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WORLD Cuban referendum, Gay Games, Berlin attacks, Indian trans men
by Andrew Davis
2022-07-31

This article shared 574 times since Sun Jul 31, 2022
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Cuba's parliament announced that the country will hold a referendum on the legalization of same-sex marriage and surrogate parenthood, Deutsche Welle reported. The referendum on the new family law is scheduled to be held Sunday, Sept. 25. In Latin America, seven countries currently allow same-sex marriage: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Uruguay and Chile, which legalized same-sex marriage in March. The new law would also offer increased protections for children, the elderly and other family members as well as greater women's rights.

Gay Games 11 Hong Kong 2023 (GGHK) announced that Alan Lang, director of sports, will step up to join Lisa Lam as co-chair of the organization, per a press release. Lang joined GGHK's management team in May 2020 as deputy sports director. In addition to new sports added for Hong Kong such as dodgeball, dragonboat and mahjongg, the line-up includes badminton, field hockey, fencing, football (soccer), marathon (half/full), swimming, road races (5/10 km), martial arts, rowing, rugby sevens, sailing, squash, table tennis, tennis, track and field, and trail running (short/long). The Games will take place Nov. 3-11, 2023 in Hong Kong and Guadalajara, Mexico.

Two apparently homophobic attacks were reported following Berlin's annual pro-LGBTQ+ Christopher Street Day celebration, according to The Advocate. Assailants attacked three teens and then a 32-year-old after the demonstration through Berlin that had Ukrainian organizations participating. The parade itself (which had about 350,000 people gather) was peaceful, police stated.

In India, trans men say the country's abortion law is progressive—but fails to include them, The Indian Express reported. Paras Dogra, a transgender man who faced sexual abuse for years at the hand of his relatives, said he fears that if he is attacked or raped again, he might be forced to carry a baby to term. After the recent reversal of Roe v. Wade ruling in the United States, Indian trans activists and allies have highlighted the dangers transgender people face in the country and have been urging for legislation toward a more inclusive abortion law to include trans men with respect to their rights to privacy and bodily autonomy.

The BVI (British Virgin Islands) Christian Council lost a proposed appeal before the High Court about a matter involving a same-sex couple in the BVI, according to BVI News. The matter concerns the validity of the marriage between same-sex couple Kinisha Forbes and Kirsten Lettsome—who entered a civil partnership in 2011 in the United Kingdom and was issued a marriage certificate once the UK's same-sex couples law came into effect—and whether any prohibition against marriage equality in the BVI is contrary to the constitution of the Virgin Islands. Judge Adrian Jack ruled that the proposed appeal had no realistic prospect of success after considering the various arguments of the council's attorney.

In the Canadian province of Alberta, the fallout continued for a food company as a number of businesses and institutions announced they would not be doing business with it anymore, CTV News Calgary reported. Valbella Gourmet Foods found itself in the middle of controversy after Canmore Pride received a homophobic and transphobic reply to a request for donations from Jeff von Rotz, who identified himself as the company's owner. The email it received in response said, in part, "I'm sorry to say but you could not pay me enough to sponsor anything to do with child-grooming trannys." Later, Chantal von Rotz apologized for the offending email on Facebook and said that Jeff, her brother, no longer worked for the company; however, other companies also stated they would decline to work with Valbella.

The UK will officially host Eurovision 2023 and the search to "find a host city to partner with" has started, Deadline noted. BBC Director General Tim Davie has said the public broadcaster will take up the mantle after British singer Sam Ryder finished second to Ukraine in this year's contest—but with Ukraine unable to host the event due to the ongoing war with Russia. Rap group Kalush Orchestra won this year's contest, and the members auctioned their trophy to help with the war effort.

Pope Francis issued a historic apology for the Catholic Church's cooperation with Canada's "catastrophic" policy of Indigenous residential schools, saying the forced assimilation of Native peoples into Christian society destroyed their cultures, severed families and marginalized generations, NPR reported. "I am sorry," Francis said, to applause from school survivors and Indigenous community members gathered at a former residential school south of Edmonton, Alberta—the first event of Francis' weeklong "penitential pilgrimage" to Canada. "I humbly beg forgiveness for the evil committed by so many Christians against the Indigenous peoples," Francis said. However, some have said the apology is not enough.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito addressed critics of his landmark opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, using a speech in Italy to make light of Britain's Prince Harry and other foreign figures who have lamented the rollback of U.S. protections for abortion, Yahoo! News noted. Prince Harry had referenced "the rolling back of constitutional rights here in the U.S." as well as war in Ukraine as examples of why 2022 is "a painful year in a painful decade," during a speech July 18 in New York. Alito also made light of commentary from outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, French President Emmanuel Macron and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Seven Manly Sea Eagles players withdrew from a National Rugby League match in Australia because they're unwilling to wear their club's Pride inclusion jersey, per NBC News. Josh Aloiai, Jason Saab, Christian Tuipulotu, Josh Schuster, Haumole Olakau'atu, Tolu Koula and Toafofoa Sipley were not available for selection. "We wish to apologize to the LGBTQ community who embrace the rainbow colors, who use these colors for pride and advocacy and human rights issues," Sea Eagles coach Des Hasler said. Australian Rugby League Commission chairman Peter V'landys said he understood the players' choices, based on religious and cultural differences, but pushed for inclusion and acceptance in the sport.

ABC News correspondent James Longman is officially married to his partner, Alex Brannan, People Magazine revealed. The British journalist, 36, and his former fiance tied the knot at the Old Marylebone Town Hall in London on Sunday after being engaged for a little over two years. The couple celebrated their fifth anniversary of being together in January.

Malaysian theater operator Golden Screen Cinemas announced that Thor: Love and Thunder will not get a theatrical release in the country, per Variety. In June, the release of Pixar feature Lightyear was canceled in Malaysia after the country's censorship authority (LPF) asked for cuts to the film, understood to include a same-sex kiss, in order for the film to obtain release certification. Reportedly, the LPF again asked for cuts, which Disney opted not to make.

British supermodel Kate Moss admitted she has "not very good memories" of her famous Calvin Klein photoshoot with Mark Wahlberg in 1992, per The Daily Mail. The pair posed for a memorable campaign together when she was at the beginning of her modeling career and he was the rapper known as Marky Mark. Speaking on Desert Island Discs with Lauren Laverne, Moss said Wahlberg made the photo shoot "all about him" and she also felt "objectified" by the crew. Wahlberg himself told The Guardian he "wasn't very… worldly" on the shoot.


This article shared 574 times since Sun Jul 31, 2022
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