Saturday, April 29, 2017

New Google advert features a gay couple

A gay couple have been featured in a new advert by Google. 

The advert features a same-sexcouple going about their morning routine with their two sons. The pair both ask Google Home for their schedules for the day, before deciding which of them will take the kids to school. 

The ad was created to promote a new feature for Google Home, which recognises different voices.

It’s the latest in a growing list of adverts by major brands that feature LGBT people.

Watch it below.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Gay rower proposes to his boyfriend after rowing across the Atlantic ocean

A gay rower proposed to his boyfriend after rowing 3000 miles across the Atlantic ocean.

David Alviar, a 31 year old University rowing coach, ended the incredible journey with a magical moment where he proposed to his partner, Stanley Lewis, as soon as he arrived on land.

As friends and family waited in Antigua (Caribbean Island), Stanley stood on the dock alongside them eagerly awaiting the return of his boyfriend, while having no idea he was about to get engaged.

After a massive seven weeks at sea, David dragged himself off the boat and fell to one knee in front of Stanley on the dock. Pulling a ring from his pocket, he held it up to his boyfriend and said: “Will you marry me?” And of course he said yes.

Congratulations to them both! 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Husband pays emotional tribute to killed policeman in Paris

French President Francois Hollande and France’s top officials and presidential candidates attended a national ceremony to honor the Paris police officer killed by an Islamic extremist on the Champs-Elysees.

The police officer, Xavier Jugelé, was shot to death last week when an assailant opened fire with an assault rifle on a police van parked on the most famous avenue in the French capital. Two other officers were wounded.

Xavier, who was in a civil union with his partner, was a proud defender of gay rights, and a member of FLAG, a French association for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender police officers. 

After his death, flags at police stations across France flew at half-mast, and President  Hollande made him a posthumous knight of the Legion d’Honneur.

Besides, at the memorial ceremony, Xavier’s husband, Etienne Cardiles, paid loving tribute to his late partner with a brief statement. 

“This pain makes me feel closer to your comrades who suffer in silence like you and me,” Cardiles said. “I have no hatred, Xavier, because it is not like you and does not fit with what made your heart beat. Nor what made you a guardian of the peace”, he added.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Republicans in Congress push Trump to scale back Obama's LGBT protections

Dozens of Republican lawmakers are asking Donald Trump to scale back Obama-era protections for gays and lesbians in order to make good on a campaign promise to protect religious liberty.

A group of 51 members of the House wrote to Trump this month to "request that you sign the draft executive order on religious liberty, as reported by numerous outlets on February 2, 2017, in order to protect millions of Americans whose religious freedom has been attacked or threatened over the last eight years". 

A senior White House official told that some sort of policy to protect religious liberty is still in the works, but that the president is trying to find middle ground. The official said that Trump has been clear about his support for the LGBT community and that he does not support any kind of discrimination. But Trump also believes there should be policies that allow for people to express and maintain their strongly held religious beliefs.

In early February, Trump was reportedly considering an executive order that would reverse former president Barack Obama's orders prohibiting discrimination against gays and lesbians in the federal workforce or by federal contractors. But the order was never signed and a White House's official declared: "The executive order signed in 2014, which protects employees from anti-LGBT workplace discrimination while working for federal contractors, will remain intact at the direction of Donald Trump”.

Although, the fact is the Trump Administration rescinded protective guidance for transgender students in U.S. schools. The guidance had been introduced by the Obama Administration and it instructed public schools to allow trans students to use bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identity.

We will see...

Monday, April 24, 2017

Just parents who love their children

This gorgeous short video from The Scene series shows parents of trans children showering their kids in positive words and unconditional love. 

According to a study, trans youth with accepting parents are three times less likely to have depression, they reported having high self-esteem at nearly five times the rate of kids who aren’t accepted by their families, and they are more than 14 times less likely to attempt suicide.

It’s amazing what the power of love can do.

Check the video below, it's awesome!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

The policeman killed in Paris was a gay rights activist

Xavier Jugelé, 37, a member of the Paris police, was killed by a gunman on the Champs-Élysées in the terrorist attack of Thursday night.

Xavier, who was in a civil union with his partner, was a proud defender of gay rights, and a member of FLAG, a French association for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender police officers. 

“He was a simple man who loved his job, and he was really committed to the LGBT cause”, Mikaël Bucheron, the president of Flag told. “He joined the association a few years ago and he protested with us when there was the homosexual propaganda ban at the Sochi Olympic Games”, he added.

Xavier joined the Parisian police force in 2010, after serving in the Gendarmerie. Yves Lefebvre, the general secretary of the police union Unité SGP Police-Force Ouvrière, said Officer Jugelé was “an excellent colleague”.

He also had been part of the response team that rushed to the Bataclan in Paris, in the wake of that attack in November 2015, which left 130 people dead. When the club reopened one year after, Xavier described his happiness at seeing the venue once again open its doors.

May he rest in peace!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Break the silence

“Silence is Ours” is the theme of this year’s “Day of Silence”, organized by the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Student Education Network, also known as GLSEN.

The worldwide event aimed at raising awareness of name-calling, bullying and harassment of LGBT youth is taking place at 8,000 middle and high schools across America, where students will speak as little as possible, or not at all, all day, to symbolize the silencing of LGBT voices through hate.

This specific theme, according to organizers, is to reclaim this silence “shifting it from something forced upon LGBT students to a strategic tool they use to advocate for safe and affirming schools”.

Thousands of American students have participated today April 21 in GLSEN’s Day of Silence, an annual international event that brings attention to the name-calling, bullying and harassment experienced by LGBT youth in schools.

What will you do to end the silence?

Thursday, April 20, 2017

53 men arrested in Nigeria for celebrating a gay wedding

This week 53 men have been arrested in Nigeria for celebrating a same-sex wedding.

Nigerian police confirmed they arrested the group of young men for “belonging to a gang of unlawful society”.

The men were arrested in the northern city of Zaria during a celebration to mark to wedding of a same-sex couple, prosecuting officer Mannir Nasir told a court.

A defence lawyer for the group said most of the accused were students and that they had been illegally detained by the authorities for more than 24 hours.

Same-sex marriage is banned in Nigeria and it is a criminal offence to perform or witness a gay wedding ceremony.

In 2013, Nigeria's House of Representative voted a bill to criminalise and punish with prison gay marriage, same-sex relationships and even membership of a LGBT rights groups. 

Early 2014, Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan signed into law the bill, which bans same-sex marriage and public displays of homosexuality and relationships, as well as LGBT organizations and groups.

Arrests and police abuses against LGBT people 
and activists are usual in Nigeria

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Gay Chechen man tells CNN about police's tortures in Chechnya

CNN’s Russian correspondent Matthew Chance turned in a report on the detentions, torture, and murder of hundreds of gay men in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya.

Chance spoke with gay Chechen man, one identified as Ahmed,  who fled the country and spoke on the condition of anonymity, for fear of reprisal.

Ahmed said: “My car got stopped at a Chechen police checkpoint, and they asked me for my documents. They looked at them then said ‘We are taking you'”.

Then he detailed the abuse he suffered: “They started beating me with their fists and feet. They wanted to get names of my gay friends from me”. 

He revealed that one of the methods used to torture the men is electrocution: “They tired wires to my hands and put metal clippers on my ears to electrocute me”. And he added: “They’ve got special equipment which is very powerful. When they shock you, you jump high above the ground”.

Despite the growing evidence of mass targeting of gay men in the region, a spokesperson for Chechnya’s Russian-backed leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, has denied the reports, insisting that gay people do “not exist” in the republic.

The international community cannot keep quiet!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. condemns attacks on gay men in Chechnya

Nikki Halley, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, has condemned the violent attacks on gay men denounced in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya, and urges to Chechen authorities to investigate and end them. 

According to credible sources inside the country, over a hundred men suspected of being gay are being abducted, tortured and even killed by Chechen police in a former military headquarters in the city of Argun. It would be the first concentration camp for gays since Hitler's times.

Halley's statement reads:

“We continue to be disturbed by reports of kidnapping, torture, and murder of people in Chechnya based on their sexual orientation and those persecuted by association. If true, this violation of human rights cannot be ignored – Chechen authorities must immediately investigate these allegations, hold anyone involved accountable, and take steps to prevent future abuses.

We are against all forms of discrimination, including against people based on sexual orientation. When left unchecked, discrimination and human rights abuses can lead to destabilization and conflict.

Tomorrow, the United States will lead a first-ever meeting on human rights in international conflicts in the U.N. Security Council to underscore our commitment to addressing human rights abuses wherever they threaten international peace and security”.

You can sign the Amnesty International's petition to stop abducting and killing gay people in Chechnya here.

This blog has been verified by Rise: R79ff92c3af73f0467a3562a0305d4a6f

Sunday, April 16, 2017

A trans musician who wants to break stereotypes

Jaimie Wilson, a transgender musician who lives in Florida, has been posting photographs of his transition to Instagram in the hopes of smashing stereotypes.

Since opening his Instagram account, he’s picked up 175,000 followers and counting.

He wrote on his account: "You don’t have to pass a test to prove you’re trans, and you sure as hell don’t need anyone’s approval but your own".

Then, why did he post the comparison photos? He answered: "Because I want people to see it doesn't matter what some LOOKS like...if someone has the guts to tell you "I'm transgender", "I'm gay", "I'm bisexual", anything like that, PLEASE BELIEVE them and be there for them because stereotypes need to be broken".

Well said hunk! 

Always be proud of who you are!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Madrid will held 2017 Union Cup

The 2017 Union Cup, the biggest rugby competition for European gay teams, will be held in Madrid from 28th to 30th of April.

The Union Cup is played every two years in one European city, and aims to raise awareness for the LGBT community within the world of rugby. This year is Spanish capital’s turn.

The first edition of this event was held in May 2005 in Montpellier, France, and since that time has toured some of the major European cities such as Copenhagen, London and Amsterdam.

In 2017, it will be hosted by the Madrid Titanes, the first gay rugby club in Spain, and the competition will be held in the Orcasitas Municipal Sports Centre.

Check all details here.

Madrid Titanes team will host 2017 Union Cup

Friday, April 14, 2017

Sign a petition to stop atrocities against gay men in Chechnya

Sign the Amnesty International's petition and demand to stop abducting and killing gay people in Chechnya.

Over a hundred men suspected of being gay are being abducted, tortured and even killed in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya according to credible sources inside the country.

The Chechen government won’t admit that gay men even exist in Chechnya, let alone that they ordered what the police call 'preventive mopping up' of people they consider to be undesirable.

We urgently need your help to call out the Chechen government on the persecution of people who are, as they put it, of 'non-traditional orientation' - and urge immediate action to ensure their safety.

Sign the petition now and urge the Russian and Chechen authorities to investigate these abductions and bring those responsible to justice.

You can sign here.

LGBT Rights are Human Rights

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Denounced a concentration camp for gays in Chechnya

New news by Euromaidan Press about persecution of homosexuals in Chechnya:

Chechen head Ramzan Kadyrov has not only sponsored direct attacks on members of the LGBT community in his republic but has adopted a plan for “the final solution of gay issue” and opened the first concentration camp in the world for sexual minorities since Hitler did so in the 1930s, according to a Novaya gazeta investigation.

The goal of this effort, the paper’s Elena Milashina and Irina Gordiyenko say, is “the complete cleansing of Chechnya from men of non-traditional sexual orientation.” The authorities have set up several internment camps where inmates are killed or forced to promise to leave the republic.

One of those who fled told Milashina and Gordiyenko that before being incarcerated in one of these camps, he had been forced to pay bribes to Chechen police of thousands of rubles every month in order to survive. Now, the regime has taken another step against gays by creating these camps, this survivor says.

Another former inmate said that he and others incarcerated in “the secret jail” were beaten to force them to name other members of the gay community. The address of at least one of these concentration camps is known: it is in the former military headquarters in Argun at 996 Kadyrov Street, symbolic in its way.

Novaya gazeta and a few other Russian outlets last week reported about repressions against gays in Chechnya, but the Kadyrov regime denied all accusations. It even claimed that “if there were homosexuals in Chechnya,” the authorities wouldn’t need to deal with them because their relatives would.

It would be the first concentration camp
for gays since Hitler's times

Monday, April 10, 2017

Miami to light up in rainbow colors as tribute to Pulse victims

Miami Pride took place this weekend with a typical explosion of noise, colour, and fabulous-ness, but this year’s event was marked by a more sombre start than usual.

The city’s three-day Pride event began on Thursday night (April 6) with an emotional event to mark to last June’s tragic events just 200 miles away in Orlando, where 49 LGBT people and allies lost their lives when a gunman opened fire on crowds at Pulse nightclub.

Miami buildings stood tall throughout the night as they were lit up in rainbow colours in a bright but silent tribute to victims and survivors, as well as their friends and families.

Local landmarks lit up included Miami Tower, American Airlines Arena, Miami Beach City Hall, Miami Beach Old City Hall, Wolfsonian-Florida International University, New World Center, Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts and InterContinental Miami.


The Freedom Tower

The University of Miami

The Perez Art Museum

Friday, April 7, 2017

Ad banned for being "too gay"

Lube company Boy Butter created a new commercial starring ginger hunk Seth Fornea. 

The spot was designed to air during the broadcast of RuPaul’s Drag Race in major markets like New York, LA and San Diego.

But appears the ad won't make it to air in Chicago, since, according to Boy Butter, Comcast thinks the ad is literally "too gay". 

The makers of Boy Butter have spoken of their disappointment after their ad was pulled from cable TV in Chicago. Eyal Feldman, who founded the company, claimed ComCast TV: "I did not think [Chicago] viewers could handle the level of gayness in this ad starring sexy ginger, Seth Fornea, who is showing us all how to properly use a butter churn.

He said that he wanted to create a tongue-in-cheek ad similar to the sexy Super Bowl ads to push his products with a gay point of view. There were not restrictions on the 2015 Carl’s Jr. Super Bowl ad starring Charlotte McKinney, which he claimed was basically porn in comparison. "It’s ‘a sexist and homophobic double standard", he added.

Watch and judge for yourself.

Boy Butter ad banned for being too gay

Thursday, April 6, 2017

March in Amsterdam to support beaten gay couple

Thousands walked hand-in-hand through Amsterdam yesterday to show solidarity with two gay men who were badly beaten over the weekend in the eastern city of Arnhem.

The gay couple, Jasper Vernes-Sewratan, 35, and Ronnie Sewratan-Vernes, 31, told police the confrontation started because they were holding hands in public.

Five suspects, all in their teens, will be charged with causing serious bodily harm, prosecutors said, adding that they are still investigating the motive of the attack.

Politicians, sportsmen, actors, policemen and businessmen have all responded to the call. Deputy Prime Minister of the Netherlands Lodewijk Asscher posted a picture of himself holding hands with fellow Labour Party politician Jeroen Dijsselbloem.



Wednesday, April 5, 2017

U.S. Federal Court rules employers can't fire people for being gay

A Federal Appeals Court in Chicago ruled that the 1964 Civil Rights Act also protects LGBT employees from workplace discrimination, the first time a federal appellate court has come to that conclusion. 

The Hively case stems from a lawsuit by Indiana teacher Kimberly Hively alleging that the Ivy Tech Community College in South Bend didn’t hire her full time because she is a lesbian. The entire court reheard oral arguments in November and directed the toughest questions at a lawyer for the college who argued only Congress could extend the protections. The aggressive questions suggested the court might be willing to expand the 53-year-old landmark law.

The decision by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals comes after it threw out a July finding by three of its own judges that the law doesn’t cover sexual-orientation bias and ordered a rare rehearing by the full court, a rare session known as an en banc hearing.

It also comes as Trump’s administration has begun setting its own policies on LGBT rights. Late in January, the White House declared Trump would enforce an Obama administration order barring companies that do federal work from workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual identity. But in February, Trump revoked a guidance on transgender students’ use of public school bathrooms, introduced by the Obama administration, deferring to states.

This very important sentence reads:

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

A photo of a gay couple has gone viral

Max Emerson, an underwear model and vlogger with more than 100,000 subscribers, posted a photo which saw him with his partner Andrés Camilo.

Andrés, a soldier in the National Guard, is shown wrapping his arms around Emerson. The caption reads: "Hello from gay army prom". It has since received more than 34,200 likes, and hundreds of positive comments.

Later, Emerson posted a second one, which reads: "an officer is always the first to dress and last to undress". It has received almost 30,000 likes, which it is not too bad.

What photo do you like most?

Monday, April 3, 2017

Manchester United team up with LGBT charity Stonewall

Manchester United have joined forces with LGBT charity Stonewall.

United, who become the UK's first football club to announce such a partnership, will work alongside the charity to help tackle LGBT issues in sport and society, including looking at ways inclusion and equality in the game can be improved.

Richard Arnold, managing director, said: "Manchester United always looks to be a leader in everything it does and we are proud to be the first sports club to sign up to TeamPride".

And he added: "The club has an ongoing commitment to equality across all areas and, with 659 million followers around the world, it is our responsibility to show support and recognition to everybody who loves this football club".

The club last year launched their own equality, diversity and inclusion programme, #allredallequal.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

The anti-transgender bus comes to Boston

The mayor of Boston has backed transgender rights in the city, as a transphobic bus arrived in Massachusetts.

The bus is sponsored by conservative action groups the National Organization for Marriage, Citizen Go and the International Organization for the Family. The organisers say it is aimed at promoting "the truth of gender", which they say is "determined by biology rather than by emotions and feelings".

Protesters surrounded the bus at the Massachusetts State House in Boston and in neighbouring Cambridge, near Harvard University. The bus was vandalised at its first stop in New York.

It closely resembles a Spanish bus created by a Catholic group that was forced off the roads by protesters in Madrid and Barcelona.

Speaking while the transgender flag was raised over over City Hall, Boston's mayor Marty Walsh said: "We are listening to our transgender community by making the city more inclusive. Its important for us to every now and then send a message, to let people know we will not be intimidated by discrimination or harassment". And he added: "When you deny the experience of transgender individuals, you are denying the experience of basic human civil rights".

Walsh has responded raising the trans flag at City Hall

Saturday, April 1, 2017

LGBT rainbow flag creator dies aged 65

Gilbert Baker, 65, an artist based in San Francisco who created the rainbow flag as a symbol for the gay community, has died in his sleep at his home in New York 

Baker, who was born in Kansas in 1951, was stationed in San Francisco in the early 1970s while serving in the US Army, at the start of the gay rights movement.

Activist and artist, he began making banners for gay rights and anti-war protests in the 1970s, often at the request of Harvey Milk.

He initially designed an eight-colour flag in 1978 for the city's gay freedom day, the precursor to the modern pride parade. Baker said he wanted to convey the idea of diversity and inclusion, using "something from nature to represent that our sexuality is a human right".

Original flag had eight colours, each representing a different aspect of humanity:
Pink - sexuality
Red - life
Orange - healing
Yellow- sunlight
Green - nature
Turquoise - art
Indigo - harmony
Violet - human spirit

It would later be reduced to six stripes, removing pink and indigo, and swapping blue for turquoise.

In 2015, New York's Museum of Modern Art acquired the flag for its design collection, calling it a powerful design milestone. "I decided that we should have a flag, that a flag fit us as a symbol, that we are a people, a tribe if you will", Baker told in an interview. "And flags are about proclaiming power, so it's very appropriate", he added.

Rest in power Gilbert!