The song, written almost 30 years ago, uses the word faggot in the verse:
little faggot with the earring and the makeup. Yeah buddy, that's his own hair. That little faggot got his own jet airplane. That little faggot he's a millionaire
The Canadian Broadcasts Standards Council has ruled
that any radio station wishing to play the song must edit or bleep out the offending word, which appears three times.
In its ruling the Standards Council said that even if entirely or marginally acceptable in earlier days, [the word 'faggot']
no longer so. The societal values at issue a quarter century later have shifted and the broadcast of the song in 2010 must reflect those values, rather than those of 1985 .
Later versions of Money For Nothing replace the word faggot
with mother , which the Standards Council said the radio station should have played instead.
One listener had complained that the song was extremely offensive to lesbian, gay and bisexual people, the Vancouver Sun reports.
I'm not sure about other UK radio stations,
but both commercial radio stations in Peterborough, Connect FM and Heart (formerly Hereward) have been playing an edited version of the song for a number of years now, which totally omits that particular verse.
Newcap programmer Steve Jones said that Canada's Broadcast Standards Council went too far in banning the original 1985 Grammy-winning version of Money For Nothing.
He said: If you listen to the context of the terms, you will realize it
is an artistic portrayal of a bigoted person looking at the riches and excesses of the music industry. (The lyric goes That little faggot with the earring and the makeup/Yeah, buddy, that's his own hair/That little faggot's got a jet airplane/That
little faggot, he's a millionaire.)
K97 added that LGBT supporter Elton John has performed the song as written.
So on 14th January, the radio station CIRK and Newcap sisters Q104 and K-Rock protested about the dangers of censorship .
They looped the unedited version of Money For Nothing for a whole hour.
They've also invited representatives from the gay community to participate.
McDonald's has caused controversy in the GLBT community after blocking access to gay-related websites for Wellington customers using its free WiFi service.
GayNZ.com says it has received numerous complaints from the community that sites they
frequent cannot be accessed.
The complaints say GayNZ.com has been blocked, as has The Agender site for transgender people; Rainbow Youth, an advice site for young people is also blocked. familyplanning.co.nz was also unavailable.
McDonald's have sent an email response to GayNZ.com, after the website contacted them for comment:
We're a family restaurant chain, and as part of offering this new Free WiFi service, our policy is that viewed content must be of a family friendly nature, i.e.- suitable for a child to view.
Because of this, access to a number of websites is blocked, including access to gaynz.com gambling, tobacco and adult mature content websites.
We stress that all the content of allowable sites
must meet family friendly criteria. By this we mean a child cannot access a website where they can click on any content, link or third party advertisement and access sexually explicit content and images.
You will also
appreciate that there are inevitably teething problems with the introduction of a new service and getting our filtering process right is one such issue.
McDonald's say they are prepared to review GayNZ.com and other websites
customers feel are unfairly blocked.
A Turkish court in Bursa has closed the Rainbow LGBT Association. The case was opened two years ago upon the complaint of the Bursa Governorship.
The Rainbow is the Association for the Development of Protection, Solidarity and Cultural
Activities for Transvestites, Transsexuals, Gays and Lesbians. The Association President Özen commented, This is a deplorable decision, but our struggle will not cease .
The Bursa Governorship had filed a criminal complaint about the LGBT
organization because of alleged prostitution . It was now learned that the Bursa court brought the case to an end after a two-year trial period with the decision to ban the association.
Rainbow Association President Öykü Evren Özen said in
the final hearing, No illegal activities of any kind have been carried out within the association. I reject all charges . Özen was facing imprisonment of up to three years under charges of opposing the Law on Associations but was eventually
In a press release subsequent to the hearing, Özen said that they were sorry about the decision and that they would file an appeal against it. He added that the association would remain open during the period of appeal. If the
decision should be upheld, we will open a new association. Our struggle will never cease , he indicated.
Several trials have been opened against LGBT associations such as LambdaIstanbul, the Black Pink Triangle and other organizations in
various cities with the demand to close the organizations down.
A group of Ugandans identified as homosexual in a newspaper article headlined Hang Them have won damages and a court injunction ordering the paper not to repeat the exercise, human rights groups have said.
A high court judge ruled that the
story in the Rolling Stone newspaper, which printed addresses and photographs of some of the 100 people it named as Uganda's top homos , violated their constitutional rights to privacy and safety. The court awarded the three plaintiffs in
whose names the case was launched just over £400 each in damages, the Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law in Uganda said in a statement.
The front page of Rolling Stone claimed that the country's homosexual
community aimed to recruit 1,000,000 children by 2012 , and that parents face heart-breaks [sic] as homos raids schools . Inside, a headline read: Hang them; They are after our kids!!