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WORLD Kazakhstan protest, anti-gay attack, Taiwan wedding, Olympics
by Windy City Times staff
2021-08-15

This article shared 1103 times since Sun Aug 15, 2021
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More than 100 people protested against an event planned by LGBT activists in Kazakhstan's northwestern city of Aqtobe, RFERL.org reported. The protesters said at the Aug. 8 rally that they would hand a petition to the local authorities requesting them "not to allow representatives of a movement that propagates values contradicting our traditions and religion" to enter Aqtobe. A feminist initiative, Feminita, planned to hold an Aug. 13 seminar on the rights of the LGBT community in the Central Asian nation.

A group of approximately 10 teenaged boys and girls brutally attacked two gay men in a parking lot in England, leaving one man unconscious and both with multiple fractures to the face along with other serious injuries, out.com noted. According to a report from police in East Hertsfordshire, the two men were seriously injured in a Waitrose market parking lot in Northgate End. "This despicable attack was completely unprovoked and left both men with serious injuries," Investigator Gary Bangs, from the East Herts Local Crime Unit, said in a statement. "They are being supported by specially trained hate crime officers at what is understandably a very difficult time." An investigation is ongoing.

Following a landmark victory in court this past May, two men made their marriage official in Taiwan, out.com noted. Ting Tse-yen, 29, and partner Leong Chin-fai, 33, from Macau tied the knot after a court ruled in their favor earlier this year, according to a report from the Agence France Presse that appeared in Barrons. Taiwan has recognized marriage equality since a 2017 court decision and a further 2019 legislative act, but only when one of the partners is from a country that does not matrimonially discriminate against same-sex unions.

At least 182 out athletes from about 30 countries attended the Tokyo Olympics, more than three times the number who competed in the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, according to an NBC News item that cited Outsports. At least 55 of those athletes, who competed in 35 different sports, won medals. In fact, if the LGBTQ Olympians competed as their own country—labeled "Team LGBTQ" by Outsports—they would rank 11th in the total medal count (right behind France and before Canada), with 32 team and individual medals: 11 gold, 12 silver and nine bronze.

On a related note, only one openly LGBTQ+ athlete in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics represented any of the 71 nations with anti-homosexuality laws, according to a 76Crimes.com item that cited Sports Media LGBT+. Swimmer Amini Fonua—from the South Pacific nation of Tonga, and at his third Olympic Games—"deserves huge praise for his advocacy and activism on behalf of Pacific nations over the years," Sports Media LGBT+ stated. Fonua was recently featured by NBC News in the article "Tongan Olympic swimmer is competing for a medal and against homophobia." That widely condemned article, among other things, described an incident at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, when a Daily Beast reporter posed as a gay man and used hookup apps to identify and publicize gay Olympians.

Gay British diver Tom Daley (who won two medals at the Tokyo Olympics) admitted he was unaware of the controversy surrounding Russian television hosts and personalities using anti-LGBTQ+ slurs and rhetoric during the Games, out.com noted. However, according to iNews, he told reporters, "History shows that everything that society is has been dictated from the straight, white, male experience. If we could come together and use different points of view, the world would be a better place."

A German middle-school teacher was accused in court of murdering, dismembering and eating a man he met on a gay dating website last year, according to an out.com item that cited the Daily Mail. The accused, identified only as Stefan R., allegedly lured Stefan Trogisch, a 44-year-old electrical construction worker, to his apartment in Berlin last Sept. 5 for the purposes of killing and eating him. Pieces of Trogisch's fleshless skeletal remains were found in various locations throughout the greater Berlin area later that fall.

In Scotland, children as young as 4 years old are now able to change their names and genders at schools without requiring parental consent, according to a Newsweek item that cited The Telegraph. A 70-page document issued on Thursday states that under new LGBTQ+ inclusivity guidelines created by the Scottish government, teachers are now urged not to question their students if they indicate a wish to transition genders. Instead, teachers are urged to ask for the students' new names and pronouns.

LGBTQ+ tourism marketing guru Matt Skallerud, Atlanta Black Pride Weekend and Belmond sales director Annette Kishon-Pines will receive 2021's IGLTA Honors at the association's Global Convention in Atlanta in September, per a press release. Pink Media President and former IGLTA Board Chair Skallerud will receive the Hanns Ebensten Hall of Fame Award, while Atlanta Black Pride Weekend will receive the Pathfinder Award and Kishon-Pines will be honored with IGLTA's first Ally Award.

A Lutheran church in Norway held a name-change ceremony for a 49-year-old transgender woman in what officials said marked the first such event in a place of worship in the Nordic country, NBC News reported. Elin Stillingen legally changed her name and gender last year. She marked the occasion at a recent ceremony at the medieval Hoff church north of the Norwegian capital of Oslo. The occasion was led by pastor Stein Ovesen, who planned the ceremony with the Stensveen Foundation—a Norwegian non-governmental organization supporting people with challenges related to their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.

A new Egyptian bank note stirred outrage and calls for a boycott after apparently featuring the colors of the rainbow flag associated with LGBTQ+ Pride, The Sunday Times reported. The Egyptian central bank has indicated that it will change the design of the plastic note, which appeared to show a rainbow spectrum on its watermark in a sample photograph, leading to consternation on social media in the conservative society.

Apple removed gay dating app Hornet from its App Store in Turkey after a court order last year claimed that personal rights of the Ankara provincial military command were violated, Middle East Eye reported. Hornet, which has more than 3 million users in Turkey, described the move as another Turkish government attempt at suppressing and silencing LGBTQ voices. The Turkish government previously blocked Hornet's website last August, citing the same court decision.

Visionary creative director Jeffrey Cameron passed away at age 53 in Paris, legacy.com noted. Cameron initially made his home in New York City, and received his BFA from the Fashion Institute of Technology there. He was an artistic director at Ralph Lauren in New York and, later, a creative consultant for Dior, Puma, Chaumet, TopMan, Levi's, Bruno Magli, Aerogroup International and MTV, among others. He contributed his skills and time to charitable organizations such as Centre LGBTQI+ Paris, Red Cross UK, True Colors, LGBTQ Center NYC, Act Up and God's Love We Deliver.

A CityNews item featured Montreal-based Mauritian-Canadian trans writer and multi-disciplinary artist Kama La Mackerel, who is changing the narrative through their art. La Mackerel recently received the Canada Council for the Arts 2021 Joseph S. Stauffer Prize in visual arts, and was a 2021 finalist for the writer's trust of Canada Dayne Ogilvie Prize. Their work is grounded in the exploration of justice, love, healing, hybridity, cosmopolitanism and collective/self-empowerment—molded through the experience of growing up "zom-fam" which is the Mauritian Creole for transgender; and the intersection of two ethnicities, two religions and three languages.

Italian tennis player Fabio Fognini wore rainbows for a Canadian tournament following his homophobic outburst last month at the Olympics, out.com noted. In Toronto, he wore a rainbow headband and two rainbow wristbands. Most of the comments on his own Instagram post (which included the caption "#loveforall") were positive, but Fognini took a beating on the Twitter video post, with some questioning if the rainbow sweatbands were meant to show solidarity with and contrition to the LGBTQ+ community, or just to soak up the negative press he received following his anti-gay outburst.


This article shared 1103 times since Sun Aug 15, 2021
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