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Gay Marriage Anthem 'Marry Me' Advances to Finals of Eurovision Song Contest: VIDEO

Marryme_eurovision

Finland's entry in the Eurovision Song Contest, "Marry Me" by Krista Siegfrids, has become a gay marriage anthem and advanced to the finals last night with a performance that featured a big wet woman-on-woman kiss.

Check it out as well as a Euronews report on the finalists, AFTER THE JUMP...

Radio Free Europe reports:

Greece's "Alcohol Is Free" by Koza Mostra also made it through, filled with metaphors about the plight of the crisis-stricken country.

The 26 countries competing in the final are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova, Norway, Romania, Russia, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, Ukraine, and Britain.

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Petitioners in Finland Force Parliament Consideration of Marriage Equality Bill

A parliamentary committee in Finland, the only Scandinavian country without same-sex marriage, rejected a marriage equality bill earlier this month.

FinlandThe people won't have it:

A drive to gather the 50,000 signatories required to take a gender-neutral marriage bill to parliament reached its target in just one day. The accumulation of the required support means that lawmakers must now consider a bill which was previously blocked at the committee stage.

Members of the public rushed to support the “I Do 2013” campaign, which was launched Tuesday to gather the 50,000 signatures required to compel parliament to consider legalising same-sex marriages.

Public enthusiasm for the petition was so great that the civic proposal website kansalaisaloite.fi crashed as a result of the overwhelming demand.


Finland Rejects Marriage Equality Bill

A parliamentary committee in Finland has rejected a proposed marriage equality bill there, Pink News reports:

FinlandThe bill, proposed by the National Coalition Party (NCP) minister Alexander Stubb proposed the bill, which would have made marriage gender-neutral, therefore allowing same-sex couples to marry.

It was rejected 9 votes to 8, and so it will not go before the full legislature for consideration.

The bill would have made regulations relating to marriage equal for all, irrespective of the gender of the partners. In Finland, gay and lesbian couples can currently register their partnerships, but do not automatically take each others’ surnames, or adopt children, reports YLE.

Finland is the only Scandinavian country without marriage equality.

A citizen initiative to legalize same-sex marriage has now begun gathering signatures.


Swimmer Wakes from Snow Nap in Finland, Goes for Icy Dip: VIDEO

Finland

The Finnish are incredibly nuts, and the shrinkage of their nuts must be incredible.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

They somehow must be related to this guy.

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Gay Candidate Loses Presidential Run-Off Election in Finland

Haavisto-finland

Back in January I noted that Pekka Haavisto (above, left), an out gay member of Finland's Green Party, was in a run-off election against Sauli Niinisto (above, right), a pro-European conservative who survived the 2004 tsunami in Thailand by climbing a tree.

The election was held yesterday and Niinisto won:

"It looks like Niinistoe has won," Haavisto conceded on public television YLE, adding: "More than one million people have supported me and I'm quite satisfied with that."

Niinistoe was credited with 62.9 per cent of voter sympathies while Haavisto held just 37.1 per cent, with nearly 95 per cent of votes counted, Finland's justice ministry said.

The numbers were in line with what opinion polls had predicted.

AFP notes where Haavisto was weakest:

Haavisto's homosexuality lost him support among older and more traditional Finns, analysts have said. Haavisto, a 53-year-old liberal, is in a same-sex partnership with an Ecuadorean hairdresser.


Gay Man in Run-Off Election for Finland's Presidency

Haavisto-finland

Pekka Haavisto (above, left), an out gay member of Finland's Green Party, is in a run-off election against Sauli Niinisto (above, right) to serve as the nation's President, the AP reports:

The conservative favorite easily won the first round of Finland’s presidential election Sunday, setting up a runoff against an environmentalist leader who is the first openly gay candidate to run for head of state in the Nordic country.

Sauli Niinisto, a former finance minister, won 37 percent of the vote, well ahead of the other candidates but short of the majority needed to avoid a second round, official preliminary results showed.

With all votes counted, Pekka Haavisto, of the Greens party, was second with 18.8 percent, securing his place in the Feb. 5 runoff.

Flores_haavistoHere's Haavisto with his husband (or 'registered partner' as they call it in Finland, Antonio Flores (right).

A Finnish reader, Kodekon, writes in to Towleroad about what's happening:

Haavisto will be against Sauli Niinistö, who has been the front runner during the whole presidential campaign, and who is widely believed to win the election in the end. Although nothing is certain yet ;) The commentators noted that Haavisto's success probably came from people being fed up by the sudden rise in the last parliamentary election of populist party True Finns (actually they changed their English name to be just "Finns"; another populist move which annoyed lot of people here) who have been known to be e.g. conservative, anti-gay and anti-immigration. Even though True Finns got almost 20 % of votes in the parliamentary election their candidate and party leader Timo Soini only got 9,4% of the votes today. Hopefully True Finns are losing steam because even if they appear to be fighting the cause of the poor (and thus being on the left side of the politics here) they also have quite vocal right wing part, that has talked openly about hating muslims and gays, and all that bullshit. I have to point out, though,that we are talking about Finland which is one of the most peaceful countries in the world, and our political parties are quite mild when compared to some other countries :) True Finns have brought out a dangerous hate speech to the front, but still it's pretty mild.

Pekka Haavisto, who is a seasoned politician and has worked for United Nations before coming back to being a politician in Finland, has been seen as a man of peace and a bridge builder between different political parties and he famously visited a gay hating True Finn Member of Parliament to try to show him that gays are normal people. I have to add, though, that the True Finn MP in question, Teuvo Hakkarainen, spoke against the gays earlier in heated tone because some Finnish bears declared publicly that he was sexy. Teuvo got upset because of that and called a news paper to inform that he wished all the immigrants and all the gays should be shipped to an island and let them live there by themselves. He later said that he spoke in anger but this was actually just one his public faux pas since he's a rookie in politics and doesn't quite know how to behave.

But I have to say that although we Finns are pretty tolerant people the homosexuality is still not as public as it should be. Even if we have for decades had quite visible public gay figures it hasn't been until the last few years that general public has been shown that being gay is ok through coming out by some popular singers etc. Many people do hope that Pekka Haavisto will be the next president so the general acceptance of homosexuality would get much higher. But personally I'm afraid that there's just too much opposition from the old people and such to vote for a gay president.

More on the election here, from a Finnish paper. The second round takes place, as mentioned above, on February 5.


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