Moldavan officials defy court ruling banning capitol city’s Pride celebration
Gay Pride didn’t go well in Moldova for the third year in a row.
Authorities in the capital, Chisinau, banned all public Pride activities again, despite a Supreme Court ruling that last year’s ban was illegal. The city says Pride events threaten public order, offend Christian values and promote sexual propaganda.
Despite the ban, gay activists attempted to lay flowers April 27 at a monument to victims of repression. They were stopped by police, who said a permit was required for the action.
The flowers were then deposited at the officers’ feet, said Boris Balanetkii, head of the Pride organizing group GenderDoc-M.
“Police [said] GenderDoc-M has to have official permission of the City Hall to hold this event [but] later a representative of City Hall commented in an interview that the actions of the police were not correct and in order to lay flowers there is no need for any permission,” Balanetkii said.
Later in the day, about 20 activists went to City Hall and stood in front of it for 15 minutes with their mouths taped shut with rainbow stickers. Police allowed the protest and protected the activists from about 30 counter-demonstrators from an extremist youth organization, Balanetkii said.
Balanetkii said the event showed that the disorder feared by officials did not occur.
European Parliament passes resolution blasting Polish stance on gay issues
The European Parliament passed a resolution April 26 criticizing government-sponsored legislation in Poland that would ban discussion of gay topics in schools and punish teachers and principals who violate the proposed law with firing and a fine or jail time. The vote was 325 to 124 with 150 abstentions.
“These kinds of people cannot work with children,” Polish Deputy Minister of Education Miroslaw Orzechowski told local radio in March. “These activities need to be acted upon before it’s too late to make a difference.”
Minister of Education and Deputy Prime Minister Roman Giertych also has spoken in favor of the legislation, saying, “Homosexual propaganda must be limited so children will have the correct view of the family. If we will not use all our power to strengthen the family, then as a continent there is no future for us. We will be a continent settled by representatives of the Islamic world who care for the family.”
The European resolution also calls for a gay fact-finding mission to be sent to Poland, for worldwide decriminalization of homosexuality, and for the European Commission to launch court actions against European Union member states that breach EU obligations.
Following the parliament’s vote, Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski claimed that “nobody is limiting gay rights in Poland.”
Pro-gay writings from mid-18th Century found in National Archives in England
University of Manchester academic Dr. Hal Gladfelder has discovered pro-gay writings from 1749 in the National Archives in Kew, England.
The five-foot-long handwritten scroll is a legal indictment of the printer of a book by Thomas Cannon called “Ancient and Modern Pederasty Investigated and Exemplify’d.”
The book – which contained stories and philosophical texts in defense of male homosexuality – disappeared immediately after it was published, but the indictment reproduces many passages from it.
One surviving extract states: “Unnatural desire is a contradiction in terms; downright nonsense. Desire is an amatory impulse of the inmost human parts.”
Gladfelder said the book “must be the first substantial treatment of homosexuality ever in English. The only other discussions of homosexuality were contained in violently moralistic and homophobic attacks or in trial reports for the crime of sodomy up to and beyond 1750.”
Outgames to pay creditors just pennies on the dollar to settle debts
The financially disastrous 1st World Outgames, held last summer in Montreal, will pay its biggest creditors 15 or 20 cents of each dollar owed them.
Creditors voted to accept the settlement April 25 rather than see the Outgames declare bankruptcy, which would have made it difficult for the Outgames to collect money it is still owed, leaving its creditors in a worse situation.
The Outgames lost more than $5 million Canadian. Some $3 million of that has been written off by governments that loaned the organization money.
There are 308 creditors remaining who are owed about $2.3 million. Of those, 121 who are owed $500 or less will get all their money, said the Montreal Gazette. More than 100 who are owed more than $500 have agreed to accept a flat settlement of $500.
That will leave about 80 larger creditors who will receive pennies on the dollar. The Canadian dollar is worth about 90 cents U.S.
CEO of British Petroleum resigns after being outed, reports of 4-year affair
The chief executive officer of BP – formerly called British Petroleum – resigned May 1 after London newspapers reported that he had a four-year relationship with a 27-year-old man he met through an escort service.
The media also reported allegations that CEO John Browne, 59, had misused company funds, facilities and staff to support ex-boyfriend Jeff Chevalier’s cell-phone ring-tone business.
It also emerged that Browne had lied in court about how he and Chevalier met.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, April 27, 2007.