Marriage equality in Ireland


This video says about itself:

Marriage Equality: Bring Your Family With You

15 April 2015

Irish LGBT youth and parents coalition call for a Yes vote in the forthcoming marriage equality referendum. The BeLonG To lead coalition call on everyone to talk to their family and friends about why marriage equality is so important and to work for a Yes vote

The coalition includes: Barnardos, Headstrong, Youth Work Ireland, Migrant Rights Centre Ireland, Pavee Point Traveller & Roma Centre, EPIC – Empowering Young People in Care, Children’s Rights Alliance, Childline – ISPCC, Foróige, Loving Our Out Kids, Yes Equality

By Timothy McGrath:

This video will make you wish you could vote for gay marriage in Ireland

April 16, 2015 @ 5:00 PM

In the mood for a feel-good cry? We’ve got your back.

Ireland’s voting next month on whether to legalize same-sex marriage, and BeLonG To Youth, an Irish LGBT group, has just released a campaign ad that seems likely sway people on the fence and get marriage equality supporters to the polls — if they can stop sobbing and holding their loved ones.

Things are looking good for the “Yes” camp. A recent poll by the Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI found that 74 percent were planning to vote to legalize same-sex marriage, while just 26 percent said they were voting “no.”

The referendum, which takes place on May 22, is likely to be a much tighter contest, the Times warns. Conservatives will ramp up their campaigning in the final weeks, and current poll numbers could be skewed if some opponents of gay marriage have been reluctant to share their true opinion with an unknown pollster.

There’s also the question of demographics. Support for marriage equality in Ireland — like in many Western countries — is strongest among young people and weakest among elders. The same Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI found that 85 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 24 supported legalization, and only 10 percent said they were against it. The gap narrows as the people surveyed get older and flips once respondents are 65 or older. They plan to vote “no” by a margin of 43 percent to 37 percent, with 14 percent undecided and 5 percent saying they won’t vote at all.

That explains why the theme of BeLonG To Youth’s ad is simple. Young people: Bring your older family members to the polls.

If it works, and the referendum passes in Ireland, it will be the first time in history that a country has legalized same-sex marriage through a popular vote.

That’s a huge deal.

An Irish Pastor has defended making the comparison between homosexuality and rape, as well as adultery. Pastor Craig Ledbetter of the Bible Baptist Church in Ballincollig, in Cork, made the comments to the Irish Examiner in an interview regarding the build-up to the marriage equality referendum taking place on May 22: here.

One step towards LGBTQ equality in Chile


This video from Venezuela about Chile says about itself:

14 April 2015

On Monday Chilean President Michele Bachelet signed a law legalizing civil unions for both straight and same-sex couples. The measure, initially proposed in 2003, is expected to benefit 2 million Chileans. Although the law falls short of authorizing same-sex marriage, it was nonetheless praised as a step forward by LGBT activists.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Chile: Civil unions recognised after Bachelet signs law

Wednesday 15th April 2015

PRESIDENT Michelle Bachelet signed into law a long-awaited Bill recognising civil unions for same-sex and opposite-sex couples on Monday.

“We are saying this is a concrete step forward in the path toward ending the differences between homosexual and heterosexual couples,” she said.

She added that she saw this as “a vindication of the struggle for sexual diversity rights.”

Ms Bachelet was joined at the ceremony by LGBT advocacy groups such as the Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation that were praised by the president for their leadership and advocacy work.

“Today is a historic day for social diversity. For the first time the state recognises that there isn’t just one way to build a family,” said the movement.

Communist Party MP Karol Cariola tweeted: “With this law the country recognises the existence of families with same-sex parents.”

An estimated 2 million cohabiting couples may benefit from this new law.

See also here.

Reggae musician Mista Majah P against homophobia


This reggae music video says about itself:

Maverick Mista Majah P “Closet Is Open” LGBT Community Music Video

13 October 2013

Maverick Mista Majah P breaking the taboo in reggae, telling gays that it is OK to be yourself, no more hiding, come out of the closet, be who you are, be happy.

By Will Stone in Britain:

Reggae star’s LGBT rights stand hailed

Friday 10th April 2015

A JAMAICAN singer was hailed by LGBT rights activists yesterday for his lone voice attacking the homophobic “murder music” of his reggae peers through song.

Mista Majah P has relaunched a two-part music video for [his] single Karma, which attacks the homophobic songs of top dancehall singers like Bounty Killer and Buju Banton.

Many artists in the genre are notorious for their anti-gay lyrics and beliefs, with Shabba Ranks infamous for once stating that LGBT people should be crucified.

Majah P’s music turns the tables on them with lyrics warning that they will reap the hate and violence they sow and suggesting that they could be homosexual themselves, uncomfortable with their own sexuality.

His lyrics have also appealed to parents not to reject their LGBT children, spoken out against gay bullying and in support of same-sex marriage and adoption rights.

Human rights lobbyist Peter Tatchell said: “Such lyrics are unprecedented in the hard-man world of Jamaican reggae and dancehall music, where eight of the best known performers have, for over a decade, made homophobic murder music a staple part of their repertoire — variously inciting and glorifying the shooting, burning, hanging and drowning of LGBT people.”

Since releasing his pro-gay music, California-based Majah P has received numerous death threats and has been warned to not return to Jamaica.

He said: “As long as there are homophobic people, hatred, bigotry, death and no equal rights for the LGBT community I will continue to use my talent and speak out about injustice.

“I’m seeking to challenge ignorance and reach out to gay people.”

He is working on [his] third album Gays Belong In Heaven Too.

This music video from Italy says about itself:

For the first time in Italy, reggae music takes a stance against homophobia. Luciano and The Jah Messenjah Band came out in support of gay rights and the 2009 national LGBT Gay Pride to be held in Genova, Italy on 27 June 2009. The concert took place on the international day against homophobia (17 May) drawing a crowd of 3-500 revellers. Special guest: Carrol Thompson.

USA: Hateful Bigot Mike Huckabee Totally Fails At Basic Civics In Long, Idiotic, Anti-Gay Rant: here.

Nigerian lesbian refugee deported from Britain?


This video from Britain says about itself:

Interview with Aderonke Apata

11 April 2014

Former Yarl’s Wood detainee Aderonke Apata discusses the traumas of the British Immigration system.

Interview: Emma Jean Pittarides

Camera: Ralph Pritchard

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Nigerian gay rights activist has her High Court asylum bid rejected – because judge doesn’t believe she is lesbian

Aderonke Apata was so desperate to convince the Government she was gay that she submitted a private DVD and photographs of her sex life as evidence

Emily Duggan

Friday 03 April 2015

A Nigerian gays right activist who fears imprisonment and death because of her sexuality has had her case for asylum rejected by the High Court – after a judge ruled that she was pretending to be lesbian.

Aderonke Apata was so desperate to convince the Government she was gay that she submitted a private DVD and photographs of her sex life as evidence. Yet a High Court judge has ruled that she engaged in same sex relationships in order to “fabricate” an asylum claim.

Ms Apata, 47, came to Britain in 2004 and has won awards for her gay-rights campaigning. She is engaged to her long-term partner Happiness Agboro, also from Nigeria, who has already been granted asylum in the UK based on her sexuality. …

The judge acknowledged petitions signed by several hundred thousand people supporting her case – and her considerable support from LGBT activists in court – but said “I do not think that can amount to evidence as opposed to opinion and support (although that support is very impressive).”

Judge Bowers did not accept a controversial Home Office argument that Ms Apata could not be gay because she had previously had children and heterosexual relationships. Nevertheless, he agreed with the Government’s assessment that she could not be considered part of the ‘particular social group’ known as lesbians.

Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, who was in court to support Ms Apata, said of the ruling: “It’s bizarre that the judge does not accept that Aderonke is a member of a particular social group, namely lesbian women. I find it offensive to suggest that she’s adopted the ‘customs, dress and mores’ of lesbian women purely in order to gain refugee status, given the evidence that she’s presented in her claim.

“The worst aspect of the ruling is the judge doesn’t accept that she has a well founded fear of persecution if she returns to Nigeria. It’s clear that she’s been publicly identified in the UK and in Nigeria as a lesbian or bisexual woman. Such women face the twin threats of legal persecution and mob violence in Nigeria.” …

Ms Apata is frightened of what will happen next but believes there may be further legal avenues for her to pursue. She did not want to risk damaging a future case by commenting publicly on the ruling.

Ms Apata was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress in 2005 and attempted suicide when she was in prison facing deportation. Her mental health formed part of the case.

Homosexuality is punishable by up to 14 years in prison in Nigeria under laws passed in January 2014 and there has been a spike in violence against gay people.

‘Kill the gays bill’, after Uganda, the USA?


This video from the USA says about itself:

Jeff Sharlett, author of “The Family” and Rachel Maddow discuss the secretive Republican “C Street House” run by a bizarre conservative Christian group.

As an addition to the earlier post on this blog about United States Christian fundamentalists The Family, also known as The Fellowship; from Dutch daily NRC Handelsblad, 6 February 2010, paper edition, page 4, article “Het geheime netwerk van Christus” (Christ’s secret network):

Asked about the recent affair in Uganda, where Family activists have proposed the death penalty for homosexuals, Stephen Haines

son of Family leader Wallace E. Haines jr.

says: “My father probably would have supported that. He always felt very strongly that gays should be punished.”

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

To counter the ‘kill the gays‘ proposal, an activist in California has proposed an ‘Intolerant Jackass Act’

Posted 2 hours ago by Evan Bartlett

This week we reported on the unfathomable news that a Californian lawyer had proposed a bill that would legalise the murder of lesbian and gay people in the state by “bullets to the head”.

Somehow, the Sodomite Suppression Act will actually be put to a signature-gathering stage because under Californian law, anyone who pays a $200 (£134) fee can put forward legislation without it being blocked by the attorney general.

In the unlikely event that Matt McLaughlin’s proposal gathers 365,880 signatures, it will be put to a ballot in November.

However, in much cheerier news, utilising the same loophole, a former politician and community activist plans to propose the Intolerant Jackass Act which brilliantly skewers the original.

The bill proposes that anyone found guilty of suggesting an act to kill gay people “shall be required to attend sensitivity training for at least three (3) hours per month for twelve (12) consecutive months. In addition, the offender or ‘Intolerant Jackass’ must donate $5,000 (£3,367) to a pro-gay or pro-lesbian organization”.

Speaking to Slate, Charlotte Laws explained that although she doesn’t necessarily expect her counter-bill to be passed, she decided she had to “fight fire with fire”.

“The only way to counter [the Sodomite Suppression Act] is… to let people know that most people in California don’t agree with something as incendiary and hateful as what this one attorney proposed.

We have a very open-minded state and country. This is one guy, and there are millions of us who do not agree with this.”

Charlotte Laws, activist and former politician