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.
It is interesting reading the news on the internet about First Lady Michelle Obama daring to stand up to an obnoxious lesbian heckler Ellen Sturtz. Ms. Obama was speaking at a private residence and twelve minutes into her speech Sturtz rudely interrupted Ms. Obama. Unlike President Obama, his wife Michelle is not an elected official so she has more leverage on how she conducts herself. Ms. Obama is a strong black woman and I commend her for standing up to Sturtz and telling her to “take the mic or I’m leaving”.
On some conservative and liberal media websites, such as Fox News they are attempting to illustrate that Ms. Obama is the stereotypical angry black woman. After all, Ms. Obama had the audacity to actually defend herself when she is being disrespected by an annoying protester!
A white gay organization codepink defended Sturtz and said ” good for @EllenSturtz for talking to @michelleobama about POTUS
unfulfilled promise to pass ENDA Mrs. Obama should have said to LGBT protester: I don’t make policy but I certainly understand your concerns. Thanks for sharing them with me”.
This is a classic example of white privilege, white gay people trying to tell a black woman how she should act when she’s being rudely confronted.
One of the issues that is often ignored in the mainstream press is the racism of some white gay folks. Sturtz had the nerve to heckle the First Lady of the United States of America! There is this racist attitude by some in the white gay community that black people owe them something.
Sturtz, was swiftly ejected from the event, but I am glad Ms. Obama stood up for herself. There is this racist narrative that black people are supposed to bow down to white folks. Slavery ended in a long time ago, yet some white people still think they can talk to a black person anyway they want in a disrespectful manner.
Sturtz certainly didn’t respect Ms. Obama why couldn’t she have waited until after the First Lady finished her speech? Glad Ms. Obama schooled this lady and put her in her place. You go girl!
Gawker Crackstarter Campaign Has Raised Over $105,000 Donate To Get Video Released Of Mayor Rob Ford Smoking Crack.
The US gossip website Gawker crackstarter campaign has raised over $105,000 dollars it is over half way to the goal of securing the video of mayor Rob Ford smoking crack. Come on people, donate to the cause, and let’s get this son of a bitch Rob Ford out of office! Ford refuses to issue a clear statement about whether or not he smokes crack.
Ford’s silence means there is growing veracity this guy did indeed smoke crack. Even the conservative news media in Toronto are distancing themselves from Rob Ford! This cow needs to speak up or resign as mayor of Toronto. Due to Ford’s entitlement and arrogance he thinks he can sweep the controversy under the rug. Donate to the cause people let’s get this video released!
Here is the link http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/rob-ford-crackstarter
Last night, the American gossip website Mediatakeout splashed the provactive pics of NFL player Kerry Rhodes embracing his male assistant. Immediately, people began speculating if Rhodes is the first gay NFL player to come out. However, Rhodes told TMZ he is not gay as he attempted to squash the gay rumours. The fact that Rhodes felt the need to announce his heterosexuality is not surprising. The problem is the intense media attention about this elusive gay male athlete means the general public is now paying close attention ttrying to figure out who these gay athletes are. This just puts even more pressure on the closeted athletes to remain in the closet.
Although the mainstream North American media want a gay male athlete from the NFL, NHL, NBA, or MLB to come out I am not sure if it is going to happen. There are numerous arguments as to why a top male athlete has not come out. The gay community is also to blame because we place so much of our expectations on gay celebrities. We forget that gay celebrities are also people they have flaws, they aren’t perfect, yet we expect them to live up to our impossible unrealistic standards.
For instance, Robbie Rogers the young American soccer player came out as gay a few months ago on his blog. However, on Queerty, Towelroad, and other gay blogs Rogers was attacked and called a coward because he refused to be the gay Jackie Robinson. Rogers told The Guardian, and the New York Times that there is a pack mentality in the sports lockerooms. The heterosexual men use gay slurs, and make jokes about homosexuals. Rogers doesn’t want to deal with the homophobia and I can’t blame the man. Who would want to be subjected to abuse? Rogers is also worried about fans in soccer giving him a hard time when he is competing. This is probably going to happen if a gay man does come out in the NFL, NHL, NBA, and MLB. When the first gay male athlete comes out it is going to be a mixed response. Some people are going to be supportive while others are going to be homophobic.
Meanwhile, female athletes are already coming out and declaring they are lesbians yet they are treated with such disregard and disrespect. In Nigeria, there is new controversy that their soccer Federation is screening out lesbian athletes from joining the women’s soccer team. In North America, lesbian athletes and coaches in women’s basketball also experience discrimination.
Last year, Megan Rapinoe a top American female soccer player came out declaring she is a lesbian yet there was hardly any media attention. Rapinoe brave decision to come out was treated like an afterthought, as though it didn’t matter. Why are courageous lesbian athletes treated with such disdain as though they don’t matter? Rapinoe’s decision to come out is amazing, she’s not afraid of speaking out about homophobia in sports but because she’s a woman she’s treated as inferior by the sports media.
The misogyny of the mainstream sports media is often ignored about the struggles and contributions of lesbian athletes. In professional tennis the only players coming out are the lesbians not the gay men. In modern tennis history numerous lesbians have come out such as Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Amelie Mauresmo, Renee Stubbs, Gigi Fernandez, Conchita Martinez, and Lisa Raymond. Lesbians are treated with respect on the WTA Tour. However, on the ATP men’s tennis tour no gay man has come out since Bill Tidlen in the 1920s.
Even though, professional tennis is an individual sport the gay male tennis players on the ATP Tour are not coming out. The question remains why?
The unknown is a barrier for the gay male athletes, nobody knows what the reaction of sponsors, agents, media, fans, are going to be. Since nobody wants to take the first step to come out the closet door remains firmly shut. The internet is also a lightning rod of homophobia in the fan forums such as ESPN, Bleacher Report, CBS Sports the homophobia is intense. The
core message of the homophobes online is they want a don’t don’t tell policy to remain intact. The homophobes believe if a gay male athlete comes out he’s being selfish, taking attention away from the team and coming out in order to obtain media attention. This argument is weak because homosexuality is still viewed as being private while heterosexuality is treated as public in society. Heterosexual male athletes broadcast their girlfriends, wives, children, talk about their marriages, their love lives to the media. Meanwhile, the gay male athletes have to hide their sexual orientation in order to maintain the peace.
The homophobic comments on blogs are adamant they will not accept a gay male athlete. This homophobia online is often ignored in the press. The subliminal message is masculinty and homosexuality are like oil and water they don’t mix. A gay male athlete would challenge the homophobia that a gay man cannot be masculine and cannot excel in professional sports.
The closeted gay male athletes of course, read the sports websites, they know some sports fans are homophobic and this is probably one of the reasons they remain in the closet.
Another point to consider is, maybe these gay male athletes don’t want to be the gay Jackie Robinson? Maybe, these gay male athletes don’t want the intense media and public attention? Think about it, a gay man who is closeted can live his life discreetly he can date whomever he wants, and nobody knows.
It is interesting that the gay activism in the NFL have been the heterosexual allies such as Chris Kluwe and Brendan Ayanbadjeo. Ayanbadjeo was criticized by the gay media when he announced last week that up to four gay NFL players might come out at the same time. I believe the gay media attacking Ayanbadjeo is counterproductive because he has been very passionate and vocal about gay rights. Ayanbadjeo didn’t have to speak out about homophobia in the NFL he could have kept his mouth closed and followed the status quo.
Sometimes the gay community we are our own worse enemy. I think the gay male athletes are cognizant that if they do come out the gay community is going to put so much pressure on these men to become gay activists. Robbie Rogers has already illustrated that it isn’t fair to expect so much from a gay male athlete. All these guys want to do is compete, play sports, make their money and be the best they can be. The media, the gay community, and the general public need to dial down their expectations of gay athletes.
What Mitt Romney discovered in this election is something that should be taped on the wall of every white presidential hopeful for years to come: If you cater to angry white men as the foundation of your campaign, you will lose.
The reason can be explained with one word: Demographics. There simply are not enough white men left in America to win the big prize for a presidential candidate. In order to win the presidency, you must knit together a coalition of voters that look much more like the composition of the country than the voters who checked the square for Romney yesterday.
This past May, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that for the first time there were more babies of color born over the past year than white babies. This means that over the next couple of decades, black, Latino and Asian Americans could form a governing coalition that could essentially rule the country.
The depressing future for the Republican Party was neatly summarized by Republican analyst Steve Schmidt last night on MSNBC.
“This will be the last election a Republican can possibly win as a national candidate with these types of numbers,” he said, looking at the results coming in for Obama—but before Obama’s re-election was called. “This will lead to some important moments of soul searching for the Republican party if it is going to be a national party.”
But yet, despite Romney reaching desperately for the votes of white males, in the end he couldn’t even win their stronghold—the Midwestern Rust Belt. Obama beat Romney soundly in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania—together probably the last bastion of the angry white male (aside from the South, of course). Romney began substantially behind the 8-ball with that group after declaring four years ago that the auto industry should be allowed to go bankrupt. In an area of the country where millions of jobs are dependent on that same auto industry, it was an extremely difficult haul for Romney to overcome that statement—particularly after he incorrectly said in recent weeks that Chrysler would be sending Jeep jobs to China, which was an outright lie.
Frankly, if a white male candidate can’t win Michigan and Ohio, he’s not going to win the country.
But beyond Romney’s blunders with the Rust Belt blue collar, Romney was doomed by the numbers. Namely, the coalition of African Americans and Latinos that came together and handed him a monumental loss. It was not a given that Obama would get the Latino vote—after all, Republican George W. Bush got over 40 percent of the Latino vote in 2004. But yesterday, Obama got well over 60 percent of the Latino vote—some estimates said as much as 75 percent. It was policy and politics that doomed Romney with Latinos—not just his vociferous attacks on undocumented immigrants during the Republican primary, but his position on issues like healthcare, reproductive rights and taxes.
Steve Schmidt on MSNBC broke down just how much the country has changed over the last 24 years. Romney got about 60 percent of the white vote yesterday, but it brought him only slightly more than 200 electoral votes. The last time a presidential candidate got 60 percent of the white vote was in 1988 with George H.W. Bush—and that number of whites brought him 426 electoral votes in a landslide win over Michael Dukakis. Schmidt called this transformation “stunning.”
The complexion of the country has changed so dramatically over 24 years that nailing down a sizable portion of whites gets you a sad concession speech on election night.
In a year when the unemployment rate hovered just under 8 percent, it was supposed to be conventional wisdom that the presidential incumbent would have a very difficult time holding onto his seat. Knowing this, Romney went after the unemployment number with a vengeance, repeating about a hundred times a day that 23 million Americans were still looking for work.
But it didn’t work.
In the end, Americans chose to hitch their fate once again to a man who they felt could much more closely empathize with their fate, who more easily understood their lives. While Romney tried to sell himself as a businessman who could put America back to work, Americans more likely saw in him the unfeeling boss who did not care how hard they were struggling. He wanted to be embraced as the smart technocrat, but instead came off as a distant multimillionaire.
The lesson is that when the economy is horrible and the nation is suffering, it’s probably more important for the public to feel like you understand and empathize with their plight than for you to throw out some dubious plans for transformation.
And maybe the final lesson was this: Telling the truth matters. Romney thought he could lie with impunity and get away with it. While there was no one to order him to the principal’s office or to threaten to wash his mouth out with soap, in the end Romney probably paid the ultimate price for his duplicity: A thorough and embarrassing defeat.
Sydney Morning Herald Article: Gay Marriage Conscience Vote Will Stop Same Sex Marriage Becoming Legal In Australia.
Supporters of same-sex marriage are delaying a final vote in federal parliament hoping to shore up their numbers.
- ADVOCATES of same-sex marriage accept Parliament will defeat two bills later this year calling to legalise gay marriage but believe public pressure will ultimately prevail.
The Finance Minister, Penny Wong, one of the strongest proponents for a change to the Marriage Act, said yesterday that change would come.
”I think the campaign is not going to go away because, ultimately, it’s a campaign for people’s equality,” she said.
A seven-member parliamentary committee split 4-2 against same-sex marriage yesterday with one abstention as it handed down a report which contained no recommendations, only information for all politicians to use to inform their final decision.
The committee chairman and Labor MP, Graham Perrett, along with fellow Labor MP Laura Smyth, favoured gay marriage while Liberal MPs Sharman Stone and Ross Vasta, and Labor’s Mike Symon and Shane Neumann opposed it.
The other member, the Liberal moderate Judi Moylan, gave no separate opinion.
Because both pieces of legislation are private members bills, time set aside to debate them is limited and no vote is expected until the end of this year at the earliest.
Priority will be given to the bill introduced by the NSW Labor MP Stephen Jones. The other is a Greens bill, sponsored by Adam Bandt.
”We’re short of the numbers at the moment but anything could change,” Mr Jones said.
The Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, will vote against gay marriage but has allowed Labor MPs a conscience vote. Number crunchers estimate about 36 of the 70 Labor MPs will vote for same-sex marriage while 10 to 15 are undecided and the rest will vote against.
Tony Abbott will not allow a conscience vote and all Coalition MPs are required to vote against same-sex marriage. Backbenchers can cross the floor but any frontbencher who does so would have to resign from the shadow ministry.
Mr Bandt, who will hold off on his bill until later this year or next year, said the delay between the start of debate and the final vote would be used to increase public pressure on political leaders, especially Mr Abbott, to have a change of heart.
”I’m optimistic of achieving reform within the life of this Parliament with some more discussion and more persuasion,” he said.
Parliament’s standing committee on social policy and legal affairs received a record 276,437 responses to an online survey it conducted as part of its inquiry.
Church groups and the Australian Christian Lobby have fiercely campaigned against gay marriage, despite Labor’s bill exonerating the churches and any other religious groups from having to marry gay people.
Mr Perrett, who holds a marginal Queensland seat, said ”it is important to remember that God did not write the Marriage Act”.
With public opinion polls consistently showing majority support for same-sex marriage, Mr Perrett said it was incumbent upon MPs to respond to growing public support ”by categorically opposing laws that legitimise discrimination”.
Ms Stone and Mr Vasta said the Liberals had promised before the federal election not to legalise gay marriage.
”I do not accept that the view towards marriage has changed since the 2010 federal election,” Ms Stone said.