Out at work? Oui!

Mounir Mahjoubi | Morocco World News | r

France’s Digital Minister Mounir Mahjoubi has come out as gay, hoping to give gay people more visibility at a time when homophobic acts are on the rise.

He came out yesterday, the International Day Against Homophobia. The 34-year old junior minister in Emmanuel Macron’s government tweeted that homophobia “sometimes forces us to adapt and lie just to avoid hatred and to live our lives. Homophobia is an ill that eats away at society, invades schools, and poisons families and lost friends.”

Mr. Mahjoubi is not the first French politician to come out, but he said his personal experience could inspire those facing prejudice.



Well done Oswestry

I never had Oswestry down as a bastion of lesbian achievement but clearly I was wrong. Congratulations to Councillor Sandy Best who was sworn in as mayor at a ceremony in the Guildhall with her lady mayoress and partner, Marilyn Taylor.

Ms Best, a historian who has now written some history, said it was a huge personal honour to be elected as mayor. The office dates back to 1674, and said she was proud to be the first openly gay mayor in Oswestry and both of them were looking forward to representing the council.


Death of Dennis Nilson


“Dennis Andrew Nilson, date of birth November 23, 1945, died in custody at HMP Full Sutton on Saturday May 12, 2018. As with all deaths in custody, there will be an independent investigation by the Prisons and Probate Ombudsman.”

Prison Service Spokesman, 13 May 2018

The Muswell Hill Murderer was thirty four years into his whole life sentence when he died. He murdered his first victim, Stephen Holmes, who was only 14 years old, on 29 December 1978. Nilson then murdered a further fourteen young men in acts which the trial judge described as “almost unequalled savagery” at his home, ending with the murder of his last victim, Steve Sinclair, who was 20 years old, on 26 January 1983.

Nilson would sit with their corpses for days. He slept with their corpses, dressing and undressing them, moving them around his home and placing them in different positions, hide the bodies under the floorboards, then he would dismember them, burning the body parts and flushing them down the toilet to dispose of them.

His victims are all thought to be homosexual men he had picked up. They were:

Stephen Dean Holmes, age 14, died on 29.12.78

Kenneth Ockenden, age 26, died 3.12.79

Martyn Duffy, age 16, died 17.5.80

William Sutherland, age 26, died ?.8.80

Seven other men who have never been identified who died between 9.80 and 4.81

Malcolm Barlow, age 23, died 17.9.81

John Howlett, age 23, died ?.3.82

Graham Allen, age 27, died ?.9.82

Steve Sinclair, age 20, died 26.1.83.

We will always remember his victims.

Squashed? No, out!

Todd Harrity | PSA World Tour | r

Men’s United States No.1 Todd Harrity became the first male professional squash player to openly identify himself as gay. His fellow players on the PSA World Tour have also come out in support.

The PSA said “the squash world is a diverse place and no matter what creed, race, sexual preference or anything else, we should all welcome and accept each other”.


Remembering Charles Pierce



Charles Pierce | Copyright control | Find a grave | 18310

Charles Pierce was born on July 14, 1926 and died on May 31, 1999, of cancer. He described himself as a “male actress” but had a major influence on gay and drag culture throughout his life. He combined a long career of theatre and club engagements, including in London, with numerous appearances on television in the US.

Queerty noted in 2016 that

The blazing career of self-proclaimed “male actress” Charles Pierce was launched in the clubs of San Francisco around the time the struggle for gay rights was kicked into full gear with the Stonewall riots on the opposite coast. With his dead-on satirical send-ups of screen immortals such as Bette Davis, Joan Crawford and Tallulah Bankhead, Pierce quickly earned a devoted fan following and it was common to see celebrities of the day (ranging from Lucille Ball to Anthony Hopkins) in his audience.

Pierce was born in New York and began his show business career playing the organ and acting in radio dramas at station WWNY. He began playing in small gay clubs and went to live in San Francisco. He specialised in impersonating the female movie stars he loved while he was growing up, including Joan Crawford and Mae West.

“Few performers have Mr. Pierce’s energy and aplomb on stage,” wrote the San Francisco Examiner reviewer in 1990. “This man is an entertainer; he enjoys himself up there, lustfully commanding our attention and admiration.”

In the 1970s he brought his show for a limited run to the Fortune Theatre in London’s West End.




High time sport got its act together

Andrea Barone | Marta Iwanek/New York Times | r

The New York Times profiles referee Andrea Barone, who has had enough of being insulted because he is gay.

The insults came from coaches, who would roll their eyes when warned against the use of homophobic slurs on the ice. Or they came from players, who used the barbs as a way to emasculate or demean the opponents across from them.

For years, Barone handled the pointed words, the casual insensitivity that said to him that he and people like him were not welcome. It was, in some way, the price of living in this world as a gay man.

He tolerated it until last spring, when an ECHL coach, whose team had blown a third-period lead in a playoff game, charged at him. In front of three other referees, Barone said, the coach used a graphic, expletive-laced anti-gay slur.

A bigger splash?

Press Association | r

Olympic diver Tom Daley will take his gay rights campaign to Russia when he competes in next month’s World Series, but for safety he may pare down his message amid a fear of reprisals.

Tom, right in the photo, who won the men’s synchronised 10-metres platform title with Dan Goodfellow, left in the photo, at this month’s Commonwealth Games in Australia, was praised for the public plea for equality in the Commonwealth just moments after taking the gold medal, then used his media duties after winning his fourth Games title to implore the Commonwealth Games Federation to do more to persuade those 37 out of 53 nations of the Commonwealth where homosexuality remains illegal, to amend their laws.