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Current Affairs

  • 8th January 2007

    Analysis: From student radical to Presidential candidate

    When did she become that old, that Establishment, when her soul tells her she is still fighting for the same things she's always believed in?

    10:45 AM — It almost went unnoticed in the fevered pitch leading up to today's primary contest in freezing New Hampshire - but in a front page editorial in the Washington Post's Sunday edition, former 1972 Democratic presidential nominee George McGovern - the Barack Obama of his day - called for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney."I have not been heavily involved in singing the praises of the Nixon administration," wrote the former Senator from South Dakota who was trounced by incumbent President Richard Nixon in a 'dirty-tricks' campaign that included the Watergate scandal.

  • LGBT ‘Navajo’ project angers Natives 4

    The Navajo project was set up in the North West of England in to tackle oppression, stigma, prejudice. photo: dbking@flickr

    10:20 AM — The Native American Navajo nation have written to a Christian couple recently awarded damages by Lancashire Police to express their dismay that their tribal name is being used for an LGBT project.Helen and Joe Roberts from Fleetwood hit the headlines last year after police questioned them for attempting to distribute anti-gay literature.

  • Orkney Council denies homophobia accusations 5

    The council has told the 72-year-old composer that he must travel to the main island of Orkney for a civil partnership ceremony.  photo: Collins Classics

    9:45 AM — The remote Scottish island of Sanday is at the centre of a row, after a leading British composer was refused permission for a civil partnership ceremony.Sir Peter Maxwell-Davies, who is Master of the Queen's Music, has lived on the small island, the third largest of the Orkney Islands, for nine years.He had planned a ceremony with his partner, Colin Parkinson, next month.

  • 5th January 2007

    COMMENT: Peter Tatchell – A quote for every occasion? 5

    I'm never sure what Peter Tatchell is going to discuss when I see him appear on television - Westminster politics, Iraq, Zimbabwe or gay rights?

    5:00 PM — The execution of Saddam Hussein led commentator Ben Leung to confront his mixed feelings towards gay rights activist Peter Tatchell. Despite staying up the night before for news of his demise, it wasn't until I saw the front-page of The Times newspaper at a windswept Ascot racecourse that I truly accepted that Saddam was dead.The headline of the 4am edition was brief and succinct: 'SADDAM HANGED', two words which not many people could ever have imagined seeing had suddenly become a reality.

  • Gay Congressman takes up key post

    In 1998, he founded the National Stonewall Democrats, a gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Democratic pressure group.

    12:17 PM — The only out gay man in the new 110th US Congress has been appointed chairman of the powerful Financial Services Committee, and has promised to give shareholders more say over executive salaries.Rep. Barney Frank commented in 1996 that he is used to being in the minority, but thanks to the shift of power in Congress as a result of the November elections the left-handed, Jewish homosexual suddenly finds himself in the driving seat.

  • Christian Union students want gay acceptance test case 4

    Recently the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, criticised student unions for barring homophobic groups, claiming it was an attack on free speech.

    11:21 AM — A small group of Christian students at Exeter University are going to court to try to set a legal precedent about acceptance of gay rights.The Christian Union has been prevented from using facilities at the university because they ban gay or lesbian students from joining their organisation."Legal action was the very last thing we wanted to take," a Union spokesman told The Daily Mail. 

  • Vatican embraces gay icon

    The inclusion of Wilde in a Catholic-endorsed book has puzzled many Vatican watchers.

    10:22 AM — Oscar Wilde, long claimed by the gay community as the ultimate bitchy queen, has been embraced by one of Pope Benedict's closest advisers.The Vatican's head of protocol, Fr Leonardo Sapienza, has published a book of witty remarks for Christians, perhaps aware that the devout tend not to be the most spontaneously amusing of people.Irish-born playwright Wilde is featured heavily in Provocations: Aphorisms for an Anti-conformist Christianity. 

  • 4th January 2007

    COMMENT: Congress should scrap “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” 5

    A poll published last month showed that 73% of people currently serving in the US Armed Forces are comfortable with lesbians and gays.

    4:10 PM — A new United States Congress will be sworn in later today. In the November election, the Democratic party seized control of both the House and Senate. PinkNews.co.uk's Tony Grew considers whether the 110th Congress will be the one to finally allow gays and lesbians to serve in the US military. It seems America is finally coming to terms with the fact that there are gay people in their Armed Forces, whether they ask or not.

  • Nepalese gays face new persecution

    LGBT leaders warned last October that their rights might not be protected by the new government.

    4:10 PM — Gangs of Maoist militants have launched a campaign in Nepal against the country's gay and lesbian population.The country's only gay rights organisation, Blue Diamond, reports that this new oppression is sanctioned by Prime Minister, Girija Prasad Koirala.Gays and lesbians in the Himalayan kingdom previously suffered persistent persecution from security forces during the absolutist rule of King Gyanendra.

  • Egyptian man questioned over dismembered body 57

    The body was found in a suitcase outside Cairo. photo: marc lacoste@flckr.com

    2:10 PM — An Egyptian man is being questioned in Cairo after the discovery of the remains of a German national in a suitcase.The victim was identified because his mobile phone had also been packed into the suitcase, which was discovered on a plateau outside the city. The Australian newspaper reports that Mustapha Maher was arrested by Egyptian police on 27th December soon after the grisly discovery.

  • Homophobic teenager convicted of firearm offence

    Both were ordered to carry out community service. The severity of their sentences reflects the homophobic nature of their crimes.

    1:31 PM — Two Surrey teenagers have received suspended jail sentences after they threatened people at a popular beauty spot with an air rifle and a samurai sword last May Bank Holiday.The pair, both unemployed, arrived at the Wisley Car Park in Old Lane, Ockham, Surrey, by car and shouted homophobic abuse at passers-by before producing their weapons and using them in a threatening manner.

  • Home Office anti-homophobia campaign gets 5 out of 10

    Gay activists have questioned why the Department for Education and Skills was not involved in the campaign.

    11:50 AM — The charity Schools OUT, which works to combat homophobic bullying in schools, has welcomed the Home Office's new guidance to schools, but has said that overall the government "must do better."Gay activists have questioned why the Department for Education and Skills was not involved in the campaign.

  • Stonewall slams Christian/Muslim protest 8

    Mr Summerskill said that Stonewall had worked over the Christmas period to exert as much pressure as possible in support of the new rules to protect gay and lesbian people from discrimination.

    10:59 AM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Gay rights organisation Stonewall has described claims by Christian and Muslim activists that new anti-discrimination regulations will force religious groups to hire gay people as fantasy.Ben Summerskill, Stonewall's chief executive, also accused evangelical Christians of breaking one of the ten commandments.

  • Jewish leaders question anti-discrimination regulations 1

    This is the first time the Jewish Board of Deputies has joined the debate over the regulations.

    10:15 AM — The Board of Deputies of British Jews, which represents most of the Jewish community in the UK, has weighed into the controversy surrounding new regulations that grant gay people protection against discrimination.The organisation has expressed concern about the controversial new rules, due to be introduced this month.They have been delayed on the orders of Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly, after protests from the Christian churches.

  • 3rd January 2007

    Muslims urged to join protest against “deviants” 8

    The unusual combination of hardline Christians and Muslims will hold what is billed as a torchlight parade in Westminster next Wednesday.

    4:55 PM — Evangelical Christians will be joined on their protest march on Parliament on January 9th by leading members of the Muslim community.Earlier this week, a group of Christian lawyers announced their intention to petition the Queen and protest at the Palace of Westminster to show their opposition to the proposed regulations to outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation in the provision of goods and services.

  • Backlash against gay marriage in Massachusetts 57

    Patrick will be sworn in as governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts tomorrow, the first African-American to hold that office.

    4:32 PM — Lawmakers in the American state of Massachusetts have approved a referendum on gay marriage. The ballot, which will take place in 2008, will ask voters to ban same-sex marriage.The New England state is currently the only one in the US that has legalised gay marriage.Republicans in the state legislature voted through the measure twice, despite opposition from the governor-elect, Democrat Deval Patrick.

  • Former US Defence Secretary queries “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” 5

    “It's time to start thinking about it and starting to discuss it,“ he told presenter Wolf Blitzen on CNN.

    3:50 PM — A Republican politician who was in charge of the US Armed Forces for four years has backed calls by a retired chairman of the Joint Chiefs to re-open the debate over the controversial "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy.William Cohen served as Defence Secretary from 1997 - 2001 under Democrat President Bill Clinton.In an interview last night on CNN, Cohen described the current policy as discriminatory and not reflective of current American public opinion.

  • Czechs flock to register partnerships 1

    Since the new laws were adopted in July last year, over 200 gay unions have been registered.

    1:24 PM — Gay rights activists in the Czech Republic have spoken of their delight at the number of gay and lesbian couples that have registered their partnerships.The central European state, which joined the EU three years ago, became the first former Soviet Bloc country to allow gay unions.Since the new laws were adopted in July last year, over 200 gay unions have been registered.

  • Government “open to discussion” on homophobic incitement 1

    12:23 PM — PinkNews.co.uk Exclusive A Home Office minister has vowed to review homophobic incitement laws amid calls for anti-gay remarks to be made illegal.Speaking exclusively to PinkNews.co.uk, Police and Security Minister Tony McNulty said that the issue is under review and vowed that once religious and racial incitement laws are implemented it will then be easier to see how to follow up with a law against homophobic harassment.

  • Canadian boy has two mommies – and a dad

    The Ontario Supreme Court ruled that the lesbian partner is also legally a parent to the child.

    11:15 AM — A ruling by a court in Ontario has for the first time given the full legal status of parent to three people. It is believed to be the first time that a Canadian child has legally got three parents.The case involved a lesbian couple, who used the sperm of a friend to have a baby. The biological father is actively involved in the raising of the child, and is legally the father of the boy, now five years old.The biological mother's lesbian partner chose not to adopt the boy as that would have negated the legal parental status of the biological father.

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