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WORLD Global Pride, trans woman attacked, Poland items, singer comes out
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2020-06-15

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Organizers of the June 27 virtual event Global Pride said that former U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden, U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Ireland Prime Minister Leo Varadkar and artists Laverne Cox, Adam Lambert, Kesha and Todrick Hall will appear, OutInJersey.net noted. Global Pride leaders have said they will amplify Black voices, acknowledging the international response to the death of George Floyd and the unprecedented demand for racial justice by working with founders of the Black Lives Matter movement. Global Pride is a 24-hour stream of music, performances, speeches and messages of support that Hall will host on his YouTube channel.

Maha al-Mutairi, a trans woman in Kuwait, posted a video explaining how police have raped and assaulted her as she turned herself into a police station, Gay Star News reported. The authorities had summoned al-Mutairi, 39, to attend the police station on the charge of "imitating a woman"—the fourth time she has faced this charge in a year. But this time she fought back. On her way to the police station she filmed a video, explaining how police had raped her and beat her senseless when in a male prison for seven months in 2019 for "imitating the opposite sex." Trans women have reported police stripping them and parading them around police stations, having to dance for officers, sexual humiliation, physical abuse and torture.

Poland President Andrzej Duda pledged to ban LGBT+ education in schools, as well as blocking the legalization of same-sex marriage and adoption, PinkNews reported. Duda ramped up his homophobic rhetoric to jump-start his re-election campaign, which had been interrupted by coronavirus.

Speaking of Poland, the country has featured its first-ever gay couple on television, in a steamy advertisement for Durex condoms, StarObserver.com reported. Despite having a culture of rampant homophobia leading to one-third of Poland declaring itself an "LGBT-Free zone" in February, the nationally aired condom ad features famous YouTube couple Jakub Kwiecinsk and Dawid Mycek.

Mexican singer and DJ Raymix rocked the Latin music world June 5 when he came out as gay, LGBTQ Nation noted. This news was coming from a guy who broke through with the hit single "Oye Mujer," Raymix's ode to a captivating woman in the club. "Can you believe that in 2020 there are people in the industry who told me not do this video?" says Raymix at the start of his YouTube video titled "I Officially Declare Myself Gay" in Spanish. "That I should stay quiet and pretend to be a person that I'm not because I wouldn't be successful. They told me the world is not ready for an artist who sings cumbia, or regional Mexican music [to come out]." Raymix came out after his latest single—"Tu y Yo," with Mexican pop icon Paulina Rubio—hit number one on Mexico's Pop Airplay chart.

Switzerland's National Council approved same-sex marriage by an overwhelming majority, Gay Star News noted. The National Council is the lower house of the Swiss parliament, the National Assembly; now, the issue will now have to go before the upper house, the Council of States, and it may face a referendum. The bill guarantees full equality, including access to sperm donation and parenthood recognition.

In Britain, more than 100,000 people have signed an online petition calling for "conversion therapy"—aimed at changing a person's sexuality—to be made illegal, the BBC reported. It will now be considered for a debate in Parliament, having gained the required support, two years after the government pledged to ban the practice. Also, the charity Stonewall has urged the government to "urgently" publish its plans to "end these harmful practices."

The British government—after spending a gruelling two years stalling the results of a public forum to decide the future of trans rights—has opted to not listen to the public and allegedly ignore and ditch considerations for a self-identifying ( self-ID ) system altogether, PinkNews reported. The crucial legislative reforms which would have made it easier for people to change their gender will reportedly be abandoned and replaced with a series of pad-locked policies to better "protect" single-sex spaces.

Authorities in far eastern Russia charged an LGBT-rights activist with distributing pornography for posting drawings of vaginas on social media, The Moscow Times reported. Yulia Tsvetkova, 27, had been under house arrest from November to March in the remote city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur before authorities lifted her house arrest. Tsvetkova faces up to six years in jail for posting the images on her page dedicated to body positivity that she said is a hobby.

A Reuters article spotlighted gay men who are tricked into sharing personal images of themselves. In Egypt, Morocco and Nigeria, gay men are often blackmailed and outed by fake dates who dupe them into sharing intimate photos that they post online. The police also use social media to lure them to false meetings and make arrests. Ghana is one of more than 30 African countries that outlaw same-sex relations, according to the LGBT+-rights group ILGA.

The top official at the U.S. foreign-aid agency defended three political appointees—Merritt Corrigan, Bethany Kozma and Mark Kevin Lloyd—whose past social-media posts and writings include attacks on LGBT people and Muslims, saying they were "committed to enacting the policies of President Donald J. Trump," ProPublica reported. Acting administrator John Barsa condemned what he called "unwarranted and malicious attacks" on the three officials, while also making clear they had been chosen by the White House.

British actor Daniel Radcliffe—who played Harry Potter in the films based off J.K. Rowling's hit book series—responded to the English author's anti-trans tweetstorm, LGBTQ Nation reported. Rowling recently announced that she supports female activists who harass and demean transgender women online. In a statement posted to the Trevor Project website, Radcliffe said, in part, "Transgender women are women. Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I." Co-star Emma Watson also came out for trans rights in the wake of Rowling's posts.

Technology and design tertiary institution RMIT University, law firm Dentons and community-support agency Advance Diversity Services are among this year's top employers and service providers for LGBTQ inclusion in Australia, Gay Nation reported. Other top honors went to Commonwealth Bank, PwC Australia and University of Western Australia, which all received the highest tiered ranking for LGBTQ inclusion while engineering group John Holland was named most improved. The 2020 Australian LGBTQ Inclusion Awards—which announced the honors—are usually held in May; however, this year's event is being held Oct. 19 at the Hyatt Regency in Sydney.

Universal's Jurassic World: Dominion is set to be the first major studio movie to re-start filming proper in the United Kingdom, Deadline noted. Cameras are due to roll the second week of July ( July 6 ) at Pinewood Studios, Universal has confirmed. In recent days, production staff have been implementing rigorous safety protocols on-site and a two week pre-production period will begin next week.


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