Monday, October 31, 2022

Saturday, October 29, 2022

Russian lawmakers pass bill to extend ‘anti-gay propaganda’ law to all adults

Russian lawmakers gave preliminary approval to a bill that imposes tough new restrictions on activities to promote LGBTQ rights in the country.

The new bill, which the lower house of Russia's parliament unanimously approved on the first of three readings, ramps up the restrictions and expands the presentation ban to cover all age groups, not just the under-18 population.

It outlaws advertising, media and online resources, books, films and theater productions deemed to contain such propaganda.

With regards to minors, the new bill broadens the existing restrictions by banning information about gender transitions.

Violations are punishable by fines, and, if committed by non-residents, could lead to their expulsion from Russia.

A 2013 Russian law banned what authorities deem to be the "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations" to children. It has been used to stifle debate in any public context and to prevent demonstrations or any public gatherings with pro-LGBTQ content that a child could conceivably see or hear.

This new bill will not only brazenly deprives LGBTQ people of their right to freedom of expression and endorses their discrimination, but will likely also lead to an increase in violent attacks and other hate crimes against them.

Putin wants to extend ‘anti-gay propaganda’ law to all adults

Thursday, October 27, 2022

Shame on you James Cleverly!!

British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly on LGBTQ football fans travelling to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar:

"One of the things I'd say to football fans is please do be respectful of the host nation. They're trying to ensure that people can be themselves and enjoy the football... I think with a little bit of flex and compromise at both ends, it can be a safe and secure World Cup."

This is the answer by former football player Gary Lineker: "Whatever you do, don’t do anything Gay. Is that the message?"

In Qatar, same-sex relationships can be punished with the death penalty under Sharia law.

Shame on you James Cleverly!!

Thank you Gary

Thank you Peter

Same-sex marriage is legal across Mexico

Same-sex marriage has become legal throughout Mexico after the state of Tamaulipas became the last in the mostly Catholic country to approve it.

The Congress of Tamaulipas approved the reforms to article 132 of the Civil Code for the State, to recognize the right to same-sex marriage

The northern border state’s decision ends a 12-year journey toward national marriage equality beginning when the capital Mexico City became the first to celebrate same-sex unions in 2010.

The move was followed by a Supreme Court declaration five years later stating a ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional that spurred changes at the state level.

“There are no first or second-class people, all people should enjoy this right,” said local congresswoman Nancy Ruiz of the conservative National Action Party (PAN), who promoted the reform.

Felicidades México!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

President Biden calls out bans on trans healthcare affirming they are immoral


President Joe Biden has criticised lawmakers trying to ban gender-affirming healthcare and called their actions “immoral”.

President Biden spoke about a range of pressing U.S. issues including, gun violence, abortion access, climate change and trans rights.

President Biden began speaking of his admiration for the younger generations. “You’re the single most educated generation in American history… and the most open and least prejudice generation in American history,” he said.

On the topic of trans rights, President Biden was interviewed by trans TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney who has documented her own transition through a series called Days of Girlhood.

Mulvaney announced that it was her 221st day of publicly transitioning and asked President Biden if states should have a right to ban gender-affirming healthcare.

“I don’t think any state or anybody should have the right to do that,” President Biden replied. “As a moral question and as a legal question, I just think it’s wrong. What they’re trying to do to trans persons is immoral”.

President Joe Biden is the most pro-equality U.S. president ever. Watch him below:

Tuesday, October 25, 2022

TikTok stars Nicky Champa and Pierre Boo secretly married in Las Vegas

Recently, TikTok superstars Nicky Champa and Pierre Boo made headlines for secretly getting married in Las Vegas.

27-year-old Champa is from Dallas, Texas. He has nearly a million followers on Instagram and 12.5 million followers on TikTok. Meanwhile, Boo is 36 years old and was born in Paris, France. He has 1.1 million Instagram followers and 13 million TikTok followers. 

To expand their digital presence and content creation, Champa and Boo have also launched a joint YouTube channel that has already amassed as many as 1.3 million subscribers. Though a lot of their content has to do with their relationship, Champa and Boo are also known for fashion videos, traveling posts, sharing personal stories, and posting thirst traps.

Their secret wedding did not come as a surprise to fans. They have been attached at the hip since they met. In fact, their public relationship, in part, skyrocketed their follower count to more than 25 million combined. Their good looks and hilarious shenanigans help, too.

Congrats to the newlyweds!!!

Monday, October 24, 2022

US schools are hostile places for LGBTQ students, survey says


More than 80 per cent of LGBTQ students across the United States reported feeling unsafe at school in the last year, a new survey has found.

The annual report from the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN), found that 81.8 per cent of LGBTQ students surveyed felt unsafe at school because of “at least one of their actual or perceived personal characteristics”, with nearly a fifth of these students (16.2 per cent) reporting that these feelings led them to change schools.

The study also found 32 per cent of LGBTQ students across the US had missed at least one full day of school over concerns for their safety.

Disturbingly, LGBTQ students reported experiencing increased high levels of verbal and physical harassment from their peers in the past year, with more than 75 per cent reporting in-person verbal harassment at school due to their sexual orientation or gender identity, and a horrific 12 per cent saying they were physically assaulted in the last year.

The research comes as students across the US face waves of discrimination in the form of homophobic and transphobic laws from some states with Republican governments.

For example, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis pushed through the much-criticised Don’t Say Gay Law, restricting schools from discussing LGBTQ issues in classrooms. Some Republican politicians now want to roll that bill out across all of the US.

Read the report here

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Manchester United and Chelsea condemn homophobic chants at Stamford Bridge


Manchester United, Chelsea FC and the Football Association (FA) have all condemned the homophobic chanting heard during Premier League match.

The chants were said to have emanated from the away end at Stamford Bridge on the same week as English football promoted LGBTQ inclusion by celebrating Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign.

In a statement, Manchester United said: “Homophobia, like all forms of discrimination, has no place in football. Manchester United is proud of our diverse fan base and the work we have done to reduce instances like we sadly heard at Stamford Bridge.”

“We will continue to campaign for inclusivity and to tackle discriminatory abuse whether inside stadiums or online. This includes working with fan groups to educate fans on the offence which discriminatory language causes.”

A Chelsea FC statement read: “Chelsea Football Club finds all forms of discriminatory behaviour totally unacceptable and we condemn the language used by some individuals today at Stamford Bridge.

“We are proud to be supporting Stonewall’s Rainbow Laces campaign and today acts as proof that we must do more to make football a game for everyone.

The FA also condemned the homophobic chanting and reiterated their unwavering commitment to completely eradicating such discrimination from football.

There are no openly gay footballers in any of the major leagues in the world, an anomaly considering the increasing number of professional athletes that come out of the closet in recent years, we all may be wondering why they take so long.

Friday, October 21, 2022

New anti-LGBTQ rules approved by Florida Board of Education thanks to Gov. DeSantis

The Florida Board of Education has approved new rules that will make life harder for LGBTQ people and allies.

One of the rules requires schools to post on their websites and notify parents by mail if they allow students to use bathrooms and locker rooms in accordance with their gender identity rather than their sex assigned at birth.

This policy is an attempt to bully and intimidate school districts that are providing these accommodations. It cannot prevent transgender students from accessing facilities aligned with their gender identity.

In the wake of a 2020 Supreme Court decision, President Joe Biden signed two executive orders that said federal agencies should “fully implement” the decision by applying the reasoning that anti-LGBTQ discrimination inherently involves sex discrimination. 

But the new policy from the Board doesn’t direct schools not to follow the law. It just makes them have to jump through more hoops to do so and also potentially puts them in the crossfire of angry parents who won’t support inclusive policies.

The second new rule instituted by the Florida Board of Education is in relation to the state’s Don’t Say Gay Law, signed by Gov. DeSantis last March, which prevents teachers from mentioning LGBTQ people in elementary schools.

The rule takes the law a step further by directly punishing teachers who violate it. It says any teacher who is found to have taught their students about LGBTQ issues can have their licenses suspended or revoked.

It's time to change Florida!!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Colton Haynes says it's hard getting roles after coming out

Colton Haynes is opening up about how he still struggles with getting roles in Hollywood as an out gay actor, despite all the progress that has been made.

Since Colton came out in 2016, he’s been cast in a few projects. He talked about how his sexuality is still affecting his career in 2022: “It is extremely hard navigating the industry as an out person, an out LGBTQ+ actor, no matter how hard the media loves to try to tell you that, you know, things are different now.” 

“They’re not. I mean, you have incredible movies at the box office that aren’t doing or getting the respect that they deserve. You have actors who aren’t being paid the same as everybody else, even though they’ve been a part of projects for 10 years,” he added.

In his recently memoir, Miss Memory Lane, the actor is opened up about having to conceal his sexuality and past to get acting roles. He's even given a specific instance when him being on the cover of a gay magazine almost made him lose a job.

Colton posted once for Pride month: "Being gay is worth celebrating. I wish I’d figured that out sooner, but I’m so glad I know it now. To everyone in the LGBTQIA+ community, I hope you celebrate yourselves this month & always, exactly as you are ❤️".

Read more in Out magazine.

Colton appeared in one of Lil Nas X video clips

Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Fears for Iranian climber Elnaz Rekabi after she competed in Seoul without a hijab


Iranian sport climber Elnaz Rekabi, 33, did not wear a hijab at an international competition in South Korea, in open defiance of her country's mandate, amid fierce protests against the Islamic Republic's restrictions on women's dress.

The gesture came one month into protests in Iran over the death of Mahsa Amini, arrested by Tehran police for allegedly violating the dress rules, which have transformed into a movement against the obligatory hijab and the Islamic republic itself.

Some media outside of Iran warned she may have been forced to leave the country early by Iranian officials and could face arrest back home. The Iranian authorities routinely pressures activists at home and abroad, and nothing had been heard since the event from Rekabi.

They also reported that the head of Iran's climbing federation had "tricked" her into entering the Iranian embassy in Seoul and that she would then be taken directly to the airport. They said her mobile phone and passport had been taken from her.

Women should never be prosecuted for what they wear. They should never be subjected to violations such as arbitrary detention or any kind of violence with regards to what they wear.

Sunday, October 16, 2022

Mexico votes to ban all conversion therapy

Mexico’s senate has voted to ban all conversion therapy that aims to alter sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. 69 lawmakers voted for the bill, with 2 against and 16 abstentions. It will now head to Mexico’s chamber of deputies for a final vote.

The vote has been years in the making, with the bill first introduced by senators from the parties Citizen Movement, Morena and the Green Party in October 2018.

The introducers said that conversion therapy’s “main victims are young LGBTQ+ people, causing irreparable damage to their mental health throughout their adult life and in the worst cases, driving them to suicide”.

Mexico city banned gay conversion therapy in 2020, its approval made the Mexican capital, which in 2009 was the first region of the country to legalize same-sex marriage, the first jurisdiction in Mexico to ban that practice.

Bravo Mexico!!! 

Nada que curar!

Saturday, October 15, 2022

Thousands marched in Bratislava to protest murder at LGBTQ venue


Two men were killed and a woman was injured after a young gunman opened fire in front of a LGBTQ bar named Tepláreň in Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia.

The 19-year-old killer had written a lengthy homophobic and anti-Semitic manifesto prior to the attack, and he expressed hatred for LGBTQ individuals and highlighted notion Jews are orchestrating a campaign to «replace» white people.

After the murderer, thousands of people joined a rally in Bratislava’s old city to show support for LGBTQ Slovakians and attended a vigil to honour the victims of the shooting. 

Slovak president Zuzana Caputova gave a speech during the event, saying: “I’m sorry that our society was not able to protect your loved ones. You belong here, you are valuable for our society.”

However, according Slovakian research within the gay and lesbian community, 60 per cent of respondents hide their sexual orientation from one or both of their parents; 50 per cent would not reveal their sexual orientation in public; 52 per cent concealed their sexual orientation at work and 15 per cent suffered aggravated assault due to their sexual orientation.

Due to social hostility in Slovakia, LGBTQ individuals do not reveal their sexual orientation and remain invisible to the majority of the population. LGBTQ individuals often prefer to stay invisible and avoid unwanted publicity. Besides, LGBTQ persons are not specifically protected by the Criminal Code and homophobia is not listed as an aggravating circumstance.

The true is most of politicians are generally members of Christian parties or the Slovak National Party, and some of them state that homosexuality is a disease. They say the killer is a "radicalized teenager", but despite he shooted with his father's gun, a far-right extremist, a part of Slovakian society is responsible for the situation of discrimination and fear that LGBTQ community is bearing. 

Enough murders and hate crimes!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Several teams will wear a rainbow armband at the World Cup in Qatar

Several teams will wear a rainbow armband at the Qatar World Cup, despite the fact it may be prohibited by FIFA, with organisers yet to grant permission for the anti-discrimination initiative amid anger over Qatar's anti-LGBTQ laws.

Several national soccer federations announced that their captains will wear a rainbow armband during the tournament as part of an anti-discrimination initiative over anti-LGBTQ laws in Qatar. For now, the nations supporting it are England, Wales, France, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Swtizerland, but it is expected more countries will join them.

Despite the fact that no permission has yet been given by FIFA, the national federations remain determined for their captains to be wearing the armband, even if it risks potential fines.

The armbands will be used to promote diversity, inclusion and anti-discrimination in Qatar, where same-sex relationships and the promotion of same-sex relationships are criminalised, and they can be punished with the death penalty under Sharia law.

Surprisely, the "gay icon" David Beckham signed a deal worth £150 million to become the “face of Qatar” ahead of next year’s World Cup. This decision contrasts with the announcement made by Tom Daley, who decided to try and ensure that countries which criminalise homosexuality and the LGBT community can’t compete in and host big sporting events in the future.

Fans can be jailed for waving rainbow flags in Qatar

Monday, October 10, 2022

The Swimmer, a film which confronts homophobia in the elite sport


When a young athlete falls for one of his competitors, he is faced with some big decisions, in this smart and sexy tale of forbidden love. That is the plot of The Swimmer, a Israeli movie directed by Adam Kalderon and starred by Omer Perelman Striks and Asaf Jonas.

Having earned himself a coveted spot at an elite training camp, talented swimmer Erez (Omer Perelman Striks) finds himself thrust into an unforgiving world of sporting rivalry, battling against his peers for a place on the Israeli Olympic swimming team. 

Erez is single-minded in his athletic ambition, until he meets handsome fellow swimmer Nevo (Asaf Jonas), with whom he forms an undeniable connection. But this ultra-competitive environment does not tolerate such distractions and Erez is soon warned by his exacting coach to stay away from Nevo, something Erez comes to understand is impossible.

A thrilling blend of sports movie and love story, Adam Kalderon’s  stylish coming-of-age tale is fraught with heady drama and smouldering sexual tension, not to mention a healthy dose of men in speedos, if that happens to be your thing.

Watch the trailer below:

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Dear Casillas, coming out is not a joke


Iker Casillas, the former Real Madrid and FC Porto player, regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers in soccer history, wrote on Twitter: "I hope you respect me: I'm gay."

Casillas inmediately received a wave of support following the post. Including Barcelona legend Carles Puyol, who responded to his friend saying: "It's time to tell our story, Iker" followed by a love heart and kissing emoji.

But that story does not appear to be true after Casillas sent another tweet claiming he had been hacked and apologised to his followers and then more importantly, the LGBT community.

Reports in Spain soon emerged claiming it may have been a hoax amid reports that he's fed up of speculation surrounding his dating life.

Spanish media suggested Casillas' post on Twitter is a response to many rumours that he could be in a possible relationship with numerous women (one of them Gerard Pique's ex-wife Shakira), since his recent split with his wife after 11 years together.

Anyway, the tweets received a whole lot negative reaction too. Josh Cavallo, who became the first openly gay active professional soccer player, hit out at the pair of former players and branded the tweets as "disappointing and "beyond disrespectful" given their standing in the game.

"@IkerCasillas and @Carles5puyol joking and making fun out of coming out in football is disappointing. It’s a difficult journey that any LGBTQ+ ppl have to go through. To see my role models and legends of the game make fun out of coming out and my community is beyond disrespectful."

Cavallo came out last year posting a statement where he said, "I'm a footballer and I'm gay. All I want to do is play football and be treated equally." He did, however, speak out after suffering homophobic abuse during a game.

Dear Casillas, you had a bad play this time.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Slovenia allows same-sex couples to marry and adopt

The Slovenian parliament passed an amendment allowing same-sex couples to marry and adopt after a constitutional court ruling made it the first country in Eastern Europe to do so.

Same-sex couples have been able to hold a wedding ceremony in Slovenia since 2017 and share many of the same rights as heterosexual couples. However, so far their marriage was legally called "a partnership union," and they were also not allowed to adopt children. From now on, the union of a same-sex couple will also be called "a marriage," and such couples will have the same rights as heterosexual couples.

Slovenia, which emerged from the break-up of Yugoslavia, is the first former communist country to endorse this reform in Europe, as most of its neighbours do not allow civil unions or same-sex marriages, and in Hungary, even talking about homosexuality in front of children has been punishable by a fine since the summer of 2021.

Slovenia is finally joining a number of countries in Europe and the world that have already given equal rights to heterosexual and same-sex couples, congratulations!

Monday, October 3, 2022

Brazil elects first-ever trans politicians to congress

Brazil, the deadliest country in the world for trans people, has endured years of increasing anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and violence under far-right president Jair Bolsonaro

On Sunday, citizens cast their votes in the presidential and congressional elections, and they elected the first ever openly trans members of parliament: Erika Hilton, Duda Salabert and Robeyoncé Lima.

Erika Hilton became the first-ever trans councillor elected the the Municipal Chamber of São Paulo in 2020, receiving the most votes for any councillor in the entire country.

Duda Salabert, a former teacher, founder of the anti-transphobia organisation Transvest and Democratic Labour Party member, became the first openly trans person elected to the city council of Belo Horizonte in 2020.

Robeyoncé Lima, a lawyer and activist, is the third trans person to be elected to Brazil’s congress. In 2019, she was elected as state deputy for Pernambuco.

Brazilians also cast their votes for the country’s next leader, and while the left-wing Lula da Silva beat the far-right Bolsonaro in the popular vote, he received 48 per cent of the vote, just shy of the 50 per cent of votes needed to be elected. The run-off election will take place on October 30th.

Sunday, October 2, 2022

Taiwan Pride to celebrate 20th anniversary with an exhibition

An exhibition of artifacts, photographs, and archive documents celebrating 20 years of Taiwan Pride, Asia's largest LGBTQ pride parade, opened to the public at Songshan Cultural and Creative Park in Taipei.

The Taiwan Rainbow Civil Action Association, organizers of Taiwan Pride, said the Walk with Pride exhibition would also look at the challenges and controversies encountered by those running the parade over the last two decades.

The exhibition's curators and designers said they hoped visitors would be able to learn about the major milestones in Taiwan Pride's history.

They added that they hoped visitors would also be able to place themselves in the shoes of past attendees to bear witness to the progress made toward equality in Taiwan.

As in years past, the 2022 edition of Taiwan Pride will be held on the last Saturday of October, and organizers said that this year's event would return to its usual format with a full-scale parade. The last edition in 2019 attracted a record 200,000 participants.

Recently, WorldPride 2025, originally scheduled to be held in Taiwan, has been abruptly canceled. It would have been the first time a global lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer event was held in Asia. This can be traced to external pressure from neighboring China.