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Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-08-31



WORLD Death in Bali, Chile constitution, Wales items, Israel petition
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by Andrew Davis

This article shared 599 times since Sun Sep 11, 2022
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Bowing to pressure from activists, prosecutors in Peru launched an investigation into the suspicious death of a transgender man from Peru who died in custody in Bali after he was arrested for alleged cannabis possession, Gay City News noted. Rodrigo Ventosilla, 32, attended graduate school at Harvard when he traveled to Bali on Aug. 6 with his partner, Sebastian Marallano, to celebrate their honeymoon. Ventosilla was detained upon arriving at the airport and died five days later after he suffered what authorities described as a "failure of bodily functions." Marallano was also detained, but was later released. Indonesian authorities are denying any mistreatment, and authorities reportedly consider the case to be closed.

Chileans overwhelmingly rejected a new constitution that would have enshrined LGBTQ+ rights in an unprecedented way, The Washington Blade reported. About 80 percent of Chileans, in October 2020, voted in favor of changing the constitution, but more than 60 percent of them recently rejected the new constitution in the referendum. One of the constitution's most controversial amendments called for Chile to become a plurinational state that would have recognized the existence of the different indigenous people in the country. Congresswoman Emilia Schneider, a Boric supporter who is the country's first openly transgender member of Congress, acknowledged the "hard result" of the referendum on Twitter.

The BBC profiled Golden Cross, Wales' oldest gay bar that is still standing amidst Cardiff's high-rise buildings, offices, flats and numerous construction projects. In 1846, the Shields and Newcastle Tavern opened on the site. Bar manager Cody Jones said, "The Golden Cross has the most spectacular pub interior in all of Wales. It was built in 1903 with excellent S A Brain & Co Ltd lettering on its colorful exterior, which gives you an indication of what to expect inside." The Golden Cross officially became a gay bar 24 years ago, and over the years Cardiff has seen its LGBTQ+ pub scene grow, with many other establishments opening.

Also in Wales, the Cardiff-based LGBTQ+ Film Festival unveiled the 36 international shorts (from 18 countries) competing for the 30,000-pound Iris Prize, a press release noted. Just a few of the titles include Beautiful They (Australia), Chaperone (USA), Hornbeam (UK), Night Ride (Norway) and Tank Fairy (Taiwan). Full details of the festival (returning in person on Oct. 11-16) can be found at

In Israel, two NGOs and several LGBTQ+ couples filed a petition with the High Court of Justice to compel the state to implement the court's July 2021 ruling that was supposed to advance the surrogacy process after more than a decade of legal battles, The Jerusalem Post noted. Yoav and Etai Arad-Pinkas said they would not allow the health ministry to continue to drag its feet on the issue more than a year after the ruling came out, which violated the High Court's six-month deadline for reforms regarding LGBTQ+ people who want to become surrogate parents. According to the petitioners—despite the High Court's clear ruling that, within six months, all the definitions in the law that exclude men from equal access to the surrogacy arrangement in Israel must be abolished—the Health Ministry's legal division is posting obstacles that systematically thwart the changes from happening.

However, Etai Arad-Pinkas is also involved in a development connected to a controversy, according to Haaertz. A committee formed by the Israel Gay Youth Organization to examine complaints of sexual abuse inside the LGBTQ+ community said in its report that an imbalance of power had left young people vulnerable. The panel—headed by retired judge Nava Ben-Or and which included researchers and educators—was formed at the organization's initiative following a series of incidents of sexual abuse in the LGBTQ+ community, including ones allegedly committed by activist Gal Uchovsky; and Pinkas-Arad, a former Tel Aviv city council member who suspended himself from his position as holder of the LGBTQ portfolio after being accused of sexual misconduct. The case against Uchovsky was closed and Pinkas-Arad has denied the allegations against himself.

Seven Arab countries demanded that Netflix remove content they consider offensive from the streaming platform's local sites, LGBTQ Nation noted. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) —which includes Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and four other Gulf Arab states—released a statement demanding that Netflix remove "visual materials that violate the media content controls in the GCC countries and contradict Islamic and societal values and principles," according to the Kuwait News Agency. While neither statement explicitly mentions the specific content in question, as CNBC and The New York Times reported, depictions of LGBTQ characters and relationships are widely believed to be the target.

In Scotland, activists from four of Holyrood's main parties marched on the Scottish Parliament calling for "bolder" reforms to be brought in for transgender people, according to The National. Equality campaigners from the Out for Independence, Rainbow Greens, Scottish Labour's LGBTQ+ wing and young LibDems walked en masse from Edinburgh's city chambers to Holyrood demanding "trans rights now." The Gender Recognition Act (GRA) was laid in the Scottish Parliament on March 2, 2021, by social justice secretary Shona Robison with a call for an end to the "abusive" rhetoric surrounding the reforms. The bill is intended to make it easier for a trans person to acquire a gender recognition certificate.

The head of Poland's ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, is suing journalist Jan Pinski, who claimed the politician is gay and had a relationship with a male military intelligence officer, leaving him open to blackmail, according to Notes from Poland. Kaczynski—who has led a vocal anti-LGBTQ+ campaign by PiS—is demanding a retraction, apology and charitable donation to a hospice of his choice in his defamation lawsuit. Pinski has claimed that, despite PiS' anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric, Kaczynski is a well-known member of the gay community in Warsaw. He also claimed that Kaczynski had intimate relations with Piotr P., a Military Information Services officer, which exposed him to blackmail.

The BBC unveiled its first diversity and inclusion director, with L'Oreal diversity exec Chinny Okolidoh taking on the role, Deadline noted. Okolidoh will oversee the development and implementation of initiatives related to on-air and production, talent representation, commissioning guidelines, diversity and inclusion training programs and metrics to measure progress.

Australian tennis legend Margaret Court made her feelings known about Serena Williams known during an interview with The Telegraph, per Yahoo! Sports. "Serena, I've admired her as a player," Court (who actually has won 24 Grand Slam titles to Williams' 23) said. "But I don't think she has ever admired me." Court—a pastor at Perth's Victory Life Centre since 1995—has also shared anti-LGBTQ+ sentiments in recent years, with sustained backlash coming from people such as lesbian tennis icon Martina Navratilova.

Sean Penn and Ben Stiller were among 25 "high-ranking officials, representatives of the business and expert communities, as well as cultural figures" banned from Russia by that country's foreign ministry, Deadline noted. Also on the list are Sens. Rick Scott, Mark Kelley, Pat Toomey, Kevin Kramer and Krysten Sinema as well as numerous U.S. trade officials, including U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. Penn traveled to Ukraine earlier this year, meeting with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky and filming a documentary about the conflict with Russia for Vice; Stiller visited Ukrainian refugees in Poland in June before traveling to Kyiv and also visited Zelensky.

British filmmaker Tom C. Brown's upcoming short film with Psyop—Christopher at Sea—is a queer, nautical thriller that made its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, per a press release. The film follows Christopher (James Potter) as he embarks on a transatlantic voyage on a cargo ship with hopes of finding out what lures so many men to sea and it sets him on a journey into solitude, fantasy, and obsession. The trailer is at

Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything; The Danish Girl) will be awarded a Golden Eye for his career achievements during the 18th Zurich Film Festival (Sept. 22-Oct. 2), Variety noted. The British actor will receive the award in person on Sept. 25 prior to presenting the European premiere of Tobias Lindholm's thriller The Good Nurse, in which he plays a nurse who poses a deadly threat to his patients. He will also participate in a ZFF Masters session.

To mark the death of Queen Elizabeth II, Google has paid tribute with a gray version of the normally colorful company logo, according to 9to5Google. While condolences have poured in from all over the world for the longest-reigning monarch in British history, Google decided to pay tribute to Queen Elizabeth II in a subtle manner. This change came as Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai posted his own condolences to Her Majesty on Twitter.

Noel Clarke dropped his defamation suit against BAFTA, Deadline revealed. The actor-producer initially filed the suit at London's High Court in May following the awards body's decision to suspend his membership following allegations of his sexual harassment and bullying. In a statement, BAFTA said, "The serious misconduct alleged in first-hand testimonies and published in The Guardian newspaper is contrary to the standards expected of a BAFTA member and the values we uphold as an arts charity and Academy. We stand by our decision to suspend his honorary award and membership as soon as the detailed allegations came to light."

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