Saturday, 26 February 2005

Christian Voice?

On Thursday, Radio 4 came back to the subject of this scottish pressure group (Christian Voice) who forced a charity to to refuse "tainted money" for the Jerry Springer, the Opera show (See my previous post on this for details). They did a 2/3 minutes slot on the group claiming to wanting to find out more about them and there activity. A rather shoddy uninformative (and, coming from Radio 4, disappointing) piece of journalism to be honest. After a few meaningless words from their leader about "King Jesus", we got an interview from a bishop opposing their views who had organised a charity concert in support of the tsunami victims in which members of the Opera's cast (described as good practicing christians) took part. Then the report turned to the subject of the group's membership, trying to find out how many members there are. The leader of the group refused to give a specific number only making some obscure biblical reference implying they had more than 600 members. An expert was brought in from an independent charity monitoring religious groups funded by the Home Office and based at the London School of Economics. The result of this (and the only real piece of information in the report) was that they probably were a very small group for the reason that they did not want to tell how many of them there are and because if they were numerous there would be traces of their activites (which Inform monitors) such as rent venues for their meetings.

This morning, the Today Programme (as every Saturday mornings) was reading letters and reactions from listeners they have received during the week. Apparently the above story got the most mail with people, thankfully, condemning Christian Voice's stand (and the charity's for that matter). There was however one letter from a christian complaining, in an argument we seem to hear a lot these days over here, that Christians are fair game for journalists to criticise. Do they not give the stick to beat them though with behaviours and statements of the kind Christian Voice makes?

The worrying result of all this, appart from the fact that cancer patients in London will remain longer with some useful help they probably need, is that Christian Voice seem to have managed do wiggle their way into the consciousness of journalists as a legitimate christian voice. I can understand that their extreme views make for good copy but this is dangerous game. I caught a mention of them about a different subject in the press review later on the same Today Programme.

A few links on Christian Voice:

The moral minority - A profile of Stephen Green in the Guardian.

Christian Voice are blackmailing scumbags
More on Christian Voice
Bloggerheads



An Ancient Egyptian Male Couple




Click here for more details

Celebrating LGBT History Month


In 1964 in the ancient necropolis of Saqqara, Egyptian archaeologist Ahmed Moussa discovered a series of tombs with rock-cut passages in the escarpment facing the causeway that leading to the pyramid of Unas.
Soon after the Chief Inspector Mounir Basta, crawling in one of the tombs, came face to face with the unique scene of two men in intimate embrace, something he had never seen before in all the Saqqara tombs.



Friday, 25 February 2005

LGBT and disabled



In this general climate of body fascism, I can't really start to imagine what it must be like to be disabled and homosexual. To be a minority within a minority. I have tried to find a few clues:

DWP in house report no. 188

Blind and Gay

A few links from the BBC disability website:

Gay and disabled: hard times or rich rewards?
by Philip Patston

God bless text messages
by DL Williams

Lisa Egan's column
Lisa also has a blog

I googled for "gay disabled" in the UK and couldn't find much to be honest.


Links of the Day

Rising Numbers by Terrance...

Anglicans split over gay row
The division in the Anglican Communion over gay issues has appeared to grow deeper, with leaders demanding that the US and Canadian branches of the church temporarily withdraw from a church council.

Move To End 'Don't Ask' As GAO Reveals Gay Ban Cost $200 Million
(Washington) On the heels of a new report by the Government Accounting Office showing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" has cost taxpayers more than $200 million since its inception in 1993 a group of congressmembers has announced plans to introduce legislation to end the ban on gays in the military.

Map reading study laughed off by gay groups
A study claiming to reveal that gay men and heterosexual women have poor map reading skills has been laughed off by gay groups.

Impact of Navy's gay recruiting felt overseas
The impact of the Royal Navy's decision to actively encourage lesbian and gay people to sign up is being felt across the globe, particularly in those countries that still hold a ban on gays in the armed forces.

Library sees gay books arrival
A library in north London will see more than 150 LGBT themed books on its shelves from next week, as part of the LGBT History Month.


The Height of IT Illiteracy

I work for an ICT department in a local Council. This means that even though we do not any technical support (this is outsourced), we are the first contact of the users (lawyers, who are apparently notoriously IT phobics) when they have a problem with their PCs.

A few month ago, they hired a new person. A guy who is probably about 150 years old by the looks of him. I am sure he is a perfectly good lawyer (I hope anyway), the proof being that they have just promoted him team leader. The problem is, this guy would not recognise a computer if it hit him in the face. Now don't get me wrong, I am not trying to say here that this has something to do with his age. My own mother, who is over 70 years old, has recently, gone to a few classes on how to use Word before boldly buying a computer and is now regularly sending me emails. She also does here genealogy things with the thing and is considering buying a digital camera. Of course she is not proficient but she is the proof that you can do it if you want.

When we get a new user, we usually dedicate half an hour to train them on our case management system (a database) and to explain to them how the shared drives work. And this is more than enough for most people. This guy required more than a day's training. That is when we guessed that there might be a slight problem. They sent him to an internal course called "discovering PCs" or something like that, introducing people to the use of a PC. That is when we started receiving phone calls for this guy, asking us (wait for it) how to send emails. We explained it to him, told him to take notes on how to do it but that did not prevent my colleague to have to go to this guy's office one day to sent an email to.... himself.

Thinks seem finally to improve after we complained to our managers who probably had a word. I don't know. We had a distinct feeling that the guy was not cooperating fully in the process (he was even rude sometimes on the phone, complaining how the whole thing was a waste of his time and swearing in the process).

That was until this morning that is. Yesterday, a big-ish office move took place in th building with people swapping desks and sometimes computers (keeps people busy I guess!). (there was a bit of drama there already with a locum (temp) lawyer, refusing to move, blatantly lying sevral time in the process, (no manager was, of course, willing to make a decision to force her to move) and then moaning that she felt undervalued because a permanent member of staff had requested to sit where she finally agreed to want to sit and because she had not been consulted on the subject. That got my adrenaline going I can tell you. Especially as I was asked at the last minute to oversee the move.

Going back to our lawyer friend. he was part of the move yesterday and find himself in a new office with new computer (which had been in this office all along). This morning, he rang the facility manager complaining that the "bit that goes on the floor" (the tower) was missing and that his computer was not connected properly. You can probably see the punchline coming now. I told the facility manager who had rang me, that I could bet the base unit would be on the desk, under the screen. And guess what: it was!



Thursday, 24 February 2005

Not Very Orthodox


An interesting postscript to this month's Stonewall's newsletter by Ben Summerskill:

"I couldn't help noticing a newspaper report the other day about the Greek Orthodox Church. The Church, which still furiously condemns homosexuality as an "abomination", is embroiled in a chain of embarrassments.

One leading cleric has been arrested in an Athens nightclub on suspicion of drug dealing. The Archbishop's former private secretary has, apparently, been having gay sex with a bishop. Another bishop has been suspended after allegedly embezzling four million euros and yet another has been charged with antique smuggling. Meanwhile "rampant homosexuality" has been uncovered among priests."

Here the Guardian's article Summerskill is presumably refering to.

While browsing to find the above article, I came accross this very interesting link on Homosexuality and Religions summing up the position of 45 Christian Churches on the subject.

Another link I came accross while browsing. A highlight begotted view of the Real impact of Senate Bill 3186 from "YOUR NORTHWEST ILLINOIS NEWS SOURCE SINCE 1847", the Journal Standard. And guess who is the author? A Reverend!!!


Wednesday, 23 February 2005

Links of the Day

Canadian Lawmakers Swamped With Anti-Gay Mail From US
(Washington) Bob MacCready's already written to Canadian Liberal MPs who support allowing gays to marry, telling them he thinks it's against God's own law and everything that's decent.

Swiss Gay Partner Breakups Mirror Those For Straights
(Geneva) About seven percent of the same-sex couples who registered as domestic partners in Geneva have "divorced" about the same percentage as the number of straight couples who registered, officials said Tuesday.

Gay Marriage 'Insidious' Pope Declares
(Vatican City) Pope John Paul, in a new book, calls same-sex marriage part of "a new ideology of evil" that is threatening society.

And an interesting and rather sensitive (more than what the pope can claim to) reaction to this. Look here too or here.

Gay groups complains over tabloid response to History Month
The organisers of the country's first ever LGBT History Month have made an official complaint about the tabloid reaction to it, criticising The People newspaper in particular.


Outrageous!!!!!

I was quietly ironing a shirt this morning, getting ready to go to work and listening to the Today Programme on BBC Radio 4 as I do every morning when the presenter introduced this subject. In an ongoing campaign against the show Jerry Springer, the Opera, a bunch of Scottish bible wielders have threatened Maggie’s Centres, a cancer charity, of reprisals if the said charity gave up on £10,000 (note that the Christian group at the origin of this only mention £3,000), the producers of the show were going to donate them. And the charity actually stupidly caved in!!!! This is outrageous!!!! I can not find words to say how pissed off I am with this.

*camera pans on to me shouting at my radio and fuming, on my own, in my bathrobe a hot iron in the hand*

Radio 4 had invited someone from Christian Voice, the group responsible for this and David Soul (who plays Jerry Springer in the show), who, unfortunately, let's face it, is not very good at delivering his own lines (he is not very articulate!). Soul still managed to call this action unchristian and equivalent to blackmail. One listening to the programme, one learnt that Christian Voice had actually threatened the charity of demonstrations in front of their premises should they take the so-called "tainted money". This allowed the group to congratulate themselves on saving the charity from a PR disaster with Christian donors by avoiding reactions which they were going to fabricate themselves. Christian Voice, created the whole incident from scratch to obviously, as the spokesperson for the charity says, promote their own agenda. We know that fundamentalist Christians are not averse to that type of tricks to gain publicity, what is truly disheartening and incredible, is that the charity actually gave in. By doing so, they apparently wanted to avoid offending Christian sufferers of cancer and their families. I am offended by their conduct and I should think I am not the only one. As David Soul pointed out cancer is not a solely Christian disease; other people suffer from it and would have been grateful of the money, I am sure.

At the end of this press release on the subject, we can read that the leader of Christian Voice has the nerve to "
hope and pray that Maggie’s Centres will know the blessing of God in their efforts to raise funds for their London centre and that it will become a beacon of excellence in cancer care.
" I would just like to point out that god would not have to bother with this and the centre would have happened much earlier had not those self-appointed defenders of the faith muddled in!!! By preventing the occurrence of a good deed, are not these people promoting the "culture of death" they claim to be fighting against?

Once again an example of irresponsible Christian zealots taking actions in the name of good which will actually bring evil results. I am thinking of the Catholic church, denying human realities and preventing its followers from using condoms, thus being instrumental to the death of thousand of people.

---------------------------
You may want to read my previous rant related to Jerry Springer, the Opera and its christian opposition.


Tuesday, 22 February 2005

Links of the Day

The first Civil Partnerships will take place before Christmas 2005, can reveal, with the government announcing an official implementation date of December 5th.
A meeting of Anglican leaders intending to discuss the issue of gay bishops has been slammed by the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement (LGCM) as unlikely to yield results.
Chris Morgan, the hotly tipped gay powerlifter, has qualified for his third British Championship Final.
After intense speculation from fans and the viewing public, The Simpsons has finally aired its now infamous 'gay wedding' episode, revealing Patty Bouvier to be the gay character.
Shrek 2 is the latest animated film title to be ``outed'' by Christian fundamentalists.
The Royal Navy has announced a new drive towards equality for its lesbian and gay employees, with a host of new initiatives set to modernise and reform the institution.
The Bush Administration has reversed itself on whether it is permissible for programs sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to use the words "lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender".
Outrage from lesbian and gay groups and -- apparently -- the strength of animal amore, have thwarted a German zoo's plans to break up three gay penguin couples.

At least they are being consistent:
Charles & Camilla Caught As Bush Gay Marriage Attack Spreads To Heteros
(London) The Bush Administration's attacks on same-sex marriage have now been expanded to include unmarried heterosexuals and divorced people - resulting on a ban of Camilla Parker Bowles from the White House.

These guys aren't however:
Gay Republicans Return To Fold
(Washington) After refusing to endorse the reelection of President Bush last fall the Log Cabin Republicans have made peace with the Administration and the GOP.

Gay Hustler White House Reporter Denies Being Plant
(Washington) The mystery of White House reporter Joe Gannon shows no sign of dissipating.

Escape Of Gay Couple Leads To Gov't Inquiry
Lagos, Nigeria) The Nigerian government Thursday launch an inquiry into the disappearance from police custody of two gay men charged under the country's "crimes against nature" law.

UK Anglicans Push For US Apology Over Gay Bishop
(London) The leader of the world's Anglicans warned Thursday that the Church is heading towards a schism over the role of gays in the faith.

Calif. Gay Black Households More Likely To Parent, But Suffer Economically
San Francisco, California) A study of same-sex African-American couples in California offers encouragement along with concerns.

AMA Feels Heat Over Leader's Anti-Gay Remarks
(Chicago, Illinois) After being criticized by gay and lesbian groups, the president of the American Medical Association said Thursday his views were misrepresented in a newspaper article that quotes him defending a Roman Catholic-affiliated medical school's decision to ban a gay student group - but a tape of the interview shows the quotes were accurate.


Subtle Mechanic



Click here for more details

Celebrating LGBT History Month


In September last year I finally got rid of my enormous old clanger of a PC (the beast was at least 5 years old) and bought a nicely compact laptop perfectly suited to my tiny room. It's got loads of memory (much more than said old clanger) and when recently I was introduced to I-Tunes, I decided to "rip" my CDs (ie copy them to the computer) and turn my laptop into a jukebox (albeit an expensive one). As I was going through the process I came across a couple of old tapes by a Spanish pop band called Mecano. They used to be very big in Spain (I think they have slip now). I had not listen to those for about ten years. I downloaded the track off the net and listen to the whole thing. To my surprised I still remembered most of them (and that includes the lyrics).

From 1989, I believe, I started to learn a third language at school. After English and German, I went for Spanish. Our teacher, otherwise a nice enough woman, had domestic problems and was a notorious alcoholic. That did not quite make for good teaching. One year, I can not remember exactly when (I would say 1990), she went on long term sick leave and we got a replacement teacher. She was a young wiry woman with short dark hair, several ear piercings, wearing pants. She is the one who introduced me (and my class) to Mecano. They were trying to break in in France at the time and had a couple of songs in French in the charts. One of them, Une femme avec une femme (a woman with a woman), was about lesbian love and society's view of it. We "studied" several of the songs and we did copies of her album. I listened to it quite a bit and I bought the next one they released.

As I was listening to the songs again a few weeks ago, I realised that another of their songs was about being HIV+ and while browsing limewire I came across one I did not know called Stereosexual. Googling for the lyrics, I seemed to understand it was about being bisexual and accepting oneself as such. I was impressed that such a well known band should have such controversial subjects for their songs; especially in Spain, which I have always view as very catholic and conservative (the latest news on marriage coming from over there seem to belie this view). From all this, the penny dropped. It suddenly dawned on me that this woman all those years ago was probably a lesbian (She certainly had the look for it). What was even more thrilling was that without ever saying the word, she had told us, country pumpkins, that gay people (the lesbians of the song) existed. She had find a way to bring gay visibility at our school and considering how fond we all were of her and of the songs, she certainly left a good impression.

Of course if everyone in the class were a blind and naive as I was, her lesson was probably lost on us (at the time at least) but perhaps some of my fellow people did understand more and got a positive view of homosexuality as a result. This was not a big sweeping lesson on what homosexuality is, how important it is to be tolerant and all that. It was just a tiny, low key, matter of fact touch of positive representation that hopefully planted a little seed of open-mindedness in our young minds. An example of which you very seldom (if at all) found when you grew up gay where I come from. And not only at school but in society in general.

This is what History Month is about: changing attitudes so that someday this sort of occurrences become so commonplace that no one will even notice. This is not about perverting children and as we can see, there is not necessarily a need for speaking openly about gay issues or persons. It is about getting into the frame of mind that gay people exist and that they are no better and certainly not worse than other people. Of course History Month is not enough but it is a step in right direction.




Monday, 21 February 2005

The Mythical Origin of Longing



Click here for more details
Celebrating LGBT History Month



Today I am feeling lazy, so I have decided to post a famous extract of possibly one of the earliest "gay book" ever written: Plato wrote his Symposium in 360 BC. The book describes a banquet Agathon had at his home where he invited some of his friends (amongst whom is Socrates). I found the online version of the text at the Internet Classics Archive. It is a lovely book. Enjoy.


"Aristophanes professed to open another vein of discourse; he had a mind to praise Love in another way, unlike that either of Pausanias or Eryximachus. Mankind; he said, judging by their neglect of him, have never, as I think, at all understood the power of Love. For if they had understood him they would surely have built noble temples and altars, and offered solemn sacrifices in his honour; but this is not done, and most certainly ought to be done: since of all the gods he is the best friend of men, the helper and the healer of the ills which are the great impediment to the happiness of the race. I will try to describe his power to you, and you shall teach the rest of the world what I am teaching you. In the first place, let me treat of the nature of man and what has happened to it; for the original human nature was not like the present, but different. The sexes were not two as they are now, but originally three in number; there was man, woman, and the union of the two, having a name corresponding to this double nature, which had once a real existence, but is now lost, and the word "Androgynous" is only preserved as a term of reproach. In the second place, the primeval man was round, his back and sides forming a circle; and he had four hands and four feet, one head with two faces, looking opposite ways, set on a round neck and precisely alike; also four ears, two privy members, and the remainder to correspond. He could walk upright as men now do, backwards or forwards as he pleased, and he could also roll over and over at a great pace, turning on his four hands and four feet, eight in all, like tumblers going over and over with their legs in the air; this was when he wanted to run fast. Now the sexes were three, and such as I have described them; because the sun, moon, and earth are three;-and the man was originally the child of the sun, the woman of the earth, and the man-woman of the moon, which is made up of sun and earth, and they were all round and moved round and round: like their parents. Terrible was their might and strength, and the thoughts of their hearts were great, and they made an attack upon the gods; of them is told the tale of Otys and Ephialtes who, as Homer says, dared to scale heaven, and would have laid hands upon the gods. Doubt reigned in the celestial councils. Should they kill them and annihilate the race with thunderbolts, as they had done the giants, then there would be an end of the sacrifices and worship which men offered to them; but, on the other hand, the gods could not suffer their insolence to be unrestrained.

At last, after a good deal of reflection, Zeus discovered a way. He said: "Methinks I have a plan which will humble their pride and improve their manners; men shall continue to exist, but I will cut them in two and then they will be diminished in strength and increased in numbers; this will have the advantage of making them more profitable to us. They shall walk upright on two legs, and if they continue insolent and will not be quiet, I will split them again and they shall hop about on a single leg." He spoke and cut men in two, like a sorb-apple which is halved for pickling, or as you might divide an egg with a hair; and as he cut them one after another, he bade Apollo give the face and the half of the neck a turn in order that the man might contemplate the section of himself: he would thus learn a lesson of humility. Apollo was also bidden to heal their wounds and compose their forms. So he gave a turn to the face and pulled the skin from the sides all over that which in our language is called the belly, like the purses which draw in, and he made one mouth at the centre, which he fastened in a knot (the same which is called the navel); he also moulded the breast and took out most of the wrinkles, much as a shoemaker might smooth leather upon a last; he left a few, however, in the region of the belly and navel, as a memorial of the primeval state. After the division the two parts of man, each desiring his other half, came together, and throwing their arms about one another, entwined in mutual embraces, longing to grow into one, they were on the point of dying from hunger and self-neglect, because they did not like to do anything apart; and when one of the halves died and the other survived, the survivor sought another mate, man or woman as we call them, being the sections of entire men or women, and clung to that. They were being destroyed, when Zeus in pity of them invented a new plan: he turned the parts of generation round to the front, for this had not been always their position and they sowed the seed no longer as hitherto like grasshoppers in the ground, but in one another; and after the transposition the male generated in the female in order that by the mutual embraces of man and woman they might breed, and the race might continue; or if man came to man they might be satisfied, and rest, and go their ways to the business of life: so ancient is the desire of one another which is implanted in us, reuniting our original nature, making one of two, and healing the state of man.

Each of us when separated, having one side only, like a flat fish, is but the indenture of a man, and he is always looking for his other half. Men who are a section of that double nature which was once called Androgynous are lovers of women; adulterers are generally of this breed, and also adulterous women who lust after men: the women who are a section of the woman do not care for men, but have female attachments; the female companions are of this sort. But they who are a section of the male follow the male, and while they are young, being slices of the original man, they hang about men and embrace them, and they are themselves the best of boys and youths, because they have the most manly nature. Some indeed assert that they are shameless, but this is not true; for they do not act thus from any want of shame, but because they are valiant and manly, and have a manly countenance, and they embrace that which is like them. And these when they grow up become our statesmen, and these only, which is a great proof of the truth of what I am saving. When they reach manhood they are loves of youth, and are not naturally inclined to marry or beget children,-if at all, they do so only in obedience to the law; but they are satisfied if they may be allowed to live with one another unwedded; and such a nature is prone to love and ready to return love, always embracing that which is akin to him. And when one of them meets with his other half, the actual half of himself, whether he be a lover of youth or a lover of another sort, the pair are lost in an amazement of love and friendship and intimacy, and would not be out of the other's sight, as I may say, even for a moment: these are the people who pass their whole lives together; yet they could not explain what they desire of one another. For the intense yearning which each of them has towards the other does not appear to be the desire of lover's intercourse, but of something else which the soul of either evidently desires and cannot tell, and of which she has only a dark and doubtful presentiment. Suppose Hephaestus, with his instruments, to come to the pair who are lying side, by side and to say to them, "What do you people want of one another?" they would be unable to explain. And suppose further, that when he saw their perplexity he said: "Do you desire to be wholly one; always day and night to be in one another's company? for if this is what you desire, I am ready to melt you into one and let you grow together, so that being two you shall become one, and while you live a common life as if you were a single man, and after your death in the world below still be one departed soul instead of two-I ask whether this is what you lovingly desire, and whether you are satisfied to attain this?"-there is not a man of them who when he heard the proposal would deny or would not acknowledge that this meeting and melting into one another, this becoming one instead of two, was the very expression of his ancient need. And the reason is that human nature was originally one and we were a whole, and the desire and pursuit of the whole is called love. There was a time, I say, when we were one, but now because of the wickedness of mankind God has dispersed us, as the Arcadians were dispersed into villages by the Lacedaemonians. And if we are not obedient to the gods, there is a danger that we shall be split up again and go about in basso-relievo, like the profile figures having only half a nose which are sculptured on monuments, and that we shall be like tallies.

Wherefore let us exhort all men to piety, that we may avoid evil, and obtain the good, of which Love is to us the lord and minister; and let no one oppose him-he is the enemy of the gods who oppose him. For if we are friends of the God and at peace with him we shall find our own true loves, which rarely happens in this world at present. I am serious, and therefore I must beg Eryximachus not to make fun or to find any allusion in what I am saying to Pausanias and Agathon, who, as I suspect, are both of the manly nature, and belong to the class which I have been describing. But my words have a wider application-they include men and women everywhere; and I believe that if our loves were perfectly accomplished, and each one returning to his primeval nature had his original true love, then our race would be happy. And if this would be best of all, the best in the next degree and under present circumstances must be the nearest approach to such an union; and that will be the attainment of a congenial love. Wherefore, if we would praise him who has given to us the benefit, we must praise the god Love, who is our greatest benefactor, both leading us in this life back to our own nature, and giving us high hopes for the future, for he promises that if we are pious, he will restore us to our original state, and heal us and make us happy and blessed. This, Eryximachus, is my discourse of love, which, although different to yours, I must beg you to leave unassailed by the shafts of your ridicule, in order that each may have his turn; each, or rather either, for Agathon and Socrates are the only ones left."

From Symposium by Plato.
Translated by Benjamin Jowett
Internet Classics Archive

Saturday, 19 February 2005

OMG! He is Back!!!!

While googling the links for the previous post, I have found Salam Pax's new blog. I haven't had time to have a read yet but as you can see it has already been added to my blogroll and I intend to have a look very soon. Hopefully (and I can't see why not), this will be just as good as the previous one.

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Addendum et Erratum - 11:55pm
Looks like I was a litte kick in rejoicing. Salam does not seem to have posted there since October last year... I have to say I am not sure what the idea is behind his having several blogs and abandoning all of them but hey, who am I?! I'll keep looking though for something more recent... There might be a clue here. Diane was (is?) a close virtual friend of Salam...


Nightly Ramblings

I have been blogging for about 4 months now and I thought it was time for me to stop and take stock. As stated in my first posts on here, I was given the inspiration to blog by Salam Pax (Where is Raed?). Unfortunately, Salam seems to have disappeared from the blogosphere to spread his wings in the real world (From what I here, a documentary, he filmed has recently been released).

I have now written thousands of words (unfortunately, the stats facility has been "temporarily" disabled so I can not tell exactly how many) but it seems that this blog has taken a life of its own. Ok, I was never exactly clued at to what I would be talking about here but it appears the blog has taken the decision for itself. Amongst the blogs I regularly read (see the blogroll on the right hand side), there are personal accounts, musings, fiction, news. People tell about their lives, others comment on that of their country. As usual I seem to be sitting on the fence; both talking about my experiences (some of them anyway) and commenting on pieces of news which caught my eye. And as someone told me today, there seems to be a gay theme to my blog... One reassuring thing is that the title was quite aptly chosen. This is really aimless ramblings. Perhaps, I would have liked to have more personal stuff to write and possibly to rely little less on Gay.com and 365gay.com, but nothing in myself seem to be of enough importance to make it to these pages and at least to give me enough drive to write about it.

A point that both brings some disappointment and does not make things easier is the lack of reactions and comments I get from my few visitors. I know this is personal and I decide what is to be posted and what is not but the fact that is it published for all to read give the readers some sort of importance to and a right to give some input too. At the very least, I would be able to tell whether I am doing things right or not. If my ramblings are of any interest to anyone or if i am to be condemned to speak out in empty space. One sure is for certain though: I will continue to speaking out.

Thursday, 17 February 2005

Links of the Day

(Rome) The Italian Communist Party on Wednesday called for the legalization of same-sex marriage. The party is a member of the center-left Union, the opposition in Italy's parliament.
A councillor has sparked accusations of homophobia, after he tabled a bizarre set of questions on whether Worcester County Council should offer funding to pro-gay groups.
(New Brunswick, New Jersey) Rutgers University has banned the "Fat Dyke" and the "Fat Bitch".
(Ottawa) Saying "Separate is not equal," Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin Wednesday opened debate on the government's bill to legalize same-sex marriage across the country.
The Irish government has been accused of "stalling" the debate on Civil Partnerships in the country, after its late tabling of an amendment resulted in the bill being blocked from a parliamentary vote.
(Washington) The Bush administration has told a federally funded conference on LGBT suicide to remove the words "gay," "lesbian," "bisexual" and "transgender" from its material.
(Washington) Pat Mitchell, the Public Broadcasting Service chief under fire for spending public money on a cartoon show that also featured a real-life lesbian couple, will step down when her contract expires in June 2006.

Wednesday, 16 February 2005

The Power of the Blog

We had heard of bloggers bearing witness in war zones (see Where is Read? in my blogroll), of blogs used after the tsunami last year to help the survivors. The lastest avatar of blogs in mainstream news, takes the shape of the fall of Eason Jordan, a CNN executive, who made controvertial comments in Davos, which then found themselves blogged and disiminated on the Blogosphere. The coverage is still quite limited in the traditional media. The Washington Post aluded to it an article and the story just go a slot on BBC radio4's PM programme. It seems to be more or less it. See the story as told by The Australian.

Links of the Day

Have look at this and... well... laugh: Americablog

Anti-Gay License Plates Die
(Richmond, Virginia) Legislation has been withdrawn that would have seen cars in Virginia bearing license plates promoting heterosexual marriage.

Russia High Court: Niet To Gay Marriage
(Moscow) The Russian Supreme Court has refused to recognize same-sex marriage.

EastEnders Hunk: I'm Gay
EastEnders hunk Jake Maskall has just disappointed his female fans by revealing that he's gay.

Right wingers slam "disgusting" teen gay novel
Right wing Christian groups have attacked the publication of gay teen novel Boy Meets Boy, slamming its depiction of gay romance at high school.

Man in court over gay MP attacks
A man has appeared in court charged with abusing gay Labour MP Chris Bryant and threatening to "hound him out" of the region he represents.


Translated from Têtu:

Opening of a home for young homosexual Muslims.

A home intended for the young homosexual Muslims in trouble opened its doors in Amsterdam. The project is financed by the city. Al Mina Al Amin (« the shelter of the harbour ») - its name, is a "space for young Muslims who find difficulties in living their homosexuality because of their religion" Astrid Van Der Haver, spokeswoman of the Schroder Foundation which is involved in the initiative, explained to the AFP. "It is not about psychological or spiritual assistance. It is a place where these young persons can express themselves, speak with volunteers about the difficulties they meet", the spokeswoman added. The address of the home is being kept a secret.



Marriage vs PACS

According to the 2004 Demographic Report (English version) by the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (Insee), the number of marriages in France continued to fall as people turned increasingly to civil partnership registrations (PACS). Marriages (with 266,000 civil marriages taking place in 2004) decreased by 5.9%, continuing a trend started in 2000. For the first 9 months of 2004, 27,000 PACS were signed (22,000 in the previous year). Insee notes that there is a slight slowing down in the increase of registrations (25% increase in 2002 and 2003 as opposed to over 29% between 2001 et 2002).

At its creation in 1999, Jacques Chirac described PACS as "not adapted to the needs of families". Out of the 130,000 signed so far, only one PACS in 10 has been disolved. In 2004, PACS was described in a report to the Garde des Sceaux (Lord Chancellor) as "a new way of conjugality, answering many needs and inscribed in continuity" (don't worry it doesn't really make sense in French either). PACS is open to both straight and gay couples.


Tuesday, 15 February 2005

Links of the Day

Tate Modern Launches Multimedia Tour
Tate Modern has launched a multimedia tour of the collection displays, the first of its kind in a UK museum. After three years of trials the Bafta award-winning product is now complete.

AMA Head Likens Gays To Coca Cola Or Rape
(White Plains, New York) The president of the American Medical Association has come to the defense of New York Medical College under attack for banning a gay students group from campus.

Czechs reject gay union bill
The Czech Republic's parliament has voted to reject a bill offering same-sex ... have allowed same-sex couples the right to officially register their partnership. ...

Is Bush Press Aide Gay?
(Washington) An online investigative journalism site Monday suggested that White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan is gay and was a regular at gay bars in Texas.

Canadian Opposition Leader Trying To Keep Lid On Party Extremists
(Ottawa) Debate on legislation to legalize same-sex marriage across Canada will begin Wednesday in the House of Commons and Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper is working overtime trying to prevent his members from appearing like red neck bigots as they oppose the bill.

Simmering Anglican Gay Feud Comes To Boil
(London) The leaders of the Church of England have begun a weeklong meeting in London aimed at resolving the feud over gays in the faith.



Sunday, 13 February 2005

Holocaust




Click here for more details

Celebrating LGBT History Month




27 January, in most of Europe was Holocaust Memorial Day, celebrating the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the concentration camps. A special ceremony took place at Auschwitz, attended by all sorts of political leaders.

In London, a much lower key ceremony took place at City Hall on the Tuesday before HMD. In the welcome speech, we were reminded that whoever knew and remembered the atrocities committed in the camp could not even consider wearing a Nazi uniform for fun; this thought was made even more potent when a survivor of the camps, Trude Levi, read out some of her story; also pleading for tolerance and making references to our current tendencies to reject asylum seekers. Rabbi Barry Marcus said a few words and sang a very moving prayer in Hebrew. The intonations of the singing and the word "Shalom" together with a list of concentration camp (the only words I could understand) made it all the more poignant. The Rwandan Ambassador to the UK, Mrs Rosemary Museminali told about her country's experience of genocide ten years ago and of her visit of Auschwitz. In the audience, there were a handful of teenage school children in their uniforms (interestingly the vaste majority of them was white). At the end of the ceremony, a Book of Commitment was signed by 7 students and whoever who was present who wanted to sign. The book marks the commitment of London to keep the memory of what happened alive and to avoid its reoccurrence.

I attended as part of the London Gay Men's Chorus who had been officially invited to take part in the ceremony. we sang two songs, at the beginning and at the end. The fact that we had been invited was, I think highly symbolic. There at City Hall but also more widely, this year, and I believe for the first year on such a large scale, groups other than the Jews (and more noticeably I think) were recognised as victims of the Nazi in the camps, this included the homosexual victims. For the occasion of HMD, Italy saw the erection of the one of the first memorials to gay victims in Europe (there are other ones in San Francisco, Sydney and Berlin); while, in Britain, the Lesbian & Gay Foundation in Manchester has opened three ‘Books of Hope’ to acknowledge the estimated 100,000 gay and lesbian victims of the Nazi.
Let's not forget either that, at the liberation of the camps, due to the infamous Paragraph 175 (a 1871 German law, amended by the Nazis and kept on the German law books until 1969), some of the victims who were there for homosexuality were sent directly to prison and that it took years for them to be recognised as victims of the concentration camps (The official apology from the German government came in 2001!!!). A link to the site for Paragraph 175, the film with educational resources.

For many years the plight of homosexuals (and other minorities) in the camp have been eclipsed by the huge amount of Jewish victims, when not simply negated. Sometimes it still is. Lest we forget; lest it happens again:

Holocaust Memorial Day

Gay Holocaust Memorial Site

Gay Holocaust Memorial

Pink Triangle

Pink Triangle Coalition

Homosexuals and the Holocaust, an essaie by Ben S. Austin


Saturday, 12 February 2005

Old News

I just saw this on Green Fairy Dot Com. A clip of an unknown Fox News presenter commenting on the results of the Hutton Inquiry on the death of Dr David Kelly and the subsequent resignation of Greg Dyke in a slot called My Word in January 2004.
Here is a transcript of the broadcast:


My Word. Well today the British Broadcasting Corporation was forced to pay up for its blatant anti-americanism before and during the Irak war; a frothing at the mouth anti-americanism that was obsessive, irrational and dishonest. The BBC, the Beeb, was one of the worst offenders in the British press because it felt entitled to not only pillory America, Americans and George W Bush but felt entitled to lie, and when caught lying felt entitled to defend its lying reporters and executives. The incident involved the reporter Andrew Gilligan who made a fool of himself in Baghdad when the American invasion actually arrived in the Iraky capital. Gilligan, pro-Iraky and anti-American, insisted on the air that the Iraky army was heroically repulsing an incompetent American military. Video from our own Greg Kelly of the American army moving through Baghdad at will put the lie to that. After the war, back in London, Gilligan got a guy named David Kelly to tell him a few things about pre-war assessment on Irak's weapons programmes and Gilligan exagerated, lie, about what Kelly had told him. Kelly committed suicide over the story and the BBC, far from blaming itself, insisted its reporter had a right to lie, exagerate, because, well, the BBC knew the world was wrong and anything they could say to underscore that point had to be right. A British government investigation slammed the BBC today and a Beeb exec resigned to show they got it. [leaning forward] But they don't!!!. Next time you hear the BBC bragging about how much superior the Brits are at delivering the news rather than Americans who wear [touching his own lapel] flags on their lapels, remember it was the Beeb caught lying. My Word.


Do watch the clip here, and see what childish tone the presenter is using in his delivery.

Fox is owned by Rupert Murdoch's group, News Corp.

Friday, 11 February 2005

Links of the Day

Lynne Cheney Gets Snappish In Gay Amendment Interview
(Washington) Lynne Cheney, wife of U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney, opposes the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage that President George W. Bush repeatedly has called for.

MP: "Tolerating gays is not enough in bullying fight"
Schools minister Stephen Twigg MP has told schools that promoting tolerance towards sexual diversity is "not enough" at a conference on tackling homophobic bullying, calling for more action on discrimination and prejudice.

Mystery Anti-Gay 'Journalist' Goes Underground
(Washington) A man accredited by the White House as a journalist has gone underground after being exposed as a fake, a possible a shill for the president, and perhaps a spy for the Pentagon trying to out gays in the military.
More on this story on AMERICAblog

From Têtu's headlines. Têtu is the French equivalent of Attitude or Gay Times. The article is in French but I have translated it below.

ESPAGNE (Société)
Une rue honore la fierté gay

Léon, dans la région de Castille-Léon, aura désormais sa rue dédiée au jour de la fierté gay, l'«Orgullo Gay», qui a lieu le 28 juin. La rue du 28 Juin, pionnière en Espagne, est la preuve de la reconnaissance des revendications du collectif des gays, lesbiennes et transsexuels et a été proposée par le groupe municipal socialiste. D'après la présidente du collectif COGALE, Isabel Pastor, «c'est un pas de plus vers lanormalisation».

Par Martine Audusseau - Le 11/02/2005


------------------------------------------

SPAIN (Society)
A Street to Honour Gay Pride

Léon, in the Castillla-Léon region, will from now have a street dedicated to Gay Pride day, "Orgullo Gay", which takes place every 28 June. 28 June Street, pioneering in Spain, is proof of the recognition of the LGBT Collective's demands and was proposed by the Labour group of the City Council. For Isabel Pastor, president of the COGALE Collective, "This is one more step towards normalisation".

article by Martine Audusseau - 11/02/2005


What a Glamorous Life!!!!




Click here for more details


Celebrating LGBT History Month



As you may recall, last week, I was at the preview for the Churchill Museum. And on Monday evening (07/02/05), I made my first ever entrance in the Houses of Parliament in style. Not with an ermine cape and a crown (that is for the other queen) but as a proud gay man. To quote the mail out sent afterwards by the organisers of History Month: "Angela Eagle, labour and lesbian MP for Wallasey hosted a reception to welcome the LGBT History Month initiative, with guest speaker Stephen Twigg, Minister for schools." Sounds rather grand does it not? I can see you imagining the flowing dresses, the tiaras... and the lesbians in tuxedo. The champagne flowing and the canapés doing whatever canapés do.... (being gobbled, I suppose).

Well get over it, right now! The event was rather well attended as far as those sort of events go, but then again, the appeal of the venue and the way the event had been sold probably did help. About 30 people were there. We all got herded into Committee Room 10. On the first floor, at the heart of the building, Committee Room 10 is like a miniature House of Commons in its lay out with wooden school desks (complete with inkwells) and chairs (upholstered in green leatherette with the famous crest on the back) instead of the green leather seats. There are large paintings at each ends, big chandeliers and a reddish velvety kind of William Morris wallpaper making it all look cosy and from another age.

When I arrived (slightly late because the venue had been changed), someone I recognised to be Paul Patrick (co-chair of Schools Out) was doing an impersonation of Churchill, Cicero, Dale Winton or whoever he thinks is a great public orator with big gestures. Several other people mostly from public bodies (DfES, unions (PCS Proud)) but also interest groups like Regard or Press For Change talked of the involvement of their services/groups with LGBT equality. There were also more transsexuals than you could shake a lipstick at. The whole thing felt a little like school too as a bell rang a couple of times during the meeting, apparently calling the MPs to the chamber for a vote. Angela Eagle, who, while talking to us, dropped several not too subtle hints that if we voted for Labour at the next election, some interesting legislation (something called "single equality body" currently being prepared would be passed, had to run back and forth each time.

Also present was a lawyer visiting specially from the Isle of Man who told us how bad the situation was for LGBT people in his country with the age of consent for gay sex (18) not equal to that for straight sex (16) and also problems with the implementation of the 2001 Human Rights laws. Although he did not expend on this he also said that the meeting we were attending would be illegal there. Angela Eagle must have mentioned something to Stephen Twigg who later on said he would try to do something about it.

All in all and although the point was made that, contrary to what has been said in the media, History Month was not just about children, we heard a lot about schools. The speakers also picked up some of the arguments made by the opponents of the Month, reminding us that, yes, the month is supported by “tax payers’ money”, but that we are after all tax payers ourselves and that it is about time that our needs should be recognised by the society to which we belong and contribute. It was also pointed out that although the media focus on the “outings” of famous people (notably Shakespeare and Florence Nightingale), which, I think, both provide an important role model to us and make a stronger point to the general public for the recognition of the value of LGBT people for society, the month is also about the ordinary people claiming their history and their sense of identity.

The thing is, this current drive to record gay history (I am not only talking of LGBT History Month but also of archives (like the Hall-Carpenter Archives) and, of course, of the LGBT Museum project (See also this article in the Guardian)), is quite important. The 19th century gave homosexuality its name and therefore allowed not only for discrimination and but also for the rise of a community consciousness amongst people of this inclination. This consciousness later turning into the gay liberation movement (arguably started in July 1969 by the Stonewall Riots in New York). This is our history; however, contrary to straight children we can not rely on our parents or environment (extended family, neighbours, school, TV) to pass this knowledge on. This means that each individual has to virtually re-invent the wheel each time. The Internet has simplified things dramatically but local history is getting lost and it is what needs to be preserved now.

Of course this event in itself is, I think, historic. I don’t think there have been many officially recognised meetings of a bunch of poofs, dikes and Trans at the Houses. And of course this is marking the first ever LGBT History Month in this country. Most importantly, however, this should remind us that we are still in pioneering times as far as gay history goes and everything that we do is a historic event.

After the “reception”, we adjourned to a nearby bar for drinks and nibbles. Everybody present proceed to frenetically exchange business cards and Lo! I even managed to get one myself. Another first I guess!

The evening finished just as stylishly as it had begun: at good old Wong Key, that old favourite...






Thursday, 10 February 2005

Links of the Day

Yankee Go Home Gay Canadians Tell Same-Sex Marriage Foes
(Ottawa) Supporters of same-sex marriage legislation in Canada are telling conservative Christians from south of the border to keep their noses out of Canadian affairs.

Gay MP to talk on school bullying
Schools minister Stephen Twigg MP will advise schools on how best to tackle homophobic bullying today, at a special conference in Lincoln.

'Homophobic' B & B owner to become MP?
Tom Forrest has been short listed as a candidate for the Operation Christian Vote party, a recently launched political party that runs with the tag line "waking the sleeping giant".

Woman jailed for testicle attack.
A woman who ripped off her ex-boyfriend's testicle with her bare hands has been sent to prison.



Wednesday, 9 February 2005

Links of the Day

Zoo Uses Aversion Therapy 'To Cure' Gay Penguins
(Bremen, Germany) A German zoo is trying "to cure" three gay penguin couples using a form of aversion therapy.

The Day of Silence takes place April 13, 2005
The Day of Silence, a project of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) in collaboration with the United States Student Association (USSA), is a student-led day of action where those who support making anti-LGBT bias unacceptable in schools take a day-long vow of silence to recognize and protest the discrimination and harassment -- in effect, the silencing -- experienced by LGBT students and their allies.



Monday, 7 February 2005

Today's Selection

Democrats Openly Courting Anti-Gay Religious Right
(Washington) The religious right in the United States is getting proof of their political influence from a surprising source, Hillary Clinton

Will UN Recognize 'Gay Kingdom'?
(Sydney, Australia) Its a tiny coral island off the coast of Australia but it could become the center of a major battle at the United Nations.

Tatchell: My life of civil war
On the occasion of his addition to the new edition of Who's Who, campaigner Peter Tatchell has spoken of how his fight against injustice has resulted in him becoming a target of attacks and abuse, and how he has been forced to modify his home into a fortress against "violent opponents".

Murder music campaign suspended as truce offered to gay activists
The campaign against music that incites violence towards lesbian and gay people could be on the verge of halting today, after organisers agreed to a new partnership with representatives of the reggae industry.


Multilingual Birdcage


Click here for more details
Celebrating LGBT History Month

A friend of mine who works for the Welsh government sent me this recently:
"this was on one of the notice boards today....

is there a native French speaker out there who can answer this question for me please.

La Cage Aux Folles (the film) is known in English as The Birdcage, but (as best as I can work out) the literal translation is more like 'the cage of fools'. Is this an idiom for a birdcage? or is it a euphemism for an asylum or something? or is it just an unknown phase invented for the film title?

And what is the real French word for birdcage? I've found variously 'voliere' and 'panier', what (if anything) is the difference in meaning of the two?

And what about the word 'gonze' is that a bird of the feathered variety? or is it something to do with another meaning of 'bird'?
"

An interesting request to find on government notice board I thought. Here is my reply:
La Cage aux Folles, directed by Edouard Molinaro in 1978, is credited in the Celluloid Closet (also a film) with having been the "first gay box office smash hit". I personally find it of bad taste and on the verge of being homophobic... After all it was perpatuating the cliches of the time. It just makes me cringe.

The literal translation of "cage aux folles" is "cage for madwomen". In Addition to meaning a mad woman, "folle" is also a slightly pejorative, although not nasty, word for an effeminate man. The English equivalent would be a "queen". Like other insults the word has been re-owned by the gay community who uses it fairly freely to qualify themselves. "Cage aux folles" is not an idiomatic expression but something created, as far as I am aware, specifically for the play (later film). It might be some old fashion (gay) slang (some sort of French polari?) or perhaps the name of an actual place in the 1970's but I am not aware of it.

The translation for birdcage would be "cage à oiseau" or simply "cage". "Volière" implies something bigger and would be translated by "aviary", I think. A "panier" is in fact a basket and has no relevance in this instance.

"Gonze" is a not that often used shorter version of "gonzesse". This is a slang word designating a woman, "bird" would indeed be a good translation of it. Not relation with the feathered world in French however.


Friday, 4 February 2005

A New Theme Park in Whitehall

"Tonight I met the PM". This is how I had planned to start this post until things started to unravel slightly. A friend of mine (and let's face it, I only have one close one, so it is the same that appeared on these "pages" earlier), had invited me to tag along to a preview of the new Churchill Museum soon to be opened at the Cabinet War Rooms. He had misleadingly (it appeared) sold it to me by telling me that Blair might make an appearance. To be honest I would have gone anyway: can't really resist the appeal of free canapés sprinkled with a bit of culture. And I had never been to the War Rooms before so it was a good opportunity. OK the PM wasn't there but I almost met him once before already (back in the days when I worked for the National Army Museum); so who cares...?

After going down to what if effectively a basement, we were ushered into a large empty room where the Vice President and Chairman of the Imperial War Museum, Admiral Sir Jock Slater GCB LVO DL greeted us. We were given drink. When the room was quite full of people Sir Jock clapped in his hands to ask for silence and introduced the new gallery, telling us it had cost as little as £6M and inviting us to go and have a look. We complied

The new gallery/museum will be opened by the Queen (and probably the PM) on the 11th; this is scheduled to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the death of the great man (He died on 24/01/65). Most people know what a character Churchill was mostly for his galvanising Britain to stand up against the Nazis during the Second World War. He is however much more than that. He painted 572 paintings, wrote about 100 books for which he won the Nobel Prize of Literature in 1953. He was voted the Greatest Briton ever by the "Great British Public" last year. A truly larger than life character. And this is what a museum dedicated to the man should make you feel.

We had been warned before going in that the gallery was "challengingly engaging". That perhaps we would need 10 year olds to show us how things worked. That proved to be almost true. While the exhibition space is rather drab and not very "engaging" (it is grey, dark and maze-like), the exhibition is technically ingenious to the point of becoming gimmicky. You have screens showing films and sound bits in many places, which is they sort of things you would expect but you also have touch screens that allow you to "re-paint" some of Churchill's paintings colour by colour by moving your finger over the "canvas" or to *cough* play with his goldfish. There are also carved pieces of wood representing Churchill or other important military chiefs (Stalin, Roosevelt,...) with sensors attached which you can move about on a table and get some interactive visual content depending of which part of the table the piece has been moved. Perfect for Children I imagine. The pièce de resistance is a 50-foot long (I thought this country used decimal measures these day?!) interactive ‘Lifeline’. A long table-like screen with sensor pads on the sides (of the type you find on laptops) allowing you to browse the files of the years of Churchill's life. This is complete with sound effects, pictures and animations. Have a look at some pictures

When I first walked in the room, my only interest was for the gadgets described above. They drew my attention and I just moved down the aisles going from one the next, figuring out how they worked and what they did and loosing interest as soon as I had found out. Only on the second take, once I had exhausted the novelty, did I start to register interesting and/or funny details about Churchill's live and personality. Now I know I am a unique individual and I like to cultivate my differences but I don't think I am intrinsically that different from my fellow human beings and I have a feeling that most people will react in the same fashion. What is slightly worrying is I know myself to have a longer attention span than most people; this means that most visitors will probably give up after the first tour of the gallery. I think the focus is put far too much on Churchill, the politician, which is already his better know face. I was quite surprised towards the end of my first round (after having seen artefacts on the war and even footages of his funeral) to find myself suddenly looking at his earlier years, a little as if they had been put there as an afterthought. All in all and however fun it was to be taken back to a childlike frame of mind (not), I think the gallery fails its basic ambition as it doesn't really bring a sense of who this extraordinary man was to the visitor. A missed opportunity, I think. Still, I got a goody bag at the end with a biography by John Keegan, a few postcards and a booklet on the museum...

Oh, and something which is obviously not mentioned in the exhibition: Sir Winston was probably one of us.

An interesting point, which I discussed with my friend afterward, is the way a couple of people my friend knew there (one of them is 80 odd years old, although of a very young disposition) treated us. Although we are not a couple, they treated us as such. One would have expected people to feel ill at ease and try to avoid even the thought but the fact that they made the assumption in the first place surely proves that they are happy with at least the concept of two men in a relationship. Nice one!

--------------------------------------------------

Addendum, Erratum and private joke - 01:50pm

My Friend is moaning that I am making him look bad by saying he mislead me about the PM attending at the event. He was mislead too. What a gullible creature he can be...
Happy now?
;O)

--------------------------------------------------

Updated 10/02/05

Added a link to pictures of the place on the site of the company who designed the exhibition.


Aren't They Cunning Those Poofs!?


This would be funny if it wasn't so sad!

"Parents at a Catholic school in Orange County, Calif., are challenging a gay couple that has put their adopted twin sons into a Catholic kindergarten. The parents are concerned that the children may be part of a broader strategy to create greater tolerance for homosexuality within the church."
From NPR, thanks to SistersTalk.

Different Perspectives

Celebrating LGBT History Month

LGBT History Month in the press

FURY AT KIDS GAY-LEVELS
and another smaller piece in the same vein:
HIS OR HERS-TORY
More seriously:
Gay history month to 'out' Newton and Nightingale

Why they all focus on Nightinghale and Shakespeare is something I don't quite understand. There so many other people to talk about....


Tuesday, 1 February 2005

February 2005 is LGBT History Month


February 2005 is the frist ever LGBT History Month in the UK. This is still a small event but hopefully it will end up being as successful as Black History Month. To find out more about the month, what events are taking place and to get some useful resources please go to the LGBT History Month's website.

During the month I intend to try and regularly post on this blog about LGBT History. Probably in the form of links to interesting websites.

No Love Lost

So much for the "love the sinner, hate the sin" doctrine. "Hate the fuckers" is just so much easier!
Nun's Gay Outreach Angers Church