A Suppa Earl Gae
The UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki Moon, urged African countries to entrench civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights to boost stability and development in the continent. He cited discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity as one of the injustices that has been ignored or even sanctioned by many States for too long.
He told leaders:
This has prompted some governments to treat people as second-class citizens, or even criminals. Confronting this discrimination is a challenge. But we must live up to the ideals of the Universal Declaration [of Human Rights].
And he called for greater representation of women in parliaments across Africa, which he said currently stands 20 per cent on average, as well as speaking about young people in African nations:
We must ensure that women are fully represented in decision-making bodies, including in Egypt and Tunisia, where they played a role” in the recent pro-democracy protests.
And we must restore hope and a better future for youth in Africa. Unemployment and poverty feed chronic instability and create tensions. I intend to appoint a special representative for youth, who will open dialogue with young people and lead our efforts.
South Africa’s Times Live reports that the men convicted of the murder of Zoliswa Nkonyana are due to be sentenced later this week.
Nkonyana (19) was stabbed and stoned to death outside a shebeen in Khayelitsha, Cape Town, on 4th February, 2006.
The trial of the men has been beset by repeated delays in the nation where violence against women, and in particular the persecution of lesbian women, is endemic.
In other news, and without a hint of irony, an African Christian cleric has urged that “tradition and history” in England be preserved.
The Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, told The Telegraph that “Marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman,” and “[Marriage] is set in tradition and history and you can’t just [change it] overnight, no matter how powerful you are.”
Speaking of Biblical texts and “tradition”, those very same foundations framed arguments employed by those seeking to preserve the system of slavery and the slave trade in 19th century Britain and “anti-miscegenation” laws in the 20th century US.
Blogger Blabbeando brings has tweeted the news that Cuba’s Communist Party “has officially adopted platform to end discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity”. Far from being a bastion of human rights vindication, it will be interesting to see who this “official” move by the Cuban authorities plays out.
Meanwhile, Pinksixty News reports that Jamaican gay rights activist Maurice Tomlinson has fled his country after the police said they couldn’t guarantee his safety. Following reports of his marriage in Toronto to his Canadian partner, increased death threats made it impossible for him to remain.
The Study began in 1986, and the latest findings examines the situation of about 80 teenagers parented by lesbian couples. The young people were matched on gender, age, parental education, and ethnic background with adolescents in heterosexual-parent families. The children were interviewed at age 10 and again at age 17 with queries about their activities, social lives, feelings of anxiety or depression, and behaviour.
The authors found that children raised by lesbian mothers – whether partnered or single – scored very similarly to children raised by heterosexual parents on measures of development and social behaviour. They also discovered that children in lesbian homes scored higher than those in straight families on some psychological measures of self-esteem and confidence; did better academically and were less likely to have behavioural problems, such as rule-breaking and aggression
Take that, Professor Patricia Casey!
“Quality of Life of Adolescents Raised from Birth by Lesbian Mothers” is published in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics.
On Wednesday, the Six Nations rugby fest was officially launched in London. It may have been easily missed (thank you, mainstream media) but the women’s captains were there as well as the men’s captains, and there’s even photographic evidence to prove it!
Here’s the skippers namecheck: Fiona Coughlan (Ireland); Sara Barattin (Italy); Katie McLean (England); Susie Brown (Scotland); Rachel Taylor (Wales); Nathalie Amiel (France).
Across the pond, the USA was victorious over Canada with four goals to nil in the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying final, securing the States qualification for this year’s tournament in London. Abby Wambach and Alex Morgan secured their country’s win with two goals each.
* swoon *
Irishers may not be too familiar with the phrase “No homo” – so here’s an intro from Current TV’s Bryan Safi to get you up to speed: