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December 2007

  • 12th December 2007

    Cyndi Lauper to headline at Sydney Mardi Gras

    On the bill to entertain the gay masses at Mardi Gras this year is pop diva Cyndi Lauper, fresh from her True Colors tour in the US,

    10:30 AM — One of the most highly anticipated annual events on the gay social circuit has announced plans for the 2008 celebration.Unlike years past, Sydney Mardi Gras 2008 will run three weeks instead of four and be a tighter celebration over all, with fewer conflicting events and lots of big name international gay favourites on hand.On the bill to entertain the gay masses at Mardi Gras this year is pop diva Cyndi Lauper.

  • Ban gays from political office says cardinal 15

    In May the controversial Cardinal defined homosexuality “total corruption in the sexual arena.“

    10:04 AM — A Roman Catholic Cardinal has suggested that gay people should be banned from political office.Latvia's Prime Minister Aigars Kalvitis resigned last week and the Archbishop of Riga Janis Pujats warned new candidates not to support LGBT related issues.He asked that all candidates running for the post of Prime Minister state whether they intended to "defend the Latvian nation against the invasion of homosexuality in public life."

  • 11th December 2007

    Equality commission considers incitement proposals 1

    The commission is designed to promote a fair, equal and diverse society and tackling illegal discrimination.

    5:31 PM — The Equality and Human Rights Commission has yet to decide whether it supports the government's proposal to make incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation a criminal offence.The legal committee of the commission is to meet on Thursday to discuss the proposal, which has received cross-party support in the House of Commons.The commission is designed to promote a fair, equal and diverse society and tackling illegal discrimination.

  • EU pressures member states on discrimination 1

    two members of the EU Parliament, Marco Cappato and Sophie In't Veld, asked for an intervention of the EU Commission.

    4:40 PM — The European Commission is examining replies from three member states after it had warned them to transpose into national law a 2000 directive against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.The Commission had sent letters of formal notice to Italy and Latvia on December 15th 2006 and to Finland on January 3rd 2007.Two members of the EU Parliament, Marco Cappato and Sophie In't Veld, last month asked for the intervention of the Commission.

  • Anglican gay rows harm relations with Rome 3

    Pope Benedict XVI has defined such requests as evidence of what he calls “cultural relativism“ towards ethic values

    3:40 PM — Divisions over sexual ethics could be harmful in the relations between the Anglican Church and the Catholic Church, a cardinal in Rome said.Speaking to the Pope and cardinals in a private meeting three weeks ago Cardinal Walter Kasper, head of the Pontifical Council for promoting Christian unity, said that there were disagreements with the Anglicans that had stalled talks."While progress is being made on theological divisions, new divergences are emerging in the ethical field," he said.

  • Fruit flies study raises questions about homosexuality 4

    The research, published online by the journal Nature Neuroscience, seems to show that in some animals homosexuality is not hard-wired. photo: the alpha wolf

    2:04 PM — A new scientific study at the University of Illinois has found that genetic manipulation in fruit flies can "turn" their homosexual behaviour on and off within a few hours.Biologist David Featherstone said that his team had discovered a "gender-blind" gene in fruit flies which could be altered with drugs, turning them bisexual."The gender-blind mutant males treated other males exactly the same way normal male flies would treat a female," he said.

  • Interview: A rising star in the Tory firmament 11

    The first openly gay man to be elected as a Conservative MP, he is destined for a frontline role in any future Cameron administration.

    1:45 PM — The 2005 intake of MPs contained the usual mix of the good, the bad and the barmy. There were 50 new Conservative MPs, a brace of freshman Lib Dems and hardly any new Labour faces at all.The new Tory boys and girls were instrumental in propelling David Cameron (2001) into power, and he has rewarded the best and the brightest with seats in his Shadow Cabinet.Nicholas Le Quesne Herbert is one of two Nicks who first sat on the green benches two years ago to keep an eye on in the years ahead.

  • Race for Iowa heats up as Oprah joins Obama 2

    Recent tallies in Iowa show Obama leading in several polls, with Clinton leading others and North Carolina Senator John Edwards close behind.

    12:01 PM — Democratic Presidential candidate frontrunners are pulling out the big guns this week to woo voters in Iowa.While Barack Obama leans on Oprah Winfrey's star power to pull in crowds, Hillary turns to support from daughter Chelsea Clinton and mother Dorothy Rodham to lend her campaign a softer 'family' feel.This week, Hillary Clinton debuted two more weapons in her arsenal to claim victory in Presidential primary race.

  • No gay wedding for Queen Latifah

    For the past week, the word on the street has been that actress, singer and rapper Queen Latifah is about to come out of the closet.

    11:48 AM — Queen Latifah has finally gone public about the rumors that have been spreading about her decision to announce that she's engaged to rumored long-time girlfriend, Jeanette Jenkins.For the past week, the word on the street has been that actress, singer and rapper Queen Latifah is about to come out of the closet.She's also expected to announce her engagement to Jenkins. Bloggers and gossip columnists have been wringing their hands for weeks awaiting official word on the supposedly upcoming nuptials.

  • Scottish attitudes to LGBT changing but prejudice remains 1

    65% of people who took part think Scotland should do everything it can to tackle all kinds of prejudice.  photo: ed tarwinski@flickr.com

    11:25 AM — Results from the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey which show the country is becoming more accepting of the LGBT community were announced this morning.The survey, conducted for the Scottish Government, found that the number of people who think same-sex relationships are always or mostly wrong has dropped 11% since 2002 to 30%.65% of people who took part think Scotland should do everything it can to tackle all kinds of prejudice.

  • Opposition to restrictions on HIV+ travellers to US 6

    The United States is one of only 13 countries in the world, including Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan, which ban travel for individuals who are HIV-positive.

    11:15 AM — An American organisation that works for full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV has expressed its opposition to new rules from the US government concerning HIV positive visitors.Lambda Legal is opposing regulations proposed by the Department of Homeland Security on Issuance of a Visa and Authorisation for Temporary Admission into the United States for Certain Non-immigrant Aliens Infected with HIV.

  • Gay club refuses entry to straight woman

    Vera Donovan was “shocked and humiliated“ at her treatment at Sin nightclub in the city's Temple Bar area.

    10:53 AM — A Dublin promoter has apologised and made a donation to charity after a woman was turned away from a gay night because she is heterosexual.Vera Donovan was "shocked and humiliated" at her treatment at Sin nightclub in the city's Temple Bar area, the Irish Independent reports.Eddie McGuinness, the promoter of the weekly Sin night, told the paper he has donated 200 euros (£143) to a charity of Ms Donovan's choice, the Dublin AIDS Alliance.

  • Queens offered own Christmas speech

    This personalised Christmas speech which will be seen by three times as many people as the 5.7 million who watched Her Majesty's speech in 2006.

    10:45 AM — For gay men wanting to follow in the footsteps of Quentin Crisp and transmit their very own Queen's Speech to the nation this Christmas, eBay may have the answer.Users of the consumer website will have the chance to bid on the message which will be aired on the eBay homepage. The money raised will be donated to the NSPCC.The message will be broadcast will be seen by up to 15 million people over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

  • Help for the one in four LGBT people who suffer domestic abuse

    about one in ever four LGBT people will experience domestic abuse of a sexual, emotional, financial or physical nature.

    10:23 AM — Victims of sexual abuse can now find help at Galop, a safety charity for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.A new caseworker at the London-based charity is available to help LGBT victims of sexual violence make anonymous reports to the police and provide them with advice.According to the caseworker, Jamey Fisher, the aim of the service is to "help LGBT people who have experienced sexual abuse at any point in their lives."

  • Gay rights protests at Cameroon embassies

    In Pretoria, IGLHRC led more than 100 protesters in a demonstration outside the Cameroon High Commission.

    10:03 AM — Activists in France, South Africa and the United States descended on Cameroonian embassies today to express their anger at a pattern of arrests and harassment of gay men and lesbians in that country.More than 30 people have been arrested in Cameroon in the last two years on charges of homosexuality, despite an October 2006 ruling by the United Nations that termed such arrests to be arbitrary and unfair.Dozens of students, particularly girls and young women, have been expelled from schools as result of their real or perceived sexual orientation.

  • 10th December 2007

    NI equality commission explores LGB concerns 3

    Hetrosexism, the assumption that everyone is heterosexual, further exacerbates the problem of LGB invisibility.

    5:20 PM — A report has been published by the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland to help enable lesbian, gay and bisexual individuals to access their rights under equality law.The purpose of the report was to explore the obstacles facing both LGB individuals and equality bodies when it came to the realisation of LGB rights.Its findings showed that many LGB people are cautious about disclosing their sexuality.

  • Holland to fight for global gay rights 6

    The Netherlands was the first country in the world to institute same-sex marriage and allow homosexual partners to adopt children.

    5:10 PM — The Dutch government has announced that it is determined to fight discrimination against gay and lesbian people both at home and abroad.Last month the Dutch Cooperation Development minister, Bert Koenders, said in a letter to the Parliament that in its foreign relations "the Netherlands will promote equal rights for gays as much as possible."The centre-left government has also announced it would also tackle rising homophobia at home.

  • Irish gay emigrants reluctant to return home

    Last week the Irish government confirmed it will not legalise gay marriage.

    2:33 PM — An increasing number of gay Irish emigrants are choosing not to return to Ireland because they can't take their partners with them.The Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) said that the issue is a huge problem for Irish nationals whose partners cannot live or work in Ireland.Calls to GLEN about the issue have doubled in the past two years.The situation is also difficult for Irish people living in Ireland who are in a relationship with a foreign national.

  • Desmond’s new theory on causes of male homosexuality 35

    Morris suggests that some gay men may have had unpleasant experiences with girls during the stand-off.

    1:25 PM — A new book by a well-known British academic suggests that some men are gay because they don't break with other boys during childhood and retain some of their juvenile characteristics when they become adult.In The Naked Man: A Study Of The Male Body, Desmond Morris questioned why "a certain percentage of adult human males, with or without the approval of society at large, find members of their own gender attractive."

  • Australian capital delays same-sex unions

    In May 2006, the ACT became the first Australian state to recognise same-sex civil unions.

    12:45 PM — Laws allowing same-sex unions in the Australian Capital Territory are to be delayed after concerns were voiced by the new federal attorney-general, Robert McClelland.The decision follows talks between Mr McClelland and ACT attorney-general Simon Corbell about the proposed legislation to grant legal recognition to same-sex unions, which was due to come into effect in February 2008.The discussion came after the previous attorney-general Philip Ruddock tried to block ACT laws.

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