May 17th is symbolic due to its significance in the improvement of the status of gays and lesbians. IDAHO proposed this date for annually holding a day set aside to fight homophobia. In removing homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses on a May 17, the World Health Organisation (WHO) put an end to over a century of homophobia in the medical field.
Borne out of the International Conference on LGBT Community Human Rights held in Montréal from July 26 to 29, 2006, prior to the opening of the first World Outgames, the Declaration of Montréal included a recommendation to have an International Day Against Homophobia on May 17 of each year recognised.
In honor of IDAHO, we thought it would be fun to do an Evil Slutopia link roundup: totally gay edition.
First, some of the gayest hits from the ESC archives:
And Tango Makes...My Kids Gay?
Island of Lesbians
The Lavender Menace
ENDA Passes in the House
National Coming Out Day
Soy Makes Kids Gay?
I Heard a Crazy Rumor That Elton John is Gay
Some gay rights organizations:
~GLAAD - The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation
(Check out the GLAAD Media Awards on Bravo on June 27th.)
~PFLAG - Parents, Families, & Friends of Lesbians and Gays
(Check out PFLAG this summer on the True Colors tour with Cyndi Lauper, The B-52s, and other artists and special guests.)
~HRC - The Human Rights Campaign
~GLSEN - The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network
~Marriage Equality USA
Some of our favorite crazy 'gay scares' from the right wing:
~Tinky Winky is gay! Jerry Falwell famously claimed that the BBC TV show Teletubbies was bad for kids because of Tinky Winky's total gayness. He carries a handbag! Won't someone think of the children?
In an article called Parents Alert: Tinky Winky Comes Out of the Closet, he says: "He is purple - the gay-pride colour; and his antenna is shaped like a triangle - the gay-pride symbol."
He said the "subtle depictions" of gay sexuality are intentional and later issued a statement that read: "As a Christian I feel that role modelling the gay lifestyle is damaging to the moral lives of children."
~Spongebob is brainwashing kids into accepting the 'gay lifestyle'. Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family protested a video for schools put out by a group called the We Are Family Federation. The video is about tolerance and is supposed to promote acceptance and understanding of families that are 'different', but is not specifically about homosexuality.
The eight-page long teacher's guide that accompanies that DVD makes three passing references to same-sex parents. It contains generic advice about what teachers should do if kids ask them about atypical homes— like ones with adoptive parents, step-siblings, or grandparents. Teachers are advised to remind kids that everybody's family is different, but they're all based on love.
Dr. Dobson's press spokesman says he's not sure whether or not Dr. Dobson has seen the SpongeBob video, but he has been briefed on it. And an assistant says the group stands by its claim, and says, "We see the video as an insidious means by which the organization is manipulating and potentially brainwashing kids. It's a classic bait and switch."
As Margaret Cho said, "These Christian groups are always up to some kind of bullshit. They're either trying to sneak Terry Shiavo a Happy Meal, or going off about 'SpongeBob is gay!' Sponge Bob is a sponge. Obviously transsexual."~And let's not forget the originals, Bert and Ernie of Sesame Street. B & E were outed by Reverend Joseph Chambers on his radio show.
"They’re two grown men sharing a house — and a bedroom!" bellows Chambers, whose radio ministry is broadcast in four Southern states. "They share clothes. They eat and cook together. They vacation together and have effeminate characteristics. In one show Bert teaches Ernie how to sew. In another, they tend plants together. If this isn’t meant to represent a homosexual union, I can’t imagine what it’s supposed to represent."
We can't imagine what's going on in Reverend Chambers' imagination.
Some news stories that give us hope:
~Maryland Adopts Anti-Bullying Law - "Gov. Martin O'Malley on Tuesday signed a bill that makes Maryland one of the few U.S. states to protect LGBT students from bullying in schools.
Maryland becomes the seventh state to protect students on the basis of gender identity or expression and the 11th state to do so based on sexual orientation, according to a news release from the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network and Equality Maryland."~Russia Observes First 'Day of Silence' - "Russian gays and their allies participated Saturday in that country's first observance of a Day of Silence to protest antigay discrimination, harassment, and violence, the website UK Gay News reports."
~Judge: School Must Allow Pro-Gay Shirts - "Heather Gillman can wear her T-shirts. U.S. District Judge Richard Smoak decided Tuesday the Holmes County School Board violated Gillman’s right to free speech in November and ordered the board to alert students in writing that they are allowed to express their support for the equal treatment of gays in an appropriate and non-disruptive way.
“I find that the core message here is of tolerance and fairness,” Smoak said...Gillman, 17, a Ponce De Leon High School junior, sued the Holmes County School Board last year because it prohibited her from wearing T-shirts she had made in support of gay rights. Gillman made the shirts after her ninth-grade cousin, who is openly gay, was suspended along with nine other students for disruptions they caused in September."
~Ellen Degeneres gets a standing ovation from her talk show audience when she announces that now that California has overturned the gay marriage ban, she and girlfriend Portia DeRossi are getting married.
And some stories that remind us that there's still much more to do:
~Arizona Gay Marriage Ban Moves to Senate - "Today the Arizona House of Representatives voted 33-25 to put a proposed constitutional amendment to prohibit same-sex marriage on this year's statewide ballot in November.
The measure now moves on to the state Senate, where legislators will decide whether to hold a vote on the amendment. A similar ban was defeated at the polls in 2006."~Hagee Reneges On Retraction of His Katrina Comments: 'God Always Punishes Unconfessed Sin' - "Two weeks ago, controversial Pastor John Hagee reiterated his prior belief that Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans because it was “planning a sinful” “homosexual rally.” Asked about the comments, McCain — who sought Hagee’s endorsement for more than a year — was forced to distance himself, calling them “nonsense” nine times."
~Gay Panic Defense For Gay Teen's Killer - "The lawyer of Brandon McInerney, the 14-year-old boy who killed gay teenager Lawrence King at a high school in Oxnard, CA, in February, claims school officials' gay positive attitude is to blame for King's murder.
Deputy Public Defender William Quest, Brandon McInerney's lawyer, claims in his defense that educators should have moved aggressively against the rising tensions between the two boys, which allegedly started when King openly flirted with McInerney. By allowing King to come to school wearing feminine makeup and accessories, school officials were so intent on nurturing King as he explored his sexuality that they downplayed the turmoil his behavior was causing on campus, Quest said.
Quest claimed McInerney shot King in the back of the head with a handgun as first-period classes were beginning because he was unable to see another way to solve his problem."