New Zealand Hub

New Zealand Paddle Boarder Has Incredible Close Encounter with Orca: VIDEO


Luke Reilly, a 27-year-old paddle boarder from New Zealand, had an extremely close encounter with a curious and playful orca on Monday, and captured it on his GoPro, 3News reports.

ReillyReilly went into the water after hearing someone had seen orcas and shortly thereafter found himself being checked out by one, which even grabbed the back of his board for a moment.

Said Reilly:

"I grabbed [my GoPro] thinking something might happen. I didn't think I'd get anything. Then this one bee-lined it for me. He popped up about 10cm away from the back of my board. I was a bit nervous thinking, 'what's this guy going to do?' Then he slowly crept up and grabbed the back of my board and I yelled, 'What are you doing!'"

Watch Reilly's incredible video, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "New Zealand Paddle Boarder Has Incredible Close Encounter with Orca: VIDEO" »

Among Six English-Speaking Countries, Study Finds American Sports Are Most Homophobic

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A new study titled "Out On The Fields," which is considered the first international study on homophobia in sport, found that the U.S. ranks the worst in sports homophobia reports TIME. The study, which surveyed 9,500 people from six different countries (U.S., U.K., Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand), found that LGB people in U.S. sports report the most instances of receiving verbal threats and homophobic slurs because of their sexual orientation.

Researchers found that 82 percent of LGB participants either witnessed or experienced homophobia in sports with 84 percent of gay men and 82 percent of lesbians claiming they were targets of homophobic slurs. Half of the gay men polled along with 32 percent of lesbians noted they hid their sexuality while playing sports in their youth because they feared rejection from their teammates. 

However, the survey is not a peer-reviewed paper published in an established journal; the head author behind the study is a former journalist turned member of Australia's first gay rugby team - the Sydney Convicts Rugby Union Club. A sports sociologist from Florida State University who examined the study's findings found that even though the sampling results ended up with significant over-representation of pro-LGBT respondents, the study clearly and accurately illustrates the pervasive homophobia that permeates sports.

Although homophobia may be pervasive on the field, it looks like attitudes are slowly beginning to change in sports stands.

Incredible Gay Wedding Video of the Day: Anthony and Glenn - VIDEO


A beautifully shot video of Anthony and Glenn's stunningly scenic wedding in Queenstown, New Zealand from last October.


Don't miss our other recent gay wedding and proposal videos...
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Kriss and Lauren-Joy [tlrd] 
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Matthew and TJ [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Michael and Michael [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Jason and Daniel [tlrd]


Continue reading "Incredible Gay Wedding Video of the Day: Anthony and Glenn - VIDEO" »

Bullied Trans Boy Asks For Support In Video Declaring He No Longer Wants To Live As A Girl: WATCH


Milla Brown's parents and friends originally misinterpreted his preference for Spider-Man and close-cropped hair over dolls and tresses as mere tomboyishness. As he grew older and puberty began to approach, the reality clicked in: Brown is trans. Brown's mother Renée Fabish had nothing but support for her son:

It is not something [he] was talked into and it is not something [he] can be talked out of. We support him wholeheartedly. The only thing that has changed for us is pronouns.

But school life was not so supportive, and Brown alleges being bullied all the time. So, Fabish put together a video calling for tolerance and acceptance of her son. The video went viral and has been viewed over five million times. It's incredibly uplifting, and Brown's family should stand as a model for how to handle a trans child: with love and support.

You can watch the video AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Bullied Trans Boy Asks For Support In Video Declaring He No Longer Wants To Live As A Girl: WATCH" »

New Zealand Pastor Says Gays Should Kill Themselves Or Be Put To Death By The Government: VIDEO


Gay people are "filthy child-molesting fag[s]" who should commit suicide, according to one New Zealand pastor. And if they don't kill themselves, it's government's job to put them to death. 

Logan Robertson (above), pastor of New Zealand's Westcity Bible Baptist Church, made the comments in an email to a gay Christian author and in a TV interview over the weekend. 

MarjoramAuthor Jim Marjoram (right) said he emailed 400 churches in the Auckland region of New Zealand about his new book, It's Life Jim, which recounts his struggles as a gay Christian. Marjoram received only two responses, one of which came from Robertson.

"We are not interested in your filthy lifestyle or book," Robertson wrote to Marjoram. "Romans 1 clearly says God has rejected homos and they are worthy of death. You cannot be saved. I pray that you will commit suicide, you filthy child molesting fag."

After Marjoram shared Robertson's comments on Facebook, they went viral. Robertson later told a gay reporter from ONE News he would never grant an interview to a "filthy faggot" and doubled down on his statements in an interview with Sky News

"I think every single one of them should be put to death," Robertson said. "Christians shouldn't be doing it, I'm not going to do it, it's the Government's job to be doing it."

The leader of the Baptist Churches of New Zealand said Robertson's church, which the pastor reportedly runs out of his home, is not affiliated with the group. Robertson told Sky News he received death threats after his comments were reported, but Marjoram cautioned people against that. 

"The guy's deceived and a fruit-loop, but he doesn't deserve the same type of treatment," Marjoram said. 

Marjoram said Robertson's email was especially hurtful since he struggled with thoughts of suicide as a closeted Christian for most of his life. Marjoram and his wife ran an "ex-gay" counseling service before he came out after she died a few years ago. 

Proceeds from It's Life Jim, released today, will go toward Marjoram's support group for gay Christians, the Silent Gays Project.  

Watch news reports about Robertson's statements here and here

In related news from earlier this morning, America's own "kill the gays" pastor Steven Anderson recently compared gay people to ax murderers and Adolf Hitler in a heated exchange with an Arizona news anchor. 

Olympic Rower Robbie Manson Comes Out As Gay


Olympic rower Robbie Manson of New Zealand has publicly come out as gay in a post published over at Out Sports. Manson opens up for the first time about the struggles he faced living in the closet:

Although it hasn't always been in the forefront of my mind, deep down I was terrified of anyone finding out that I was gay, especially my teammates. I seriously thought that if anyone found out I wouldn't be able to row anymore. The thought of coming out, in my mind, felt so limiting and terrifying.

Also, in a strange way, I looked down on other people who were gay, and to a degree felt sorry for them, thinking to be gay was to be "less than." I knew I was gay too, and I hated myself because of it. I would get quite depressed about.

RowingManson also talks about his decision to finally come out to his friends before the 2012 Olympics, a decision that left him very emotional:

It was the night after being named to the NZ rowing team for the London Olympics that I came out to more people. I was ecstatic to be selected in the quad. Going to the Olympics was a dream of mine ever since watching the Sydney Games when I was 10 years old. We were having a few drinks and near the end of the night I had a heart-to-heart with two of my friends. In a very emotional state I told them that I was different, and then finally that I was gay.

On his role as a role model for other gay athletes grappling with the same challenges he once faced, Manson says:

There are already a lot of great gay sporting role models, and a lot who have achieved far more than I have, but I hope that my story can add something to what is already out there. To show other people who might be struggling with their sexuality, not only that it's ok to be gay, but it's a good thing, and it won't change who you are or limit what you can achieve. At the end of the day, it's only one of the many things that define me as a person.

It's how hard you're prepared to work for something and your talent that determines what you can achieve, not your sexuality.

(Photos via Facebook)


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