Religion

Postpone East London Gay Pride

Call for Muslims and LGBTIs to unite against hate

East London Mosque urged to dialogue with LGBTI communities

Commenting on the planned East London Gay Pride march scheduled for 2 April, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell said:

“OutRage! is not supporting East London Gay Pride, following the revelation of links between some of the organisers and the right-wing English Defence League (EDL). I have also withdrawn my personal support. We fear the march will be exploited and hijacked by the far right to create divisions and stir up intolerance against Muslim people,” he said.

“OutRage! opposes both homophobia and anti-Muslim bigotry. All forms of intolerance are wrong. The gay, Muslim, Jewish, Asian and black communities know the pain of prejudice and discrimination. We should stand together, united against hate. Let’s celebrate East London’s multicultural diversity. Don’t let bigotry divide us. Together, we can defeat the hate-mongers.

“While defending the right of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and inter-sex (LGBTI) people to protest against homophobia and the ‘Gay Free Zone’ stickers, it would be best if the march was postponed until a later date and organised by a broad-based grassroots and community coalition, untainted by associations with the EDL.

“Muslim organisations and speakers should be invited to participate in the rescheduled East London Pride.

“Sadly, the East London Mosque and its London Muslim Centre must bear some responsibility for previously stoking homophobia. They have hosted anti-gay hate preachers such as Abdul Karim Hattin who delivered a presentation called ‘Spot The Fag’.

“Hattin is not the only homophobe who has been given a platform. So have anti-gay clerics Muhammad Alshareef, Abdullah Hakim Quick and Bilal Philips.

“These fundamentalist hate preachers fuel a culture of homophobia that first and foremost intimidates and threatens LGBTI Muslims. Our Muslim sisters and brothers must be defended against those who advocate harming them.

“We welcome the East London Mosque’s assurance that it will not give a platform to anti-gay speakers in the future. We urge them to establish a regular, permanent dialogue with LGBTI organisations, including Muslim ones, to foster solidarity between the LGBTI and Muslim communities and to combat both homophobia and anti-Muslim prejudice.

“The vast majority of British Muslims are not fundamentalist fanatics. They don’t support hate preachers. Although most of them do not approve of homosexuality, they do not discriminate or harm LGBTI people. We must be very careful to distinguish between Muslim people in general and the extremist minority who oppose democracy and human rights and who want to establish a clerical dictatorship,” said Peter Tatchell of OutRage!, the LGBTI human rights campaign organisation.

BBC: Tattoo gay men, clergyman writes

The gay rights group Outrage described the comments as “Neanderthal”.

Outrage spokesman David Allison said: “It’s the kind of remark you might expect from a drunk on a Saturday night, not someone in a supposedly responsible position.”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/7655585.stm

Anglican Homophobia Protest

Protest against the anti-gay and anti-women Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (Foca), a newly formed network for millions of Anglicans angered by the rise of liberal theology.

© OutRage! 1990-2010. You are free to use this photo to illustrate news stories and articles about OutRage!, the lesbian and gay human rights group, with credit to the group and photographer. For all other uses, please inquire. Photos: Brett Lock, OutRage!

Ken livingstone and Islamic extremism

Peter Tatchell talks to Martin Bright about Ken Livingstone’s embracing of homophobic cleric, Yusuf al-Qaradawi.

Religious SORS Protest

Fundamentalist Christians and Muslims protesting outside the House of Lords, London, January 9, 2007, against the inclusion of gays and lesbians in anti-discrimination legislation for the provision of goods and services. Faith groups are already protected by law but do not want LGBT people included. Nevertheless, despite the protest by the religious bigots, the Lords voted 199-68 in favour of protecting gays and lesbians from discrimination in the provision of goods and services.

 OutRage! 1990-2010. You are free to use this photo to illustrate news stories and articles about OutRage!, the lesbian and gay human rights group, with credit to the group and photographer. For all other uses, please inquire. Photos: Brett Lock, OutRage!

EuroPride 2006

Peter Tatchell mocks the Pope’s homophobia at EuroPride, London, 1 July 2006.
[Photo: Andy Harley, UK Gay News]

Free Expression Rally

March for Free Expression – London, 24 March 2006

© OutRage! 1990-2010. You are free to use this photo to illustrate news stories and articles about OutRage!, the lesbian and gay human rights group, with credit to the group and photographer. For all other uses, please inquire. Photos: Brett Lock, OutRage!

Guardian: How gay is too gay?

In fact, in this country at least, it can be argued that the major religions between them constitute the last great bastion of official homophobia. As David Allison of Outrage!, another gay rights group, puts it: “The churches have stood against every form of social progress since the year dot. The further people go towards civil liberties, the less reliant they are on the church.”

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2005/nov/30/religion.gayrights

Gay Protest Disrupts Cardinal Winning Lecture

Gay campaigners protesting against Section 28 interrupted a lecture by Cardinal Winning in Croydon, south London, on the evening of Tuesday, 7th March.

The brief peaceful protest took place in St. Mary’s Catholic Church Hall, where the Cardinal was giving the 12th annual Cobb Memorial Lecture, in honour of the First World War conscientious objector, Charles Cobb.

The Cardinal’s lecture was on the themes of social justice, respect and solidarity.

Twenty minutes into his lecture, when Cardinal Winning was extolling the importance of respecting other people, Peter Tatchell of OutRage!, who was sitting in the audience, shouted out: “Why don’t you respect gay people? Why do you oppose gay human rights?”

Ignoring the interjection, the Cardinal continued his lecture.

Six members of the gay rights group OutRage! then walked onto the platform and surrounded Cardinal Winning, holding up placards emblazoned with the words “Stop Crucifying Queers” and “Apologise for Church Homophobia”.

Mr. Tatchell took the microphone and criticised the Cardinal’s support for laws that discriminate against lesbians and gay men. Another OutRage! member, Huw Williams, shouted at Cardinal Winning: “It’s about time you stopped supporting discrimination”.

Church officials ripped down the placards and tried unsucessfully to hustle the protesters off the platform.

The police were called and eventually the protesters left peacefully. One member of OutRage! was arrested but was later released without charge outside the meeting.

“It is hypocritical for Cardinal Winning to talk about justice, respect and solidarity, when he denies these things to lesbians and gay men”, said Peter Tatchell.

“Inviting the Cardinal to give this lecture is an insult to the memory of Charles Cobb. Whereas Cobb took a stand against injustice, Cardinal Winning endorses the injustice of antigay discrimination.

“Cardinal Winning opposes gay equality on Section 28, the age of consent, marriage, employment, military service and the fostering and adoption of children.

“He has condemned love between people of the same sex as a ‘disorder’ and ‘perversion’, and he endorses the Catholic catechism’s denunciation of homosexuality as a ‘grave depravity’”, said Mr. Tatchell.

PHOTOS: ISF news agency – 01628-54.25.54

PHOTOS: Piers Allerdyce – 0976-72.43.90

FURTHER INFORMATION: Peter Tatchell – 020-74.03.17.90

Gay Millennium Protest at St. Paul’s Cathedral

OutRage! stages the world’s first gay rights protest of the Third Millennium

CALL FOR CHURCH TO APOLOGISE FOR 2000 YEARS OF HOMOPHOBIA

As the Queen arrived for the National Millennium Service at St. Paul’s Cathedral this afternoon, 2nd January, ten OutRage! protesters unfurled a huge banner with the words: “2000 Years of Church Homophobia”.

The protesters had “blood” streaming from their foreheads to symbolise two millennia of church violence and discrimination against gay people.

When the Queen saw the banner, she looked away.

The Queen was joined by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Prime Minister Tony Blair, and over 1000 civic dignitaries. The National Millennium Service was held to celebrate 2000 years of Christianity.

Those arriving for the service responded with mixed reactions to the protest. Several Anglican priests expressed support for a Church apology. Others reacted with homophobic comments, defending the church’s opposition to an equal age of consent.

“They are celebrating 2000 years of Christianity, but we are mourning two millennia of Christian homophobia”, said one of the protesters, John Hunt of OutRage!.

OutRage! is claiming that its demonstration at St. Paul’s is the world’s first gay rights protest of the Third Millennium.

“Over the last 2000 years, church teaching has led to hundreds of millions of homosexuals worldwide being rejected and reviled by their families, driven to depression and suicide, discriminated against by antigay laws, and condemned to death for sodomy”, he said.

“The celebratory, triumphalist tone of the National Millennium Service is an insult to the millions of queers who have suffered as a result of Christian intolerance.

“None of the churches have ever shown any remorse for their persecution of gay people.

“We call on Archbishop Carey to express his regret for the pain inflicted on homosexuals by the church, and urge him to offer his apologies to the gay community.”

Leviticus 20:13 demands that homosexuals be put to death. For over 1800 years, the Christian churches followed this Biblical injunction, sponsoring a Homo Holocaust involving the mass murder of queers.

“We were stoned to death in antiquity, burned alive during the medieval era, and, in this country, hanged from gallows until the mid-nineteenth century.

“This slaughter of homosexuals took place with the official blessing of Dr. Carey’s predecessors, the Archbishops of Canterbury, and of successive Popes and other Christian leaders.”

While the Anglican Church no longer advocates the death penalty for homosexuals, it still preaches a gospel of sexual apartheid, arguing that homosexuality should not be accorded the same moral or legal status as heterosexuality.

“This straight supremacist doctrine is used to justify the treatment of queers as second class citizens. Dr. Carey and most Christians continue to support discrimination against gay people with regard to the age of consent, marriage, employment, Section 28 and fostering and adoption”, said Hunt.

PHOTOS: David Hoffman – 020-89.81.50.41

FURTHER INFORMATION: Peter Tatchell – 020-74.03.17.90