13th March 2007
Gay war hero calls on homophobic general to apologise 3
5:17 PM — General Peter Pace has come under heavy fire from gay advocacy groups and the first serviceman wounded in Iraq, after he made homophobic remarks in a newspaper interview.Eric Alva, the first soldier to be wounded in the current Iraq conflict, who came out as gay last month, slammed the General's comments."Certain leaders' bigotry should not be a rational basis for discrimination," he said.
Clergyman refuses to marry straight couples
5:09 PM — An American Episcopal clergyman has announced that he will not perform marriage ceremonies as a protest against the church's bar on gay unions.A conference of Anglican primates from around the world last month urged the American communion, known as Episcopalians, to desist from appointing openly gay bishops and blessing gay partnerships.The Americans had caused tension with traditional churches by performing the blessings.
Pope instructs politicians to vote against gay marriage 6
1:33 PM — The leader of the Roman Catholic church has said that politicians have a moral duty to vote against gay marriage or partnership legislation.In a 140-page document covering a range of moral issues, Pope Benedict has reiterated his hard-line attitude towards gay people.The Apostolic Exhortation, published today, calls on all Catholics to uphold what the Pontiff refers to as fundamental values.
Comment: Are we too quick to scream homophobia? 2
12:48 PM — Ben Leung, himself a member of an ethnic minority, considers the seriousness of last week's racist and homophobic outbursts from prominent right-wingers in Britain and the US. I've been contributing to this website for a few months now, and have always tried to remain as politically neutral as possible.However, events in the last week on both sides of the Atlantic have made me wonder.
General in favour of gay military ban 3
11:40 AM — One of America's most senior army generals has come out in support of a total ban on gay men and women serving in the military.Marine General Peter Pace described homosexual acts as "immoral" in the Chicago Tribune newspaper, likening them to adultery.Gen Pace is the chairman of the US military Joint Chiefs of Staff. He said that he backed the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
12th March 2007
Latvian conservatives begin Pride backlash 2
3:26 PM — Christian groups in Latvia have welcomed fundamentalist US preachers and to the country and talked tactics about opposing gay rights.A meeting organised by Janis Vanags, Archbishop of the LatvianEvangelical Lutheran Church, was attended by Janis Pujats, the Latvian Roman Catholic Cardinal, and representatives of the Orthodox, Penecostals and other Christian sects.
US state moves to allow gay adoptions
2:53 PM — A Colorado bill granting adoption rights to same-sex couples and unmarried partners was pushed forward in a State House committee last week without a single witness testifying against it.Republican legislatures in 2003 and 2004 killed similar bills, but with Democrats in charge, the bill is headed toward passage.It was placed on the calendar of the House Health and Human Services Committee on last Thursday and passed by an 8-3 vote.
Gay rights activists rally in Rome 4
2:46 PM — Thousands of Italians marched on Rome on Saturday to demand legal rights for unmarried same sex couples.50,000 activists, including leftists from Prime Minister Romano Prodi's coalition, took to a Roman piazza and rallied in support for a bill that would offer greater legal protection to unmarried couples.Some demonstrators wore bishop's mitres with slogans that attacked the Vatican.
Christian teen group hold San Francisco rally
2:40 PM — Thousands of teenagers from a Christian ministry gathered in San Francisco at the weekend to rally against homosexuality and other moral corruptions they think affect their generation.More than 20,000 teenagers converged on the city 's ATT baseball park to participate in "BattleCry," a two-day extravaganza featuring Christian rock and religious inspiration and worship.
Charity demand HIV legal loophole be closed
12:02 PM — Terrence Higgins Trust has launched a new campaign to reduce discrimination against people who are perceived to have HIV - often partners, friends or family of those diagnosed with the condition.The current Disability Discrimination Act covers people who are diagnosed with the virus but doesn't protect those who experience discrimination based on the belief or perception by others that they are likely to have HIV.
Catholics protest gay rights from the pulpit 5
10:39 AM — In a clear indication that the Catholic church's fight over the Sexual Orientation Regulations is far from over, the Archbishop of Birmingham has urged his flock to write protest letters to the government.A letter was read out at all churches in the diocese at Mass yesterday, telling Roman Catholics to write to their MPs about the regulations, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.
9th March 2007
Gains for anti-gay party in Northern Ireland elections 1
5:19 PM — The results of the elections for the Northern Ireland Assembly show big gains for Ian Paisley's Democratic Unionist Party.The DUP tried to overturn the Sexual Orientation Regulations, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.The regulations came into force in the province in January.
Gays to march for their rights in Rome
3:35 PM — Up to 50,000 Italian gay activists will campaign this weekend in Rome in support for same-sex unions.The campaigners will gather in the Piazza Farnese to voice their enthusiasm for the Dico Bill, which will grant gay and lesbian couples the right to make their relationships official, as well as to mutual assistance and inheritance.The bill is strongly opposed by the Catholic and right wing parties.
Republican activist defends porn career 1
3:26 PM — An ex gay porn performer seems to have repented his wicked ways - with a vengeance.Marine Corporal Matt Sanchez, formerly known as 'Rod Majors' and 'Pierre LaBranche,' has expressed conservative views about his eventful past."I don't like porn, it reduces the mind, flattens the soul," Sanchez wrote on his blog and on Salon.com.
Quebec DJ sacked for “club of fags” comment
1:35 PM — A Canadian shock jock has been pulled from the airwaves for making homophobic comments about the Parti Quebecois and its local candidates during an election campaign.Saguenay radio host Louis Champagne fell foul of the authorities at popular radio station CKRS when he described the Parti Quebecois as a "club of fags."Champagne also said that local factory workers would not vote for gay candidates.
Malta delays transsexual’s wedding
10:56 AM — The Maltese Director of Public Registry is continuing to resist the release of marriage banns for a transsexual woman and her male partner.Mr Justice Gino Camilleri ordered the director, Anthony Geraldi, to issue the banns on 12th February, on the grounds that the union between the transsexual and her partner did not conflict with any part of the Marriage Act, as she has now become a woman.
8th March 2007
Rapper’s documentary prompts MPs on bullying 1
5:58 PM — The Channel 4 Schools documentary Coming Out To Class has generated interest at Westminster.The programme, presented by gay rapper QBoy, talked to young people who had come out of the closet while still at school.Lib Dem education spokesman Stephen Williams was inspired to table an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons after the documentary.
Analysis: Nigeria attacks the heart of human rights
5:37 PM — Legislation proposed by the Nigerian government last year designed to ban and criminalise same sex marriages and those who assist with it, is expected to be enacted by the National Assembly before the April 2007 elections.The Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act 2007 in its current form provides that persons of the same sex and those who marry them or is a witness thereto will be committing a crime with a mandatory sentence of five years imprisonment.
Blood donation and insurance companies get regulations opt-out 3
2:50 PM — The new Sexual Orientation Regulations contain an opt-out for insurance companies and blood donor clinics that allows them to continue to discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation.The SORs, published yesterday, protect gay, lesbian and bisexual people in England, Scotland and Wales from discrimination when accessing goods and services.Regulation 27 provides an exception to the SORs where a person is treated less favourably on grounds of his sexual orientation.
MPs vote for an elected House of Lords
12:25 PM — The House of Commons last night voted by a wide margin to have a fully elected House of Lords.The vote was not on an Act of Parliament and therefore will not immediately become law.It is thought that many traditional-minded MPs voted for the most radical proposal in order to scupper plans to elect a proportion of peers.