Posts tagged ‘Sexual orientation’

An LGBT and HIV/AIDS activist…turned gay because of gang-rape

28 years old Sanjeev Vandse is an LGBT activist from the small town of Udipi, Karnataka, India. He fights of the rights of gays and male sex workers. He has tied up with NGOs to help these people who otherwise have been neglected by most as homosexuality is still a taboo and not discussed or a subject barely touched by the mass specially in small towns.

Sanjeev himself is HIV positive. He was gang-raped by his bosses when he came to mumbai to work for a hotel, Sanjeev claims. He further claims that incident changed his sexual orientation.

For the past 3 years he has become an sexual health advisor, mentor, almost a messiah to LGBT people in his town and around. The concern is, his belief that rape changed his sexual orientation is scientifically wrong and probably he is still trying to justify his sexuality with that excuse of being a victim. It looks like he needs councelling himself. He needs to accept who he is and not feel ashamed of it and find the need to have an excuse to justify his being gay.

If rape could change sexual orientation, then all the african lesbians who are forced to have sex with men (corrective rape) with the believe that it would turn them straight would work too. But it doesn’t. His claim could backfire. In those small towns, where most are uneducated, illiterate, such a claim would do more harm than good.

We have already seen in one family in States, father forced his 14 year old son to have sex with a hooker while he stood vigilant outside the door because he thought his son might be gay.

Sanjeev’s work to make the lives of LGBT people in his community easy,  is commendable to say the least but he needs to be councelled before its too late.

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Gay 15 year old student gets beaten up

Union Scioto High School student at Chillicothe, Ohio was brutally beaten up for being gay. There is a video footage of what took place.

The student was left with a possible concussion and a broken tooth. There were by standers but no one came to help as per the victim. And as a punishment for attacking a kid for being gay, all the attacker got was a 3 days suspension.

The student informed that his attacker called him “the definition of a faggot” on Facebook. Victims mother was quoted saying “All those people who have that hate in their heart, they need to let it go. Because people are going to be who they are.”

Towleroad, which first reported the incident also reports that “Union-​Scioto has no policy in place that specifically protects students from being bullied or attacked based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The Union-​Scioto Local School District does have a policy that prohibits harassment based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, among others, but it does not specifically protect against harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity.”

The video which was initially posted on Facebook is below. If you go through the comments section of the video, you will find one guy commenting “boys will be boys”. That kind of comment is disturbing and scary. Having a fight, or wrestling between two guys where both want to do it and just beating up someone who is not interested in picking up a fight is not being ‘ boys will be boys.’ Although both the situations are wrong. One doesn’t need to fight to prove they are men, but to beat up someone for being gay is ‘homophobes will be homophobes’.

Illinois college, first to ask students their sexual orientation

‘Would you consider yourself to be a member of the LGBT community?’

Elmhurst college is the first to ask students to disclose their sexual orientation while applying for admission.

I was a bit apprehensive about the whole thing, trying to figure out what was the motive behind such a step. But reading in detail, I must say I am pleasantly surprised at such a stance taken by the college.

No one is required to answer the question, however if anyone answers with an YES, he/she maybe eligible for a scholarship that would pay upto a third of the tuition fee.

“Increasing diversity is part of our mission statement,” Rold told the Chicago Sun-Times. “This is simply closing the loop, in many ways, of another group who has a very strong identity. It may not be race and religion, but it’s an important part of who they are.”

Elmhurst is a private Liberal Arts college and has 3300 students and affiliated with the United Church of Christ.

The idea of directly asking a student about their sexual orientation is novel, to say the least however, it is to be seen how it goes down with students and parents. Students getting in a college knowing that the college embraces them for what they are, with no judgement or discrimination should leave them relaxed and bring the best out of them academically.

Lesbian couple from India illegally married but legally protected.

A Indian lesbian couple from a small town of Manesar near New Delhi got married on the 22nd of July, needless to say against their family’s wishes.

Although homosexuality has been decriminalized in India, same-sex marriages are still not recognized legally. After receiving death threats from their family members, these women went to court asking for protection.

You can get full details here.

Today the court has granted them 24 hours protection.  They are not legally married, but they are of legal age so can choose to live with whoever and wherever they want. And homosexuality being no longer a criminal offence in India, the law cannot pin anything against the two girls.

I had reported before another incidence of Neha and Khushboo and how the court granted them full protection too. That was the first legal individual case. At that time I had stated that once court rules in the favour of an LGBT person, it will have a snowball effect. They cannot rule against them ever again on the basis of their sexual orientation.

You can read about it here.

I hope this trend continues. As long as we have the legal backing, a lot can be accomplished, even when our Heath Minister says that homosexuality is a disease and has come from a  far off  land.

And I celebrate my 50th blog with a great news from INDIA.

 

UPDATE

The stories that have been coming in on this although are from reliable sources, are bizarre to say the least. Savita and Veena, I assumed were married in some obscure little temple and hence legally has no significance, now looks like they were actually married in court in front of a Gurgaon judge. It is very hard to believe that on judge randomly would allow two girls to get married when he very well knows that it would not be recognized anywhere in the country.

Another piece of information that has come in from Times Of India is, the girls are missing now. They went missing even before the police to arrange for protection for them. Again I am surprised  that if that is true, it has not got more media attention.

I will try to update this once I get some more information.

Prop 8 trial hearing

http://www.prop8trialtracker.com/

The above link is the live blog of the trial that was held today where judge was to rule on 2 cases

a) Whether Judge Walker’s ruling should be reversed because of his sexual orientation and for the fact that he is in a long term relationship so his personal interest may have made him biased while ruling Prop8 is unconstitutional.

b) Whats to be done with the video recordings of the trial which was in possession of Judge Walker. Whether they should be ordered to be submitted to the court.

Judge Ware adjourned court by saying that he would be ready with a written ruling within the next 24 hours.

These 24 hours, all we can do is keep our fingers crossed and pray.

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