Sunday, May 31, 2015

A human rainbow for equality in London

A crowd of Londoners have just created a human rainbow along the Thames to celebrate and push for equality.

Dozens of eager volunteers put on their T-shirts and tops in varying colors in order to raise awareness of the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia  and Transphobia (IDAHOT).

Organized by Stonewall, it was intended to kick off the pro-LGBTI events that will be held around the world from Kenya to Kyrgyzstan.

James Taylor, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Stonewall said: "International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia brings the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans community and its allies from around the world together with one clear message: equality".

IDAHO is a great chance not just to celebrate the progress made towards LGBT equality but also about how much there is left to do.

A new rainbow appeared in London

Friday, May 29, 2015

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Watch Ireland voting YES!

Watch Raymond Braun's YouTube video about Ireland's same-sex referendum.
The young American vlogger traveled from U.S. shores to Ireland early last week, camera in hand, with the Human Rights Campaign's Ty Cobb. Braun's video journal of the trip captures the suspense felt across Ireland during the days before voting.
But by the time, the final votes were counted Saturday, Braun's lens captured the moment when victory for equality was declared.
Don't miss the poignant moment at the four-minute mark, when Riyadh K's dad barely holds back his tears, lamenting his initial negative reaction to learning his son was gay.
One awesome video for one amazing moment.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Greenland legalizes gay marriage

Greenland's Parliament voted unanimously to adopt Danish laws legalizing gay marriage and gay adoption.
Greenland is an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark and has been self-governing since 2009.
The Arctic nation adopted Denmark’s civil union law in 1996. But it did not do the same when Denmark legalized gay marriage in 2012.
In February, it was announced that a bill to remedy this would be introduced in spring, which parliament passed by a vote of 27-0 with two absentations.
The law will come into effect on 1 October.

Greenland's Parliament has adopted
the Danish legislation on the issue

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Italy what are you waiting for?

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has said his country can no longer put off civil unions after Catholic Ireland legalized gay marriage by referendum last Friday.
Socially conservative, Italy is now the only country in western Europe that does not recognize either gay marriage or civil unions.
"Civil unions cannot be delayed any longer", Renzi affirmed.
He conceded that many in his center-left Democratic Party wanted full marriage equality but leading LGBTI campaigners in the party said that civil partnerships would be the realistic first step.
In any case, Italy has to move!

PM Renzi admits it's Italy's turn

Love always wins!

Monday, May 25, 2015

Green opposition asks Merkel to follow Ireland on marriage equality

The German Green Party has called on Angela Merkel to follow Ireland in introducing same-sex marriage in Germany.
Germany allows same-sex couples to enter into registered life partnerships that provide some of the benefits of marriage, but the Chancellor’s CDU/CSU coalition continues to oppose same-sex marriage.
A string of court rulings have already forced the government to take a more proactive stance on equality calling for the recognition of same-sex parents.
Following the Irish victory, political leaders in a number of other countries, including Northern Ireland, Australia and Italy, are calling on their governments to follow suit.
It’s time Mrs Merkel!

Chancellor Angela Merkel is facing calls
for her Grand Coalition government
to catch up and introduce equality

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Sweden Wins Eurovision 2015

Sweden has won Eurovision song contest 2015, with Mans Zelmerlow singing Heroes.

Congrats hunk!!!!

YES wins on Ireland's same-sex marriage referendum

The first constituency has announced their official result in the Irish Marriage Equality Referendum.

62.1% percent voted for the measure, with 37.9% percent voting against. The result was announced in Dublin Castle, to a huge jubilant crowd.

Over a million people supported equality, with 1,201,607 voting Yes and just 734,300 voting No, despite fears that a stronger turnout among older religious voters, who are more likely to oppose would might sway the outcome.

In Dublin 70% voted in favor of extending marriage to same-sex couples.

Earlier this morning, just two hours after counting began, No-campaigners conceded defeat and congratulated the Yes-side on their hard earned victory.

Bravo Ireland!

Moscow Pride Banned Again and LGBT Activists Arrested

Moscow Pride has been banned again this year, Moscow town hall announced: "We have warned the organisers that the demonstration will not be authorised", the mayoral spokesperson said.
This year marks the tenth time the organizers attempted to obtain permission to hold a Pride event in Moscow; like every year since 2006 permission was denied and no reasons were given.
The organizers had applied to hold two meetings and a march which was supposed to end in a demonstration outside the mayor’s office on 30 May; all three events attracted a hundred people each but some activists have been attacked and arrested.
In the past any attempts at carrying out a public event, such as the demonstration for IDAHOT on 17 May, have been dispersed by Moscow’s police, but the organizers said they will not give up.
Recently to release colorful balloons has been considered gay propaganda in Russia, and police detained 17 gay rights activists in Moscow for that reason.

Russian LGBT people are intimidated
and their rights trampled over and over

Friday, May 22, 2015

Today #BeMyYes in Ireland

#BeMyYes is an online campaign to give a voice to those Irish abroad who cannot vote in Ireland's referendum on May 22, 2015.

Today Be My Yes!

It´s time Ireland!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

To release colorful balloons is considered gay propaganda in Russia

Russian police detained 17 gay rights activists in Moscow yesterday at a rally to celebrate the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHO).

Over 50 people assembled on a square outside a Moscow theater and had planned to release colorful balloons into the air during the flashmob demonstration,  but a crowd control police drove up a bus and started shoving the protesters inside before they managed to unfurl any banners or chant any slogans or release any balloon into the air.
The LGBT activists were arrested under Russia's 2013 law banning so-called gay propaganda. The LGBT community has come under increased pressure in Russia as President Vladimir Putin has charted a more conservative course since starting his third term in 2012. After that date, most of LGBT events and demonstrations have been forbbiden in Russia.
This action is considered gay propaganda in Russia

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

First Federal Monument to LGBT Veterans Approved

A monument dedicated to LGBT veterans will be unveiled in a national cemetery near Chicago on Memorial Day, in a celebration of the first federally approved monument to LGBT veterans.
A black granite slab flanked by two blocks of pale granite, the monument will feature the five seals of the military’s main branches – the army, navy, marine corps, coast guard and air force – as well as the the emblem of the merchant marines.
The memorial has been planned by the Chicago chapter of the American Veterans for Equal Rights (AVER). Cemetery office supervisor Lynne Phelan said it is, to the best of her knowledge, the first such approved monument.
The monument will also include an etching that reads: “Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people have served honorably and admirably in America’s armed forces. In their memory and appreciation of their selfless service and sacrifice this monument was dedicated.”

Rendering of the monument
American veterans for equal rights

Monday, May 18, 2015

World Gay Happiness Index

Gay dating network PlanetRomeo ranked countries on three criteria. They combined three main topics to generate one worldwide ranking on gay happiness:
  • Public Opinion: How do gay men feel about society’s view on homosexuality?
  • Public Behavior: How do gay men experience the way they are treated by other people?
  • Life Satisfaction: How satisfied are gay men with their lives and do they accept themselves?
Things seem to improve in North and South America as well as in Southeast Asia. Great!
Europe shows a huge diversity, from the most gayfriendly Scandinavia in the Northwest to the gay drama in the Balkans in the Southeasterly direction.
But Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East are depressing, and negative devleopment was seen in some European countries, such as Russia, Turkey and Hungary.
The top five are Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Uruguay. And the worst five are Nigeria, Kyrgyzstan, Ethipia, Sudan and Uganda.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Luxembourg's PM marries his partner

Xavier Bettel, the Prime Minister of Luxembourg, married his partner Gauthier Destenay yesterday.
Bettel and his partner were set to marry in a private ceremony at Luxembourg's City Hall. Only friends and family were invited, with no press or photographers allowed.
Luxembourg legalized gay marriage in June last year, a surprise for the largely Roman Catholic nation. Shortly after, Bettel revealed his partner, with whom he has been in a civil union since 2010, asked for his hand in marriage.
He is the first European Union leader, and only the second leader worldwide, to marry someone of the same sex. It comes five years after Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, the then prime minister of Iceland, became the first serving leader in the world to marry a same-sex partner.

PM Bettel with Gran Duke of Luxembourg

The newlyweds after marrying

Friday, May 15, 2015

Take Action to protect LGBT people from Islamic State

Since June 2014, the Islamic State has proudly documented the brutal murders of five men accused of having same-sex relations in Iraq. In recent months, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has reported killings by the Islamic State of four men also accused of “sodomy”.

These cruel acts add to the Islamic State’s countless other well-publicized murders of individuals apparently because of their faith, their demeanor, their dress, or because they were accused of adultery or other “transgressions”.

Even before these executions, the Islamic State, on its website, had sworn its intent to punish homosexual acts with death. While no precise details are available as to the victims’ identities or circumstances, the gruesome public spectacles are clearly intended to instill terror among the region’s LGBT people, long marginalized and persecuted.

The international community must confront the latest onslaught–photos that show men being thrown from tall buildings, and details on some being stoned and shot to death before assembled crowds. We cannot look away from these atrocities. There are steps that can be taken to protect LGBT people and others fleeing the violence.

You can join IGLHRC call to the United Nations and governments engaged in the region to help protect them.
Don't turn away and visit IGLHRC website or sign the letter to officials.

We have to stop this barbarity