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Polish Parliament Rejects Civil Union, Gay Rights Legislation

Poland's parliament on Friday rejected legislation that would have legalized civil unions and given limited rights to gay couples, Reuters reports:

TuskThe lower house of parliament rejected three bills that would have legalized civil unions, including narrowly defeating one proposed by a member of the ruling Civic Platform that would have given limited rights to unmarried partners, including ability to inherit property.

The motion to prevent the Civic Platform bill from going to committees for further work was backed by 228 deputies, with 211 against.

Prime Minister Donald Tusk (pictured) spoke out in favor of the reform, but 46 members of his own party, including Justice Minister Jaroslaw Gowin, sided with the conservative opposition and voted against all three bills on their first reading.

"You can't question the existence of such people (living in homosexual partnerships) and you can't argue against the people who decide to live in such way," Tusk told the parliament before the votes.


Should Maurizio Cattelan's Hitler Pray In Warsaw Ghetto?

HimItalian artist Maurizio Cattelan's 'HIM,' a 2001 sculpture of Adolf Hitler praying on his knees, has shown all over the world, including New York City's Guggenheim and Venice's Palazzo Grassi, eliciting emotions everywhere it appears. And that's precisely the point.

Cattelan, also infamous for creating a sculpture of Pope John Paul II getting hit by a meteor, deceives the viewer into believing the small body, typically approached from the back, is a school boy.

When they approach and see the big reveal, they're jolted.

"When people see this piece, they react with gasps, tears, disbelief. The impact is stunning," collector and Holocaust survivor Stefan Edlis told The Economist in 2009. "Politics aside, that is how you judge art.”

But should the likeness of the most vile anti-Semite be placed at the site of Poland's Warsaw Ghetto, home to so many Jewish people killed by Hitler's Nazi armies?

Vanessa Gera offers details:

The Warsaw ghetto was an area of the city which the Nazis sealed off after they invaded Poland. They forced Jews to live in cramped, inhuman conditions there as they awaited deportation to death camps. Many died from hunger or disease or were shot by the Germans before they could be transported to the camps.

The Hitler representation is visible from a hole in a wooden gate across town on Prozna Street. Viewers only see the back of the small figure praying in a courtyard. Because of its small size, it appears to be a harmless schoolboy.

"Every criminal was once a tender, innocent and defenseless child," the center said in a commentary on the work.

HIM was installed there by Warsaw's Center for Contemporary Art last month, but growing outrage is gaining traction this week.

"As far as the Jews were concerned, Hitler's only 'prayer' was that they be wiped off the face of the earth," said Efraim Zuroff, director of US-based Jewish rights group The Simon Weisenthal Center's Israeli outpost. Zuroff described the installation as "a senseless provocation which insults the memory of the Nazis' Jewish victims."

CCA's director, Fabio Cavallucci, insists HIM isn't mean to insult the memory of the dead. Rather, it's a reminder of "hidden evil" everywhere.

"There is no intention from the side of the artist or the center to insult Jewish memory," he said. "It's an artwork that tries to speak about the situation of hidden evil everywhere."

Michael Shudrich, Poland's chief rabbi, supports HIM, and even wrote an introduction to the exhibition's catalogue. Art "force[s] us to face the evil of the world," he wrote, according to the AP. He also said, "I felt there could be educational value to it."

Do you agree?

HitlerWarSaw


Reporters Told 'Kiss My Ass' and 'Shove It' for Asking Mitt Romney Questions in Warsaw: VIDEO

Poland_romney

Mitt Romney's traveling Press Secretary Rick Gorka cursed at frustrated reporters today after they questioned Mitt Romney in a public plaza near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Warsaw, CNN reports:

As Romney made his way to his vehicle, reporters attempted to shout questions to the candidate. The former Massachusetts governor, who has answered only three questions from his traveling press corps during a week-long overseas trip, ignored the queries.

CNN's transcript:

NN: "Governor Romney are you concerned about some of the mishaps of your trip?

NYT: "Governor Romney do you have a statement for the Palestinians?

Washington Post: "What about your gaffes?

NYT: "Governor Romney do you feel that your gaffes have overshadowed your foreign trip?"

CNN: "Governor Romney just a few questions sir, you haven't taken but three questions on this trip from the press!

Gorka: "Show some respect"

NYT: "We haven't had another chance to ask a question..."

Gorka: "Kiss my ass. This is a Holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect."

Shortly thereafter, Gorka told Politico reporter Jonathan Martin to "shove it."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Reporters Told 'Kiss My Ass' and 'Shove It' for Asking Mitt Romney Questions in Warsaw: VIDEO" »


Google Goes Gay, Globally

Yesterday, at the Global LGBT Workplace Summit in London, Google announced its new "Legalize Love" campaign, which intends to work with pro-gay grassroots organizations and small businesses in those countries where anti-gay laws are still on the books, and in which Google has a business interest.

Fron DOT429:

GaygleThe "Legalize Love" campaign officially launches in Poland and Singapore on Saturday, July 7th. Google intends to eventually expand the initiative to every country where the company has an office, and will focus on places with homophobic cultures, where anti-gay laws exist. 

Google's Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe outlined the initiative at a Global LGBT Workplace Summit in London earlier today. "We want our employees who are gay or lesbian or transgender to have the same experience outside the office as they do in the office. It is obviously a very ambitious piece of work.

Google acknowledges that the Legalize Love campaign isn't entirely altruistic. Google's Mark Palmer-Edgcumbe notes that the company has, on several occasions, wished to place a highly skilled gay employee in a particular country, but couldn't because of that country's anti-gay policies. Palmer-Edgcumbe singled out Singapore for special criticism:

Singapore wants to be a global financial center and world leader and we can push them on the fact that being a global center and a world leader means you have to treat all people the same, irrespective of their sexual orientation.


Google Exporting LGBT Love Around The World

GoogleGayShirtGoogle, one of the nation's most LGBT-friendly companies in the United States, is exporting its inclusive philosophy abroad through a "Legalize Love" set to launch tomorrow in first Poland and Singapore and then, they hope, the rest of the world.

Instinct offers more details:

Gay Star News says the campaign "will tackle places where it is illegal to be gay, or where there are other anti-gay laws or where the culture is homophobic."

Google, long known for their pro-LGBT business practices, has a clear goal.

The company's Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe says: "We want our employees who are gay or lesbian or transgender to have the same experience outside the office as they do in the office. It is obviously a very ambitious piece of work."

Google will join forces with other non-government organizations (NGO's) to lobby the governments.

Singapore is specifically mentioned, says Palmer-Edgecumbe, because it "wants to be a global financial center and world leader [and being] a world leader means you have to treat all people the same, irrespective of their sexual orientation."


'I Just Made Love' App Apparently A Dream Come True For Horny Polish Oversharers

IjustmadeloveDid you just make love? Do you want to tell the world about it? There's an app for that!

"I Just Made Love" is catching on in Europe. At least, it's catching on in Poland. According to The Daily Mail:

The Android - and now iPhone - app lets you record where, when and even in what position you 'made love' - and then upload it to an online database - with your comments.

The Android app has already been downloaded 10,000 times.

The I Just Made Love site claims to have recorded 193,000 'acts of love' ... Most of the posts via the site so far seem to be in Polish - with only isolated instances of lovemaking in other countries.

Along with the blunt fact of your having got lucky, the app lets you note where it happened, and allows you to provide a "very limited" amount of context -- whether the encounter occured indoors, outdoors, in a car, or on a boat. It's the perfect app for the Don Juan cum compulsive oversharer. Assuming compulsive oversharers get laid.


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