Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Neil Patrick Harris & Family at the Smurfs 2 Premiere

The actor Neil Patrick Harris and his partner David Burtka attended the premiere of Smurfs 2 in Los Angeles, with their lovely twins, Harper and Gideon. Harris played in the first film, and he does again in the sequel.

Harris and Burtka's relationship began in 2004. In 2010, Harris announced that they were expecting twins via a surrogate mother. The twins Harper and Gideon were born in that year. In 2011, following the passage of the Marriage Equality Acta in New York, they announced their engagement.

Now, they go to the movies like any family! Bravo for them!

New South Wales: Step Forward for Gay Marriage in Australia

New South Wales (NSW) could become the first state in Australia to legalize same-sex marriage. NSW's capital is Sydney, which is also the state's most populous city.

The final report about same-sex marriage law, released by a state parliament committee, found that NSW Parliament has the power to approve its on law about this issue at a state level.

The report has been welcomed by a cross-party group of state MPs, which described it as "a momentous step forward" for marriage equality in Australia.

The group said it remained committed to marriage equality, and they will exam the detail of the report and will colaborate on overhauling a same-sex marriage bill, for introduction into the state parliament next session.

The pressure to legalize same-sex marriage in Australia has increased, following legislation passed in New Zealand establishing it as the 13th country with such rights for same-sex couples.

Perhaps, it's the first step to reach equal marriage in all nationwide.

Watch this video for more information

Monday, July 29, 2013

Pope Francis: Who am I to judge if Someone is Gay?

Surprising statements of Pope Francis, on the plane back to the Vatican, after his recent trip to Brazil.
Answering a journalist's question about a gay lobby within the Vatican, he said: "They say they exist. If someone is gay, who searches for the Lord and has goodwill, who am I to judge?". An he added: "The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains this very well. It says they should not be marginalized because of this (orientation) but that they must be integrated into society".
"The problem is not having this orientation. We must be brothers. The problem is lobbying by this orientation, or lobbies of greedy people, political lobbies, Masonic lobbies, so many lobbies. This is the worse problem", he also said.
Is something changing in the Catholic Church or is it only his opinion?

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Hunk of the Month: Tom Daley

Tom Daley, born in Plymouth (England) in 1994. He is an European Champion and Olympic diver, who specialises in the 10 metre platform event.

He started diving at the age of 7 as a member of Plymouth Diving Club. He participates in national and international competitions from age 9. He represented Great Britain at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing (China), where he was the youngest competitor. In 2009, Daley reached a career best ranking of number one in the FINA World Diving Rankings for the ten-metre platform.

After his success at the 2012 Olympic Games, and the great sporting interest amongst the public, a television network approached Daley to have a role in a new celebrity diving reality TV show Splash!. The show was a ratings success.

In 2012, published his book My Story, an official memoir, where Tom offers unprecedented access to the pressures, challenges and fascinating experiences of a world-class Olympian. From his day-to-day schedule, to his hobbies and family life, to sharing his hopes and dreams in the build up to the London Olympics.

Currently, he is competing at FINA World Championships in Barcelonabut Chinese diving team are not making things easy.

Career highlights in 10 metre platform: 
  • 1 bronze medal at 2012 Summer Olympic Games, in London
  • 1 gold medal at  2012 European Championships, in Eindhoven
  • 1 gold medal at 2012 Junior World Championship, in Adelaide
  • 1 gold medal at 2010 Commonwealth Games, in Delhi
  • 1 gold medal at 2009 World Championships, in Rome
  • 1 gold medals at 2008 European Championships, in Eindhoven
  • 1 silver medal at 2008 Junior World Championship, in Aachen
Amongst other honours and awards, Tom has also won BBC Sports Personality of the Year, several years. And he was nominated to Laureus World Sports Awards in 2010.

But the last prize is not for his sport career, last week he was named the sexiest man in the world by the readers of Attitude magazine, in a poll for the magazine’s summer special issue. 

In one interview, Tom answered he would like to be remembered as a hard working and a successful athlete. It's obvious he is getting.

In any case, I deserve him the best in and out of the pool!

Lithuania Pride Goes Ahead Despite Anti-Gay Bigots

A few days after the sad and embarrassing anti-gay protests in Montenegro, intolerance scenes have happened in Lithuania. A group of anti-gay protesters tried to disrupt Lithuania’s second gay pride parade on Saturday, defying an enormous police presence. Despite bigots, the march was a success.

The parade, dubbed The March for Equality, is only the second such event for Lithuania, a predominantly Catholic nation of 3 million people that activists say has not done enough to ensure LGBT rights.

Over a thousand gay rights activists took to the grand main street of Vilnius to show their pride, waving Lithuanian and rainbow-colored flags, with some standing on top of buses decked out in colorful balloons. 

But they were met by hundreds of anti-gay bigots, 50 of whom tried to storm a concert stage where activists were to speak, but police forced them off. Protesters also threw eggs, hitting Lithuanian lawmaker Giedre Purvaneckiene and Sweden’s European Union Affairs Minister Birgitta Ohlsson, who were standing at the front of the parade.

“It shows that we need to march until eggs aren’t thrown anymore and people can march freely and without fear”, said Purvaneckiene, who was not injured. 

Many feel the unrest in Lithuania, which is currently heading the European Union’s rotating presidency, is particularly troubling since the Baltic state, along with neighbors Latvia and Estonia, continues to discriminate against LGBT people, despite having undergone intense political and economic integration with Western Europe over the past two decades. 

This time I will not show the protesters, they can not be, they should not be, the protagonists of this event. All suport to Lithuanian LGBT community!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

UN: First Global Pro LGBT Campaign

Amid a surge of anti-gay violence and repression in several countries, the United Nations’ Human Rights Office has launched its first global outreach campaign to promote tolerance and greater equality for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people (LGBT).

Called Free & Equal, it’s an unprecedented effort by the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights to change public attitudes around the world on LGBT people and their rights.

The multi-pronged campaign will include videos and public-service announcements distributed through social media, a new website, a series of fact sheets, and engagement by celebrities well-known in different regions of the world.

Navi Pillay, the High Commissioner said: "Changing attitudes is never easy... It begins with often difficult conversations". And she added: "And that is what we want to do with this campaign. Free & Equal will inspire millions of conversations among people around the world and across the ideological spectrum".

Less than half of the U.N.’s 193 member states have gone on record in support of gay rights and in opposition to laws criminalizing homosexuality. In March 2011, for example, only 85 states signed a joint statement at the Human Rights Council expressing their concern at violence and human rights violations against LGBT people.

According to the human rights office, at least 76 countries still criminalize consensual, same-sex relationships, and discrimination against LGBT people is widespread in many other nations.

We still have a very long way to go!

Gay Marriage a Step Closer in Scotland

After England and Wales legalized same-sex marriage last week, equal marriage is being closer to made be legal in Scotland. The Marriage and Civil Partnership Bill of Scotland has been published.

The bill allows for the provision of marriage to couples of the same sex, whilst protecting the rights of religious organisations to abstain from carrying out same-sex marriage ceremonies. 

After publishing, the bill will be reviewed by committee members, then brought before the Scottish Parliament chamber.

According to the Equality Network, of the 128 members of the Scottish Parliament, 89 have endorsed same-sex marriage and only 11 have explicitly stated their opposition.

In addition, the last public opinion poll, in June 2012, showed that 64% of Scottish people consulted were in favour and just 26% opposed. 

In any case, if the bill finally passes early next year, the first gay marriages in Scotland are likely to take place to the start of 2015.

Time for Equal Marriage in Scotland

It's time Scotland

Friday, July 26, 2013

Oregon Says I Do!

On Friday, July 26th,, the state's LGBT rights advocates have launched an ambitious Oregon Says I Do petition campaign to extend marriage equality to Oregon.

With this campaign, they want  to collect 116,284 valid signatures from Oregonian voters to put the freedom to marry and religious protection initiative on the ballot in November 2014.

Petition Director Ryan Brown said: "Together, we can make it possible for every Oregonian to have the freedom to marry the person they love". 

Join them for this special kick-off weekend in cities across the state of Oregon, to become the first state in the U.S. to write the freedom to marry into its constitution. Find a petition event here.

Contact them:
  • PO Box 14250, Portland, OR 97214
  • Petition Hotline: 866-493-6792

Thursday, July 25, 2013

It's Not Time For Florida!

On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned part of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), ruling the federal government must recognize legal marriages of same-sex couples performed internationally, in 13 states and the District of Columbia. But the high court did not consider the portion of DOMA that allows states to not recognize same-sex marriages.

Gay marriage is constitutionally banned in the U.S. state of Florida since 2008.

Last June, Equal Marriage Florida began work on gathering the more than 683,000 petition signatures needed for a proposed constitutional amendment erasing the gay marriage ban approved by voters five years ago. In three weeks, they collected nearly 40.000 signatures. You can download the petition form here.

There is a 54% of voters in support of marriage for same-sex couples in Florida, according to a recent Public Religion Research poll. But it would take 60% majority to repeal the gay ban, and seems that’s currently not possible.

Howard Simon, ACLU of Florida Executive Director, has said: "I don’t want to build up any false expectations that it would be good to run back to the ballot right now, or that it would be good to think that we should file a lawsuit anytime until the hearts and minds change more and the environment changes a bit more". And he added: “People have to be realistic. We have a high hurdle to jump over in Florida, which is the 60 percent rule".

Sadly, it's not time for Florida... but work go on!

By the way, a warning to those who ask to boycott Florida ... I will continue drinking orange juice from Florida, and visiting the Orlando Theme Parks.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Montenegro First Gay Pride Parade... Protected by Police

Montenegro has held today its first gay pride parade, in the city of Budva.

In the tiny Adriatic state, gays and lesbians live in isolation, in permanent fear of hate attacks and do not trust the authorities to protect them. In fact, the Montenegrin LGBT Forum Progress tried to organise a gay pride parade two years ago, but eventually cancelled following two attacks on gays in the capital, Podgorica, before the start of the event. They blamed a lack of backing from the government.

Since then, under European Union pressure, the Montenegrin government has adopted measures to protect the LGBT community and improve their rights. 

Finally, the first Montenegrin gay pride parade has held today, but hundreds of police have had to protect the participants of event, so they could walk and show publicly their demands on the streets of the coastal town of Budva.

Several hundred of anti-gay protesters, shouting "Kill the gays", attacked LGBT activists and clashed with police in a bid to disrupt the parade. But the activists shouted back "Kiss the gays", and they continued marching by the sea shore under police's protection. Later, police again clashed with smaller groups of violent extremists and arrested some of them.

All support to Montenegrin LGBT community!!!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

First Openly Gay Mayor in Mexico

Benjamin Medrano Quezada is the first openly gay mayor in all of Mexico. Medrano has been elected as the mayor of Fresnillo, in the north central state of Zacatecas, with a high support. He will take office in September.

The municipality of Fresnillo has more than 210.000 inhabitants, and it seems the last place in Mexico where a gay mayor could be elected, but there are some reasons that could explain it.

First is that Fresnillo and the surrounding area have been plagued by gang violence and a drug turf war. Medrano ran on a public safety reform platform, calling for cooperation with state and federal police, as well as vetting of the notoriously unscrupulous local police force. 

Second, Medrano is a singer, and singing is one of the few areas in Mexico where gays are readily accepted.

Besides, although Medrano promotes gay rights, do not use it as a political fight. He does not agree with all gay movement demands. For example, he is not agree to same-sex marriage or adoptions by gay couples.

In addition, he is defined himself as a Catholic, and not want to be against Catholic Church doctrine. He is proud to be gay, but he is also proud of his strong roots on Mexican customs.

In any case, one step for gay rights in Mexico. Like the news I published a few days ago, about Mexico City's mayor, Miguel Mancera, who held a mass wedding for gay couples. Remember Mexico City is the only place in Mexico where same-sex marriage is legal.

Felicidades wey!

Medrano showing elections results' minutes