7th January 2008
Amsterdam mayor to clean up red light district
2:01 PM — Amsterdam mayor Job Cohen announced he will clean up the city's red light district in a bid to reduce human trafficking, money laundering and drug abuse, by replacing prostitutes' windows with clothes shops.Cohen said he wanted to put a stop to the criminals taking advantage of the city's prostitutes and corrupting the city centre."The romantic picture of the area is outdated if you see the abuses in the sex industry and that is why the council has to act," he told Reuters.
Sex overshadows De Beauvoir’s contribution to French society
11:33 AM — Academics fear novelist and feminist icon Simone de Beauvoir's sex life may overshadow the celebration of her birth in France this week.Critics are concerned with the French press condemning her sex life instead of highlighting her contribution to modern thought.The author and philosopher shocked the Parisian society of the early 20th Century with her threesomes and affairs with women.
Analysis: Hillary and Barack excite gay voters 2
11:10 AM — That was then, this is now.Less than 24 hours after the stunning victories of Democratic Senator Barack Obama and Republican Mike Huckabee, the former governor of Arkansas, in the Iowa caucuses, the Presidential campaigns and the accompanying national media shifted attention from cold Iowa to the colder tiny Granite state of New Hampshire.And where there are politicians, especially New York Senator Hillary Clinton and former North Carolina Senator John Edwards, the other leaders in the Democratic Party contest, there are LGBT folks trying to influence them and their voters.
Wyoming win proivdes small comfort to Romney
10:40 AM — He wasn't even present, but Republican candidate Mitt Romney took home the top prize in the Wyoming caucuses on Saturday anyway.Although a small win in the overall election 2008 run-up, the result lends more strength to Romney's campaign going into New Hampshire for Tuesday's primary."Today," former Massachusetts governor Romney said in a statement to the press, "the people of Wyoming took the first step towards bringing true conservative change to Washington."
Obama endorsed by former Presidential candidate
10:25 AM — Former US Senator Bill Bradley has officially announced his endorsement of Illinois Senator Barack Obama for president.A former Democratic Presidential candidate himself, Bradley will campaign with Obama on Monday in New Hampshire.Bradley said Obama's ability to bring people together for change makes him the best Democrat to reclaim the White House.
6th January 2008
Facebook “exposes” bisexual, boozy friends of Bhutto’s son 7
4:00 PM — Lesbian relationships are illegal in the country where he is a leader of a major political party but Bilawal Bhutto Zardari is friends with a couple in a lesbian relationship.Mr Bhutto Zardari, son of the murdered Pakistani opposition leader, Benazir is a student at Christ Church College, Oxford and his Facebook profile has been highlighted by The Mail on Sunday. The 19-year-old's profile now appears to have been removed.
4th January 2008
Spanish PM slams Church over “family” rally comments 40
6:00 PM — The Prime Minister of Spain has responded to Roman Catholic leaders after they criticised government policy supporting gay marriage and abortion.José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero spoke out during a speech in the Huelva town of Almonte yesterday following comments made last Sunday in Madrid at a Catholic Church rally led by Cardinals and Bishops.Clearly angry, Mr Zapatero defended his government's policies, saying they were supported by the "immense majority" of the Spanish population and that everyone had rights in Spain, whether they belonged to a religion or not.
Xena stars top lesbian lust list 3
4:45 PM — Lucy Lawless, the actress who played Xena: Warrior Princess, has topped the LesbiaNation Top Ten Women We Love of 2007.The popular lesbian website lists "beautiful and talented women of all persuasions, artists, musicians, athletes, filmmakers, movie stars and television celebrities," but all of the top ten as voted for by their readers are TV stars.In second place was Renee O'Connor, last year's winner, who also starred in Xena as Gabrielle.
Rosie O’Donnell is most annoying celebrity
4:40 PM — Comedian, talk show mainstay and LGBT rights activist Rosie O'Donnell has hit back after being voted 2007's most annoying celebrity.The readers of Parade magazine in the US chose the 45-year-old, who took the title with 44% of the vote.She beat off still competition from other hated celebs Heather Mills-McCartney, rightwing polemicist Ann Coulter and gossip blogger Perez Hilton.
Tax victory for California’s same-sex couples
3:30 PM — An attempt by tax officials in California to overturn property tax protections for domestic partners has been halted by the state's Supreme Court.The ruling has been hailed as a major victory by gay rights activists.California's Court of Appeal had previously affirmed the validity of a Board of Equalisation rule that protects domestic partners from increased property taxes when one of the partners dies and the other inherits the couple's home.
Analysis: Romney vows to fight on after losing Iowa caucus 1
1:56 PM — Mike Huckabee won the Iowa caucus battle among Republicans with Mitt Romney running second. Former Baptist minister Huckabee is known as a solid conservative candidate popular among evangelical Christian voters.On the Democratic side, Barack Obama was the winner with John Edwards second and Hillary Clinton in a very close third.Turnout for the caucuses was higher than predicted, nearly double the participants in the 2004 caucuses according to some reports.
As Iowa chooses, Bush snoozes
1:45 PM — Don't expect to hear President George W. Bush's reaction to the Iowa caucus results until sometime today.His press secretary suggested in a news conference yesterday that nap time likely will outweigh whatever desire the President has to see who will gain the early lead in the US 2008 election season."What time do all the results start coming in?" asked White House press secretary Dana Perino.
New ‘divorce’ rights for Australian gay couples
1:30 PM — Gay and de facto couples in Australia who break up are set to win the same property rights as married couples.Unmarried couples will be able to settle their differences in Family Court thanks to Victorian Attorney-General Rob Hulls, who won Commonwealth and state backing for the federal law to be changed.Previously these couples were obliged to split their assets in state courts, which were more costly, more complicated and took longer than the Family Court.
Obama and Huckabee win in Iowa 4
3:08 AM — In an excting night in American politics, Barack Obama and Mike Huckabee have won the first votes in the race to choose the country's Presidential candidates.Obama, the first African-American to stand a serious chance of winning nomination by a major party, romped home in a rural state that is 95% white.His stunning victory over former First Lady Hillary Clinton and former Vice Presidential candidate John Edwards has transformed the race for the White House.
3rd January 2008
Coming out raises plight of gays in Korean military
4:00 PM — A South Korean riot policeman has declared his homosexuality on a police community website, raising questions about the treatment of gay people in the country's Armed Forces.All young men in the country are obliged to serve in the military or in the riot police for up to two years and have to take a test at the time of enlistment which includes various questions about their sexual orientation.Private Kim Hyun-jong (not his real name) vowed to fight social prejudice against sexual minorities.
Gay group questions Huckabee’s extreme views 7
3:01 PM — An American organisation that works to expose the tactics of "ex-gay" groups has raised concerns that a leading Republican candidate for President of the United States has links with known extremist groups.TruthWinsOut has said it is "alarmed" that former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is a serious contender for the White House.The first state caucus for the Republican nomination for the Presidency is being held in Iowa today and many polls put Huckabee in the lead.
Lesbian senator committed to fight for gay equality
2:30 PM — As the youngest woman ever elected to Western Australia's Legislative Council she was instrumental in pushing forward some of the most progressive gay equality laws in Australia, including equalising the age of consent, allowing same-sex adoption and banning sexual orientation discrimination.Now 35-year-old Louise Pratt has pledged to work just as hard as an advocate for LGBT rights in her new role as a federal Senator.She has spoken of her excitement at the recent elections that brought her party to power after 11 years of opposition.
COMMENT: Iowa caucuses too close to call 1
10:30 AM — Here's the only thing we know for certain about today's Iowa caucuses: no one can predict the winner.Here's the other thing that no one wants to talk about: Will Iowa really matter?For all the attention and millions of campaign dollars spent in the first Presidential contest in the nation, the Iowa caucuses are really a straw poll; a beauty contest with an actual delegate section coming down the road.
New York HIV infections up 32% among young gay men
10:02 AM — It has been over two decades since the HIV/AIDS epidemic became a national concern, and although in most communities the annual infection rate has been falling, New York City's young gay population doesn't seem to be part of the trend.The NY State Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has released new statistics about HIV/AIDS demographics, and the news is alarming for the gay population.The New York Times reports rates of new infection of HIV rose 32 percent in the five-year period from 2001-2006 among young gay men.
2nd January 2008
Spain’s ruling party attack Catholic bishops 8
5:30 PM — A leading member of the governing Socialist party in Spain has attacked the Roman Catholic Church for getting involved in politics.On Sunday a "family" rally was held in Madrid, and senior church figures lined up to criticise laws introduced since the Socialists took power in 2004 including same-sex marriage.Pope Benedict XVI addressed the crowd, estimated at 150,000 people, by a videolink from Rome.