Elton John won't cancel his forthcoming Moscow show, despite protests from homophobic activists in Russia. The singer will go ahead with his concert on 6 December and hopes to be able to talk to some people at the Kremlin.
week, the Ural Parents Committee wrote a letter to Russian president Vladimir Putin, asking him to ban Sir Elton's forthcoming gig:
The singer intends to come out in support of local sodomites and break the current
Russian law. (referring to the country's bill prohibiting so-called gay propaganda).
The Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods referred to the scheduled concert as an amoral sabbath . Union leader Yuri Ageshchev told the Novy Region
The statement by this gay guy -- Elton John -- about his support for gays and other perverts during the upcoming concert ... is an insult to all Russian citizens. It also makes a mockery of our recently
enacted law against the public propaganda of gay ideas.
Elton John said in an interview with NPR's Terry Gross:
On one hand, I [am tempted] to say, 'I'm not going and you can go to hell, you guys.'
But that's not helping anyone who's gay or transgendered over there, he said. There are a lot of great Russian people out there who are outraged by what's going on ... as a gay man and a gay musician, I cannot stay at home and not support these people
who have been to lots of my concerts in the past.
Russia's anti gay 'propaganda' law is having wide and chilling effects on gay film making.
Filmmakers of a film with the translated title of A Winter's Journey have found that the film has been effectively banned despite winning approval by
Russia's film censors and winning two prizes at separate film festivals. The film tells the story of a gay classical singer falling in love with a street-smart petty criminal.
Director Sergei Taramayev told AFP he was saddened it could not be
shown at the Kinotavr film festival after receiving such high critical acclaim. He said:
For the organisers of the festival it was uncomfortable, because there is such a law, so they thought it was better not to
At least people who were in the jury told us that this was the reason why we were not accepted for Kinotavr.
The film's co-writer Lyubov Lvova said festivals feared they could lose funding if they
showed the film:
At many festivals, Russian ones, this scared the organisers a lot. They were afraid of this law, that it could stop them getting financing for their festivals.
Taramayev said they did not even submit the film to Russia's main film forum, Moscow International Film Festival, because of its anti-gay organiser, Nikita Mikhalkov. He said:
He supports the
government's line and is a very political director and we realised that they would not take us.
Producer Mikhail Karasyov wrote in an email to AFP:
As for a cinema release, at the moment we are
holding talks, but so far there is nothing concrete.
News of a third adult-film actor testing positive for HIV is putting new pressure on both the industry and state lawmakers.
The HIV cases have spurred
campaigners pushing for a statewide mandate for condom use in adult films. The new law is being held up by an ongoing court battle.
The adult industry trade group, the Free Speech Coalition initially said that it had not been formally notified of
the case, but later called for a new moratorium on production, saying it had been notified that another performer had tested positive for HIV.
Free Speech Coalition spokeswoman Joanne Cachapero said late Friday that the new case involved a third
performer. The group said in a statement that the performer whose case prompted the current moratorium had not done a shoot since before the first moratorium. The industry required performers whose last STD test was prior to Aug. 19 to be retested if
they wanted to continue performing. The coalition said it would cover the cost of retesting for the performer's partners.
Christians should be repentant about the Church's past treatment of gay and lesbian people, the Archbishop of Canterbury has said.
Justin Welby told a group of traditional evangelical Christians that the Church's historic support of homophobia
was utterly and totally wrong .
He also acknowledged that many young people considered the Church's views on same-sex marriage as wicked and plain wrong .
The Archbishop insisted he did not regret voting against gay
marriage legislation, but acknowledged that such views were seen by many as akin to racism and other forms of gross and atrocious injustice :
We have to face the fact that the vast majority of people under 35
not only think that what we're saying is incomprehensible but also think that we're plain wrong and wicked and equate it to racism and other forms of gross and atrocious injustice. We have to be real about that.
The Church has not
been good at dealing with homophobia. It has at times, as god's people, either implicitly or explicitly supported it and we have to be really, really repentant about that because it is utterly and totally wrong.
A painting depicting politicians Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev in women's underwear was one of the items Russian authorities have physically censored by raiding a newly-opened St. Petersburg art gallery that had shown solidarity with Russia's
The off-beat gallery, known as the Museum of Authority, opened with an inaugural exhibit called The Rulers that featured paintings by artist Konstantin Altunin of Russian and international public figures.
Much of the
inaugural exhibit was raunchy or politically-charged. One painting depicted St. Petersburg politician Vitaly Milonov, who spearheaded a local homophobic gay propaganda law that became the baseline for similar national legislation.
accompanied police at the gallery. Police seized the portrait of Mr. Milonov as well as the painting depicting Messrs. Putin and Medvedev in women's underwear.
Authorities also took two other works of art. One was a painting of Russian Orthodox
Patriarch Kirill with criminal-style tattoos mixing Soviet and religious iconography. The other was one of Yelena Mizulina, the Kremlin-allied Duma deputy and morality crusader who led the drive to pass Russia's gay propaganda law nationally. That
painting was entitled The Erotic Dreams of Deputy Mizulina.
Stephen Fry called for a boycott of the Russian Winter Olympics in response to anti-gay legislation. The Daily Mail then published a column attacking Fry, who has now responded with a few choice words of his own
Stephen Fry has called for the Winter Olympics to be taken away from Russia in a strongly-worded open letter to Prime Minister David Cameron, Jacques Rogge and Lord Coe.
The Olympics in Sochi are due to begin in less than seven months but Fry
believes the anti-gay stance of the Russian parliament is incompatible with the ethos of the Olympic movement.
Fry compared Russia hosting the Games next year to Germany's staging of the Summer Olympics under Adolf Hitler in 1936. Fry wrote:
It is simply not enough to say that gay Olympians may or may not be safe in their village. The IOC absolutely must take a firm stance on behalf of the shared humanity it is supposed to represent against the barbaric,
fascist law that Putin has pushed through the Duma.
The idea that sport and politics don't connect is worse than disingenuous, worse than stupid. It is wickedly, wilfully wrong.
An absolute ban on the
Russian Winter Olympics of 2014 on Sochi is simply essential. Stage them elsewhere, in Utah, Lillyhammer, anywhere you like. At all costs Putin cannot be seen to have the approval of the civilised world.
doesn't Stephen Fry call for a ban on Russian music, theatre and all performing arts?
But if there's one thing the Mail can do better than any other paper it's erect a fake coconut and then knock it down and claim a prize.
I have helped spark a debate about the Sochi Olympiad and I can be as proud (or smug as they would undoubtedly call it) about that as I like.
There's no real personal animus in this at all. A friend gave me a Hated by the Daily Mail badge and it remains one of the proudest things I own.
But there's form here. The Mail still can't quite
live with the shame that it has always, always been historically wrong about everything - large and small - from Picasso to equal pay for women. Because it has always been against progress, the liberalising of attitudes, modern art and strangers (whether
by race, gender or sexuality).
Australia: Banned from film festival showings by the Australian Censorship Board in 2013
The hotly anticipated debut
feature film from director Travis Mathews (INTERIOR. LEATHER BAR) is a bold and unflinching look at gay relationships among a group of San Francisco friends, which includes scenes of real sex, striking controversy amongst global film censors, including
Australia where the film was banned in 2013.
After a decade of living in San Francisco, Jesse is forced to move back to his Midwestern roots because he can no longer afford the city. On his final night in the city, friends and
ex-lovers gather for a going away party that promises to heighten Jesse's already bittersweet feelings about leaving into sharper focus. Torn between his creative dreams and the reality of earning a living, he's forced to take responsibility by
redefining what it means to be an artist, a gay man, and an adult.
Featuring music from The Chromatics, I WANT YOUR LOVE is a passionate and deeply intimate film, that dares to capture the uncensored zeitgeist of modern-day San
Francisco unlike any film before it.
Australian billboards showing a pregnant woman having a lesbian has been cleared by the advertising censor after complaints that it had somehow sexualised children .
The Advertising Standards Bureau has thrown out both complaints
against the ad promoting gay marriage. The reasons for the decision have yet to be published.
The billboards, now on display in Brisbane, show a pregnant woman with the slogan, Congratulations, you're having a lesbian .
complainant claimed the ad is illegal as it involves the sexualisation of children . Another complained that the billboard could make pregnant woman uneasy . If science can prove one is having a lesbian/homosexual should one abort?
The campaign's organiser, Shelley Argent, said the real child abuse was to reject a child on the grounds of sexuality. The campaign's theme is that any child can be born gay.