Tag Archives | Gay Culture

Philatelists’ Delight? The Gay Bondage Stamps of Finland

Courtesy Itella Posti Oy; original image: Tom of Finland Foundation

Courtesy Itella Posti Oy; original image: Tom of Finland Foundation

You have to hand it to the Finns: they may have singlehandedly created a whole new generation of philatelists. Slate reports on the new gay bondage stamps designed by Tom of Finland:

The United States has some pretty cool stamps and, once the Harvey Milk stamp is released next month, at least one commemorating an openly LGBTQ American. But it’s difficult to imagine a future where America’s stamps are as amazingly, graphically gay as Finland’s. This fall, the country will begin selling stamps that feature the “confident and proud homoeroticism” of Tom of Finland, an artist renowned as “beyond question the most influential creator of gay pornographic illustration.”

Itella Posti Oy, the Finnish equivalent of U.S.P.S., boasts that Tom of Finland—also known as Touko Laaksonen—is “considered one of the most well-known Finnish artists around the world”:

His emphatically masculine homoerotic drawings have attained iconic status in their genre and had an influence on, for instance, pop culture and fashion.

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Sochi’s Olympic Twin Toilets – Gay-Friendly Russian Propaganda?

twin toiletsPerhaps having a men’s bathroom with two sit down toilets next to each other is normal in Russia. Whatever the case the photo at right has caused a Twitter storm reports BBC News:

A BBC photo of a men’s cubicle with twin toilets at a Sochi Olympics venue has caused a Twitter storm in Russia.

The picture from the Biathlon Centre tweeted by Moscow correspondent Steve Rosenberg was picked up by opposition leader Alexei Navalny among others.

Mr Navalny queried how the budget for the games, said to be $50bn (£30bn; 1,700bn roubles), had been spent.

Elsewhere, the photo caused disbelief and much hilarity, with some linking it to the recent debate over gay rights.

“Seeing double in the Gentlemen’s Loo at the Olympic Biathlon Centre,” our correspondent wrote in his original tweet.

Retweeting the photo, Mr Navalny commented: “This is a men’s toilet in a Sochi Olympics media centre for 1.5bn roubles [£27m; $45m].”

“Two toilets – 28,000 roubles,” wrote another blogger.

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Bret Easton Ellis on the ‘Reign of the Gay Magical Elves’

EllisBret Easton Ellis, author of modern classics Less Than Zero and American Psycho, writes about the lionizing of celebrities who announce they are gay for OUT:

Was I the only gay man of a certain demo who experienced a flicker of annoyance in the way the media treated Jason Collins as some kind of baby panda who needed to be honored and praised and consoled and—yes—infantilized by his coming out on the cover of Sports Illustrated? Within the tyrannical homophobia of the sports world, that any man would come out as gay (let alone a black man) is not only an LGBT triumph but also a triumph for pranksters everywhere who thrilled to the idea that what should be considered just another neutral fact that is nobody’s business was instead a shock heard around the world, one that added another jolt of transparency to an increasingly transparent planet. It was an undeniable moment and also extremely cool.

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Gay Republicans Go For Romney

The Log Cabin Republicans are as divided as ever over the GOP presidential candidate, but Mitt is their man reports The Advocate:

Log Cabin Republicans, the largest national group representing gay Republicans, announced its endorsement of Mitt Romney for president Tuesday, saying the decision shows, “We are Americans first.”

In a separate explanatory statement, however, the group also said its endorsement of the former Massachusetts governor was “qualified” and that it planned to be “most active” in working for its endorsed House and Senate candidates. And it dismissed Romney’s signed pledge to ban same-sex marriage via an amendment to the U.S. Constitution as an “empty promise.”

The group’s national board of directors said the decision to endorse came “after careful consideration and consultation with our members and chapters, as well as communication with Mitt Romney and his campaign team.” Questions about whether the Log Cabin Republicans would endorse the Romney-Ryan ticket have surrounded the group for months…

[continues at The Advocate]

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An Oral History Of Gay Punk

It’s exciting when something happens in the news that reminds you how subversive punk rock can be. Via OUT, a conversation featuring remembrances from Bruce LaBruce, Hüsker Dü’s Bob Mould, and numerous notable others about a movement which changed the world, whether people know it or not:

The Queercore scene grew out of a generation that bristled against what it saw as the bourgeois trappings of a mainstream gay lifestyle and the macho, hetero hardcore scene that punk — a movement founded by women, people of color, and gays — had become. It started out as a loose collective, trading fanzines and letters, and evolved to include dozens of bands.

There was a gay element to early punk, such as the Los Angeles group The Germs — whose singer was the closeted Darby Crash—as well as Seattle transplants The Screamers, The Apostles in the U.K., and, in Texas, The Dicks.

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Gay Republicans Are Like Jewish Nazis And Black Klan Members

Michael Musto of the Village Voice is outraged that anyone in the gay community would even consider voting for Mitt Romney:

Ever since the conservative gay group GOProud backed Mitt Romney for President last week–albeit by a very slim margin–the epithets and insults have been hurling at them like taunts at a gay kid.

But this time, the outrage is justified.

I always thought that any gay who backs a candidate that doesn’t support equal rights must have some very scary death wish…

He goes on to say that these Gay Republicans (once profiled in the disinformation documentary of that name) are like Jewish Nazis, Black Klan members, women who campaign for Rush Limbaugh, etc…

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Barack Obama Is Our First Gay, Female, Hispanic, Asian, Jewish President (According to the Media)

First Gay PresidentBill Clinton only got to be America's first "black" president. Interesting take from Eric Randall in the Atlantic Wire:
Newsweek's cover this week declares that Barack Obama is the "First Gay President," playing on the reader's knowledge that Obama isn't himself gay, but his support for same-sex marriage earns him an honorary rainbow halo. The headline obviously calls back to 1998, when Toni Morrison declared Bill Clinton the first black president in The New Yorker, which at the time was edited by current Newsweek editor Tina Brown. "Clinton displays almost every trope of blackness: single-parent household, born poor, working-class, saxophone-playing, McDonald's-and-junk-food-loving boy from Arkansas," Morrison wrote, laying out the formula for how to declare a President has attained the identity of someone else through actions and behaviors. Newsweek's cover has been called "controversial" and "pretty shocking," but it's merely the most recent in presidential firsts that weren't for the country's actual first black president.
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First Openly Gay Presidential Candidate, A Republican, Fred Karger Announces 2012 Run

Lauren Seifert reports on CBS News:
Barely hours after filing his intent with the FEC to run for the 2012 Republican nomination for president, Fred Karger stopped by "Washington Unplugged" to formally announce his decision. Speaking with CBS News congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes Karger said, "I've filed to run for President of the United States." (watch above) Explaining what brought him to this moment Karger said, "It was the culmination of a lifetime of political work. It was a very exciting moment." This is the first time Karger has run for political office, but he has been a behind-the-scenes player for 35 years — serving as an advisor to Presidents Ford, Reagan and George H. W. Bush.
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Quakers Welcome Government Move On Civil Partnerships

Matrimoni_gay_SpagnaVia Ekklesia:

Quakers in Britain have welcomed the government’s announcement, today, (17 February), that the celebration of civil partnerships will be allowed on some religious premises, if a faith group wishes. This was introduced as part of the Equality Act 2010, section 202.

Michael Hutchinson, Acting Recording Clerk for Quakers in Britain said: “We are delighted that the government has heard us and others. We ourselves see no distinction between heterosexual or homosexual in terms of commitment and wish to move further to allow legal marriage for same sex couples, but this is a welcome step along the way to full equality.

“We are also heartened by proposals to address calls for full equality of civil marriages and civil partnerships, as our religious experience leads us to seek a change in the law so that same sex marriages can be celebrated, witnessed and reported to the state in the same way as heterosexual marriages.”

[Continues at Ekklesia]

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UK To Bring ‘Gay Lessons’ To Classrooms To Promote LGBT History Month

Photo: Blackcatuk (CC)

Photo: Blackcatuk (CC)

The Telegraph reports:

Children are to be taught about homosexuality in maths, geography and science lessons as part of a Government-backed drive to “celebrate the gay community”.

Lesson plans have been drawn up for pupils as young as four, in a scheme funded with a £35,000 grant from an education quango, the Training and Development Agency for Schools.

The initiative will be officially launched next month at the start of “LGBT History Month” – an initiative to encourage teaching about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual issues.

The lesson plans, spread across the curriculum, will be offered to all schools, which can choose whether or not to make use of them.

But critics last night called the initiative a poor use of public money which could distract from the teaching of “core” subjects.

Among the suggestions are:

  • Maths – teaching statistics through census findings about the number of homosexuals in the population, and using gay characters in scenarios for maths problems;
  • Design and technology – encouraging pupils to make symbols linked to the gay rights movement;
  • Science – studying animal species where the male takes a leading role in raising young, such as emperor penguins and sea horses, and staging class discussions on different family structures, including same-sex parents;
  • Geography – examining the transformation of San Francisco’s Castro district in the 1960s from a working-class Irish area to the world’s first “gay neighbourhood”, and considering why homosexuals move from the countryside to cities;
  • Languages – using gay characters in role play scenarios, and teaching “LGBT vocabulary”.
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