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News: Brooklyn, Max Mutchnick, Ann Coulter, Tom Hardy

 road The History Channel won't air its 8-part miniseries The Kennedys in the United States.

Brook  road A skyline emerges in Brooklyn.

 road Spider-Man star Andrew Garfield on bullying: "I think everyone has been bullied at some point. Kids can be incredibly cruel. On certain days you would come home and think, “today was really horrible”, so I guess I have been bullied and I think everyone has been bullied at some point."

 road Ann Coulter tweets: MSNBC host Cenk Uygur is a "retarded person."

 road Will & Grace co-creator Max Mutchnick reacts to Richard Chamberlain's recent statement about gay actors: “I don’t think the audience is as homophobic as the media would have us believe,” he writes. "Neither is Hollywood. I’ve never denied an actor a job because he was gay. But I have denied actors jobs because they suck."

 road Andy Cohen gets profiled in the NY Times.

Tom  road Tom Hardy enjoys basketball and a brewski.

 road Australian publisher Carmen Callilcricket calls her counrty's cricket team poofters.

 road Corona del Mar High School responds to anti-gay graffiti found on the school's property.

 road Nepal makes a push for gay tourism.

 road The Wonder Woman television show won't happen after all.

 road Melissa Rivers has finally had enough of her mom's plastic surgery: “In my opinion, it’s like enough. Stop it. It is a source of conflict, it really is. It bothers me.”

 road Photo surfaces of female campaign donor licking Mary Bono Mack's breast.

70 Gay Rights Activists Arrested at Demonstration in Nepal

Kathmandu police detained 70 gay rights activists including openly gay MP Sunil Pant yesterday, during a demonstration in Nepal's capital over government identification for transgender people, ABC reports:

Pant "Nepali men and women who identify as transgender are seeking citizenship certificates with their gender marked as 'third sex' instead of male or female. Sunil Babu Pant, lawmaker and founder of the Blue Diamond Society, a gay rights group, says more than 70 people were detained near the prime minister's office and parliament. 'We are running out of patience and are demanding our rights,' Pant said from a detention centre. "Without the citizenship papers, the sexual minorities are unable to get a job, enrol in schools or colleges, seek treatment in hospitals and travel," he said. 'They cannot even inherit parental property.' ... Kathmandu police chief Ramesh Kharel said the activists were detained for 'violating the norms' by gathering at a place where demonstrations were not allowed."

In related news, one initiative that Pant has also spearheaded to raise awareness about the plight of transgender people in the country is the Beauty and Brains Talent contest.

Watch a trailer for a documentary on it, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "70 Gay Rights Activists Arrested at Demonstration in Nepal" »

Nepal Holds 'International' Gay Pride Parade


Nepal's Gay Pride celebration went international this year, with participation from several foreign entities. A parade took place yesterday.

British The Times of India reports:

Dozens of young men and women, dressed in costumes, masks and animal ensembles, marched in a gay pride reminding one of the Mardi Gras celebrations in Brazil. Organised under the aegis of Blue Diamond Society, Nepal's pioneering gay rights organisation, the march, now in its ninth year, has grown from strength to strength since its inception when the participants hid their faces behind masks for fear of being identified.

"From this year, our march has become internationalised," said Sunil Babu Pant, BDS founder and Nepal's only openly gay MP who successfully lobbied Supreme Court to recognise same-sex marriages and is now hosting such events for foreigners in Nepal with his gay travel agency, Pink Mountains, promising elaborate honeymoon packages. "We have the support of the Irish parliament, the American ambassador to Nepal, Scott DeLisi, has sent a message of solidarity and the march saw the participation of the British ambassador, John Tucknott. Thousands of gays die worldwide every year, some of natural causes, some due to AIDS/HIV and many due to violence. In Nepal, there were 10 known deaths last year. But no one remembers them. Our gay parade ends with a candle-light vigil in memory of those who died last year. This is about equality for all."

Tucknott, who can be seen in the inset photo above marching with the British contingent, released a statement about his participation:

2_nepal "Nepal Pride is not just about LGBT people standing up for their rights. It’s about all of us - straight or gay - supporting them in their quest for equality,"British Ambassador John Tucknott said. "It is about saying no to intolerance, no to prejudice, no to discrimination, and no to violence. It is about saying yes to embracing diversity. I wish all the participants in Nepal Pride 2010 a safe and enjoyable day.”

The Canadian Press adds:

"Pant's gay rights group organized the parade to campaign for greater rights for sexual minorities in Nepal. 'Our message is ending all forms of discrimination,' Pant told reporters. He said the parade participants were from India, Japan, Britain, Germany, Denmark and Norway, and a police officer at the scene estimated the crowd was around 2,000. Smaller such parades have been held in Nepal in the past."

Nepal Holds First Wedding Ceremony for Foreign Gay Couple

Nepal this week held its first wedding ceremony for a foreign gay couple, though same-sex marriage is not legal in that country...yet:

Pant  "The ceremony was held Tuesday night in Kathmandu for Sanjay Shah, 42, a Briton from Leicester, and an Indian man who did not want to be identified, said Sunil Pant, a member of Nepal's parliament and the nation's most prominent gay activist. Pant's gay rights group, Blue Diamond Society, organized the ceremony and issued the pair a certificate for a $200 fee. The two men were not legally married because Nepal has no laws legalizing same-sex marriage and does not marry foreigners. However, marriages performed by priests are generally accepted by society and most people who live in rural areas do not register their marriages with authorities...

...Gay rights have improved dramatically in a country where just five years ago police were beating gays and transsexuals in the streets. Now, in addition to having an openly gay parliamentarian, Nepal is issuing 'third gender' identity cards and appears set to enshrine gay rights — and possibly even same-sex marriage — in a new constitution. The charter, however, has been delayed because of bickering among political parties that have been unable to choose a new leader since Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal resigned in June. Tuesday's private ceremony was attended by a small number of gay rights activists and members of Pant's group. Pant said there have been a few same-sex wedding ceremonies among Nepalese people, but it was the first for a foreign gay couple."

The ceremony was conducted by Mukti Neupane, a 58-year old Hindu priest in Nepal’s capital: “He was apprehensive at first. But later agreed to conduct a proper ceremony that lasted over 30 minutes."

Recently, Pant announced that the country would hold its first-ever Gay Pride parade on August 25 in Kathmandu.

Nepal to Hold First Gay Pride Parade on August 25

On August 25th, Kathmandu, Nepal will hold the nation's first Gay Pride parade, says openly gay MP Sunil Pant:

Nepal Sunilpant "Pant said he hopes up to 3,000 gays, lesbians, transvestites and transsexuals from Nepal and neighbouring countries will march through the streets of the capital Kathmandu on August 25. The date has been chosen to coincide with a centuries-old Hindu festival when Nepalese men traditionally dress up in women's clothing, and which has in recent years been adopted by Nepal's increasingly vocal gay community. 'We want to make this a truly international event,' said Pant, a well-known gay rights campaigner. 'Nepal has made so much progress on gay issues in the last few years, and we hope to spread hope and inspire others.' ... Pant said the parade would feature live music and include elephants and horses dressed in bright colours, and would culminate with a candle-lit memorial service for victims of HIV and violence."

Instability in Nepal Endangers New Constitution, LGBT Equality

Reports out of Nepal suggest the new constitution being drawn up, which would offer LGBT people equal rights, is in danger of missing a deadline and being lost altogether:

Nepal  "A specially elected constituent assembly has until May 28 to complete the draft of the nascent Himalayan republic's first constitution, two years after it got rid of the monarchy. But assembly chairman Subas Nemwang said the panel, dominated by the Maoist former rebels, still had a long list of chores and could take at least four months to complete the task. 'There are difficulties to meet the May 28 deadline. We don't have enough time to follow the procedures and rules,' Nemwang said. Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal seeks to extend the deadline, saying 'a situation has arisen under which the constitution cannot be made in time', his office said. And the leader's immediate concern is to ease a political standoff with the Maoists, who demand his resignation to make way for them to head a unity government, a year after they quit. But the support of the Maoists, who control 40 percent of the seats in parliament, is a must for any change in the schedule. The Maoists have said an extension of the deadline will be 'meaningless' until the prime minister resigns. 'This government is not keen in pursuing peace and on preparing a new constitution,' Maoist chief Prachanda said at a meeting. In a sign of a hardening position, a Maoist strike last week closed transports and businesses for six days to press for their demands. Analysts said missing the constitution deadline would erode the credibility of political parties."


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