United States religious fundamentalist’s half-retraction of ‘stone gays’ advocacy


This video from the USA says about itself:

Stone Gays To Death Or Risk God’s Wrath, Says GOP Candidate

16 June 2014

“Scott Esk, a Republican candidate for the Oklahoma state house, endorsed stoning gay people to death last year in a comment thread on Facebook.

By David Edwards in the USA:

Bob Jones apologizes 35 years after saying gays should be ‘stoned’ — still calls them ‘sinners

22 March 2015 at 10:09 ET

Bob Jones III, chancellor of Bob Jones University, shocked LGBT activists by apologizing for anti-gay comments that he made 35 years ago.

Bob Jones University is a fundamentalist Protestant organisation, (in-)famous inter alia for denying evolution science, for racism, etc. Similar in many respect to the self-styled ‘Liberty University’, founded by Bob Jones’ colleague fundamentalist preacher Jerry Fallwell; an institution where President Obama’s Democratic Party is banned.

In 1980, Jones made the remarks to the Associated Press while he and other fundamentalist Christian pastors were visiting the White House to oppose equal rights for LGBT people.

“I’m sure this will be greatly misquoted,” Jones told the AP. “But it would not be a bad idea to bring the swift justice today that was brought in Israel’s day against murder and rape and homosexuality. I guarantee it would solve the problem post-haste if homosexuals were stoned, if murderers were immediately killed as the Bible commands.”

His comments were recently in the news again when authors of a 3-year-old Change.org petition noted that Jones had still not apologized.

Over the weekend, Jones shocked activists by finally apologizing for the comments.

“I take personal ownership of this inflammatory rhetoric. This reckless statement was made in the heat of a political controversy 35 years ago,” Jones said in a statement. “Upon now reading these long-forgotten words, they seem to me as words belonging to a total stranger—were my name not attached.”

“I cannot erase them, but wish I could, because they do not represent the belief of my heart or the content of my preaching. Neither before, nor since, that event in 1980 have I ever advocated the stoning of sinners,” he added.

BJ Unity Executive Director Jeffrey Hoffman told WSPA that the apology was shocking.

“It is never too late to say you’re sorry,” Hoffman said. “Most people are just shocked. We never expected to see an apology.”

But he pointed out that the apology was only a first step because LGBT people were still struggling for equality in South Carolina, where Bob Jones University is located.

“It’s been the Gays versus the Christians, which ignores and erases a large number of Gay Christians who live in the upstate of South Carolina,” Hoffman explained. “We think that this is the time to start to talk about how to make Bob Jones University safer for its LGBT students.”

British governmental homophobia against lesbian refugee


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 @RalphPritchard

End quote from Open Democracy.

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children

The Home Office has been accused of ‘highly offensive’ views

Emily Dugan

Tuesday 03 March 2015

The Home Office was accused of relying on “highly offensive” and “outdated” views of sexuality to reject an asylum claim made by a Nigerian lesbian.

Aderonke Apata, who fears imprisonment and death because of her sexuality, appeared in London’s High Court to challenge the Home Office’s refusal to grant her asylum in Britain. Ms Apata, who came to Britain in 2004 and has won awards for her gay-rights campaigning, is so desperate to convince the Government of her sexuality that she has submitted a DVD and photographs of her sex life as evidence.

But the Home Office argues that Ms Apata could not be considered a lesbian because she has children and has previously been in heterosexual relationships. Ms Apata’s barrister, Abid Mahmood, said these were “highly offensive… stereotypical views of the past”.

He told the hearing: “Some members of the public may have those views but it doesn’t mean a government department should be putting these views forward in evidence.”

The Home Secretary’s barrister, Andrew Bird, argued that Ms Apata was “not part of the social group known as lesbians” but had “indulged in same-sex activity”. He continued: “You can’t be a heterosexual one day and a lesbian the next day. Just as you can’t change your race.”

Holding hands with her wife-to-be Happiness Agboro in court yesterday, Ms Apata, 47, was surrounded by dozens of gay-rights activists.

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.

Mr Mahmood said the Home Secretary recently referred in court papers to Ms Apata’s case being “a publicity stunt” and had a closed mind. He said: “There is evidence of the genuineness of her case, that she will be picked out as a lesbian if she is returned.”

Ms Apata was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress in 2005 and attempted suicide when she was in prison facing deportation. Her fragile mental health forms part of the case that she would suffer if returned to Nigeria.

Deputy High Court judge John Bowers QC is expected to hand down a ruling by the end of the month.

Speaking after the hearing, Ms Apata said: “The Home Office has treated me badly from day one. Staying in Britain means staying safe, staying with my partner and continuing my campaigning.”

USA: ALABAMA SUPREME COURT BLOCKS SAME SEX MARRIAGES The highest court in Alabama ordered the end of same sex marriage licenses in the state after an extensive battle in the state’s courts. A federal judge had ruled the state’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional in January, but probate court judges had refused to cooperate with the ruling. [Sam Levine, HuffPost]

Chelsea Manning will write for The Guardian


This video from the USA says about itself:

Ann Wright on Chelsea Manning Being Sentenced to 35 Years in Prison

23 August 2013

Ann Wright speaks to The Real News in an exclusive interview responding to Wikileaks Whistleblower Chelsea Manning being sentenced to 35 years in prison.

By Jackson Connor in the USA:

Chelsea Manning To Join The Guardian U.S. As Contributing Opinion Writer

02/10/2015 3:48 pm EST Updated: 1 hour ago

The Guardian U.S. has hired Chelsea Manning as a contributing opinion writer covering war, gender and freedom of information, Katharine Viner, the publication’s editor-in-chief, announced Tuesday via Twitter.

Currently serving a 35-year sentence in federal prison for supplying thousands of classified military documents to WikiLeaks, Manning — who was once known as Bradley — has written on such topics before. In December, she penned an essay for The Guardian titled “I am a transgender woman and the government is denying my civil rights,” and in June she wrote a piece for The New York Times blasting the U.S. government for keeping information from the American people.

“I believe that the current limits on press freedom and excessive government secrecy make it impossible for Americans to grasp fully what is happening in the wars we finance,” Manning wrote for The Times.

According to Politico, Manning will write her pieces for The Guardian U.S. from Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas and will not be paid for her work.