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WORLD South Africa murder, lesbian couple, Brianna Ghey, Eurovision
by Andrew Davis

This article shared 14419 times since Fri Feb 16, 2024
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In South Africa, LGBTQ+-rights groups condemned the brutal murder of Diego Jacobs, a queer man in Cape Town, The Washington Blade reported. Reports indicate Jacobs, 21, was brutally murdered (reportedly by a former neighbor) on Feb. 3 while walking home with two friends. OUT LGBT Civil Society Engagement Officer Sibonelo Ncanana has asked law-enforcement officials to thoroughly investigate the incident and ensure the alleged suspect receives a lengthy sentence.

Anju Devi Shresth and Suprita Gurung made history as the first lesbian couple to legally register their marriage in Nepal, Go Magazine noted. The couple were legally married at the Bardiya district's Jamuna Rural Municipality. LGBTQ+ activist and former Nepal parliamentarian Sunil Babu Pant said that the marriage certificate was granted by ward secretary Dipak Nepal. Maya Gurung and Surendra Pandey were the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Nepal, doing so last November.

In the UK, Brianna Ghey's mother, Esther, paid an emotional tribute to her "unique and joyful" daughter at a vigil marking one year since the trans teen's murder, PinkNews reported. Brianna was only 16 when two teenagers fatally stabbed her in Culcheth Linear Park in 2023. Appearing at a vigil outside Warrington's Golden Square Shopping Center, Esther said, in part, "I will be forever thankful that I was able to spend 16 years with Brianna; she taught me so much and gave me so much peace and love."

Also, regarding Brianna and Esther, Prime Minister has, so far, refused to apologize for making an anti-trans barb despite Brianna's father asking him to do so, per PinkNews. During Prime Minister's Questions—despite having been told that Esther Ghey was in the public gallery—in arguing that Keir Starmer had broken "every single promise he was elected on," he joked that the opposition leader had also changed his position on "defining a woman." Brianna Ghey's father, Peter Spooner, later urged Sunak to apologize for the remark—a request the prime minister has so far refused.

A group of 400 actors, musicians and entertainment execs—including Helen Mirren, Liev Schreiber, Mayim Bialik, Sharon Osbourne, Debra Messing, Boy George, Julianna Margulies and Gene Simmons—wrote and signed an open letter supporting the decision for Israel to remain in the Eurovision Song Contest, Deadline reported. Released by non-profit industry organization Creative Community for Peace, the letter backs the decision of Eurovision organizer the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) to keep Israel in this year's contest.

In India, more than 1,000 LGBTQ+ individuals and allies joined a Pride march in Hyderabad, according to NewsMeter. An ally named Alex stated, "Isn't this the whole point? Letting more people know about the struggle of fighting for our rights." Marchers carried posters that promoted "No queer liberation without caste annihilation," "Queers for Palestine and Kashmir" and "Love Is Love," among other things.

Canada's Conservative opposition leader Pierre Poilievre backs a gender-identity policy that would ban minors in the western province of Alberta from receiving hormonal treatments like puberty blockers, Yahoo! News noted, citing Reuters. Alberta's guidelines (expected to be enacted later this year) would be the strictest in Canada, as they would ban hormonal treatments for children who are 15 and under, and require parental consent for 16- and 17-year-olds. Randy Boissonnault, the openly gay minister of employment and workforce development who is also from Alberta, accused Poilievre of mimicking U.S. Republican Party rhetoric.

Polish LGBTQ+-rights activist Bart Staszewski said he believes it's a "new beginning" in Poland after a host apologized on air for the homophobic propaganda aired by state media in recent years, according to PBS Newshour. In part, Wojciech Szelag, the TV host, began his discussion with Staszewski and another activist by saying: "For many years in Poland, shameful words have been directed at numerous individuals simply because they chose to decide for themselves who they are and whom they love. LGBT+ people are not an ideology, but people, with specific names, faces, relatives and friends." Staszewski said the apology was refreshing and he feels like it's a "new beginning"—but he added that the new government (a centrist unit led by Prime Minister Donald Tusk) still has work to do, given that same-sex unions are still not permitted under Polish law.

In Spain, artist Salustiano García Cruz's new portrait of Jesus has caused controversy online for being "too effeminate," PinkNews noted. The artwork was recently unveiled as the official poster of the Holy Week in Seville, in southern Spain. "It's a Christ that I would say is effeminate or androgynous in a way," Spanish gallery owner Artur Ramon said. "Spain is a country that is still quite homophobic, and people don't like that he is represented in this way for a festival that marks the passion of Christ in his final moments of life." Responding to the image on X/Twitter, conservative Catholic group The Institute of Social Policy labelled the painting a "true aberration," arguing that the portrayal is both "sexualized" and "effeminate."

The queer thriller Femme—starring Nathan Stewart-Jarrett and George MacKay—will open on March 22 in NYC and March 29 in LA, with a national expansion to follow, per a press release. The plot is described thusly: "With his performances as Aphrodite Banks, Jules (Nathan Stewart-Jarrett) has a place among London's celebrated drag artists. One night after a show, he steps out to get some cigarettes and is brutally attacked by a man (George MacKay), out with a gang of his friends. … Months later, he recognizes his attacker by chance in a gay sauna. Without make-up and wrapped only in a towel, Jules is able to approach the other man incognito and find out who he is. He begins an affair with the closeted Preston, with a plan to take his revenge." Femme has won three British Independent Film Awards.

Avi Federgreen is starting a new LGBTQ2S+ movie-distribution label, Pride Pictures, for North America at the European Film Market in Berlin, The Hollywood Reporter noted. The queer cinema releasing outfit, with Kirk Cooper as head of acquisitions, will kick off with two titles: Inari Niemi's Finnish feature Light Light Light and Dylan Rhys Howard's Canadian indie Eudaimonia. Pride Pictures will aim to bring queer cinema to North American audiences with no language or regional barriers.

German trans pop singer Kim Petras dropped another set of completely raunchy songs—the sex-positive EP Slut Pop Miami—in time for Valentine's Day, a press release noted. The 12-song track list includes tunes such as "Banana Boat," "Cockblocker" and "Slut Pop Reprise." Petras is currently on the European leg of her Live Nation produced Feed The Beast World Tour.

Prince Harry was awarded an additional $500,000 in damages in his phone-hacking case against British tabloid The Mirror, Variety noted. The BBC reported that Harry's lawyer, David Sherborne, told a judge at London's High Court that Mirror Group Newspapers agreed to pay the prince damages in addition to "all of the costs of his claim, including individual and common costs." In December, Prince Harry was awarded $180,000 when a judge ruled that there had been "extensive" phone hacking between 2006 and 2011.

Blackpink member Lisa has joined the season-three cast of The White Lotus, per Variety. (Blackpink is a very successful South Korean girl group.) She will be credited under her given name, Lalisa Manobal. The large cast already includes Leslie Bibb, Dom Hetrakul, Jason Isaacs, Michelle Monaghan, Parker Posey, Tayme Thapthimthong, Walton Goggins, Patrick Schwarzenegger and Carrie Coon, among others.

This article shared 14419 times since Fri Feb 16, 2024
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