Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Spa Night

Spa Night is the story of David, a young gay man’s sexual awakening, and its sensitive lead performance affectingly expresses the tension between tradition and personal identity. 

Directed by Andrew Ahn and starred by Joe Seo, as David, and South Korean actors Youn Ho Cho and Haerry Kim, as David's parents, the movie is set in L.A.'s Koreatown.

David's first words in the film are: “Dad, I can’t breathe”. Father and son are in the steam room of a bathhouse, a weekly family ritual, and David is talking about the stifling heat, but it’s soon clear that his parents’ aspirations for him — college degree, professional career, marriage and family — are just as oppressive as the room’s thick air.

An intense and shocking drama with superb actors, leaded by a brilliant director.

Don't miss it!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

This Promise by Sam Tsui

Sam Tsui is one of the people that made YouTube famous, pioneering cover videos like Don’t Stop Believing as well as making his original music.

Earlier this year, he revealed he had been dating fellow YouTube musician Casey Breves.

"I am proud of who I am and very proud of my relationship with Cacey, because he is amazing… I never felt the need to do a big tear-y coming out video because honestly, in my daily life it’s such a non-issue", he said in the video.

Following the coming out video, he posted two Instagram pictures from their wedding day. 

And now we’ve got the video. Watch it below: 

Monday, August 29, 2016

Discovering San Francisco

Last week I visited San Francisco. I've never been before and I have to say it is an amazing and a very gayfriendly city.

I was walking around and seeing several places, specially the famous Castro Street, surely the first gay neighborhood in the US. 

Although the greater gay community is concentrated in the Castro, many gay people also live in the surrounding residential areas bordered by Corona Heights, the Mission District, Noe Valley, Twin Peaks and Haight-Ashbury neighborhoods.

The gay community created an upscale, fashionable urban center in the Castro District in the 1970s, and many gays moved there after 1970. The neighborhood became known as the Castro because the landmark theater by that name near the corner of Castro and Market Streets. 

By 1973, Harvey Milk, who would become the most famous resident of the neighborhood, opened a camera store, Castro Camera, and began political involvement as a gay activist, further contributing to the notion of the Castro as a gay destination.

There were numerous famous watering holes in the area contributing to the nightlife, including the Corner Grocery Bar, Toad Hall, the Pendulum, the Midnight Sun, Twin Peaks and the Elephant Walk.

Probably, today the Castro District is more visited by tourists than activists, but in any case is one of the most important places for the gay rights movement.

I have to thank my loved Eddi who guided me around the city, showing wonderful places and sharing amazing experiences with me. Thanks baby!!!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Hands, a song & video for Orlando

GLAAD and Interscope records leased a moving lyric video to accompany 'Hands', the Orlando tribute song. 

The video features a bevy of YouTube stars, as well as survivors of the attack and victims of gun violence from across the country, who traveled to Orlando with GLAAD in the wake of the tragedy to stand in solidarity with the victims, survivors and families

The video concludes with a call to action to accelerate acceptance and end hate at

Check it out below:

Friday, August 19, 2016

Salt Lake City Mayor weds her longtime partner

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski married her longtime partner Betty Iverson in a private ceremony.

Biskupski is the city’s first openly gay mayor. She was sworn in last December with Iverson by her side.

Sharing their happiness in a Facebook post, the Democratic politician said: "We have always been bonded by love, but now we are joined by law".

The private ceremony was performed by their friend Kate Kendell, who is the executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. Kendall wrote on Facebook that she is so proud to officiate the wedding of her longtime friends.

Congrats to the newlyweds!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Italian Olympic swimmer dedicated medal to her girlfried

Olympic swimmer Rachele Bruni has won silver in the 10km marathon, and she decided to come out by dedicating the medal to her supportive girlfriend.

"I dedicate his victory to my family, my coach and my beloved, who have followed and supported me", Rachele said.

When people questioned who her beloved was, Rachele spoke to reporters that it was indeed in reference to her girlfriend, Diletta Faina, who had accompanied her to Rio.

"I've never done a big coming out. Undoubtedly there are people who have too many prejudices, but I live peacefully. I do not think about the prejudices, I live for myself, for my passion for swimming and for the people who love me", she added.

This is the swimmer's first Olympic medal, and she is the only out LGBT Olympian in Italy.


Rachele (right) with her girlfriend Diletta

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

British athlete proposes to boyfriend at Rio Olympics

Gay British track and field athlete Tom Bosworth proposed to his boyfriend Harry Dineley while in Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics.

Tom, a race walker for Great Britain Team, shared the below photo on Twitter of him down on one knee with ring box in hand. 

The athlete captioned the photo simply: “He said YES!!!”

Tom and Harry are the second gay couple to engaged at Rio Games, after a rugby sevens player was proposed to by her Brazilian girlfriend.

Congrats hunks!

Pride Night with the New York Mets was a success

Last night, the LGBT Network and the New York Mets co-sponsored the team’s first ever Pride Night at a Major League Baseball game in the US. Hundreds of LGBT people and their families and friends filled the Citi Field for this historic event.

Pride Night included many special activities even a pre-game Pride in the Plaza show. Commemorative Pride Night t-shirts are also available for purchase.

Before the start of the game, the Mets gave a check of $12,000 to the advocacy group to support anti-bullying programs in Long Island and NYC schools.

The LGBT Network is a non-profit organization which operates Long Island’s four community centers for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. These community centers are a safe space and life-changing resource for the tens of thousands of LGBT and ally individuals who pass through the doors each year.

Help Strike Out Bullying and celebrate Pride Night...Let's Go Mets!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Odessa held first Pride March in Ukraine

Ukraine held its first Pride March outside Kiev at the weekend, and it went without any major incidents.

On Saturday, over 100 marchers came together in Odessa, the country’s third-largest city, and marched through the streets of the city.

Authorities were initially resistant to allow the march, but they only banned the group from taking their event to Shevchenko Park.

Marching along the Primorsky Boulevard, with a rainbow banner stretched between them, the parade was protected by 700 officers of the national police. At the end, the event went ahead peacefully, without major disturbances or attack.

In the last years, Kiev Pride Marches were cancelled because authorities said they would not guarantee protection to those taking part from homophobic violence.

Activist Bogdan Globa wrote about the problematic situation of LGBT people in Ukraine.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

First married couple to play together at the Olympics

Two British women have become the first married couple to play together for the same team at the Olympics.

Field hockey players Helen and Kate Richardson-Walsh took the field for their first match in Rio Olympics, helping Great Britain best Australia 2-1. The couple has been married for just three years, after same-sex marriage was legalized in England and Wales

The couple says it’s important for them to be out as athletes. They received nothing but support from their teammates. In fact, they invited the whole squad to celebrate their nuptials. Now, they say teammates have a particular appreciate for their sense of connection.

But their historic Olympic moment that almost doesn’t happen. Kate technically retired two years ago and Helen has faced multiple back surgeries in the past year. But they decided to come back for Rio.

Love always win... in Rio Olympics too!

The couple hopes to take Great Britain's 
field hockey team to Olympic victory

Saturday, August 13, 2016

ISIS murders another man for being gay

Members of so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have executed another man accused of being gay, throwing him off a roof in Mosul, Iraq. 

An ISIS commander preached before a crowd gathered at the base of a tall building, included many children, informed bystanders that the victim had been found guilty of "corruption of thought" and "homosexual acts". 

The punishment for such crimes is death by stoning or by being thrown from the tallest building in the city. In some instances, if victims survive the fall, they are subsequently stoned to death. 

The public executions in ISIS territories started at early 2014. United Nations reported that at least 30 people have been killed after being accused of being gay. 

Stop this barbarity!

ISIS territories in Syria and Iraq by CNN

Friday, August 12, 2016

Belize's Suprem Court strikes down sodomy law

Belize's Supreme Court ruled that a law punishing homosexuality is unconstitutional. It has had the law in place since its days as a British colony. 

Under the previous law, homosexual citizens in Belize could face a penalty of up to 10 years' imprisonment for having "carnal intercourse". In fact, Section 53 stated: "Every person who has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any person or animal shall be liable to imprisonment for 10 years". 

Now, the chief justice of Belize, Kenneth Benjamin, has found that section 53 of the criminal code is unconstitutional and must be removed.

The Bahamas removed the same law when it broke away from Britain, but many former British colonies in the Caribbean still have anti-sodomy laws in place from the days when the English controlled the territories. 

LGBT advocates are hoping the fact that this law has been struck down will encourage other Caribbean countries to do the same. Precisely, one of those countries where a similar battle is happening is Jamaica, where attorney Maurice Tomlinson brought suit against that country's law that also criminalizes homosexuality.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Growing support of American youth for LGBT community

A new survey has found that young people in the US show great support for LGBT rights.

The GenForward study was conducted by the Black Youth Project at the University of Chicago with The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. It surveyed 1,940 adults age 18 to 30 years old.  

Key findings included:
  • 80% support LGBT adoption
  • 92% support HIV and AIDS prevention
  • 90% support equal employment

The survey also found that support for LGBT adoption had increased across the board over the last two years: up from 69% to 84% for young white people; and 65% to 75% among Hispanics.

However, just 6% considered LGBT issues to be among the top issues facing the US. The greatest issues facing the US, among those surveyed, include racism (28%), terrorism and homeland security (25%), education (24%) and gun control (21%). 

Although same-sex marriage and adoption are now legal across the US, next goal is passing a federal Equality Act, for effectively expanding the 1964 Civil Rights Act to include protection for LGBT people in employment.

Equal rights for all!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Love also wins in Rio Olympics

A field manager and Rio volunteer Marjorie Enya, 28, couldn't have picked a better time to propose. 

The Australian women's rugby 7s team had just won gold after beating New Zealand and the mood was high. 

Following the conclusion of the medals ceremony, Enya grabbed a mic and took her girlfriend of two years Isadora Cerullo, 25, a Brazilian rugby player, out onto the field and proposed in front of her teammates and the fellow officials.

All of whom cheered and waved heart-shaped balloons as Curello said yes. Then, Enya put a ring on it, and the crowd went wild. 

"I wanted to show people that love wins", Enya said. "She is the love of my life", she added. 

Congratulations the engaged couple!

Love always wins!

Monday, August 8, 2016

China crowned its first Mr Gay

Meng Fanyu, 27, was voted the winner of Mr Gay China, the country’s first franchise from the international Mr Gay World competition.

“Something like this event is a great platform to raise awareness of the LGBT community”, the winner said, still looking slightly stunned at having won. “Many people don’t really know what LGBT is, and coming out can still be difficult, so you really have to prove yourself to be an upstanding person”, he added.

The LGBT community in China took a step toward visibility and awareness this weekend when it held its first Mr Gay pageant.

The first Mr Gay China was set to be held in 2010 but was shut down by police for apparently not following the correct procedures. This year the event met with zero resistance as China’s LGBT community gains more acceptance in society.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

It's time for equal marriage in Northern Ireland

Tens of thousands who took to the streets of Belfast for the city’s annual Pride parade have called for same-sex marriage to be legalised in Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland remains the only part of the UK where it is not legal for same-sex couples to marry. England and Wales legalized same-sex marriage three years ago, and Scotland did the same in december of 2014.

Meanwhile, the Republic of Ireland endorsed gay marriage by referendum over than year ago, but their northern neighbours are still resisting to change.

In addition, almost 70% of people asked in Northern Ireland said yes to gay marriage in a poll

In this context, the LGBT activists groups have said they will keep on going until same-sex marriage is legalised in Northern Ireland.

It's time Northern Ireland!

Saturday, August 6, 2016

A record number of out LGBT athletes participate in Rio Olympics

The Olympic Games of Rio de Janeiro are finally here, and there is a record number of 43 publicly out gay, lesbian and bisexual athletes participating. But, for now, there are no openly transgender Olympians. The 2012 Summer Games in London featured 23 out LGBT athletes. 

The Olympics are meant to be inclusive, and in a country not known for its tolerance for LGBT people there were signs of acceptance during the opening ceremony. Before the ceremony opened, a kiss cam focused on two men. The crowd at Maracana Stadium roared as the men kissed. And during the Parade of Athletes, five of the volunteers carrying the placards of each country are transsexual.

The Olympic Charter says the rights and freedoms set forth in it are secured “without discrimination of any kind, such as race, color, sex, sexual orientation, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status”.

Earlier this year, there were extensive protests on the streets of Rio following alleged police brutality against members of the LGBT community around the time of Carnival. Gay rights groups have long complained of discrimination in both regular society and in the workplace, despite Brazilian law officially dictating that all people should be treated fairly and equally.

Please, it's important don't forget Brazilian LGBT issues during the Olympic Games but specially, when the Games have gone.

Friday, August 5, 2016

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Iran hangs an adolescent for being gay

Iran's regime executed a gay adolescent, Amnesty International reported, the first confirmed execution of someone convicted as a juvenile in the Islamic Republic in 2016.

Hassan Afshar was hanged in Arak Prison in Iran's Markazi Province, after he was convicted of  "forced male-to-male anal intercourse", the NGO said in a statement. He was a 17-year-old high school student when he was arrested. 

Consensual homosexual conduct remains illegal under Iran’s Sharia law and is punished with public flogging or even execution. While the Islamic State throws gays from rooftops, the Islamic Republic of Iran hangs them.

“Iran has proved that its sickening enthusiasm for putting juveniles to death, in contravention of international law, knows no bounds", said Magdalena Mughrabi, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Programme Director at Amnesty International.

"He had no access to a lawyer and the judiciary rushed through the investigation and prosecution, convicting and sentencing him to death within two months of his arrest as though they could not execute him quickly enough”, Mughrabi added.

According to a 2008 British Wikileaks dispatch, Iran executed between 4,000 to 6,000 gays and lesbians between the start of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 to 2008. 

With this execution, Iranian authorities have demonstrated once again their callous disregard for human rights.

At the same time, the execution of 20-year-old Iranian youth Alireza Tajiki, which had been scheduled for 3 August, has been postponed again following renewed public pressure. Despite this, Alireza Tajiki, who was 15 years old when arrested, remains at risk of execution as the authorities have yet to quash his death sentence and grant him a fair retrial. 

Stop the killings!

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Don't forget Brazilian LGBT issues during Rio Olympics

Read this post in the day before that the Olympic Games begin:

"As the 2016 Summer Olympics begin in Rio this week, GLAAD is calling on media outlets to include the many issues facing the LGBT community in Brazil while reporting on the events.

LGBT people in Brazil say this is a very difficult time, with the rise of anti-LGBT evangelical politicians who’ve blocked LGBT inclusive projects. Advocates express concern over the looming impeachment of president Dilma Rousseff and the rise of Michel Temer whom advocates say is far more anti-LGBT than Rousseff. They say this is the most anti-LGBT moment they’ve experienced. “And that includes during the dictatorship,” according to one.

Over the past several years, violence against the LGBT community, especially transgender women, has been rising significantly in Brazil. While same-sex marriage has been legal in the country since 2013, significant hate and violence against the LGBT community remains prominent.

In 2014 alone there were 326 murders of LGBT people in Brazil, with about 40 percent of these victims being transgender women, compared to them making up only 10 percent of the community. Brazil also is the country with the highest number of reported violence against transgender people.

Just a few days ago, a gay man was found murdered and tortured in Rio and his death is, sadly, one of many. A recent story in the Advocate highlights the huge problem of anti-LGBT violence.

In addition, the LGBT to community in Brazil is faced with police brutality, religious fundamentalism and greater likelihood of living in poverty. Christian evangelism is growing in both Brazilian politics and society. More conservative evangelists are being elected into congress and have since been barring many laws granting LGBT protections from being passed.

Because many LGBT people aren't given equal access to education, job opportunities and housing, the poverty rate is much higher for the LGBT community.

GLAAD can provide reporters with background information, Brazilian LGBT contacts, and organizations who are working to make life better for LGBT people in Brazil. We hope that, in addition to the games, the Olympics will be an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the issues faced by the Brazilian LGBT community."

Joe Biden officiates gay wedding for White House staffers at his own house

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has officiated his first ever marriage, and it just happened to be for a same-sex couple.

The two grooms were White House staffers Brian Mosteller and Joe Mahshie, who had asked the vice president to lead the ceremony.

Tweeting out a picture, Biden said: "Proud to marry Brian and Joe at my house. Couldn’t be happier, two longtime White House staffers, two great guys".

As it's known, VP Biden is a fierce supporter of LGBT rights and equality.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Russian LGBT network: different people, shared values

Russian LGBT Network is an interregional, non-governmental human rights organization that promotes equal rights and respect for human dignity, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity in Russia. 

It was founded in April 2006. In October 2008, the All-Russian Conference of civic organizations in support of the LGBT movement was held in Moscow. During this conference, the network transformed into an interregional public movement. Currently, Russian LGBT Network has regional divisions in 14 regions of the Russian Federation.

Their goals are:
  • To get the state to acknowledge and obey a set of basic rights and freedoms essential for the protection of the human dignity of LGBT people and further work on human rights in Russia.
  • To enhance the visibility of the community, boost its potential, ensure its protection, and engage it in various forms of civic activity.
  • To raise awareness of the dangers associated with homophobia and transphobia, and create an understanding that these are types of xenophobia and should not be socially accepted.

Recently a report said the situation of LGBT people and rights in Russia worsens.

You can support them making a donation here.

Russian LGBT activists are not alone

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Former Mr. Gay UK is the Manchester's Lord Mayor

Carl Austin-Behan, a former Mr. Gay UK, who was dismissed from the Royal Air Force in 1997 because of his sexual orientation, was sworn in as Manchester's Lord Mayor, 

Austin-Behan started his career in the RAF, but was thrown out after six years in 1997 for being gay. Following an 18-month stint working for Manchester fire service, Austin-Behan was crowned Mr Gay UK in 2001.

The new mayor married Simon, his partner of 12 years and who works for Greater Manchester police, just six months ago and the couple are in the process of adopting a child.

Austin-Behan will be making history, he is not only Manchester's first openly gay lord mayor, but at 44 years old he is also the youngest.

Manchester is known for being one of the most LGBT-friendly cities in the UK, but Austin-Behan says that there is no room for complacency: “We've got to remember that we've still got challenges out there. There are still barriers”.

He plans to use his mayoralty to tackle transphobia and to push to get HIV testing more readily available in Greater Manchester, which has the highest number of people living with HIV outside of London.

Carl in 2001 when he won Mr. Gay UK

Carl and his husband at Manchester's town hall

Monday, August 1, 2016

The Simpsons bawl Donald Trump out

The Simpsons interrupted their summer vacation by posting a two-minute campaign ad that asks Springfield residents whether they would rather have Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump in the White House during a national crisis.

"It's 3 a.m. and the phone's ringing in the White House. Who do you want answering that call", commercial asks Springfield residents

While The Simpsons don’t flatly state “I’m With Her”, they’re extremely critical of Clinton’s opponent. This isn't the first time The Simpsons mocked Trump this campaign season.

Watch the video below: