Bill De Blasio Won’t March In New York’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade

I’m sorry, but it’s the St Patrick’s Day Parade, not the gay pride parade. Why does every parade have to have rainbow flags? We have our day and I think the Irish should have theirs, without strings.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said today he will sit out the nation’s largest St. Patrick’s Day parade because of organizers’ refusal to allow participants to carry gay-pride signs.

LGBT New Yorkers are allowed to walk in the parade, but they aren’t allowed to identify themselves by their sexual orientation.

“No, I am not planning on marching in the parade,” de Blasio said at a City Hall press conference. “I will be participating in a number of other events to honor the Irish heritage of this city, but I simply disagree with the organizers of that parade.”

His predecessors, Michael Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani, marched every year that they were in office.

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Students suspended for wearing Confederate flags to protest gay rainbow flag

Why would people in the Northwest even bother with something that’s been a symbol of the South, anyway? The rainbow flag is worn for peaceful reasons, not so much with the Confederate flag.

Of course the ACLU will be around soon to side with these kids and proclaim it’s our right to spread hatred disguised as the First Amendment right. If hate speech is band most everywhere else, why not on kids’ clothing as well?

At Tahoma High School in the nether suburbs of Seattle, it’s totally okay to display a gay-pride flag, but two juniors were suspended for three days for wearing Confederate flags at school.

An unnamed school district spokesman said that a sophomore had been exhibiting a gay-pride flag at Tahoma High for the last two weeks, reports local CBS affiliate KIRO. When the two juniors showed up on Tuesday in a common area wearing the Confederate flags as a political statement in response, they were suspended.

School officials said the Confederate flags caused a disruption because some students were upset. The officials added that the garb was an undisclosed violation of the Tahoma High dress code.

At least one of the unidentified, Confederate flag-wearing students wore the controversial symbol around his neck in some fashion.

Local residents supported the school’s decision, according to KIRO.

“I can see where we wouldn’t okay that,” said concerned aunt Tiki Scroggins, who was at at school to pick up her nephew. “There’s too many ethnic backgrounds that that could offend.”

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West urges Serbia to allow, protect gay Pride

Nice way to hold their feet over the flames. If Serbia wants to join the European Union, accept gay rights. 🙂

BELGRADE (Reuters) – Western envoys urged Serbia on Wednesday to make sure a planned gay pride march this month goes ahead without violence, in a test of the Balkan country’s commitment to tolerance and diversity as it eyes talks on joining the European Union.

Authorities in Serbia banned Belgrade Pride last year and the year before, after a 2010 march triggered rioting by nationalist protesters and soccer hooligans. Gay rights activists say they will try again on September 28.

Conservative societies across the Balkans have been slow to accept greater gay rights, and similar events across the region have often ended in violence.

Turkey’s Violent Homophobia

This is so awful. 😦 I will never understand why people have to resort to violence when they disagree with someone over ANYTHING. A lot of the time I fear that’s what will end up happening here more and more. I don’t believe for an instant that this country is more civilised than all other countries in the world.

For a brief moment, Istanbul’s Taksim Square was transformed yesterday. The riot police, clouds of tear gas, and barricade-building protesters that characterized the past month’s unprecedented unrest were gone. Instead, a mass of rainbow flags, garish makeup, and neon clothing and face paint gleamed in the afternoon sunshine ahead of the city’s 10th LGBT pride march.

The atmosphere was festive. Despite that the demonstration was not legally sanctioned and there were frequent anti-government chants, uniformed police were almost nonexistent. Public reaction seemed to be almost overwhelmingly positive, and bystanders applauded the procession as it passed down İstiklâl Avenue. Attendance, estimated at least 20,000, was among the largest in the march’s history and included three M.P.s from the Republican People’s Party, an opposition group.

It was an undeniable success, and organizers were justifiably delighted. But under any other circumstances, things might have been very different. Homosexual conduct between consenting adults is legal in Turkey, but far from accepted. Prejudice is widespread: 84 percent of Turkish people said gays or lesbians were among the groups they would least like living in their area, according to 2011 research conducted as part of the World Values Survey.

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Twin girls speak at White House event

I always feel a ray of hope when kids these girls’ age speak out about LGBT rights.

When twin sisters Zea and Luna Weiss-Wynne, both 9, wrote a letter to President Barack Obama last year, they asked for his attention on a few things.

Obama invited the sisters to join him at a reception at the White House to outline their requests in public. The girls, who asked for his support of marriage equality, spoke at the LGBT Pride Month reception Friday, which is part of the annual celebration dedicated to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights. The president made sure to give the third graders a turn in front of the microphone.

“We told the president that we would like for him to make some changes this year,” the girls said to the crowd, which was composed of leaders in the LGBT community and supporters. Among the requests the girls outlined in their speech and their letter was to help “make it harder for bad guys to get guns,” more funding for schools and a commitment to gay marriage.

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Is Russia moving backward?

I’m so glad that I don’t live in Russia. There’s a lot more I could say, but I won’t. I’m sure many will form their own opinions.

MOSCOW (AP) — More than two dozen activists were detained in Moscow on Tuesday as they were protesting a bill that stigmatizes the gay community and bans the giving of information abouthomosexuality to children.

The protesters attempted to rally outside the Russian State Duma before what is expected to be a final vote on the bill banning “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations.”

Police moved in after supporters of the bill started showering the protesters with eggs and water. Some of the protesters who were not detained were viciously attacked by masked men on a central street a mile away.

The Kremlin-backed legislation imposes hefty fines for providing information about the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to minors or holding gay pride rallies.

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