Link to NPR Radio Michel Martin interviewing Sandip Roy:
The western media have focused an enormous amount of media attention about the homophobia in Russia. Since the Winter Olympics will take place in Russia in February 2014 the issue of LGBT rights in Russia has gotten the spotlight.
Perhaps the shock of the Occident is due to the fact Europe is stereotyped as being progressive, tolerant, and modern?
Western people seem to be horrified that Vladimir Putin has created and passed anti gay legislation in Russia.
Where is the press about the anti gay bill in Uganda now becoming law? Where is the GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz? Why isn’t the Human Rights Campaign on television denouncing the anti gay law in Uganda becoming law? Why is there this canyon of silence?
If the Winter Olympics was taking place in Africa, or South America, or Asia, or the Middle East would the western media care about the plight of LGBT people there? Or, is it because Russia although a communist nation, is still a part of Europe and is still a white nation why there is so much press?
The white homosexuals in Russia have it easier than say Jamaican LGBT people, or gay and lesbian people in Iran where gays can be killed.
Although, people like to pretend race doesn’t matter in the obsession of the western media coverage about discrimination of LGBT people in Russia it would be naive to ignore it.
The Russian LGBT people we see on television are white, and western people especially in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada relate to them since they are white themselves.
The homophobia in Uganda is treated and viewed through a different lens by the western media in the mainstream and the LGBT community. Uganda is foreign, it is distant, it is too black, the other, and therefore invisible and treated like an afterthought.
However, Russia’s anti gay laws are terrible. I am not disputing that LGBT people in Russia are not being discriminated against. I am just pointing out there are many countries around the world where the rights of LGBT people are worse! Celebrities like Wentworth Miller, Thomas Roberts, speak out about the homophobia in Russia yet are silent about the discrimination of LGBT people in other countries.
There is this facade that the LGBT community is a monolithic group however this is a DANGEROUS LIE! The racism within the LGBT media is more subtle but it is indeed very real and it exists.
Whenever, I visit message boards and people write about homophobia in African countries there is the usual racist rhetoric that Africans are uncivilized and that’s why they are against homosexuality. However, in the United States, there are racist white Christian groups who travel to the third world to engender homophobia. Why doesn’t the bigotry of American Christian groups not getting more media attention? I recall during my undergraduate days at York University, I learned that American Evangelical Christian groups travel to Uganda, and other African countries and provide funding for Christian groups there. The homophobia in Uganda didn’t just emerge out of nowhere.
The Rachel Maddow show is one of the rare American television shows which have provided a space for dialogue about the homophobia in Uganda.
The Ugandan government has passed the anti gay bill. However, I don’t recall GLAAD, or Human Rights Campaign, or LGBT celebrities speaking out about the homophobia in Uganda.
Since the majority of the LGBT community in Uganda are black Africans or South Asians due to the issue of race they don’t receive the same media attention.
Could it be, because Russia is a white European nation, gay and lesbian organizations in the west relate to Russia easier? Uganda isn’t the only nation with terrible anti gay laws countries such as Iran, Malaysia, and the Middle East gay people have NO RIGHTS!
Sorry if I sound cynical, but I can’t help sense there is an element of racism by the LGBT power elite organizations like GLAAD about Uganda and other third world nations in relation to gay rights.
102.1 The Edge is a radio station I listen to frequently because I love rock music. However, I am very disappointed to hear 102.1 The Edge Dean Blundell show is so homophobic. In the past, I listened to Blundell’s show for a few minutes but then I realized how sexist and immature the program is. Blundell is a wannabe Howard Stern.
Recently, Blundell made some disgusting anti gay jokes calling gay men “man whores”, negative comments about anal sex calling it “butt love”.
The worst part about this incident is, 102.1 The Edge probably LOVES the free publicity the Dean Blundell show is getting. 102.1 The Edge will claim that Blundell’s show is just comedy, but as I said before comedy has a subtext.
Shock jock radio hosts and comedians always say their humour is just for jokes. However, sometimes jokes are not funny and the humour is a mask for bigotry.
The homophobia that Dean Blundell and 102.1 The Edge is spreading is abhorrent. Now imagine, if 102.1 The Edge made racist comments on the air, would the Canadian public accept this? Of course not! So why is homophobia against gay men acceptable? Is it palatable in Canada for a radio station in Toronto to broadcast anti gay hate? The CRTC needs to do something about 102.1 The Edge.
The producer for 102.1 The Edge, Derek Welsman was actually a foreman in he jury in a case involving a HIV positive gay man who was convicted of sexually assaulting other gay men at the Spa Excess bathhouse. Welsman actually talked about he case ON THE AIR, even though he was instructed by the judge not to.
This anti gay crap at 102.1 The Edge, must be challenged and must not be ignored. I urge the readers of my blog to contact the CRTC and file a complaint against 102.1 The Edge.
LINK TO TORONTO STAR ARTICLE ABOUT 102.1 THE EDGE HOMOPHOBIA
LINK: FORM TO FILE COMPLAINT WITH CRTC AGAINST 102.1 THE EDGE.
Although the James Franco & Seth Rogen parody of Kanye West new video is considered funny is it really? The immediate reaction people have is Franco & Rogen are just being funny making fun of rapper Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s arrogance.
Franco and Rogen are homophobes, except they utilize humour as a mask to conceal their anti gay prejudice.
Franco has used male homosexuality as a gimmick to get free publicity, yet he clearly has no respect for gay men!
The subliminal message is still homophobia against male homosexuality is palatable if the homophobes are young white heterosexual male actors. We live in a racist, homophobic world where the obnoxious behaviour of white heterosexual men is giving a free pass. Imagine, if two young black male actors made this parody video? Would the mainstream media and public be so accepting of it or would they scorn them?
Some people might argue, that it is simply a joke not be taken seriously. However, humour has a subtext, a message that is beneath the surface. The homophobia Franco and Rogen are engendering is that male homosexuality is wrong.
The anti gay message Franco and Rogen are spreading must be challenged and not dismissed as just comedy.
The general public is laughing at the fact two famous young male actors are kissing and being affectionate with each other. People are not just laughing at Kanye West, they also have a platform to being homophobic because Franco and Rogen provided the space for this to occur. Male homosexuality is ridiculed, gay men being affectionate with each other is seen as a joke. Since Franco and Rogen are both white, heterosexual men, they utilize their white male privilege to humiliate gay men.
Once again, two men kissing is considered funny and disgusting at the same time. Although, James Franco claims to be an ally of the gay community he has a propensity to be an opportunist. Franco is no friend of the gay male community, he utilizes male homosexuality to shock his heterosexual audience. James Franco is a bigot, but his bigotry is covert not overt. Franco’s art about gay male sexuality which he manipulates for his personal game is an example of his prejudice.
Since Franco is heterosexual, some gay men fall for Franco’s prejudice they give him a free pass for mocking male homosexuality.
Franco has white male skin privilege and since he is handsome, gay men ignore his anti gay prejudice. However, just because Franco is a good looking man, does this give him a pass for being a jerk?
Franco isn’t as gay positive as some gay men assume. For instance, Franco’s short film Interior Leather Bar, was created to alarm heterosexual audiences since he was recreating portions of the 1980 cult gay classic Cruising. Of course, Franco was not involved in any of the gay male sex scenes.
Franco’s so called art is meant to shock, he feels comfortable exploiting male homosexuality for his own personal fame. However, Franco won’t get too close to male homosexuality and he is quick to point out he isn’t gay. Franco’s coy attitude about his sexuality is lame and pathetic. Franco needs a new gimmick and move on from male homosexuality he is a coward.
Only a coward would claim to be an ally of the gay male community yet consistently use homosexuality to alarm the general public. There is no substance behind Franco’s art, it lacks true meaning.
Male homosexuality is just a prop for Franco, a joke, not to be taken seriously. In addition, since Franco has never clarified his true sexuality, he is assumed to be heterosexual. Franco utilizes his heterosexual male privilege to mock, humiliate, and discriminate against gay men.James Franco is the enemy of gay men he is not an ally.
This is so disgusting, disturbing, and horrible! My goodness, this is so sad! The gay men in this video are terrified, since a violent angry mob is after them! The homophobia in Jamaica is wrong, and something needs to be done about this. I think Canada, should do something about this either cut off foreign aid to Jamaica or put in sanctions.
Zimbabwe’s newly re-elected President Robert Mugabe. Source: AFP
ROBERT Mugabe has been sworn in for a seventh five-year term as President of Zimbabwe, despite widespread disbelief that he won 63 per cent of the vote in an election he had been expected to lose.
A crowd of about 60,000, enjoying free food, bands and a holiday declared for the occasion, filled the national sports stadium yesterday as Mr Mugabe delivered an hour-long address promising better conditions and a rant against gays and the West.
“We dismiss them as the vile ones whose moral turpitude we must mourn,” he said of Britain, Australia, Canada and the US, which have questioned his victory.
The election result has been bitterly disputed and various nations have indicated that they are unlikely to restore normal relations with Harare. Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr called for a rerun of the election; British Foreign Secretary William Hague said an independent investigation would be required for the ballot to be deemed credible. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said the EU would review its policy towards Zimbabwe amid serious concerns about the vote.
Digital Pass $1 for first 28 Days
The US has said that its travel and investment bans on Mr Mugabe and his senior officials would be removed “only in the context of credible, transparent and peaceful reforms”.
Unlike previous low-key investitures, this event carried strong echoes of Mr Mugabe’s inauguration as prime minister of a newly independent Zimbabwe in 1980.
A no-show by leaders from neighbouring nations, including President Jacob Zuma of regional power-broker South Africa, did little to dampen enthusiasm.
“I promise you better conditions,” he told supporters. “The mining sector will be the centrepiece of our economic recovery and growth. It should generate growth spurts across the sector, reignite that economic miracle which must now happen.”
Mr Mugabe’s opponent, Morgan Tsvangirai, withdrew his challenge to the result last Friday after the state electoral body refused to provide an electronic copy of the voters roll to help investigators to check for rigging.
The pro-democracy leader also expressed doubts that he would receive a fair hearing from the country’s Supreme Court, which critics say is packed with Mr Mugabe’s supporters.
Mr Tsvangirai described the ceremony as “a robbers’ party”.
After the holiday, Zimbabweans will have to face the realities of another five years under Mr Mugabe, 89; presuming that old age and frailty do not claim him. The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange’s index has plummeted since the election and power supplies are disrupted for 14 hours every day.
Globe & Mail Article: Health Canada Discriminating Against Gay Men Must Be Celibate For Five Years Prior To Giving Blood!!!
The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, May. 22 2013, 10:47 AM EDT
For most Canadians, donating blood is as easy as visiting a clinic and rolling up a sleeve.
Not so for gay men, who since the mid-1980s have been banned from giving blood.
That changed Wednesday, when Health Canada approved lifting the prohibition as long as the donor has not had sexual contact with another man in at least five years. The change is expected to take effect this summer.
The policy shift may give celibate gay men eager to tap a vein reason to celebrate. But it was met mostly with derision by critics of the ban, who argued the move perpetrates an unscientific stereotype of gay men and HIV transmission and does nothing to enhance the safety of the blood supply.
“For the vast majority of people who are affected by the ban, this policy change is actually no change,” said Adam Awad, the national chairman of the Canadian Federation of Students, an organization among a coalition of groups that has advocated against the ban.
The coalition, which includes the Canadian AIDS Society, has recommended that behaviour and risk of transmission of disease be factored in to blood-donor restrictions. They argue, for example, that a straight man who has unprotected sex with multiple women is a greater threat to the sanctity of the blood supply than a gay man who has been in a long-term, monogamous relationship.
“This [new] policy assumes that if you’re a man, regardless of what protections you might take, any sexual contact with another man becomes risky,” Mr. Awad said. “We know that’s not the case.”
Canadian Blood Services, a non-profit charity that manages the blood supply in all provinces and territories outside Quebec, and Héma-Québec, which serves the same function in that province, began pushing for what they call the five-year “deferral period” for gay men in 2011.
The effort followed a 2010 Ontario Superior Court ruling that upheld the ban, but said there was insufficient evidence to support an “indefinite deferral period.”
Dana Devine, vice-president of medical, scientific and research affairs at Canadian Blood Services, cast the policy shift as “a very significant change for us.” She acknowledged, though, that the change would face resistance.
“We recognize that many people will feel that this change does not go far enough, but given the history of the blood system in Canada, we see this as a first and prudent step forward on this policy,” Dr. Devine said. “It is the right thing to do and we are committed to regular review of this policy as additional data emerge and new technologies are implemented.”
Several countries allow men to donate blood one year after having had sexual relations with another man, including Great Britain, Australia, Japan and Sweden. In South Africa, the deferral period is six months. Italy is one of a handful of countries that has no restrictions.
A blood-donor ban remains in place in the United States for men who acknowledge having had sex with another man at least once since 1977. Canada’s screening process had also set the threshold at 1977.
Dr. Devine said a five-year deferral would give the organization enough time to collect data, specifically the rate of transmissible diseases found in donated blood. The data would be used to regularly review the policy and amend it as appropriate, she said.
At the same time, she said she did not expect the change to trigger a noticeably larger pool of donors, leaving critics to wonder what substantive data could be gleaned from the new policy.
“We do not anticipate that this will bring a large number of gay men forward to the blood-donor pool,” Dr. Devine said.
Researchers at the University of California found in 2010 that if the ban in the United States were replaced by a five-year deferral, an additional 71,218 pints of blood would be donated each year.
The Canadian AIDS Society, which called the change “a good first step” that does not go far enough, was optimistic about the impact the change could have on the donor pool.
Monique Doolittle-Romas, the chief executive officer, said people who refused to donate because of the blanket ban would now reconsider.
Still, she said her group would intensify its efforts to push for a screening process based on donor behaviour rather than sexual orientation.
When a person gives blood, the donation is typically tested within 24 hours for HIV and several other infectious diseases, including hepatitis B and C, West Nile virus, syphilis and the human T-cell lymphotropic virus HTLV-I and II.
Since the 1980s, when the ban took effect, tests have become much more sensitive and accurate. The organization employs nucleic acid and antibody tests for HIV that are considered state of the art.
Of the 901,640 units of blood collected by Canadian Blood Services last year, fewer than five were found to be infected with HIV, according to the organization. A unit is the equivalent of 450 millilitres.
Fewer than 250 of the roughly 900,000 donations annually – or about 0.03 per cent – test positive for an infectious disease, according to the organization.
Hundreds of Canadians were infected with HIV and hepatitis C through blood transfusions in the 1980s before rigorous tests were implemented.
Helen Kennedy, executive director of Egale Canada, a gay-rights advocacy group, said the advances in blood testing make any deferral policy antiquated.
“It’s still a discriminatory process,” Ms. Kennedy said. “They’re saying that a person’s sexual orientation and gender identity is reason enough to have a five-year deferral. It’s no different than an indefinite deferral.”
In the United States, where the Food and Drug Administration is facing growing public pressure to lift the ban, the agency insists its policy is grounded in statistics.
Men who have sex with men accounted for 61 per cent of all new HIV infections in the United States in 2010. The largest increase was found in homosexual males ages 13 to 24, the population the agency says is most likely to donate blood.
Francine Proulx-Kenzle, president of PFLAG Canada, a support group for gays and lesbians, said any deferral could be viewed as discriminatory.
But she said she is heartened by Canadian Blood Services’ openness to reviewing its policy and making adjustments.
“Sometimes going step by step is a result that is more lasting,” Ms. Proulx-Kenzle said. “You get everyone on board and you get a result that becomes part of who we are as a society.”
I am not surprised that some French people are against gay marriage. Although France is a secular country, there are some conservative elements to French society. I am glad the same sex marriage bill was approved and that marriage equality now exists in France for gay couples. Some of the arguments of conservatives are that the French family is going to decay and breakdown.
However, in Canada almost a decade ago prior to gay marriage becoming law there were similar arguments. Now almost eight years since same sex marriage became legal in Canada it isn’t a big deal anymore. Even the conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, recognizes that same sex marriage is just a part of what makes Canada a great nation. Canada was the first country in the western hemisphere to legalize gay marriage.
I think in a generation from now in France people won’t make a big deal about same sex marriage they won’t be upset about it. Consenting adults should be allowed to marry whomever a person of the same sex. Why should gay people in France be denied gay marriage when they pay taxes just like the heterosexuals? It is nice to see France moving forward and progressing towards modernity.
Today’s clip is from a soap opera from Finland called Secret Lives, the big storyline is about a gay male hockey player Lari. Lari has broken up with his boyfriend Elias because he is scared. Photos of Elias and Lari kissing were plastered across the school and now Lari’s secret is out. Lari is conflicted about being gay and he worries that his dreams of becoming a NHL player are over. However, Elias talks to Janne a good friend of Lari and convinces him to talk to the other boys on the hockey team. Unfortunately, Lari is gay bashed by the other boys because he is gay.