The Singing Sailor

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A Swedish peace society has come up with a new way of fighting off Russian submarines in the Stockholm archipelago: a subsurface sonar system called ‘The Singing Sailor’, which sends out Morse code and features the message “Welcome to Sweden. Gay since 1944”. Read more…

Boys (and Teachers) Beware!

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A US high school has indefinitely suspended one of their teachers after he showed his class a film warning boys of ‘predatory homosexuals’.

Simons, a history teacher at the school, was suspended weeks before he was due to retire for showing a law enforcement class the film Boys Beware; it warns students to avoid strangers ‘because they might be homosexual’.

Made by Sid Davis Productions with assistance from Inglewood Police in California, the film was a social guidance film depicting gay men as sexual predators, prowling around high schools on the lookout for underage boys. One of the film’s scenarios shows a boy named Jimmy being lured in by a man named Ralph.

‘I’m not against homosexuality,’ Simons told KCTV. Simons said three days after showing the film, he was told by school officials that two students had complained; the school then suspended him from teaching.

Simons argued he had been using the film to highlight how attitudes towards homosexuality have changed. Why the students would report him in this case remains unclear.

Trans Nightmares

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Transgender Europe, a Berlin-based organization working on inclusion of transgender people throughout Europe, recently released a powerful video as a part of their #TransNightmare campaign.

The video portrays the nightmare that transgender people still face today in 34 countries in Europe [PDF]. Prior to changing name or gender in official documents, people in these countries must undergo forced sterilization, file for divorce, and/or receive a diagnosis or psychiatric opinion.

Transgender Europe works to change the situation for transgender people by:

  • Campaigning: In 2014, they launched the Europe-wide Access All Areas! Recognition Opens Doors campaign, calling for quick, transparent and accessible legal gender recognition.
  • Educating: They publish and share information and campaign materials, like this video or the Trans Rights Europe Map, to raise awareness about the problems with legal gender recognition. Learn more.
  • Changing laws: They inform politicians and policy makers about the problems with legal gender recognition and work with them to create better laws in Europe. Learn more.
  • Supporting the trans community: They work with and train transgender organizations across Europe to help them create political change at the country level. Learn more.

Many transgender Americans face the same struggles. Right now 32 states lack explicit protections against workplace discrimination on the basis of gender identity. The levels of violence and harassment transgender people face in the United States constitute a national crisis.

Clément

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A boy in his teens develops a crush on a grown woman only to discover she is also attracted to him. In this controversial drama from France. Marion (Emmanuelle Bercot) is a headstrong and free-spirited woman in her early thirties who heads to the seacoast for a short vacation that coincides with the birthday of her godson Benoit (Kevin Goffette). Benoit and his friends are just old enough to be enthralled with any conversation involving sex, and Marion humors them by joining in their talks on the beach about the mysteries of women.

Clément

Marion soon gets to know one of Benoit’s friends, Clement (Olivier Gueritee), and the interest between them becomes more than just friendly; some good-natured horseplay stirs a desire between them, and after the two share a kiss on the beach, Clement is obsessed with Marion. While she’s unsure about starting a relationship with a boy less than half her age, Marion can’t deny her feelings for Clement, and before long she and the youngster are lovers. One night, Clement appears at Marion’s doorstep, announcing he’s run away from home and wants to move in with her; Marion isn’t sure what to tell the boy, knowing the foolishness of such a move even though she does love him, and soon Clement is crestfallen, certain that Marion no longer cares for him. Clement was written and directed by Emmanuelle Bercot, who also stars as Marion; the film was shown in the Un Certain Regard series at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival, where it received the Young Cinema Award.

Kids have Anti-Gay Day

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Students at a Pennsylvania high school allegedly staged a protest of the Day of Silence, which included intimidation and physical harassment of LGBT students and a ‘lynch list’.

The Day of Silence, an annual event that raises awareness of LGBT bullying, produced a loud backlash from students at a Pennsylvania high school. A group of students at McGuffey High School allegedly organized an “Anti-Gay Day” in response to the peaceful protest coordinated by the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network.

A local news station reports that the clique encouraged others who were antigay to wear flannel and write “Anti-Gay” on their hands Thursday, the day preceding the Day of Silence. But the backlash did not end with sartorial choices. Participants also targeted LGBT students, hanging posters on their lockers and physically harrassing them in the hallways of their school.

“There was pushing, posters hung on homosexual students’ lockers. Teachers were having to run out and take them down,” Zoe Johnson, a student at McGuffey High School, told the news station. “It hurts me to see how rude and cruel, and some of these people were my friends before this started,” she added.

The antigay group promoted the event on social media, posting a photo of the flannel-clad participants. “Anti-Gay Day” was to be the first of a planned week-long series of antigay events, which would use clothing to signal their animosity toward their LGBT peers. “Flannel anti-gay day only a few of many tomorrow is red day,” a student wrote in the caption.

Nationwide, animosity toward the Day of Silence has been encouraged by groups like Focus on the Family and the Illinois Family Institute, which organized antigay events like the Day of Dialogue as well as walkouts in protest of GLSEN’s “homosexuality-affirming dogma.” GLSEN reports that 56 percent of LGBT students felt unsafe at school due to their their sexual orientation. In addition, 38 percent felt unsafe because of their gender expression.

Administrators at the McGuffey School District are investigating the incident. Dr. Erica Kolat, the superintendent, released a statement saying that the school “will follow our Student Code of Conduct, and file legal citations, as warranted. We will resolve to ensure that all children can grow and learn in a safe, supportive environment free from discrimination.” However, some students do not feel safe returning to the school.

“It’s sad to me. It’s a high school. We should feel safe here. We don’t, and it’s starting to get worse,” Johnson said. Among the reasons for this fear was a “lynch list” circulating around the school, with a growing list of names.

via Advocate

Love is All You Need?

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Unique lives intertwine and collide in a world confronted by controversy and forbidden love. This world is very much like our own: filled with family gatherings at church, children playing in the yard, and college frat parties. Except these families are led by same-sex couples, and homosexuality is the expectation. To be heterosexual is to be shunned and ridiculed because it means you are different. In this world, to be gay is right and to be straight is wrong.

33 Teeth, a Short about Length

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Eddie is a hormonal 14-year-old boy living alone with his mother in the suburbs. One day after school, he accidentally spies on his attractive older neighbour, Chad, stepping out of the shower and measuring his manhood with a comb.