21st February 2008
Black US state legislator comes out
12:10 PM — Democratic Connecticut State Representative Jason Bartlett made the decision on Thursday to come out publicly as a gay man.Bartlett says he has always preferred to keep his personal life private, but felt the announcement was needed to quell the rumours about his sexual orientation.Bartlett's coming out makes him unique in the political world as the first openly gay black state legislator.
Obama’s momentum is a serious challenge to Clinton
12:01 PM — In politics, the operative rule to live by is -"it ain't over till it's over" — and the Democratic national convention is still six months away. Anything can happen.But, and this is a BIG 'but,' with his blowout wins in Hawaii and Wisconsin's open primary on Tuesday, Illinois Senator Barack Obama has now won ten contests in a row in the Presidential race against New York Senation Hillary Clinton, once considered the Democratic party's "inevitable" nominee.
20th February 2008
Israeli politician claims gays cause earthquakes 14
6:25 PM — An outspoken member of Israel's parliament has said recent earthquakes that have hit the country are a consequence of gay rights laws.Shlomo Benizri, who is a member of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, was speaking in a Knesset (parliament) debate on earthquake preparedness.After reading passages from the Old Testament, he said that in his view one cause of earthquakes is that "the Knesset gives legitimacy, to sodomy.
Australian military to march in Mardi Gras parade 2
5:39 PM — Members of the Australian Defence Forces will take part in the Sydney Mardi Gras parade for the first time this year.Permission was granted by the Chief of the Defence Force earlier this month and 60 marchers, comprising servicemen and women and non-uniformed personnel, and a float, will participate in the world-famous parade on March 1st.They have not been given permission to wear uniform. The ADF lifted its prohibition on gay, lesbian and bisexual people serving in 1992.
Spanish judge suspended over lesbian ruling
4:45 PM — A judge in Spain who ordered a mother to choose between her partner and her daughters, because "a homosexual environment threatened their education," has been suspended.The body which supervises the judiciary in that country, the General Council for Judicial Power, has suspended Fernando Ferrín Calamita and a complaint about his behaviour is under investigation.The woman, from Murcia, south east Spain, was faced with the impossible choice after her husband discovered her in a compromising position with another woman.
China starts HIV prevention schemes among gay men
2:30 PM — The Chinese Ministry of Health is to devise an HIV prevention policy after a rise in infections among the country's gay population, it announced today.Prevention measures will target MSM (men who have sex with men) and extend condom use, Xinhua news agency reports.The ministry estimates that there are five to ten million gay men in China among a population of one billion, most of them living in cities.
Focus on next US President’s gay appointments
2:30 PM — Some of America's biggest gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans rights groups have come together to launch the Presidential Appointments Project.Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and Stonewall Democrats are all part of the project.It is designed to help grow the pool of openly LGBT professionals who would be qualified and ready to accept politically appointed positions in the next US Presidential administration.
School murder of gay teen spurs new legislation 24
1:50 PM — The fatal shooting of a 15-year-old gay student in Oxnard, California has spurred the introduction of a new diversity education bill by state Assemblyman Mike Eng.Lawrence King was killed on February 12th by classmate Brandon McInerney, 14, at E.O. Green Junior High School.Mr Eng said he hopes the new bill will establish school diversity and sensitivity training to help prevent such tragedies in the future.
Slovenia to host conference on gay families
1:35 PM — Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans activists, decision makers and experts will attend a conference in Slovenia next month which aims to draw attention to the to the lack of recognition and existing discrimination LGBT families face in Europe.At present only three of the 27 EU member states legally recognise same-sex marriage, six allow equivalent civil registration schemes and a further seven have schemes which provide considerably less rights and protections than marriage.The conference is being held in Slovenia as they currently hold the EU presidency.
Catholic high school rejects female referee
8:10 AM — There has often been some argument among the rank and file of the Roman Catholic Church about women of authority but, this week, the dismissal of a female referee has raised questions about discrimination against women in sports.At a Topeka, Kansas high school, basketball referee Michelle Cambell was told she was not allowed to officiate a men's basketball game solely because she was a woman.
Obama continues his winning streak in Wisconsin
8:03 AM — Barack Obama, the 46-year-old African-American running to win the Democratic party nomination for President of the United States, is expected to win two more state competitions held yesterday.He took Wisconsin, his ninth win in a row over his only rival, former First Lady Hillary Clinton.Polling data indicates she is losing support among key groups such as white men and women and lower income voters.
Moscow gays want one million euros compensation for Pride ban
7:10 AM — The ban placed on the organisation of a gay Pride march in Moscow in 2007 was a breach of human rights, the organisers have said in a letter to the European Court of Human Rights.They are asking the court to rule on the ban and want one million euros compensation.The legal action against the Russian authorities is the second brought by Moscow Pride organisers, who are also asking for a ruling on the 2006 Pride march ban.
19th February 2008
Castro’s departure brings hope for gay Cubans 1
2:30 PM — Fidel Castro today announced his resignation as the political and military leader of Cuba, 49 years after he seized power and installed a Communist regime in the Caribbean island nation.The 81-year-old's poor health in recent years has sparked a renewed national debate about the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans Cubans.Sexual diversity was seen by Fidel Castro as a corrupt consequence of capitalism.
Will Grace creators to produce new gay-themed comedy
2:30 PM — American TV network ABC has ordered a pilot of a gay-themed comedy from the creators of Will Grace.It is one of the first major TV deals to take place since the Hollywood writer's strike came to an end last Tuesday.According to Hollywood Reporter, the untitled project revolves around two men, one straight, one gay, who are lifelong best friends and business partners.
Gay Iranian teen faces deportation 23
2:30 PM — A gay teenager from Iran who fled the UK for the Netherlands last year after his appeal for asylum was refused by the Home Office has been arrested by Dutch authorities.He is reported to be due to be returned to the UK next week, where he may face deportation back to Iran.19-year-old Mehdi Kazemi is currently being held by police in Rotterdam pending his return to the UK.
Russia to hold anti-homophobia week
11:30 AM — Major cities across Russia are to hold events in support of Russian Week against Homophobia next month, as a reaction to the homophobic attitudes which still prevail within the country.It has been 15 years since criminal prosecution of male homosexuality was repealed in Russia.Russian Week against Homophobia is an attempt to attract public attention to the problem of homophobia in Russian society.
Clinton campaign accuses Obama of plagiarism 1
12:40 AM — Illinois Senator Barack Obama is not troubled by accusations he plagiarised portions of a recent speech from Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick.Hillary Clinton campaign spokesman Howard Wolfson accused Obama of unabashed plagiarism in using Patrick's words without credit and said his actions "raises questions about the premise of his candidacy." The latest brouhaha between the Obama and Clinton campaigns emerged over a recent speech.
18th February 2008
Beckham team mate’s same-sex kiss excites gossip sites 11
6:20 PM — A former team mate of England footballer David Beckham has been photographed kissing another man.Spanish tabloid magazine Cuore ran the photos of Real Madrid midfielder Guti outside a restaurant.Jose Maria Gutierrez Hernandez, 31, is married to TV presenter Arancha de Benito and they have two children. She has made a statement to the press stating she has decided to "take a break" from their eight year marriage.
Spanish gays protest at party’s homophobia
5:55 PM — Spain's Federation of Gays and Lesbians held a protest outside the headquarters of the country's main opposition party on Saturday.Mariano Rajoy, who leads the conservative Partido Popular (PP), said in an interview last week that he is ready to take the right to adopt away from gay couples.Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has called a general election for March 9th.
March date for Sharia “gay” trial in Nigeria 22
1:40 PM — The trial of eighteen young men in Nigeria charged with dressing in female clothing and attending a gay wedding may be part of a campaign to reintroduce legislation targeting lesbian, gay and bisexual people.Cary Alan Johnson of the Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) was in Nigeria last week to meet the men and their lawyers.He has expressed serious doubts as to whether the men can get a fair trial. All aged between 18 and 21, they were detained by the Islamic "vice squad" at a hotel in Bauchi city, Nigeria in August 2007.