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PostPosted: Tue Jun 09, 2009 1:26 pm 
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Russia gays to take mayor to court over "queer" jibe
3 June 2009
By James Kilner

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Mayor Yuri Luzhkov

MOSCOW (Reuters) — Gay rights activists in Moscow plan to take the city's rampantly homophobic mayor to court for insulting their dignity during an interview in which he said "queers" undermined a morally healthy society.

A Moscow court rejected a previous case made by gay rights campaigners against 72-year-old mayor Yuri Luzhkov in 2007 after he described their marches as "satanic" and banned one.

Prominent gay rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev said on Wednesday that lawyers would present a new case against Luzhkov to a Moscow court this week and later to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. "Nobody in Russia can win against the authorities. This is about raising awareness," he told Reuters by telephone.

Besides banning several gay parades in Moscow, Luzhkov has also blamed homosexuals for the spread of HIV/AIDS.

The issue of gay rights in Russia heated up in May, which saw the rejection of a lesbian couple's attempt to apply for a marriage license and the banning of a gay rights march to coincide with the Eurovision Song Contest, held in Moscow for the first time. Police detained around 80 people, including Alexeyev, who tried to hold the march anyway.

Luzhkov's latest comments, urging Alexeyev and other activists to take him to court, were broadcast on Tuesday by a state-run television program. "Our society has healthy morals and rejects all these queers," Interfax news agency quoted Luzhkov as saying on TV Center. "If you even imagine that they get permission to hold their parade and gather, they will simply be killed."

In 2006, militant Russian Orthodox believers and neo-fascists attacked a gay rights protest, injuring some of the demonstrators. The gay scene in Moscow is relatively small and low profile but accessible. Most clubs and bars aimed at the gay community are known through word of mouth rather than being openly advertised.

Alexeyev said Luzhkov was using security concerns as a smokescreen and did not want to see gay activists on Moscow's streets. "If the mayor of Moscow cannot provide security for a group of 100 people then he should not be mayor," Alexeyev said. The vocal gay activists are a minority in Moscow's homosexual community and have not attracted large numbers to their protests.

(Editing by Jonathon Burch)
Source: Reuters.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:07 pm 
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New campaign against homophobia in Vienna
5 June 2009

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A new campaign against homophobia is to be launched in Vienna.

The campaign by the Christian gay support group "Courage" will see 3,000 posters bearing the slogan "Liebe verdient Respekt" (Love deserves Respect) and showing gay, lesbian and heterosexual couples kissing hung in schools, youth facilities, underground stations and other public advertisement spaces.

The slogan will be translated into the Serb, Croatian, Bosnian and Turkish languages in an effort to reach out to the migrant community.

Courage chairman Johannes Wahala said yesterday (Thurs) the purpose of the campaign, which would last until the end of the year, was to diminish irrational fear of gays and lesbians. He said there had been an increase in physical and verbal attacks on gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people.

Wahala added that homosexuals of all kinds had a suicide rate seven times higher than the Austrian average. Young people aged 15 to 17 were especially vulnerable, Wahala said, since they were frequently subject to "outing." Homosexuals in that age group accounted for 90 per cent of all homosexual suicide attempts, he said. That was the reason, Wahala explained, why the posters would be directed mainly at young people.

Wahala said the city government had contributed 2,000 Euros of the 3,200 Euros cost of putting up the posters.

But observers have predicted the campaign will anger the Vienna branch of the right-wing Freedom Party (FPÖ), which wants "self-glorifying depictions of homosexuality in children"s books" banned. The Vienna FPÖ has also called for a law forbidding dissemination of "exhortative information about homosexuality among minors" in an effort to "protect our children from sexual exploitation."

The Vienna Greens have meanwhile attached the FPÖ"s calls. The Greens have called them "irresponsible" and claimed the FPÖ is contributing to the high rate of suicide among young homosexuals and that the FPÖ is only trying to foment anxiety and hatred.

Source: Austrian Times.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:11 pm 
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Hmm, as usual when I read that homophobia has increased in cities that were well known for their gay communities and acceptance by the local and general population, do I wonder if it has anything to do with the large influx of migrants coming from traditionally homophobic cultures like East Europe, the Middle East or Africa...

Unfortunately, and hypocritically so, IMO, these articles rarely fail to mention any statistics. I guess that would be racist or discriminatory...

WHAT ABOUT THE RIGHTS OF THE GAY PEOPLE IN THEIR OWN COUNTRIES?? !!!
:x

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 1:39 pm 
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 2:41 pm 
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 15, 2009 8:59 pm 
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Gays face "worrying" level of discrimination in Denmark
Wednesday, 10 June 2009

One in five members of the gay, bisexual and transgender community have been discriminated against in Copenhagen, says new report

Discrimination based on sexual orientation is at a high in the capital compared with the rest of the country, a new study due out today finds. The report from the Centre for Alternative Social Analysis (CASA) also showed that younger people are most subjected to sexual discrimination.

With only a little over a month to go before the World Outgames — a cultural and sporting event for the gay, bisexual and transgender community — begin in Copenhagen, the new data shows a worrying level of discrimination, according to advocates.

Eighteen percent of people in Copenhagen have felt discriminated against because of their sexuality in the last year, compared to eight percent in northern Jutland. Of those who have been discriminated against in the last 12 months, 44 percent were in 16-29 age group, while 23 percent were between the ages of 30 and 44.

"Discrimination, threats and violence affect people"s mental health very much," said study author Leyla Gransell. "There"s good reason to be worried."

The latest data from the National Police shows that approximately 3,400 people were subjected to homophobic attacks in 2008. According to the City Council"s office for integration, at least 64 percent of hate crimes take place in public areas, and of these, the majority of complaints list sexual orientation as the basis for attacks.

However, attacks are not just limited to individuals and a number of businesses within the gay community have been targeted as well.

Politiken newspaper reports that Copenhagen"s oldest gay bar, Centralhjørnet, has seen rocks thrown through its windows on six occasions during the last year, while eggs have also been thrown in the door at patrons.

"In my experience, the stupid antics have been more frequent in the last two to three years," said bar owner Torben Rasmussen.

Source: Copenhagen Post.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 15, 2009 9:00 pm 
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:x
What I would like to know is WHO is doing this???
Somehow it never gets mentioned...

:???:

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 4:29 am 
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Police say hate motivated attack on transgender person near Franklin High

The brutal attack of a transgender person by a group of youths at a bus stop near Franklin High School on Saturday was clearly motivated by hate, Seattle police say.

By Lewis Kamb
Seattle Times staff reporter
10 June 2009

The brutal attack of a transgender woman by a group of youths at a bus stop near Franklin High School on Saturday was clearly motivated by hate, Seattle police say.

A 13-year-old boy was arrested shortly after the assault in South Seattle faces felony malicious harassment and attempted-robbery charges, according to police. Several other youths who allegedly joined the boy in the attack remain at large, police say.

The suspect "was uncooperative in providing information regarding the identities of the other suspects involved," Officer Wayne Johnson wrote in his report.

The attack occurred at 4:42 p.m. at a Metro bus stop near Rainier Avenue South and South Mount Baker Boulevard. The 36-year-old victim told police that she is in the process of changing her "name and appearance from a man to a woman,"according to Johnson's report.

The victim, who told police that she sometimes wears a skirt, said the attack was a result of that, the report stated. During the confrontation, several of the victim's assailants uttered a slur for a gay man as they struck and kicked the victim, then knocked her to the ground, the report says. The attacking youths also tried to pull off her backpack. The group then fled.

At least one boy among the attackers tried to flee by getting onto a nearby Metro bus. When officers responded, several witnesses directed them to the bus, which came to a stop at Rainier Avenue South and South Andover. The teen got off and tried running away, but police caught and arrested him.

The boy later told investigators that his "homies" started "messing with the victim" because they thought the victim was gay, according to the police report. The boy claimed he didn't bother the victim until she tried soliciting him for sex. He denied that he tried robbing the victim of the backpack, the report says.

Police later booked the boy into the King County Youth Services Center for investigation of attempted robbery and felony malicious harassment. Police continue to look for the other attackers.

Dan Donohoe, spokesman for King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg, said that the case might be handled under a new section of the state's malicious harassment, or hate-crime, law.

The law, adopted earlier this year, makes it a felony to threaten, damage the property of, or physically injure someone because of ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, disability or sexual orientation. Until this year, the hate-crime law protected the rights of gay, straight or bisexual people, but not the rights of transgender individuals.

Source: Seattle Times.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2009 9:15 pm 
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China hushes up first gay pride week
By Peter Ford
11 June 2009

Beijing — Organizers of China's first gay pride week were struggling Thursday to find new venues for their events after police in Shanghai warned clubs and bars against joining the planned festival.

The crackdown came even as China's state-run English-language daily was hailing the celebration as "a good showcase of the country's social progress" and "an event of profound significance."

Police and commercial bureau officials warned a local restaurant of "very severe" consequences if it screened films as part of the festival, says an organizer who asked not to be identified. A photo studio called off a theater performance after a similar visit.

Gay activists said the official interference illustrated official Chinese policy toward homosexual gatherings: low-key events in private spaces are tolerated; public activities are banned. "If you attract a lot of attention and media reports, the government will intervene," says Wan Yanhai, an AIDS activist in Beijing.

The two American women who organized Shanghai Pride week deliberately avoided scheduling any public events that would have required official permission, for fear of being banned. The festival of film, theater, literary readings, and panel discussions, however, has drawn considerable international media attention, even if the Chinese-language press in Shanghai has made no mention of the event. Most of the 500 or so people who have attended events so far have been foreigners.

There are thought to be around 35 million homosexuals in China, who face considerable discrimination in the workplace and elsewhere if they are courageous enough to come out. Homosexuality was a crime here until 1997, and classed as a mental disorder until 2001. Some government-funded medical institutes are still trying to find a "cure" for homosexuality.

Although gay websites, clubs, and tea rooms have sprung up in cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, there is still a taboo on gay culture in Chinese cinema and television. At the same time, adds Mr. Wan, "the traditional Chinese concept of the family is very conservative, and families put heavy pressure on gays to get married."

"Official attitudes have not changed at all," complains Cui Zi'en, a gay activist and film director. The general public, however, is growing more tolerant, he says, and young people are better informed than their parents about sexuality.

"We are still trying to make sense" of the police interference in Shanghai Pride, one of the organizers says. "But social and official attitudes will both continue to slowly and gradually embrace homosexuality in China. This is an irreversible tide."

Source: Yahoo! Christian Science Monitor.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:54 pm 
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Connecticut church creates stir with gay exorcism video
24 June 2009



BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut church has outraged gay rights advocates by posting a video of members performing an apparent exorcism of a teen's "homosexual demons."

The 20-minute video was posted on YouTube before it was taken down.

Gay youth advocate Robin McHaelen (mih-KAY'-lehn) says the video appears to show abuse. She says she plans to report it to the Connecticut Department of Children and Families.

The boy confirms he is 16 but otherwise has declined to comment.

The Rev. Patricia McKinney of Manifested Glory Ministries in Bridgeport says he is 18 and came to the church on his own seeking help. She denies the church is prejudiced and says it took care of the youth.

Source: Breitbart.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 4:04 pm 
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Live-in gay couple: Together and alone
26 June 2009

NEW DELHI: Every morning Ravi wakes without fail when the alarm goes off well before the maid knocks at the door.

While his lover Harsh sleeps, e folds the sheet and straightens his side of the bed. Then he goes to his own room and ruffles the sheet. It's a daily ritual. Ravi needs to create this setting every day because he doesn't want the maid to discover his closely-guarded secret: they are a gay couple.

It isn't just the maid. Barring some friends, neither their parents, nor their landlord or neighbours know that Ravi and Harsh are homosexual. They haven't, as the expression goes, 'come out.' Staying in the closet has enabled them to live together posing as just roommates. But life is also a long list of dos and don'ts and being constantly on guard to avoid being caught.

"One day I forgot to fold up my sheet in Harsh's room. We were really scared thinking what if she finds out? There's a lot of stress and tension over the slightest of things in our life in order to keep our relationship a secret," says Ravi.

Ravi, 22, works for an MNC in South Delhi. Harsh, 24, is a computer engineer. They share an apartment in Gurgaon. They have been living together for about six months now.

On several occasions, they have been almost found out. Once a friend of Harsh came over when the two really weren't expecting company. "We got into our separate rooms. But when he went into Harsh's room he smelt perfume and asked what that was all about," says Ravi, who's over six feet.

His partner made up the excuse that he had been with a woman he had picked up the night before. "His friend bought the story instantly and even congratulated him! It is sad because it only means that for some people it is okay to be loose and immoral but not gay. The same friend would've walked out on him if he had found out his sexual orientation," he says.

On another occasion, the two had gone for a stroll in the night and were holding hands when a cop saw them from far away. He slapped them and asked them what they were doing. "Thankfully Harsh had a cigarette in his hand and we pretended to be just exchanging that. Since the cop had seen us from far, he wasn't sure of what he'd seen. We told him we were just walking home after a drink and got off with a heavy fine. I don't know for what," says Ravi.

Despite the constant worries and the need to be really careful all the time, Harsh prefers it this way. "We are afraid of being discovered not only for our own sake but for our families. Even if we assume our families will eventually learn to accept us, society will not. We don't want our family to have to face the consequences.. We've seen it with our other gay friends who came out." Adds Ravi, "Even your job is at risk. You don't get accommodation anywhere. Life becomes a living hell."

Some of their close friends cut them out once they came to know of their sexual orientation. "Quite a few, especially male friends, begin to behave differently and are almost scared of interacting with us. A few made us the target of their jokes saying things like 'couldn't find a woman so he decided to turn gay'. We have even been called faggots to our face," says Ravi.

The couple adjust their behaviour according to the place and the people around them. "If we are at a party at a close friend's house, where we know most people who are present, we sit back and relax. But if it's anywhere else we are really conscious and go out of our way to behave like two ordinary guys binging together. Even among our friends we have different levels of comfort with different sets of people," he says.

"Even if it's just the two of us and we are out for dinner to celebrate an anniversary or something, we cannot do simple things like holding hands because of what other people will think or say," says Ravi.

He adds: "Being gay is a part of our identity and to hide it from some of the most important people in our lives is very difficult. The stress does take a toll on the relationship. Sometimes Harsh tends to drink excessively as result of the stress. At times we get really snappy with each other. But at the end of the day we know we are in it together. To have that one person by your side gives you the courage to keep up with this life."

(Names have been changed on request to protect identity)
Source: Times Of India.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:37 pm 
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Texas officials want investigation of gay bar raid
June 29, 2009
By ANGELA K. BROWN
Associated Press Writer

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FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Two city officials are seeking an investigation into a police raid at a gay nightclub that ended with the arrests of several patrons and the hospitalization of a man with a head injury.

"I've asked for as thorough a report as possible ... to reassure folks that the police are not singling out any group," Councilman Joel Burns said Monday. He said he was particularly disappointed that the raid occurred on the 40th anniversary of New York City police raid on the Stonewall Inn. That 1969 raid touched off a riot and subsequent demonstrations that fueled the gay rights movement in the U.S. Burns said Fort Worth police were unaware of the anniversary.

Mayor Pro Tem Kathleen Hicks, also calling for an investigation, said she was "very concerned" after hearing from patrons and others in the community about the early Sunday morning raid at the Rainbow Lounge.

More than 100 people gathered outside the Tarrant County Courthouse on Sunday evening to protest what they said was police harassment and abuse. One of those arrested during the raid, Chad Gibson, 23, remains hospitalized with bleeding on the brain, his sister Kristy Morgan said. Gibson is not violent, and "for anyone to come back and say he did something to provoke this is ludicrous," she told Dallas-Fort Worth television station KDFW.

Fort Worth police went to the Rainbow Lounge with Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission agents early Sunday as part of routine alcoholic beverage code inspections, said police Sgt. Chad Mahaffey. They first went to two other bars, where 10 people were arrested, he said.

Officers then went to the Rainbow Lounge, which had opened about a week ago. They encountered two drunk people who made "sexually explicit movements" toward officers and another who grabbed a TABC agent's groin, according to the police report. No one was arrested for assault but about half a dozen people were arrested on charges of public intoxication, according to police records.

Police Chief Jeff Halstead said Gibson was the patron who grabbed at the agent's groin. Gibson was so drunk he was vomiting and struck his head when he fell, the chief said. Gibson was arrested, but was taken to the hospital instead of jail. Halstead said he did not have additional details about how Gibson was injured. The department has started an internal investigation into the raid, he said.

The TABC is waiting on a report from the Fort Worth office, but "given the concerns that have been raised, it would not be unusual" for an internal investigation to be done, said agency spokeswoman Carolyn Beck.

George Armstrong, 41, said he had been at the Rainbow Lounge about 30 minutes when officers stormed inside. He smiled and flashed a peace sign at one officer, but was then grabbed and tackled to the floor with his arm twisted behind his back, he said. "He was yelling at me to stop resisting arrest, but I wasn't doing anything. It was horrible. I really thought he had broken my shoulder," Armstrong said Monday. "I've never been so embarrassed and humiliated. I didn't do anything to him."

Armstrong, who was arrested, said he noticed that other people who were arrested were injured or said they had been tackled by police. Armstrong said he was released from jail the next day and went to a hospital, where his arm was put in a sling after X-rays determined his shoulder and back were severely bruised and strained. Armstrong said he didn't see anyone inside the Rainbow Lounge make lewd gestures or grab the officers.

"To me, it seemed like they were trying to make a point," he said of the police.

Source: Breitbart.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:22 pm 
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Hindu guru claims homosexuality can be 'cured' by yoga

The world's most popular Hindu guru, Swami "Baba" Ramdev, has claimed homosexuality can be "cured" by yoga in a petition to India's Supreme Court.

By Dean Nelson, South Asia Editor
8 July 2009

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Swami "Baba" Ramdev

The television guru whose yoga programmes are watched by an estimated 85 million people throughout the world, made the claim in an appeal to the overturn a ruling last week which legalised homosexuality. He has warned he will launch nationwide protests if the ruling is not struck down and said all of India's main religions regarded homosexual acts as sins.

In his petition, he argued that homosexuality was a curable disease and that sufferers could seek a cure. "It can be treated like any other congenital defect. Such tendencies can be treated by yoga, pranayam and other meditation techniques," he said. Pranayam are a series of breathing exercises which include hyperventilation, a slow release of breath while chanting "Om". His followers have said there are particular yoga positions which also help prevent sexual urges.

The overturning of India's law criminalising homosexuality was welcomed by India's gay community and by campaigners, including several leading designers and Bollywood stars.

But it was condemned by Muslim, Christian and Hindu leaders in India.

Baba Remdev, who counts senior government ministers among his devotees, issued a particularly strong response. In his petition he compared homosexuals to "other anti-social groups", and said legalisation would have a "negative effect" on the young, while increasing the prevalence of HIV/Aids.

"These are unnatural acts not designed for human beings. The decision of the High Court, if allowed to sustain will have catastrophic effects on the moral fabric of society and will jeopardise the institution of marriage itself. This offends the structure of Indian value system, Indian culture and traditions, as derived from religious scriptures," it said.

Swami Ramdev remains extraordinarily popular despite a number of controversies surrounding his own ayurvedic medicines. In 2006, a leading Communist MP claimed laboratory tests revealed human and animal remains in his herbal treatments. Other tests supported his denial, but the popularity of his medicines grew regardless.

He has also drawn criticism for his claims that yoga and ayurvedic medicines can ease the symptoms of HIV/Aids and cure cancer.

His petition was filed as gay activists extended their campaign for equality in other areas of social life. A young couple in Haryana defied their families to stage India's first gay wedding in a Hindu temple.

Source: Telegraph UK.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:23 pm 
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:?
Quote:
His followers have said there are particular yoga positions which also help prevent sexual urges.

Preventing sexual urges isn't quite the same as changing sexual orientation.

Here's an idea, why doesn't the swami cure himself of his heterosexuality to prove his method works. Then he should of course have lots of homosexual sex et cetera, then he can change himself back to heterosexual!

MORON.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:26 pm 
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India gay sex ruling - protection, not acceptance
11 July 2009

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National Akali Dal activists hold placards and shout slogans during a protest against an Indian court ruling to decriminalise gay sex in New Delhi, on July 5. For India's gay community, the joy that greeted this month's court ruling legalising gay sex is tempered by the fact that, although the law now accepts them, society still does not.

For India's gay community, the joy that greeted this month's court ruling legalising gay sex is tempered by the fact that, although the law now accepts them, society still does not.

For all the celebrations and talk of an historic milestone, many believe it will take more than a court decision to change public attitudes toward homosexuality, which is largely taboo in India and considered by many to be a mental illness.

Although the Delhi High Court's verdict has served as a morale booster for men and women who lived in constant fear of being criminalised, they say it is unlikely to encourage those in the closet to come out.

"I don't think it will make a major impact," says Maya, 32, who runs a counselling centre for lesbians and people with gender identity issues. "I'm sure some people who were afraid of the legal implications are more comfortable now, but there are still so many social issues. The major issues are how you're going to tell your family — it has nothing to do with the law," she said.

Image
Indian gay activists celebrate the New Delhi High Court ruling decriminalising gay sex

Abhi's parents took him to a psychiatrist when he came out to them two years ago. They eventually came to terms with his sexual orientation, but the 22-year-old call centre employee believes it will take generations for India to tolerate, let alone embrace homosexuality, on a wider scale. After several narrow escapes with police who raided community parties he attended, Abhi hopes he will be able to meet other men with the comfort of knowing he cannot be arrested.

"I can go to a party every night. For us to express ourselves before in public it was so difficult. Now it shouldn't be an issue for us."

Rahul, a 35-year-old who works for an outsourcing firm, says the ruling is a "psychological step forward" for him, but means more to people who suffered regular harassment at the hands of police. He and other middle-class gays generally meet men through discreet avenues such as the internet and formal groups, while others are forced to turn to public areas such as parks, where police are eager to nab suspected homosexuals.

"The gay and lesbian community was especially fearful of cops because if you are vulnerable enough they'll try to extract money from you," says Rahul. "They wouldn't actually threaten to put you behind bars but it was implicit," he adds.

Image
Activists protest against an Indian court ruling to decriminalise gay sex, in Mumbai

The government has the choice to appeal to the Supreme Court, but if the law is repealed nationwide, it means the next step in the rights movement could be a campaign to legalise gay marriage and adoption for same-sex couples. In staunchly conservative India, where heterosexual marriage is viewed as a cornerstone of family structure, the thought of a same-sex couple raising a child once seemed unthinkable.

"I'm emboldened by the fact that I can look forward to marrying my boyfriend," says Rahul. He sees it as a natural progression toward full-fledged equality, and is optimistic — some would say overly so — that gay marriage will become legal within four to five years.

"If the words gay sex are okay, then gay marriage sounds much better to Indians," agrees Ronit, a 27-year-old female-to-male transgendered media professional who regularly endures disparaging comments from his colleagues. He credits the media for much of the public interest surrounding homosexual rights, but thinks few outside that circle understand same-sex relationships.

"The actors would accept it, the media might, but the general public — they know it happens but they would never accept it."

Source: Breitbart AFP.

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