Homophobic mayor in Venice, Italy

This 2014 video is called Homophobia as seen by youth in Italy.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

New Mayor of Venice Luigi Brugnaro bans books about homosexuality from city schools

Certain books are being collected by authorities so they can “verify” they are suitable for young children

Doug Bolton

Thursday 09 July 2015

Venice‘s new mayor has been heavily criticised for his decision to ban books dealing with homosexuality from the city’s schools.

Mayor Luigi Brugnaro has banned a total of 49 books covering homosexuality and discrimination from schools, fulfilling one of his campaign promises.

Books banned include a French book titled ‘Jean Has Two Mums’, a story of a wolf family where the cub has two mothers.

Brugnaro has defended himself, saying he will “not be intimidated” by the criticism, which has taken the form of groups organising public readings of the banned books, and public libraries actively encouraging visitors to read them.

He added: “Parents need to educate their children on these things, not schools.”

According to a statement posted on Brugnaro’s website, authorities have collected all the books in question from across the city’s schools, and will “verify” them to make sure they are “suitable for preschoolers”.

Books that deal with religious, racial or disability-related discrimination have been collected by authorities for analysis, but the statement says they will “certainly be redistributed” at some point.

However, he said that books that deal with homosexuality may be kept out of school libraries for good.

The Mayor’s statement criticised the “cultural arrogance” of previous administrations, that have introduced the banned books into schools “without asking anything to anyone, especially to families.”

Any type of same-sex union, whether civil partnership or full marriage, is not recognised in Italy and unobtainable in the country.

For years there has been a push to make the government introduce civil unions, a cause that has received a boost recently following the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Ireland and the USA.

However, it has been met by a backlash from other groups, who see an introduction of same-sex unions as an affront to traditional Italian values.

The Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, supports the cause, and Italy’s senate is currently looking a a bill which Renzi hopes will allow same-sex partnerships by the end of July.

Little girl stops fundamentalist hate preacher

This video from the USA says about itself:

1st Grader Backs Down Homophobe Street Preacher

29 June 2015

Zea faces down a fire and brimstone street preacher, at a festival in Columbus, the day after the SCOTUS marriage equality ruling.

Comfest is a family-friendly, free, community music festival.

This was not a march, or a political event. The preacher was accosting festival goers, including other families with children. His rhetoric, before being confronted by a small girl, was graphic, and bigoted. He was escorted out by police a short time later. Zea was not there to protest. She volunteers at Comfest every year, and was on her way to spend her volunteer tokens on pizza.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with simple pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture

The incident has since been turned into a T-shirt

Adam Withnall

Wednesday 01 July 2015

A seven-year-old girl has inspired hundreds of thousands of people and been immportalised in a T-shirt after she confronted a hate preacher with a simple pro-LGBT gesture.

In an incident captured on camera by her father at a community festival in Ohio, Zea Bowling can be seen silently holding up a rainbow flag to a preacher yelling about “sodomy and brimstone”.

Ryan Bowling, Zea’s father, said he had told her about the US Supreme Court‘s majority decision to uphold same-sex marriage the day before.

And he said that when she heard the preacher, she “was shocked as to why he would bother to come to [the community festival] just to be so mean”.

In the video, people can be heared cheering on Zea as she confronts the preacher, and other onlookers approach to give her a high-five.

Mr Bowling said the preacher was “visibly deflated when he saw her coming”, and he can be seen turning away during the video.

The moment has been viewed more than 200,000 times since footage was uploaded by Mr Bowling, and he told Raw Story the crowd at the time had been “passionately on her side, right away, shockingly so”.

“People actually cried. I almost didn’t film it. It was pretty powerful, and I was trying not to be in my phone. Somebody I didn’t know sniffled pretty loudly, and I realized I might be missing something kind of important.”

Mr Bowling has since provided a link underneath the video to an Ohio clothing maker who has turned the viral moment into a T-shirt.

Designed by Zachary Traxler and adorned with the text of the 14th Amendment, proceeds will go towards Zea’s family and an LGBT charity.

Turkish Pride march attacked by police

AFP photo: Two gay men kiss during the Transgender Pride march along Istikbal Avenue in Istanbul, on June 21, 2015

From AFP news agency:

28 June 2015 – 17H25

Riot police use teargas, water cannon to stop Istanbul Gay Pride


Riot police in Istanbul used teargas and water cannon to disperse thousands of participants in the Gay Pride parade in the Turkish city, an AFP reporter said.

Police took action against the crowd when demonstrators began shouting slogans accusing the social conservative President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of “fascism“.

A look at how gay pride is celebrated around the world: here.

In Budapest, LGBT Pride Behind the Police Barricades: here.

THE world’s major cities were painted all the colours of the rainbow at the weekend as millions of people marched in gay pride parades: here.

Gay Pride and homophobia in Latvia

This video says about itself:

Craziness in Latvia

A short video on the crazed, feces-throwing mob that met a Gay Pride event in Latvia, July 22, 2006.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Latvia: Riga government urged to back Gay Pride celebration

Thursday 18th June 2015

GAY RIGHTS activists called on the Latvian government yesterday to come out in support of an international Gay Pride march in the capital Riga this weekend.

EuroPride, which celebrates the rights of LGBT people in a different European city every year, will be held in the Latvian capital on Saturday at the end of a week-long festival that began on June 15.

While EuroPride organisers say law enforcement authorities have been very co-operative, the Latvian government has failed to welcome the event.

When asked about it last December, Latvian President Andris Berzins stated that “homosexuality should not be advertised and imposed.”

In 2005, a gay pride march in Riga was marred by violence and hostility, as 70 activists defied more than a thousand homophobic counter-protesters who tried to block the march, used tear gas and threw eggs at the marchers.

Homophobic bishops quit in child abuse cover-up scandal

This video from the USA says about itself:

Minnesota Archbishop John Nienstedt Claims Satan Behind Gay Marriage

16 September 2013

Fornicators beware: sodomy, condoms and pornography are the work of the devil.

That’s the message of a speech posted online last week by the Catholic Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis, John C. Nienstedt. A controversial religious leader with a stridently anti-gay stance, Nienstedt originally made the comments while speaking to the conservative Napa Institute Conference on August 2. The speech detailed the importance of family, as well as the devil’s multiple attempts to weaken the institution of heterosexual marriage.

“Today, many evil forces have set their sights on the dissolution of marriage and the debasing of family life,” Nienstedt said. “Sodomy, abortion, contraception, pornography, the redefinition of marriage, and the denial of objective truth are just some of the forces threatening the stability of our civilization. The source of these machinations is none other than the Father of Lies. Satan knows all too well the value that the family contributes to the fabric of a good solid society, as well as the future of God’s work on earth.”

In Nienstedt’s opinion of course, “family” means specifically a union “comprised of one man and one woman.” Delivered one day after Minnesota began issuing same-sex marriage licenses, the Napa Institute speech is consistent with the archbishop’s public statements condemning gay marriage, notes The New Civil Rights Movement.

Voted Minneapolis blog City Pages’ Best Villain of the Twin Cities in 2013, Nienstedt has “used his position to bully proponents and demonize fellow Catholics who disagreed with him,” wrote the blog’s Jesse Marx. “He donated more than $650,000 of church money to the anti-gay-marriage cause.”

In October of 2012, Nienstedt found himself at the center of a similar controversy when a letter he wrote surfaced in which he tells the mother a young gay man that she must reject her son or go to hell herself.

“I write to inform you that the teaching of the Catholic Church on homosexuality, as described in paragraphs 2357 and 2358 and 2359 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church is rooted in Scripture and based on the Natural Moral Law,” Nienstedt wrote, according to ThinkProgress. “Catholics are bound in conscience to believe this teaching. Those who do not cannot consider themselves to be Catholic and ought not to participate in the sacramental life of the Church… Your eternal salvation may well depend upon a conversation of heart on this topic.”

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Senior US bishops quit after ignoring child sexual abuse

Tuesday 16th June 2015

TWO senior US Catholic bishops quit yesterday after failing to stop child abuse and a former church envoy to the Dominican Republic was charged with paedophilia.

The Vatican announced that Pope Francis had accepted the resignations of archbishop John Nienstedt and auxiliary bishop Lee Anthony Piche of the Archdiocese of St Paul and Minneapolis.

Local prosecutors had charged the archdiocese itself with having “turned a blind eye” to repeated reports of inappropriate behaviour by a priest who was later convicted of molesting two boys.

Curtis Wehmeyer, a former priest at Church of the Blessed Sacrament in St Paul, is serving a five-year sentence and faces prosecution for offenses involving a third boy in Wisconsin.

Prosecutors said that church leaders had failed to respond to “numerous and repeated reports of troubling conduct” by Mr Wehmeyer from the time he entered a seminary until he was removed from the priesthood this year.

Canon law allows the two bishops to resign before retirement age if illness or some other “grave” reason makes them unfit for office.

The resignations of Mr Nienstedt and Mr Piche came just days after the Pope approved the creation of a new Vatican tribunal to hear cases of bishops who had ignored abuse by priests.

In April, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of US bishop Robert Finn, who had been convicted in a US court of failing to report a suspected child abuser.

The church also announced yesterday that former papal nuncio to the Dominican Republic Jozef Wesolowski had been charged with abusing young boys and possessing child pornography.

Mr Wesolowski was recalled by the Holy See in 2013 after rumours surfaced in Santo Domingo that he paid shoeshine boys to masturbate.

He has since been defrocked and placed under a form of house arrest inside Vatican City pending a decision by the Vatican criminal court on whether to charge him.

Ordained both as a priest and a bishop by late pope John Paul II, Mr Wesolowski is the highest-ranking Vatican official to have been charged with sex offences.

Archbishop Nienstedt resigns after sex abuse coverup charges against archdiocese: here. See also here.