Thanks to my brother Victor( I only really have one but still…) for the link and heads-up.
What an amazing personal story from an older Hawaiian LGBT person. Speaking of culture and colonialism and loving yourself.
The I’m From Driftwood Project is one of my faves.
South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) airs a Special Assignment documentary on the plight of LGBT refugees in that country. A must watch!
Today is apparently National Coming Out Day (in the US at least) so it is sort of interesting that I just discovered Project Bolo on Vimeo. In their own words:
PROJECT BOLO, meaning ‘Project Speak Up’, offers role models by documenting Indian LGBT persons – their growing up, struggles, love, career, achievements and life.
Project Bolo’s objective is to record Indian LGBT history, as well as inspire and empower the LGBT community in India, by presenting video interviews of LGBT persons and role models, who ‘speak up’ about their life and work.
I found this older gentleman Hoshang Merchant to be especially brilliant and funny.
Hoshang has always been a rebel, he says, right from his
childhood in Mumbai in a Parsi household. He studied at
Purdue and then traveled extensively teaching and… looking
for life experiences – from US to Iran to Palestine. He returned
back to India but could not get a job. He was rejected by
several colleges and universities because he was openly gay
and unapologetically so. Finally he found his home at the
University Of Hyderabad where he continues to teach English
literature. The anthology he published ‘Yaraana’ was one of
the first queer writings to come out of India and he has more
than 25 books to his credit – of poems, essays and stories.
He is a rebel with a cause!
And this one is an overview video of about twenty interviews.
Looks like I have some viewing ahead of me.
Videos courtesy : Project Bolo – Indian LGBT Oral History Project
A Dan Rather report on the revolting and disturbing practice of ‘corrective rape’ in South Africa.
“Dan Rather Reports, March 1, 2011 at 8pm ET on HDNetFifteen years after the end of apartheid, South Africa is struggling to implement the laws in its progressive constitution. Gays and lesbians in South Africa have more rights than many gay Americans, but that’s doesn’t mean they are safe. Lesbians are often the victims of corrective rape — a horrific crime where men sexually violate them in an effort to “correct” or “cure” their sexual orientation. Several non-governmental organizations claim corrective rape is on the rise, fuelled mostly by a growing homophobia in Africa.”
The Trinidad Express is relentlessly publishing articles drawing attention to the need for the T&T government to address matters of LGBT equality. Rajiv Gopie has published excellent articles on the subject before and today’s is no exception. Having two columnists tackle the issue in the paper on the same day positions the Trinidad Express at the vanguard of this new thrust.
“In actuality there is no such thing as “gay rights” and that needs to be made very clear. Those on the losing side of history but who are full of hate will seek to instil fear and assert that GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered) people are asking for special rights but this is wholly untrue.
GLBT people are simply seeking equal rights and their human rights. The GLBT community is asking for the basic right to life, the right to live safe and without the fear of death or violence looming over them. There are places all over the world from Iran to Uganda to Jamaica where people are killed and are the subject of extreme violence simply for being gay. In South Africa lesbians are subject to community sanctioned “corrective rape” to “turn” them heterosexual. No religion, no belief, no dogma supports or can justify terrorism of the innocent. GLBT people in T&T are seeking the same rights afforded to everyone — to live a safe, productive life without the fear of violence.
Read the rest here.
Remarkably, another Trinidad and Tobago newspaper article on sexual orientation. This time it is from the highly respected UWI professor. I find the reactions in the comments section on the article very interesting. One compares it to pedophilia or cannibalism. I am serious. Maybe they should read this. But they are probably too stupid to read that. In any case the Professor wrote:
Homosexual behaviour in the wild amongst higher vertebrate animals has been recorded in the literature for over 1,000 different species. Amongst birds a full range of homosexual behaviours has been recorded amongst as diverse groups of birds as gulls, ducks, swans, penguins and albatrosses. Note that these groups all display social grouping behaviour.
The behaviours range from simple courtship through pair bonding and even parenting, as has recently been reported in a pair of female albatrosses that actually incubated and raised offspring in the absence of a male, the eggs having been abandoned by the previous heterosexual pair.
Homosexual behaviour in mammals is also well documented in as diverse groups as lions, elephants, dolphins, sheep, giraffes, monkeys and apes, such as the bonomo and the chimp. Indeed the bonomo, a sort of pygmy chimpanzee and a separate species, demonstrates heterosexual, bisexual and homosexual behaviours even within a single social group, with individuals alternating their behaviours as circumstances change.
Read more here.