Friday
April 13, 2007
SGN.org
Volume 35
Issue 15
 
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Rex Wockner
International News
MOSCOW SPOKESMAN: 'AGGRESSIVE' GAYS 'PLAY WITH FIRE'
Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov's press secretary, Sergei Tsoi, said April 6 that activists planning to stage a Gay pride parade May 27 are "aggressive" and "play with fire."

The Gay community's "most aggressive members try to impose their convictions on millions of Moscow citizens who deny their lifestyle," Tsoi told the daily newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets.

"They play with fire. That's their aggressive nature," he said. "If they disregard [local court rulings upholding Luzhkov's ban on Gay parades], they will assume overall responsibility for all possible consequences -- and it is dreadful to predict what they may be."

Last year's ban led organizers to replace the first pride parade with attempts to lay flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and hold a rally across from City Hall. Participants in both small events were violently attacked by neofascists, skinheads, Christians and riot police.

Organizers have filed suit in the European Court of Human Rights over the ban, seeking a determination of their right to march and $26,000 in damages.

Speaking in London in February, at a press conference with the openly Gay mayors of Berlin and Paris, Luzhkov said: "I am not going to allow the Gay parade. ... [T]hrough the Gay parade you promote some uncertain people and it becomes an invitation to acquire this quality of the sexual minorities. [It is saying that] this is OK, that's normal, this is useful. Our view is that it is wrong and unusual. Let the Gay people do what they do, but they shouldn't involve other citizens of our country."

Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoƫ responded: "Yuri! You do not become homosexual, there is no risk of propaganda. This is not a disease you catch at some point. ... Some of us have brown skin, some of us have fair skin, some of us have brown eyes, some of us have blue eyes. We are born heterosexual or homosexual. And that's it."

At the end of the London press conference, Tsoi attacked Moscow Pride organizer Nikolai Alekseev, who also is a journalist and was standing in the front row holding a "Moscow Pride" sign.

Tsoi tried to snatch away the sign and the two men scuffled. Alekseev later filed a complaint with London police.

Meanwhile, on March 30, Tsoi's wife, pop singer Anita Tsoi, told Moskovsky Komsomolets that she loves to sing in Gay clubs and that Gay people are normal.

"Among Gay people, I know lots of nice and serious guys," she said. "They have good jobs, they have normal positions in different professional domains. And they don't look like monsters. And privacy is a personal matter."



She also said she might attend the Gay pride parade. "If it takes place, perhaps I will," Anita Tsoi said. "But currently, as I see, it is not very likely now. The point is, everyone has to be safe. Although I think the more brilliant, exciting and interesting life is, the more joyful it is -- especially now, when life is quite dull and severe. I am lady-show and love all funny and positive things."

AMNESTY: HONDURAN GAY ACTIVIST BEATEN, RAPED
Honduran Gay activist Donny Reyes was beaten by police and raped by fellow detainees at a police station on March 18, according to Amnesty International.

The organization said Reyes, treasurer of the Rainbow LGTB Association, was arbitrarily grabbed from a taxi stand by police in Tegucigalpa and kept for six hours in a cell where other detainees, egged on by a policeman, repeatedly sexually assaulted him.

"Look, I'm bringing you a little princess, you know what to do," the officer said, according to Amnesty.

Another of the six officers who took Reyes into custody told him, "We have to disappear these Queers from here." Since then, Amnesty said, police have attempted to intimidate Reyes by parking outside the association's office.

"He, and other members of the organization he heads, may be in grave danger," the organization said.

"Attacks against LGBT people in Honduras are a scourge the police should confront -- yet the police are part of the problem," said Ariel Herrera of Amnesty International USA's OUTfront Program.

DISTRESS OVER UKRAINE'S EUROVISION ENTRY
Ukrainian nationalists are protesting the nation's official entry in the Eurovision Song Contest -- a single by drag queen Verka Serdyuchka.

They demonstrated in several cities April 1, calling for Ukraine to withdraw from the wildly popular pan-European extravaganza.

Serdyuchka lampoons rural Ukrainian women. Although sometimes vulgar, she is a cult icon with a diverse fan base. Her selection by public vote as Ukraine's Eurovision entry was a landslide.

Serdyuchka also is popular elsewhere in the former Soviet Union.

GAYS ATTACKED AT JAMAICAN CARNIVAL
Three Jamaican Gay men were attacked by a mob at Montego Bay's MoBay Nite Out carnival event April 2, The Jamaica Observer reported.

The men, one of whom was hospitalized, angered other attendees when they took to a stage and gyrated on each other, the newspaper said.

The crowd threw rocks and bottles at the men and, when the men returned fire, the crowd lunged for them, chased them down and beat them.

The attack follows a Feb. 14 incident in which a mob surrounded a pharmacy in Kingston and demanded that four Gay men inside come out and face punishment for being homosexuals. The crowd formed after another shopper took exception to the men's presence and began screaming that "battymen," or faggots, must be killed.

Police fired tear gas into that crowd of 200 and rescued the men, one of whom was hit in the head with a rock while being escorted to a police vehicle. But after removing the men from the scene, officers disparaged them en route to, and at, the police station, according to the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays.

One of the rescued men, J-FLAG leader Gareth Williams, said officers hit him in the head and struck him in the stomach with a rifle.

CHIEF ITALIAN BISHOP'S CATHEDRAL DEFACED
Someone spray-painted "Shame On You Bagnasco" on the Roman Catholic cathedral in Genoa, Italy, on April 2 after Archbishop Angelo Bagnasco, head of the Italian Conference of Catholic Bishops, likened Gay relationships to incest and pedophilia.

"Why say 'no' to forms of legally recognized cohabitation which create alternatives to the family?" he asked. "Why say 'no' to incest? Why say 'no' to the pedophile party in Holland?"

The remarks came shortly after the bishops conference instructed Catholic members of Parliament to vote against Italy's pending civil-union legislation.

Reports said Bagnasco is now traveling with a police escort for fear that angry Gays might attack his person in addition to his cathedral.
Quote / Unquote

"I will not be rendering judgment about individual orientation. I do believe the 'don't ask, don't tell' policy is good policy."
--President George W. Bush when FOX News Channel correspondent Bret Baier asked at an April 3 press conference: "Since General Pace made his comments that got a lot of attention about homosexuality, we haven't heard from you on that issue. Do you, sir, believe that homosexuality is immoral?"

"Well, I think traditionally these have been issues that have been managed or regulated by the states, and that's the way I think it ought to be. I think each state ought to have the capacity to decide how they want to handle those issues. Obviously we love our daughters, both of them, Liz and Mary, very much. I'm delighted I'm about to be a grandparent for the sixth time. I'm looking forward to the arrival of a new grandson. And I obviously think it's important for us as a society to be tolerant and respectful of whatever arrangements people enter into."
--U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney when asked by ABC Radio News April 4: "You are about to have a grandchild born next month ... into a [Lesbian] family that won't necessarily have the same legal standing in every state. [S]hould there be changes, legal changes in some of the laws around the country to better provide for a family?"

"I think there are four kinds of Gays in Hollywood. There's the openly Gay; the Gay and everybody knows it but nobody talks about it; the married, closeted Gay who doesn't talk about it; and the screaming 'I'll sue you if you say I'm Gay' person. In other words, the no closet, the glass closet, the cast iron closet, and the closet you get buried in."
--Howard Bragman, CEO of the PR firm Fifteen Minutes, to Out magazine, May issue.

"Anderson Cooper has finessed it where straight women who have a crush on him think he's straight and Gay men actually think he's out."
--Writer and outing inventor Michelangelo Signorile to Out magazine, May issue.

"We need all the Anderson Coopers to come out. Besides, he's real cute, and I hear he wants a boyfriend very bad. And he can't get one being in the closet."
--Writer and activist Larry Kramer to New York's Daily News, April 6.

"I don't out anyone, people out themselves, it's a choice. I report on the private lives of public figures who make a choice to live their lives in the public eye. I don't believe in discrimination so I'm going to treat everyone the same, Gay or straight, out or not."
--Blogger Perez Hilton to London's Pink Paper, March 22.

"These blogs where people say that a celebrity is Gay actually took the sting out of saying a celebrity is Gay. When I outed people (and I was one of the very few doing so), they called it a smear campaign. No one does that now."
--Village Voice columnist Michael Musto to Windy City Times, March 21.

"I was around when the very first wave of AIDS hit us; it was like a tsunami, and the government wasn't even addressing it. Gay men and women came together to kick ass like I'd never seen. That was an exciting time."
--Village Voice columnist Michael Musto to Windy City Times, March 21.

"Many awards were given to the mainstream media for their positive coverage of the GLBT community. They respond well to awards. Just as GLAAD has reached out to the huge Hispanic viewing media, I hope soon they will reach out to the Gay media which is more a part of the mainstream than ever before."
--Comedian Kate Clinton reporting from the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Media Awards in New York City, in a March 28 column at The Huffington Post. GLAAD prohibits Gay media from submitting entries for the awards, arguing that the organization's mission is to improve the "mainstream" media.

"They [Gay newspapers] are becoming more like mainstream media and, in that sense, they are less necessary. They have cheapened themselves out of a role to a large extent. What they ought to be doing is investing resources in producing quality writing, investigative reporting, long features -- real writing that isn't otherwise available."
--Larry Gross, director of the University of Southern California Annenberg School of Communication, commenting on the Gay press' use of mainstream wire copy from the Associated Press, to the San Diego Union-Tribune, April 5.

"Yes, I do [think I'd be open to having a woman as a lover]. I don't know how you describe me then. I think there are some things I could say that are not politically correct, but I have to say that it definitely would be a possibility, depending on the person."
--Actress Cybill Shepherd to the D.C. Gay magazine Metro Weekly, March 22.

"I marched on Washington in a major Gay and Lesbian march. The Human Rights Campaign sponsored me, and when I got there I said, 'I want to be in that first row and carry the banner,' and they said, 'I'm sorry, unless you're Gay or Lesbian, we're not going to let you carry it. Because the people who've worked so hard, they deserve to carry it.' I took issue with that. I said, 'I don't know why you'd have to be Gay and Lesbian to lead the march and carry the banner. It is an equal investment for anyone, regardless of what their orientation is or whatever you want to call it.' I said, 'Would Martin Luther King not have let me march with him because my skin was white? I don't see any difference in the issue.' It's about bigotry and hatred."
--Actress Cybill Shepherd to the D.C. Gay magazine Metro Weekly, March 22. Organizers relented and let her help hold the lead banner.

"[Sara Switzer is] no nonsense, tough as nails -- a real ball-buster chick. It's really good because she doesn't go to those weepy places and she doesn't like it and I really think that has been the key to the success of our relationship."
--Comedian and actress Sandra Bernhard to the Palm Springs Gay magazine The Bottom Line, March 30.

"America is my second home. I slept with half of it and came out HIV negative. I'm a lucky, lucky person."
--From a list of Elton John's 60 "most memorable quotes" published March 24 by the British newspaper The Sun to celebrate Elton's 60th birthday.

"In hotels I use names like Binky Poodleclip and Sir Horace Pussy."
--From a list of Elton John's 60 "most memorable quotes" published March 24 by the British newspaper The Sun to celebrate Elton's 60th birthday.

"I'm a mad shredder. I get these Bibles sent to me saying 'Repent now' and I shred them."
--From a list of Elton John's 60 "most memorable quotes" published March 24 by the British newspaper The Sun to celebrate Elton's 60th birthday.

"What I learned when I first met Hillary, and what I know now, is that she is qualified to lead this country. As a young woman, mother, advocate, First Lady and Senator she has continually shown us she is passionate about improving family issues, healthcare, equal pay and the challenges that people all across this nation face on a daily basis. Hillary and I both believe strongly in equal rights and opportunities for all people. She is a winner and I am standing beside her because she has the vision, the drive and the knowledge to lead this country."
--Lesbian tennis great Billie Jean King in a March 28 statement.

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