The Weekly LGBTQ News
President of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe has reaffirmed his country’s opposition to LGBTQ rights. “Let Europe keep their homosexual nonsense,” Mugabe stated, before threatening that foreign diplomats who raise issues over LGBTQ acceptance will be removed. “Any diplomat who talks about homosexuality will be kicked out. There is no excuse and we won’t listen to them,” the long-reigning president said. Zimbabwe’s law on sodomy criminalized the act, and was changed in 2006 to further criminalize any actions deemed homosexual. Mugabe has a long history of his anti-gay stance, considering it “[degrading] human dignity.”
In Brunei, a new law was passed that permits stoning for various offenses, including same-sex relations, adultery (for Muslims), rape, and more. Originally for same-sex relations, “offenders” were sentenced to jail for ten years. The United Nations has urged Brunei to delay its law and revisit it. The law has since been delayed for its original scheduled date of April 22nd but is believed to be implemented in the near future.
Back home in the United States, the Boy Scouts of America have shut down its charters to a Seattle church for standing by its troop master, Geoffrey McGrath. Rainier Beach United Methodist Church Reverend Monica Corsaro refused to remove McGrath from his position, saying the church does not discriminate and troop meetings will still occur. Executive director of Scouts for Equality has condemned the BSA’s action, stating “unfortunately, the BSA’s decision calls into question its commitment to leadership and values by perpetuating an outmoded policy rooted in fear and discrimination.”
Down in the south, the state of Louisiana has decided to uphold its law banning oral sex as well as any form of same-sex intercourse. Rep. Patricia Haynes Smith (D) sponsored the bill due to public sex bringing negative attention to her community. In Georgia, a lawsuit was filed challenging the state’s ban on same-sex marriages. The state constitution currently only recognizes marriage as between one man and one woman, and same-sex marriages performed in other states are not legally recognized. If the lawsuit succeeds, there will only be three remaining states that have no current lawsuits challenging same-sex marriage bans.
The United States Postal Service will be issuing out a stamp that features Harvey Milk. Milk has become an icon throughout the LGBTQ political community, with Milk being the first openly gay elected official after winning a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1978. Milk was instrumental in swaying public opinion against Proposition 6, which would have made firing gay teachers and anyone who supported gay rights mandatory. Milk was assassinated in 1978 by Dan White after White shot and killed Mayor George Moscone. In Finland, the Finnish will get a stamp featuring homoerotic art from Tom of Finland in September. The stamps showcase a bit of bondage with the three stamps being self-adhesive, requiring no licking. Going to the post office is bound to be a treat now.