World News
Gay Russian protester detained at Sochi torch relay Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by ESPN   
Sunday, 19 January 2014 22:27

A gay Russian protester was arrested on Saturday after unfurling a rainbow flag as the Olympic torch relay passed through the town of Voronezh ahead of February's Sochi Winter Games. Pavel Lebedev pulled out the flag and was then wrestled to the snow by Olympic security personnel before police arrived. He was taken to a police station and questioned.

"Hosting the Games here contradicts the basic principles of the Olympics, which is to cultivate tolerance," Lebedev told the Associated Press from the police station. Lebedev cited growing homophobia in Russia as the main reason for his protest.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a ban on propaganda of "non-traditional sexual relations" into law in June which has provoked widespread international criticism.
Putin has rescinded a ban on all rallies in Sochi during the Games to allow demonstrations at venues determined by the Interior Ministry.



Gay Russian protester detained at Sochi torch relay
Gay Russian protester detained at Sochi torch relay

Putin say's gay people in no danger. Russia's law banning gay "propaganda" does not harm anybody and there is "no danger" for homosexual competitors or spectators at the forthcoming Winter Olympics, Vladimir Putin has insisted

Gay soccer player makes historic announcement Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by Time   
Sunday, 19 January 2014 05:48


As the highest profile professional to come out, Thomas Hitzlsperger hopes to blaze a trail for young players.

When retired German footballer Thomas Hitzlsperger announced to the world that he is gay, he became the highest profile player to do so and only the third professional in over 20 years.  He hopes his announcement can help young gay players see that they can still reach the very top of the game and remain true to themselves. Read more:
Putin: Gays Welcome at Olympics if they 'Leave Kids Alone' Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by Mashable   
Sunday, 19 January 2014 05:43


Russian president Vladimir Putin has a message for gay Olympic fans and athletes traveling to the Sochi Games: You're welcome to come — if you leave kids alone.

Putin made the comments Friday at a meeting with Olympics volunteers. Russia's harsh anti-homosexuality laws have come under increased scrutiny in recent months as athletes and sports fans — many of them gay — prepare to descend upon Sochi for the Winter Olympics that begin Feb. 7.

A volunteer asked Putin on Friday about those laws and the social climate gay people and allies can expect at the Games, according to The Washington Post.

Putin's response: “One can feel calm and at ease. Just leave kids alone, please.”

If Putin's comment was meant to quell the controversy surrounding Russia's anti-homosexuality laws on the world stage, his apparent implication that gays in Sochi — even if just by openly acknowledging their sexuality — are a threat to children drew scorn from many.

"We have no ban on nontraditional sexual relations. We have a ban on propaganda of homosexuality and pedophilia, I want to underline that, on propaganda among minors," Putin reportedly said Friday.

A Russian law passed last year banned "propaganda of nontraditional sexual practices" to children and teenagers. While not an outright ban on homosexuality, it essentially prohibits public discussion of gay life or gay rights in schools and media, as well as public events such as gay rights parades. Critics say it creates an inhumane living environment for gays in Russia.

Putin's enabling, and even encouraging, of anti-homosexuality legislation and sentiment in Russia has drawn criticism from many world leaders in the run-up to Sochi. Some leaders have said they will not attend the Games, and Barack Obama notably selected openly gay tennis icon Billie Jean King as one of the highest-profile members of the American delegation he will send to Sochi.

But, despite criticism from world leaders, athletes, media, sports fans and gay rights activists alike, Putin on Friday insisted that Russia has a more reasonable take on sexual mores than many countries. After all, he said, some nations have considered legalizing pedophilia.

“There is nothing secret about it," Putin said. "Look it up on the Internet and you’ll find it straightaway."

That's, um, not exactly true, Mr. Putin.


Putin say's gay people in no danger. Russia's law banning gay "propaganda" does not harm anybody and there is "no danger" for homosexual competitors or spectators at the forthcoming Winter Olympics, Vladimir Putin has insisted
US : Bakery violated civil rights of same-sex couple Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by Evan Sernoffsky, Staff   
Sunday, 19 January 2014 05:37


US : The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries ruled a Gresham bakery discriminated against a same-sex couple when it refused to make a cake for their wedding.

The couple filed a complaint against Sweet Cakes by Melissa last year. The bakery's owners said they wouldn't sell the couple a wedding cake because it violated their religious beliefs.

More: Couple denied same-sex cake files complaint

The state ruled a bakery is not a religious institution, so refusing the order violated Oregon’s Equality Act passed in 2007.

In September, the bakery shut its doors and said via a Facebook post it was moving the business to an in-home bakery.

Background: Gresham bakery that denied same-sex wedding cake closes

BOLI will now work with both sides to see if they can reach a settlement.

Trans Miss Universe contestant scores ELLE spread Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by The Vine   
Friday, 17 January 2014 04:54


In March last year Jenna Talackova, a Canadian contestant in Donald Trump's Miss Universe pageant, was disqualified when the organisers learned she was born male. The rules of the pageant stipulated that contestants must be "naturally-born females," but public outcry over Talackova's disqualification, as well as the support of the LGBT rights advocacy group GLAAD, forced the pageant to implement a new policy and to reinstate the then-23 year old model. 

Miss Talackova eventually lost after making it to the final 12, but the">New York Daily News reports that the model, now 25, has announced a major fashion spread in ELLE Canada's January issue. 

In a behind-the-scenes video on ELLE's website, Talackova, radiant with joy, says, "I can't believe I'm posing for them. It's been a dream. I put them on my vision board and it happened!" 

Also on ELLE's website, Talackova describes some of her experience going through a sex change. “I believe I am a woman who went through transgender procedures," she says. "As soon as I started taking hormones, I felt more and more complete."

More at:

In many cultures, gay life is fraught with risk Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by Syndey Moring Herald   
Thursday, 16 January 2014 04:13


It is difficult enough for young men in Australia to come out when they realise they are gay, but being gay when you belong to a culture that doesn't accept homosexuality is much more difficult.

One of my clients is a young Chinese man who is studying in Sydney. He suspected that he was different but never had been in contact with other gay young men in his small town. It didn't take him long to embrace his sexuality in Australia but his parents expect him to come home when finishing his studies. He is the only son and realises his parents will be devastated to learn he may not marry and have children and he expects this will bring shame on the family.

I have just have read Gaysia, a fascinating book by Australian Benjamin Law, a prominent young homosexual writer and journalist whose parents are Chinese. He visited many Asian countries to investigate what it's like to be gay in Asia. t was in 1997 that homosexuality was decriminalised in China. It has only in the past few years that cities like Beijing and Shanghai have seen the rise of lesbian and gay communities with support groups, bars and gay meeting places. But for all the freedom and tolerance, homosexuality remains stigmatised throughout most of the country because it clashes with the belief that children must marry and continue the family line by having offspring.

Few Chinese gays and lesbians come out to their families and many feel they have to marry, which is tragic for them and the partners they choose. Lesbian women often experience physical violence from their parents when they are found out. It has become popular over the last years for gay Chinese men to marry lesbian women. There are websites for finding lesbian wives and in Shanghai there is a yoga studio that holds a party every month where gay men and women can “shop” for a spouse. They can then easily live separate lives allowing both to satisfy their families who may never find out the truth.

The attitudes towards gays in China is generally one of live and let live. The country is largely atheist and homosexuality is not seen as a sin or immoral.

U.S. to Recognize 1,300 Marriages Disputed by Utah Print E-mail
News - World News
Written by New York Times   
Sunday, 12 January 2014 23:07

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday made the latest contribution to a fast-moving legal battle over same-sex marriage rights as the Justice Department said that the federal government would recognize as lawful the marriages of some 1,300 same-sex couples in Utah even though the state government is largely refusing to do so.

The announcement furthered President Obama’s self-described evolution on same-sex marriage rights. He was once a politician who said he was “not in favor of gay marriage” and repeatedly invoked the rights of states to decide how marriage should be defined.

More recently, he said “I think same-sex couples should be able to get married,” and now his administration appears to be edging closer to confronting a state government over its refusal to recognize such rights.The statement also provided a new twist in a fight that has pitted notions of individual equality against the right of states to define marriage as a majority of their voters see fit. It added to legal confusion surrounding the status of couples who married in a brief window after a Federal District Court judge unexpectedly struck down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriages last month, before the Supreme Court stayed the ruling on Monday, effectively shutting down any further same-sex nuptials in the state for the duration of the litigation.

“I am confirming today that, for purposes of federal law, these marriages will be recognized as lawful and considered eligible for all relevant federal benefits on the same terms as other same-sex marriages,” said Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in an unusual video announcement on the Justice Department website. “These families should not be asked to endure uncertainty regarding their status as the litigation unfolds.”

Read more at:


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