All entries by this author

Never has she felt it so keenly until today

Jun 15th, 2016 10:07 am | By

Oh gee, a new piece on Orlando that rivals Mariella Mosthof’s for terribleness.

When I read about Orlando, I was surrounded by straight people. Well meaning straight people, yes, allies, yes, but straight people all the same.

I was surrounded by straight people because I was at my house with my husband and my daughter. I spend a lot of time around straight people (thats what I get for marrying a cishet man), but I noticed it more today than I have any other morning. When I heard the news, I started counting down the time until I could be around queer people.

No doubt the apparent distaste for and disapproval of her own husband and daughter are meant … Read the rest

Peak inclusivity

Jun 15th, 2016 9:26 am | By

Oxford Pro-Choice on Twitter:

Oxford Pro-Choice ‏@OxProChoice
What message does this send to Oxford’s female students, @OUSUCouncil?

The Oxford Student Union has not re-affiliated to Abortion Rights because “it has made no effort to become inclusive to trans people” – meaning, presumably, that it continues to talk about women in connection with abortion rights, when any fule kno the correct thing to do now is talk about people who need abortion rights rather than women who need abortion rights. Women are just cis-privileged bitches and everyone should stop talking about them.… Read the rest

The Islamist ideology must be intellectually terminated

Jun 14th, 2016 5:38 pm | By

Maajid Nawaz takes the opposite view from Mariella Mosthof:

The atrocious attack in Orlando, Florida, was an act of ISIS-inspired jihadist terrorism that targeted gays. It must concern us all.

Before any of our assumed multiple identities, we are human beings first and foremost. You don’t have to be black to condemn racism, nor Jewish to condemn anti-Semitism, nor Muslim to condemn anti-Muslim bigotry, and you certainly don’t have to be gay to condemn the evil that just descended upon Orlando.

Exactly that. The attack was targeted, but it does not follow and it is not the case that we can’t all respond to it, even if we’re not part of the group that Omar Mateen wanted … Read the rest

Try harder

Jun 14th, 2016 4:49 pm | By

Another turn of the screw.

The Orlando gunman’s wife has told federal agents she tried to talk her husband out of carrying out the attack, NBC News has learned.

Omar Mateen’s wife, Noor Zahi Salman, told the FBI she was with him when he bought ammunition and a holster, several officials familiar with the case said. She told the FBI that she once drove him to the gay nightclub, Pulse, because he wanted to scope it out.

Oh. Oh really. So she knew he was planning it but she didn’t tell anyone who could have stopped him. Well thanks a lot.

I’m seeing people say maybe she was abused, maybe she was too afraid to tell anyone. Maybe so … Read the rest

Guest post: I am a socialist and I will write about all this and much more

Jun 14th, 2016 12:21 pm | By

Originally a comment by Maureen Brian on If you are a cisgender, heterosexual, white person, please do not write about Orlando.

I was nearly a social scientist so I will write about anomie and alienation. I was a pupil, a parent and a school governor and I will write about a very rich country with so poor an education system that it equips many of its citizens only to live in fear. I am a feminist and I will write about the damage which rigid definitions of gender and gender roles do to us all. I am an internationalist and I will write about the horrors of imperialism, including American imperialism, and how the damage of that imperialism goes … Read the rest

Are you beach body ready?

Jun 14th, 2016 11:51 am | By

Sadiq Khan has an interesting plan.

Adverts promoting negative body images will be banned across the Transport for London (TfL) network from next month.

As part of his mayoral election manifesto Sadiq Khan pledged to ban adverts promoting “unhealthy or unrealistic” body images.

The advertising watchdog received 378 complaints in 2015 about a weight-loss advert that asked customers if they were “beach body ready?”

Mr Khan has now asked TfL to set up its own advertising steering group.

The ASA rejected the complaints.

The Protein World “beach body ready” promotional posters were defaced in Tube stations and a petition was started calling for the adverts to be banned, however the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) watchdog later ruled the advert

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If you are a cisgender, heterosexual, white person, please do not write about Orlando

Jun 14th, 2016 10:13 am | By

Peak something – peak doing social justice wrong is perhaps the best description of it. Mariella Mosthof at Bustle says nearly everyone should say nothing at all about Orlando.

The title alone is terrible:

Dear White, Hetero, Cis People: Please Don’t Co-Opt This Tragedy

Excuse me? Co-opt?? It’s not co-opting to express grief and outrage, and it’s not some ideal opposite of co-opting to ignore terrible things that happen to other people. If only people who are neither white nor straight nor “cis” can talk about Orlando, few people would even know it had happened.

Then the first sentence is even worse:

If you are a cisgender, heterosexual, white person, please do not write about the largest mass shooting

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Hate crimes do not occur in a vacuum

Jun 13th, 2016 5:49 pm | By

Nick Little has a blistering post on hell and the slaughter in Orlando. Like me, he takes the idea of hell seriously as an evil harmful concept.

…like many people, what moved me away from religion (including a brief sojourn in Universalism) was the concept of hell as understood by the general believer, not by the academic or apologist. Hell was, I was taught, an unspeakably bad place. A place of torture, torment, and pain that would last for all eternity. And so I became unable to hold the existence of such a place, where people were actually sent, as consistent with the idea of a loving God.

Exactly. It’s not.

But it’s a mainstream belief – which is … Read the rest

Selective Outrage: The Silence and Denial about Muslim Homophobia

Jun 13th, 2016 | By Adele Wilde

Fifty people were gunned down in a mass terrorist shooting in Orlando; USA. They were deliberately targeted by a Muslim man, Omar Mateen,29, because they were gay. Outrage and shock followed the shooting which has been described as one of the worst mass shootings in US history. I will leave the issue of the gun ownership laws in the USA to one side, which are definitely a big part of the problem.

However, since the news broke I have noticed yet again those on the Regressive Left; Muslims and Religious Right, stating that ‘we should not ‘exploit’ the crime and talk about Islamic homophobia. As Hassan Raza put it:

If one thing that stays consistent every time there is

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One flier advertises an open hunting season on backpackers

Jun 13th, 2016 4:29 pm | By

Environment and Energy Daily reports:

One flier advertises an open hunting season on southeast Utah backpackers, with no harvest limits and all weapons permitted.

Another carries a fake news release from Interior Secretary Sally Jewell: The federal government plans to seize more than 4 million acres of the Navajo Nation’s land.

A third flier advertises a July 17 party in Blanding, Utah, to celebrate President Obama’s designation of a Bears Ears National Monument that would supposedly happen that day. But Utah Navajos aren’t invited, the flier states. They can kiss access to their sacred lands goodbye.

“Utah Navajos, stay away from our party,” it reads. “Everyone else come and celebrate with us.”

The postings discovered in the past month

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Guest post: How do you like our Catholic youth, the future of our nation?

Jun 13th, 2016 4:05 pm | By

Originally a comment by Ariel on They all stated without hesitation that it was wrong and forbidden.

Catholics, huh? Well, if you are interested in reactions of people in more distant and exotic parts of the world, here it goes.

Here in Poland we have a nationalist-Catholic organization called „All-Polish Youth”. Sweet people. Soon after the Orlando attack, on their Facebook site you could read the infamous quote from Leviticus (“If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them”), attached to a photo of the Orlando club.

This provoked a lot of outrage and the Facebook post was … Read the rest

Maybe she spiked her own drink

Jun 13th, 2016 11:43 am | By

So if you’re a woman in Qatar and you get roofied, you’d better just shut up about it, because if you accuse the roofier of rape you’ll be charged with a crime yourself, and most likely convicted. The BBC reports:

A court in Qatar has convicted a Dutch woman of having sex outside marriage after she told police she was raped.

The 22-year-old was handed a suspended sentence and fined $824 (£580). She will also be deported.

Her lawyer said her drink had been spiked at a Doha hotel in March and she had woken up in a stranger’s flat, where she realised she had been raped.

The stranger was sentenced to 100 lashes for the “sex outside marriage,” … Read the rest

They all stated without hesitation that it was wrong and forbidden

Jun 13th, 2016 10:57 am | By

Adele Wilde on Facebook:

I taught a group of Algerian Muslim men here a couple of months ago. Without any provocation from my side, they asked me what I thought about gay people.

I had been warned by my boss (eager not to lose paying students) not to be pro-gay or say anything that might offend them (what like expressing views of a decent, tolerant human being?). He told me that a male teacher had said something to the class that showed he supported LGBT rights. They were deeply offended and told my boss to get another teacher for them, which he did.

So I turned the question on the men and asked them what they thought. They all

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London vigil for Orlando victims

Jun 13th, 2016 10:48 am | By

Peter Tatchell on Facebook:

London vigil for Orlando victims 7pm tonight. Join us (details below). LGBT venues (and others) must step up security. Orlando is the tip of an iceberg of global anti-LGBT violence. Don’t demonise all Muslims. Best memorial to victims: US should ban semi-automatic weapons, repeal legal discrimination against LGBT people and require all schools to educate pupils against all hate, including against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia. Appalling Sky TV interview.

Gay and human rights campaigner, Peter Tatchell, will join tonight’s London vigil in commemoration and solidarity with the victims of the Orlando massacre. It commences at 7pm in the heart of the gay village, Old Compton Street, Soho, W1.

Commenting on the mass killings, Mr Tatchell,

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Jun 13th, 2016 10:13 am | By

Reuters reports that Mateen made his 911 call announcing his allegiance to the caliph during the attack, not before it as we were hearing yesterday.

The caliphate of course returned the favor.

Islamic State reiterated on Monday a claim of responsibility. “One of the Caliphate’s soldiers in America carried out a security invasion where he was able to enter a crusader gathering at a nightclub for homosexuals in Orlando,” the group said in a broadcast on its Albayan Radio.

Uh huh, it’s all very official – it was a legitimate, in fact the only legitimate state carrying out a “security invasion” – because what, the partiers at Pulse were a dangerous threat to Islamic State? Of course they were – … Read the rest

The Daily Hate Speech

Jun 13th, 2016 8:54 am | By

Sorry to cite the Daily Mail as a source, but sometimes one has to. So, the Daily Mail:

A Turkish newspaper with links to the country’s President has published a homophobic headline calling those who died in the Orlando mass shooting ‘perverts’ and ‘deviants’.

Yeni Akit, a right-wing newspaper which has supported the likes of Al-Qaeda in the past, broke news of the attack with the headline: ‘Death toll rises to 50 in bar where perverted homosexuals go!’

According to Turkish think-tank the Hrant Dink Foundation, Yeni Akit is one of the worst offenders when it comes to using hate speech against minorities, in particular the LGBT community, but also against Jews, Armenians and Christians.

In just four

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Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera

Jun 12th, 2016 5:32 pm | By

The New York Times tells us a little about one of the Orlando victims on its live update page.

Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36, was nicknamed Shaki and had been married to his husband for about a year, said his cousin, Orlando Gonzalez, 26.

Mr. Ortiz-Rivera lived in downtown Orlando, with his husband, and worked at a Party City and a Sunglasses Hut, Mr. Gonzalez said.

He had other passions: “He was very artistic,” Mr. Gonzalez said. “He was all about interior design. He actually knew how to cut hair and stuff. He was the one that everyone in the family” went to for design advice, Mr. Gonzalez said.

And, Mr. Gonzalez said, his cousin was “a goofball” who liked to

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Sheikh Farrokh Sekaleshfar

Jun 12th, 2016 5:15 pm | By

So this is horrifying.

The United West investigative team uncovered a story so disturbing Field Sutton of Channel 9 news in Orlando, FL broke the story on their newscast.

The Husseini Islamic Center, 5211 Hester Ave, Sanford, FL 32773, invited Sheikh Farrokh Sekaleshfar to speak at their Mosque. Dr. Sekaleshfar says the killing of homosexuals is the compassionate thing to do.

In a 2013 speech Sheikh Sekaleshfar said this regarding gays, “Death is the sentence. We know there’s nothing to be embarrassed about this, death is the sentence…We have to have that compassion for people, with homosexuals, it’s the same, out of compassion, let’s get rid of them now.”

The story is dated April 6. Two months ago.

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Demanding recognition on the basis of shared paranoias

Jun 12th, 2016 12:30 pm | By

There are people who identify as victims of an organized group of stalkers, who are everywhere.

At first, Mr. Trespas wondered if it was all in his head. Then he encountered a large community of like-minded people on the internet who call themselves “targeted individuals,” or T.I.s, who described going through precisely the same thing.

The group was organized around the conviction that its members are victims of a sprawling conspiracy to harass thousands of everyday Americans with mind-control weapons and armies of so-called gang stalkers. The goal, as one gang-stalking website put it, is “to destroy every aspect of a targeted individual’s life.”

Mental health professionals say the narrative has taken hold among a group of people

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Character witness

Jun 12th, 2016 11:50 am | By

Oh guess what. It turns out Omar Mateen wasn’t a nice quiet loving peaceful citizen even before he murdered over 50 people at Orlando’s largest gay bar and injured over 50 more; no, it turns out he was a violent abuser of – you’ll never guess – women.

The ex-wife of the 29-year-old man suspected of killing 50 people in a Orlando nightclub early Sunday said that he was violent and mentally unstable and beat her repeatedly while they were married.

The ex-wife said she met Omar Mateen online about eight years ago and decided to move to Florida and marry him.

At first, the marriage was normal, she said, but then he became abusive.

“He was not a

Read the rest