Former NBA Star John Amaechi Denied Entrance to Gay Bar for Being 'Big and Black and [Possibly] Trouble'
Gay former NBA star John Amaechi tweeted yesterday that he was denied entrance to Crunch Bar in Manchester, UK (where he lives) after the bouncer said he was "big and black and could be trouble."
"When Amaechi questioned the decision, the doorman said it was a 'private members' bar.' He then allegedly claimed that the New York Times best-selling author had been flagged up as 'trouble' on the gay village's shared security radio network. A spokesperson for the bar later told Amaechi's representative: 'Your group was stopped from entering the venue on Friday night as a message was received over the NiteNet radio system, (a system where several venues work together within the village, where they announce any issues they have with any customers), that your group had been argumentative and aggressive to another venue’s doorstaff. On interview with the staff who were present at the time, we are satisfied that there were no racism or bigotry comments as you suggest. All three staff who were present on the door at the time have been with us for over 14 months and none of them have ever displayed the attitude or characteristics you suggest in your email. You have clearly misunderstood the situation and perhaps justifying your exclusion that evening. We consider this matter closed now.'"
The other bars, VIA and Taurus, which use the NiteNet system deny there was any such warning about Amaechi's behavior.
According to the paper, "Amaechi's representatives have lodged a complaint with the Equality and Human Rights Commission along with a complaint to the Manchester City Council LGBT affairs director, Terry Waller and also with the Greater Manchester Police LGBT liaison office."
Read our recent interview with John Amaechi HERE.
The police force in Manchester, England stands strong with the LGBT community, and raised the rainbow flag yesterday on the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO):
"Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney raised the rainbow flag at Chester House, the Greater Manchester Police HQ, saying there was 'still a great deal of prejudice to be tackled'. The Union Jack remained in place on the second flagpole outside the building in Old Trafford. It is the second year GMP hoisted the flags. Mr Sweeney said: 'This shows Greater Manchester Police's commitment to ensuring everyone can feel safe in Greater Manchester. We know from the number incidents there is still a great deal of prejudice to be tackled, but we are determined to show our support for anyone who feels they have been targeted by hate crime.'"
Wouldn't it be nice if all cities were as supportive.
Straight ex-spouses speak up for marriage equality: "They are federal workers and professionals, men and women who share little except that their former spouses tried to live as heterosexuals but at some point realized they could not."
British town mourns albino squirrel.
WATCH: Morrissey storms off stage after fan hits him on head with bottle of beer.
POLL: Majority of Californians oppose putting marriage equality on the ballot in 2010. "Overall, 51% of California voters favored marriage rights for same-sex couples and 43% were opposed. Strikingly, however, almost 60% of Californians did not want to revisit the issue in 2010, just one election cycle after it last hit the ballot."
Conservatives up in arms over gay-friendly recommendations in Fort Worth Rainbow Lounge police raid report.
Asheville, NC city council to take up extending benefits to same-sex partners.
Manchester, UK closes gay village to cars in weekend experiment.
Wingnut Peter LaBarbera calls FBI on gay blogger Joe.My.God over reader comments he characterizes as "domestic terrorism".
Popular DJs Fernando and Greg back on the air in San Francisco: "Fernando Ventura and Greg Sherrell had been the most recognizable voices on KNGY's gay-themed programming schedule since 2005. Last year they received the Fall Honors award from northern California chapter of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, and in 2007 they were named to OUT Magazine's Top 100 most influential people in gay culture."
Shortened, revised trailer "de-gays" Tom Ford's A Single Man?
Gay activist detained in Cameroon after dispute with taxi driver.
Cleveland City Council to get mass postcard delivery on transgender rights ordinance.
Male model fix: Parker Gregory.
Gay couple, twin sons banned for life from Walmart over BIC lighter dispute: "'They asked if I had Bic lighters. I said, 'Yes,' and handed them over,' Paolucci said. 'Then they asked if I had a receipt. I said, 'Yes, you're holding it.' Then this group of Wal-Mart employees started forming around us.' Paolucci and Hitchcock said the employees were threatening and that one used a vulgarity. Their accusations frightened the boys, who began 'crying, screaming and freaking out,' they said."
The Guardian profiles fashion designer Henry Holland: "I think it [being gay] makes you more experimental. There's not that whole thing of, 'I can't wear that, I'd look like a poof', because you are a poof."
Master performance: "Tardy for the Party".
Sweden's Lutheran Church ordains first openly lesbian bishop: "Eva Brunne was ordained as bishop of Stockholm's diocese in a ceremony on Sunday. She lives in a "registered partnership" with another woman, a civil union between gays used in Sweden before same-sex marriages were legalized this year. The couple also has a child. 'It is very positive that our church is setting an example here and is choosing me as bishop based on my qualifications, when they also know that they can meet resistance elsewhere,' the 55-year-old Brunne told The Associated Press by phone."
Possible gay element investigated in murder of 55-year-old man in India.
More info on Kenya's plans to conduct "census" of gays for HIV/AIDS purposes: "Initial media reports said the project, which was announced last week, would be a gay census — raising fears that gays could be exposed against their will and questions about whether such a count could possibly be accurate. But Muraguri says all information collected by the government will be kept confidential and officials will not seek to contact all men who have sex with men in Kenya. The government will also seek to interview both male and female sex workers and intravenous-drug users."
Manchester, UK Councillor Paul Fairweather revealed his HIV status to a crowd at the city's Pride celebrations, saying he hoped to end the stigma surrounding the disease.
Said Fairweather: "We have to beat the stigma and the nonsense surrounding this. We can never put pressure on anybody to reveal their status – it's an incredibly individual, personal thing. And I cannot stand here tonight and talk about being HIV positive without [mentioning] the love and support of my family, friends and colleagues. Many of us have this love and support, but many of us don't. I and many other HIV positive gay men have experienced rejection and even hostility from within the gay community, as well as support.”
Fairweather later told the Manchester Evening News: "I made a planned and personal decision to make the announcement at the vigil and I have had an overwhelming response. I did it to challenge the stigma and the prejudice that still exists around this...I have the full support from my friends and family, but not everyone is so lucky. I have heard stories from people who have come out and their friends and family have abandoned them and some people have even lost their jobs. So I did this for them...Since the speech I have received such fabulous feedback, it's been overwhelming. I've had phone calls and texts from my friends and family, and even people I don't know.”