Gay Rights Hub




World Famous Heterosexual Pro Boxer Becomes Leading Face of LGBT Rights in Poland

Michaelczewski

An internationally-renowned straight professional boxer is making headlines in Poland after he showed up to an LGBT rights event in Warsaw to support equality, NYT correspondent Slawomir Sierakowski reports:

D-MichalczewskiDariusz Michalczewski, a world-famous pugilist who goes by the nickname Tiger, recently made headlines by announcing his support for one of the country’s most prominent gay rights groups, Shoulder to Shoulder on Equality — L.G.B.T. and Friends, by appearing in a photograph with a sign reading, “I am an ally of L.G.B.T. people, because I want to live in a country where my gay friends are not discriminated against.”

Read a report from Poland here.

Michalczewski explained his decision to participate in the campaign:

"I just love people! I'm not a racist and do not judge people because of their sexual orientation. I'll give you an example. Two young men live near me. They are smiling, friendly, accommodating. We all like them. And then someone noticed that they kiss. Neighbors began to hate them...Did they change? No. They are still those same valuable people. You have to treat them differently because they are gay? This (kind of treatment) is sick! It prompted me to participate in this campaign."

The NYT adds:

Mr. Michalczewski is both a surprising advocate for gay rights and the perfect choice for the role: He is white, heterosexual, Catholic, rich, professionally successful and widely popular, and thus more likely to persuade conservatives than a liberal intellectual or politician. A typical young man from an economically depressed town that doesn’t have a single movie theater but has five churches might not get a chance to read a progressive manifesto. The opinions of a legendary boxer who grew up under similar circumstances, meanwhile, might prove thought-provoking.

And Mr. Michalczewski has guts: The popular sportsman did not limit himself to one photograph. He supports not only homosexuals’ right to enter into civil unions, but also their right to adopt children. In one TV appearance, he directly confronted right-wing politicians, by asking: “What if your daughter were a lesbian? What if your son were gay? If it were my child, I would love him very much. And I would support him in everything, because he’d be my child!”

Perhaps there is hope for LGBT rights in eastern Europe.

(Via Aksarbent)


Delaware School Board Member Opposes Curriculum's Discussion Of Homosexuality, Gender Identity

DelawareDelaware has not had the best school board-related news of late. In August, the Cape Henlopen school board voted to remove a coming-of-age book about a lesbian girl from its summer reading list (after which the summer reading program was removed altogether). Now, the Indian River school district board of education is facing a particularly irate and talkative member who opposes any mention of homosexuality and gender identity in the curriculum.

Pink News reports:

Last week, Shaun Fink, Indian River School District Board of Education member, spoke out at a school board meeting against lesson plans that would address issues of gender identity and sexual orientation in Indian River high schools...

He said: “I am objecting publicly to anything that discusses gender identity, homosexuality. Schools have no role in teaching someone ‘if you’re gay you’re normal.’ That is not the school’s role. When did the school become the arbiter of what’s normal and what’s not normal?”

One response? Schools have always been arbiters of normalcy, and leaving definitions of varied identities out of the curriculum only furthers some students' lack of understanding. Nina Lou Bunting, another member of the school board, had an appropriate response at the ready as well.

She said: “Whether you go into transgender, cross-dressing, all the different aspects, is that really so important? It’s just if someone is different, we are to respect them as human beings as we wish to be respected.”

It turns out that Mr. Fink also opposes lessons about STI, HIV, and pregnancy prevention, citing Title 14, which enforces an abstinence-focused education.

He said: “You can’t teach both sides of it. Condoms don’t belong in a classroom. End of story.”

Miseducation, or an utter lack of education, has never been a means to fight misunderstanding. Hopefully Fink's comments will not derail further discussion of these issues in the Indian River school district.


Wendy Davis Argues In Favor Of Same-Sex Marriage At Final Texas Gubernatorial Debate: VIDEO

WendyDavis

Fierce Texas state senator Wendy Davis met with attorney general Greg Abbott for a final gubernatorial debate last night. The nearly hour-long conversation about hot topics, ranging from abortion (Davis is pro-choice, Abbott pro-life even in the case of rape and incest) to confirmed Ebola cases in Dallas, eventually wound its way to same-sex marriage. 

A viewer named John from Forth Worth, TX posed the question: "If a 10-year-old girl asked you whether her two dads should be allowed to get married, what would you tell her?" The moderator asked whether the candidates would support legislation to overturn the ban currently placed on same-sex marriage in the state. The two candidates played their respective party roles, though Davis's direct approach and commitment to the issue clearly overshadowed Abbott's jovial dedication to preserving "traditional marriage." A 10-year-old might be confused by Davis's political jargon, but at least she wouldn't feel condescended to, Mr. Abbott.

MSNBC reports:

Davis argued in favor of marriage equality and noted Abbott has renewed the fight against same-sex marriage. She also said she’d welcome a bill that would give voters an opportunity to appeal the state’s constitutional ban on gay marriage. Abbott reiterated, “I believe in traditional marriage,” noting he’s been married to his wife for more than three decades and that more than 75% of Texans approved a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages in the state.

After Abbott opted to discuss his own happy marriage and an outdated public vote, the moderator simply asked: "Is that what you would tell to the 10-year-old?" "That's what I just told John," he replied, big grin plastered on his face (see below). 

Check out the video (skip to 44:00 for same-sex marriage discussion), AFTER THE JUMP...

GregAbbott

Continue reading "Wendy Davis Argues In Favor Of Same-Sex Marriage At Final Texas Gubernatorial Debate: VIDEO" »


California Gov. Jerry Brown Signs Law Outlawing 'Gay Panic' Legal Defense

Jerry brownCalifornia Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law a bill outlawing the "gay panic" defense in court. Under previous state law, murder charges could be reduced to manslaughter if it was shown the act took place suddenly or in the heat of the moment (so-called "panic" killings). Now, however, it is no longer viable to claim a person's gender or sexual orientation triggered the "panic."

Equality California adds this is the first measure of its kind in the nation. 


Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC) Claims He Never Called 'Firing Gays' a 'Freedom,' Despite Audio Track: LISTEN

RobertPittengerNorth Carolina congressman Robert Pittenger fell into some hot water last week after a Think Progress reporter asked him his thoughts on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Pittenger responded by referring to the right to employ/fire employees as one of "the freedoms we enjoy." Last Wednesday he attempted to right this wrong by issuing a factually incorrect statement including the line, "Americans are well protected already." Now, though, Pittenger is claiming that he never spoke those words, at least not in the context of gay and lesbian employees.

The New Civil Rights Movement reports:

MSNBC last week reported that Pittenger's communications director denied "that Pittenger discussed 'firing gay individuals,'" despite the fact that the question specified "gay or lesbian" people.

“After the event, a blogger asked for an interview and then asked about [the Employment Non-Discrimination Act]. His opposition to ENDA was ‘translated’ into ‘firing gays’ by that blogger,” the director, Jamie Bowers, wrote in an email to msnbc on Friday.

While Pittenger does quickly veer away from explicitly discussing the rights of gay and lesbian employees in the response, his entire statement is subject to be critiqued based on the question asked. At this point, it feels like a shoddy cover-up for a botched response. 

Listen to the audio of the interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC) Claims He Never Called 'Firing Gays' a 'Freedom,' Despite Audio Track: LISTEN" »


Harlem Pastor Threatens 'Homos' With Hateful Church Sign: 'Jesus Fired And Brim-Stoned Them'

ManningSign

Pastor James David Manning of ATLAH World Missionary Church in Harlem is back with another offensive, homophobic, and frightening sign. Manning previously warned African-American women that President Obama was responsible for unleashing white gay men on their husbands, and he whole-heartedly believes in the use of the word "faggot." Under a towering cross stating "Jesus is Lord," Manning has once again opted to spout hateful rhetoric and lies.

JdmThe New Civil Rights Movement reports:

"When the homos bullied the poor and needy in Sodom like they do in Harlem, Jesus fire and brim-stoned them," it reads. 

Manning would have you believe that's a quote from the Bible.

It's not.

Manning also believes that Michael Sam may marry a 9-year-old boy and that Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin are closeted homosexuals. It seems like someone may be losing touch with reality...

Photo via Real Stories Gallery on Twitter.


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