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2019: Jan-March

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Married to homophobia...

Alabama Public Television bans an episode of children's cartoon Arthur that featured a gay wedding


Link Here 23rd May 2019
Alabama Public Television (APT) has banned a TV cartoon which shows a same-sex wedding.

The first episode of the 22nd series of children's programme Arthur features the character Mr Ratburn marrying his aardvark partner, Patrick.

But APT instead ran an old episode, and announced it had no plans to show the premiere. Programming director Mike McKenzie claimed that broadcasting it would break parents' trust in the network. He said in a statement:

Parents trust that their children can watch APT without their supervision, and that children younger than the 'target' audience might watch without parental knowledge.

Show creator WGBH and broadcaster PBS reportedly alerted local stations in April about the episode, and McKenzie said this was when they decided not to air the show.

APT previously refused to broadcast a 2005 episode of the series which depicted Buster, a rabbit, visiting a girl who had two mothers.

 

 

Whatever happened to the religious teaching of tolerance and forgiveness?...

Police arrest Polish woman for posters of religious art with added LGBT colours


Link Here 13th May 2019
Polish activist Elzbieta Podlesna has been arrested for 'offending' religious beliefs for possessing copies of a poster showing the religious characters of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus with rainbow halos.

Amnesty International's Regional Europe Researcher, Barbora Cernusakova, commented:

We are extremely concerned to hear that Elzbieta Podlesna, a Polish human rights activist, was arrested and detained for several hours on spurious charges upon her return to Poland from a trip to Belgium and the Netherlands with Amnesty International.

The posters had been posted around the town of Plock at the end of April. The posters depicted the Black Madonna of Czestochowa, one of the most highly revered icons in Poland.

Amnesty International said:

Given the lack of evidence of a crime here, we can only see that Elzbieta has been detained for her peaceful activism. Amnesty International calls on the Polish authorities to stop harassing peaceful protesters and activists in Poland, including by arbitrarily arresting people who stand up for their rights. Restricting activists from freely expressing their views in the country is unlawful and must stop immediately.

 

 

Memories of My Body...

Indonesian dance film banned by regional officials after religious backlash


Link Here 5th May 2019
Memories of My Body is a 2018 Indonesia drama by Garin Nugroho.
Starring Muhammad Khan, Raditya Evandra and Rianto. IMDb

In Center Java Juno, a pre-teen abandoned by his father, joins a Lengger dance centre where men assume feminine appearances but the political and social upheaval in Indonesia forces him on the road, meeting remarkable people on his journey.

Muslim groups in Indonesia are calling for a ban on the film Memories of My Body, a drama from the country's best-known art house director, Garin Nugroho. The groups claim that the film is sexually deviant and promotes LGBT values.

The film depicts the story of a young man from a dance troupe that performs Lengger Lanang, a folk dance from central Java that is usually performed in pairs, and in which men often take both male and female roles.

Memories of My Body premiered in the Venice Film Festival's Horizon section, where it won the prize for best film. The success was repeated at several other festivals.

The film encountered problems in Indonesia following its release on April 18. After being given a 17+ rating by the censorship board (LSF), the film was given a 40-screen release.

In less than a week, the film was banned by local officials in regions including Depok and Palembang. Others called on the powerful assembly of Muslim elders known as the Indonesian Ulema Council to move against the film. Arovah Windiani, a spokeswoman for the council said that, from a moral perspective, the film should not be out there.

A backlash against the film was further fanned on social media. An online petition calling for Memories of My Body to be banned  gained 160,000 signatures.

On Monday, the Muslim elders' council demanded that the censorship board change the film's certification to 21+, and recommended that Nugroho re-edit the film to make its meaning less ambiguous.

Nugroho has refused to revise the film and told Variety that he opposes mob justice.

With screenings banned in five provinces, the film is now playing on just three screens across the country.

Update: Dancers attacked by a religious mob?

5th May 2019. See article from scmp.com

In related news a religious mob has attacked dancers at an Indonesian event.

Members of a Malay youth paramilitary organisation, justified the attack by claiming the dance was vulgar. They also said that the wearing of tight shirts by male dancers from Tanjungpura University who were dancing femininely was not compatible with Indonesian culture.

A university lecturer and three students fell victim to the mob as they were celebrating World Dance Day in the Indonesian city of Pontianak last week.

 

 

Gay cure...

Russia censors Avengers: Endgame to straighten out Marvel's first gay character


Link Here 1st May 2019
Full story: Film Censorship in Russia...Censorship in the guise of banning strong language
Avengers: Endgame is a 2019 USA action Sci-Fi fantasy by Anthony Russo and Joe Russo.
Starring Brie Larson, Robert Downey Jr and Karen Gillan. BBFC link IMDb

The grave course of events set in motion by Thanos that wiped out half the universe and fractured the Avengers ranks compels the remaining Avengers to take one final stand in Marvel Studios' grand conclusion to twenty-two films, Avengers: Endgame.

The Russian release of Avengers: Endgame features some tweaked dialogue in an early scene to straighten out Marvel's first gay character. The censorship was intended to avoid conflicts with Russia's ban on so-called gay propaganda.

[ Spoilers! hover or click text below]

Early in the movie, one of the two Russo brothers plays a gay character who attends a support group with Steve Rogers (Captain America). The scene is brief but it marks the first time an openly gay character has appeared in a Marvel film. The gay character says:

So, I went on a date the other day. First time in five years. He cried as they were serving the salad. [...] But I'm seeing him again tomorrow.

In the dubbed Russian version, Joe Russo's character says:

I was recently at dinner. First time in five years. [...] He cried over a plate of salad. [...] Tomorrow I'm meeting him again.

 

 

Confrontational Intersectionality...

Aggressive feminists attack queer porn film festival


Link Here 29th April 2019
A queer porn film festival in London this weekend was forced to relocate after protests by aggressive feminists.

Faced with the prospect of a picket, organisers of the festival, which describes itself as celebrating queer, feminist, radical and experimental porn, pulled screenings from the Horse Hospital, an arts venue in Bloomsbury. The three-day event was instead be held at a new location disclosed only to ticket holders.

Despite the festival's progressive intentions, multiple complaints about the festival had earlier been made to Camden council. 

Janice Williams, chair of the activist group Object , clamed the films on show promoted degradation and oppression. In a letter to Camden council, Williams singled out a festival strand titled Sex Work Is Work claiming the festival was to show extreme pornographic images and pornography that is likely to result in serious injury to the performers.

Festival organiser  Rude Jude responded:

These are not violent or extreme in the legal definition,Some of the films show practices that some people aren't into, but that is very different.

Meanwhile the coordinators of a separate pressure group, Women Against Pornography , spouted:

Feminist pornography is an oxymoron -- feminism is not about individualistic wishes or desires, it is about liberating all women from the oppression of males. This can never be achieved by being tied up in a bed or by telling women that torture will make them free.

Nimue Allen, whose film Fisting Fun was shown as part of the Brazen Brits strand on Friday, says the festival has proved an inspiration for performers. Festivals like this are so important to show that there are alternatives to the mainstream porn -- Centring people of colour, trans performers, queer sex of all types -- and allowing people to see themselves represented on screen -- is something that needs to be done so much more often.

Offsite Comment: Progressive Porn Vs Regressive Feminists

29th April 2019. See  article from reprobatepress.com

 

 

Wrangling on Twitter...

Jeremy Clarkson on The Grand Tour winds up gay campaigner joking about gay associations with the Wrangler Jeep


Link Here 4th February 2019
Full story: Top Gear and the Grand Tour...Top Gear and Jeremy Clarkson wind up whingers
The Grand Tour presenter Jeremy Clarkson has pushed back at claims of homophobia from gay singer Will Young by joking about enjoying lesbian porn.

LGBT+ campaigner and musician Will Young had hit out at Clarkson after a recent episode of Amazon motoring show included a running gag alluding to a Jeep Wrangler being gay. The January 27 episode of the Amazon show also saw Clarkson ask whether LGBT stands for lesbian, bacon, transgender.

Young tweeted:

I'm afraid 3 heterosexual men SO uncomfortable with their sexuality that they reference in some lame way a Wrangler Jeep being a Gay mans car

.... and then Hammond and May's 'quips to Clarkson wearing chaps , a pink shirt , he should get some moisturiser . It's f**king pathetic and actually homophobic .

Clarkson responded to Young also on Twitter:

...I will apologise to Will for causing him some upset and reassure him that I know I'm not homophobic as I very much enjoy watching lesbians on the internet.

 

 

Unprotected sex...

Gay website closes as user fears of being outed via age verification makes the site too dangerous for it to be viable


Link Here 17th January 2019
Full story: BBFC Internet Porn Censors...BBFC: Age Verification We Don't Trust
gaystarnews.com has published an article outlining the dangers of porn viewers submitting their identity data and browsing history to age verifiers and their websites. The article explains that the dangers for gay porn viewers are even mor pronounced that for straight viewers. The artisle illustrates this with an example:

David Bridle, the publisher of Dirty Boyz , announced in October that last month's issue of the magazine would be its last. He said:

Following the Conservative government's decision ... to press ahead with new regulations forcing websites which make money from adult content to carry an age verification system ... Dirtyboyz and its website dirtyboyz.xxx have made the decision to close.

The new age verification system will be mostly run by large adult content companies which themselves host major "Tube" style porn sites. 'It would force online readers of Dirtyboyz to publicly declare themselves.

Open Rights Group executive director, Jim Killock, told GSN the privacy of users needs protecting:

The issue with age verification systems is that they need to know it's you. This means there's a strong likelihood that it will basically track you and know what you're watching. And that's data that could be very harmful to people.

It could cause issues in relationships. Or it could see children outed to their parents. It could mean people are subjected to scams and blackmail if that data falls into criminal hands. Government response

A spokesperson for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) told Gay Star News:

Pornographic websites and age verification services will be subject to the UK's existing high standard of data protection legislation. The Data Protection Act 2018 provides a comprehensive and modern framework for data protection, with strong sanctions for malpractice and enforced by the Information Commissioner's Office.

But this is bollox, the likes of Facebook and Google are allowed to sell browsing data for eg targeted advertising within the remit of GDPR. And targeted advertising could be enough in itself to out porn viewers.

 

 

Discrimination against gays...

Family Guy producers announce that they will be banning jokes about the LGBT community


Link Here 16th January 2019
Family Guy is known for its politically incorrect humour, but now the team behind the show are making some changes. It appears that the jokes targeted at the LGBT community are on the way out.

In Sunday's episode, Peter Griffin, who is voiced by the show's creator Seth MacFarlane, was seen telling a cartoon President Trump that the show was trying to phase out gay jokes.

In fairness, we've been trying to phase out the gay stuff, Peter replies. But you know what? We're a cartoon. You're the president.

The change in direction has been confirmed by the show's executive producers Alec Sulkin and Rich Appel, who told TV Line that they want to better reflect the current climate in the show.

One of the defences of the show's controversial storylines is that they make fun of all minority groups equally and some have argued that there's no reason one particular minority group should be exempt.

If Family Guy is gonna be mainstream and not edgy, what's the point? asked one fan of the show on Twitter. And some in the LGBT community argued the show does not offend them.

 

 

No cruising at 30,000 feet...

Emirates Airline spotted cutting out gay kisses from their in-flight entertainment system


Link Here 3rd January 2019
 
  
er....no!, not on Emirates Airlines
 
Killing Eve, the acclaimed TV hit is among the content being censored by Emirates airline due to its LGBT scenes.

Emirates, the world's fourth largest airline, offers films and television programmes with edited-out footage of same-sex kisses. They include Oscar-nominated Ladybird , and at least one episode of BBC drama Killing Eve, In the original programme, one scene saw psychopathic assassin Villanelle seduce a woman. A kiss between them is removed. In Ladybird, the censored scene saw Ronan's protagonist burst into a toilet cubicle to find her boyfriend kissing another boy from their drama group. In the edited version, the kiss is cut out and the film skips straight to the aftermath. A spokesperson for Emirates claimed:

Emirates acquires mostly theatrical unedited versions of content, but as a family friendly airline serving an international audience, where there is excessive violence, sex, nudity or language, we opt to license the edited versions created by the studios/distributors.

 



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