Homophobic Roman Catholic bishops’ backlash


This 2008 satiric video is called Headzup: Pope Benedict And The Crime Of Being Gay.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Vatican backtracks on gay tolerance comments after angry reaction from bishops

Vatican claims report is a ‘working document’ – not Church doctrine

Heather Saul

Wednesday 15 October 2014

The Vatican appears to have backtracked on their unprecedented positive comments on homosexuality after a furious reaction from conservative Catholics.

On Monday, Hungarian Cardinal Peter Erdo read out an interim report at the Synod’s General Congregation that declared homosexuals had “gifts and qualities to offer” and even raised the prospect of the Catholic Church recognising the positive aspects of same-sex relationships.

The church, it added, must welcome divorced people and recognise the “positive” aspects of civil marriages and even Catholics who live together without being married.

The document was described as an “earthquake” in the Church’s attitude towards gays and heralded as a “turning point” in policy by Vatican experts.

But on Tuesday, conservative bishops distanced themselves from the document’s remarkable opening toward gays and divorced Catholics, calling it an “unacceptable” deviation from church teaching that does not reflect their views.

The leaders of the bishops’ meeting that produced it have now said it was simply a “working document” and was not intended to be an official statement of church teaching on family life.

Instead, they said it was a reflection of bishops’ views that will be debated and amended before a final version is released on Saturday.

The Holy See press office said bishops had “appreciated” the document but some offered additional reflections “to bring together various points of view.”

‘The bishops called for “prudence” over same-sex relationships so that “the impression of a positive evaluation of such a tendency on the part of the church is not created”.

“The same care was advised with regard to cohabitation,” the Vatican said.

Bishops also suggested the final document highlight faithful Catholic families to avoid “a near-exclusive focus on imperfect family situations”.

“The report, obviously composed under pressure, has easily given rise to some misinterpretation,” British Cardinal Vincent Nichols said Tuesday.

“It is not a doctrinal or decisive document. It is, as stated in its conclusion, ‘intended to raise questions and indicate perspectives that will have to be matured and made clearer on reflection.”‘

Several conservatives who participated in the synod also immediately distanced themselves from the report. The head of the Polish bishops‘ conference, Cardinal Stanislaw Gadecki, called it “unacceptable” and a deviation from church teaching.

American Cardinal Raymond Burke, the head of the Vatican’s Supreme Court, told Catholic World Report that the document contained positions “which many synod Fathers do not accept and, I would say, as faithful shepherds of the flock cannot accept.”

British Islamophobe’s hatred of lesbian rabbi


This video, with Rabbi Elli Tikvah Sarah from England, is called Women in Judaism seminar – Part 1/2.

This video is the sequel.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

What did this lesbian rabbi do to make Julie Burchill mad?

A lesbian Jewish leader says she has endured years of vitriol from the writer renowned for her strident style

Emily Dugan

Friday 26 September 2014

Rabbi Elli Tikvah Sarah had been warned that welcoming one of Britain’s most controversial writers into her synagogue might have its pitfalls.

But when Julie Burchill, who lists “spite” among her hobbies, showed an interest in the Brighton and Hove Progressive Synagogue in spring 2009, the rabbi was keen to give her a chance. “I thought she was a very good writer and I knew she was interested in Jews,” Rabbi Sarah recalls. “I also knew that she was a bit of a loose cannon but… we don’t try to label people.”

Things began well. Burchill attended the Saturday shul regularly and was talking about converting. After a few weeks Rabbi Sarah and her civil partner, Jess Woods, even had the journalist and a friend over for a Shabbat dinner at their home.

But a couple of months later the rabbi got a sharp insight into her new congregant’s views. An email had gone round asking whether people would help with the synagogue’s 75th anniversary celebrations. Burchill replied: “No, because your rabbi respects PIG ISLAM”.

“I could have done a big public exposure,” Rabbi Sarah told The Independent this week. “But what I did was email her and said: ‘Julie, firstly this is deeply, deeply offensive. Both Jews and Muslims don’t eat pig. I don’t know what you’re doing but this is really unacceptable and offensive. I was incredibly polite.”

When this newspaper asked Burchill about the email, she replied: “PIGS AND APES are what some Muslims call Christians and Jews, by the way. Even in school textbooks! Google it.”

Burchill is not Jewish but describes herself as a Philo-Semite,

‘Philo-Semites’ of the Burchill type are basically anti-Semites turned inside out. They want to use Jews as battering ram cannon fodder in their Islamophobic violent crusade fantasies. If Jews don’t want to play along with these delusions, then these Jews become objects of hatred by these ‘Philo-Semites’.

Let us imagine that Islamophobic racists like Burchill succeed in their aim of cleansing all Muslims, supposedly the cause of all problems in Britain, ethnically from the United Kingdom. Then, people would find out there would still be problems. And who would people like Burchill blame for that, now that the Muslims were gone? Wouldn’t they blame ‘the Jews?’

and has become a vociferous defender of Israel. In a book out next month, The Unchosen, she charts her love affair with Judaism – but ends with an acerbic 23-page rant against Rabbi Sarah, whom she dubs “Call-Me-Elli” for her informal style.

In one of many withering put-downs, Burchill writes: “When not boasting about being gay and cool, she was – via the scenic route – boasting about how tolerant she was by ceaselessly ramming the merits of Islam down the collective throats of her captive audience.”

Looking at a copy of the book for the first time, in the home she shares with her partner overlooking the South Downs, Rabbi Sarah is appalled by Burchill’s words. “What do you do about somebody who has such vile attitudes which really stoke Islamophobia?” she asks.

She reads aloud a phrase about her partner Ms Wood, where she is described as “the partner-in-petting during that fateful Shabbat dinner” – and yelps. Burchill makes many more overblown references to the couple’s “canoodling” at the Shabbat dinner and whether it would “turn into a full-on Sapphic free-for-all”.

Rabbi Sarah is mortified. “It’s outrageous. In good faith I invited her into my home. My partner and I – anybody will tell you we’re not like that at all. On Shabbat what you do is greet everyone. Everybody is kissed and she will have been too. If you met my partner – I mean, how were we in our home? We are so not outrageous. We’re so ordinary and boring and middle aged. Do me a favour.”

Burchill’s deconstruction of the meal extends to the drinks the hosts did (and did not) serve, after Burchill brought bottles of champagne. “Surely I started to dislike Call-Me-Elli at the moment she substituted her homebrew for my Veuve Clicquot,” she writes.

For Rabbi Sarah, the critique epitomises the writer’s betrayal of their hospitality. “It’s such an invasion… We served the elderflower [wine] that my partner had actually made,” she says. Burchill is unrepentant, telling The Independent: “I don’t call giving someone home-brewed elderflower filth when they’ve brought two bottles of Bolly ‘hospitality’.”

Rabbi Sarah had tasted public criticism from Burchill before the book came out. In a Jewish Chronicle column in December 2009 the polemicist complained about the rabbi’s sermons, but did not name her. Ms Wood, Rabbi Sarah’s partner, who has an MBE for her charitable work with young LGBT people in Brighton, even took Burchill to the Press Complaints Commission over claims that Christians are persecuted all across the Muslim world. She lost the case because the article was judged to be fair comment.

As one of the first two lesbians to become Rabbis in Britain, 25 years ago, and as a Jewish supporter of a two state solution, Rabbi Sarah is used to being pilloried. But few have made their attacks so personal – or so concerted. Her chief crime, in Burchill’s eyes, was “nagging about the Palestinians” and using “her pulpit to hammer home the joys of Islam”.

The rabbi believes Burchill’s religious views are dangerously simplistic. “The problem is she doesn’t have any in-depth knowledge. I can imagine her endlessly watching the film Exodus with Paul Newman. She’s got a kind of Hollywood view of Jews. You know, ‘Jews are so clever, we’ve survived…’,” she says.

After five years of abuse in print from Burchill, Rabbi Sarah has come to the conclusion that the author is fixated on her. “One has to question Julie Burchill’s psychological motivation,” she says. “Here’s someone who claims she loves Jews who’s actually persecuting an individual Jew. She’s being a persecutor.”

Nazi Unionist violence in Scotland


This video from Scotland is called Nazi-saluting thugs mar No-vote victory celebrations in Glasgow.

By Malcolm Burns in Scotland:

Scotland‘s Yes and No camps hit out at loyalist nazi thugs in Glasgow’s George Square

Monday 22nd september 2014

Activists on both Yes and No sides of the Scottish referendum campaign have slammed the “clearly orchestrated” violence by nazi-saluting loyalist thugs in Glasgow’s George Square on Friday night.

The Union Jack-waving crowd invaded the city’s main square early in the evening and launched attacks against Yes campaigners, including a Glasgow city councillor.

Eleven arrests have been made over the weekend following the shameful scenes and Police Scotland has pledged to track down other perpetrators.

Communist Party of Britain Scottish secretary Tommy Morrison told the Morning Star the violence was “clearly orchestrated by fascist groups” such as the Scottish and English Defence Leagues.

“We know they had members over from Ireland and up from England. They were in George Square in numbers which they just can’t pull together from Scotland.

“They attacked Yes campaigners who were peaceful.

“There has been some ridiculous stuff on social media saying these thugs are the true face of the No campaign — as if two million Scots are allying themselves with the fascists.”

Glasgow councillor Austin Sheridan was subjected to a vicious homophobic attack by a number of the loyalist thugs as he left the city chambers on Friday evening.

Mr Sheridan, SNP councillor for the city’s Baillieston ward, said: “I am shocked and sad — shocked in the sense that they were so aggressive and sad that there are people out there who are so divisive.

“I know fine well the majority of people who voted No will want to distance themselves from this behaviour.”

Conservative attempts to use the No victory to shut Scots out of the British government are a scandal: here.

The life and work of Tony Benn are to be celebrated at a concert in Glasgow, trade unionists revealed yesterday: here.

United States homophobe Scott Lively attacks lesbian Christian musician


This video from Britain is called Vicky Beeching – first TV interview about coming out as gay. August 14th 2014. Channel 4 News.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Anti-gay pastor slammed for berating Vicky Beeching

Saturday 16th August 2014

CAMPAIGNERS slammed a homophobic US pastor who took to TV studios to berate musician Vicky Beeching after she came out as gay.

Church minister and Christian rock star Ms Beeching received widespread support after she disclosed her lesbianism in a newspaper interview. She said she had vowed to come out after suffering an auto-immune disease from the stress of keeping her sexuality a secret.

But on Channel 4 News on Thursday night, she was paired with anti-gay pastor Scott Lively, who told her she had “given in to a lie.”

Stonewall spokesman Richard Lane said: “Scott Lively is a clear demonstration of the huge amount of work left to do to eradicate discrimination against lesbian, gay and bisexual people.

“Lively has proudly boasted about his work to introduce draconian anti-gay Bills in Uganda and Russia. Thankfully, with role models like Vicky Beeching, young people will know that you can be gay and practise your faith. That’s a truly inspirational message.”

A homosexual French Muslim imam is spreading a message of religion and tolerance in Europe. In addition to opening a gay-friendly mosque in Paris, he also recently married a lesbian couple in Sweden: here.

Texas homophobia bigwig’s wife left him for another woman


This video is about Germany in the 1930s and 1940s called Nazi Holocaust – The Forgotten Gay Victims.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Wife of anti-gay group president left him – for another woman

Posted 7 hours ago by Dina Rickman

Meet Jonathan Saenz, devout Catholic and president of American anti-gay group Texas Values.

Under Mr Saenz’s leadership Texas Values has led the fight against equal marriage, while Mr Saenz has suggested gay marriage will lead to people marrying their stepchildren and polygamy. He has also supported gay conversion therapy and suggested LGBT activists want to put Christians in concentration camps.

I have no idea on what Mr Saenz bases this assertion.

I do know about a proposal by a religious Rightist comparable to Mr Saenz to put LGBTQ people in concentration camps; like happeened in Hitler’s Third Reich..

Saenz (no surprise) is a favourite of Fox News, part of the Rupert Murdoch empire.

Now reports have emerged that months before he started the role in early 2012, his wife left him for another women.

According to court records cited by Lone Star Q, Mr Saenz’s ex-wife Corrine Morris Rodriguez Saenz filed from divorce in August 2011. She is said to still be dating Ercilia Paredes, the woman she left him for. The pair share custody of their three children, all of whom are under the age of 10.

Mr Saenz and his attorney did not respond to requests to comment to Lone Star Q. As yet Mr Saenz has not commented publicly on the reports.

MEET THE FIRST ACTIVE GAY DIVISION ONE FOOTBALL PLAYER “Arizona State football player Edward ‘Chip’ Sarafin has publicly come out as gay. The redshirt senior made his announcement in an interview with Compete magazine. The 6’6″, 320-pound backup offensive lineman is believed to be the first active college football player at a Division I program to publicly come out as gay, according to Outsports.” [HuffPost]

Scottish rainbow flags during Commonwealth Games


This video from the USA says about itself:

Lawmaker Proposes LGBT Rainbow Flag Ban in Louisiana

19 July 2013

Andy Naquin, a Republican City-Parish Councilman in Lafayette, Louisiana has proposed a bill that would ban the LGBT rainbow flag.

By Peter Lazenby:

Scotland shows true colours-with solidarity rainbow flag

Wednesday 23rd July 2014

Gesture highlights Commonwealth persecution of LGBT people

THE rainbow flag is be flown on buildings across Scotland in solidarity with persecuted LGBT people in Commonwealth countries.

Trade union offices in Glasgow will fly the flag for the duration of the Commonwealth games, which start today.

The Scottish government will also fly the rainbow flag outside St Andrew’s House for the first time in its history, alongside those of the Commonwealth and Scotland.

STUC general secretary Grahame Smith said: “By flying the rainbow flag, the international symbol of LGBT equality, we aim to recognise the human rights of LGBT people and celebrate the distance that Scotland has come in promoting equality.”

He said the campaign offers a message of hope to LGBT people and a rejection of the anti-homosexuality laws that still exist in 80 per cent of Commonwealth nations.

Forty-two out of 53 Commonwealth countries criminalise homosexuality and LGBT people are at risk of death, imprisonment, harassment and degrading treatment.

“This is simply unacceptable and it is right that we should use our Commonwealth Games to raise awareness and promote a more positive vision of the future for a persecuted minority,” added Mr Smith.

Several councils have also pledged to fly the rainbow flag throughout the campaign.

The public is also being encouraged to support the campaign by sharing images using the hashtag #gamespride on social media site Twitter.

Commonwealth Games cabinet secretary Shona Robison said: “It’s important we reinforce our strong support for and commitment to progressing equality and human rights issues.”

See also here.