Stars Of Eurovision 2016 Promise It’s Going To Be A ‘Very Gay Year’

eurovision-2016 (1)Huge crowds watched as artists from 42 participating countries walked the red carpet for the opening ceremony of Eurovision 2016, in Stockholm, yesterday.

Gay Star News was on the red carpet and talked to many of the fabulous performers as they arrived at the star-studded event.

Christer Bjorkman, the contest producer, and Petra Mede, one of the show’s hosts were among the first on the carpet.

Sweden last hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2013, when we at Gay Star News proclaimed it the ‘gayest Eurovision ever’. How will the 2016 contest compare – will it be just as good?

Christer told us: ‘If you perceived it as gay last time you probably will this time. It has a lot to do with Petra’s humor. She’s sort of an icon for us.’

Petra added: ‘It’s going to be just as gay – don’t you worry.’

UK artists Joe and Jake seemed very appreciate of Eurovision’s LGBTI audience. Joe told GSN: ‘We’ve had a lot of love from all of the gay community and all the gay fans, and we’d like to give that love back to them and just say thank you.’




Nicky Byrne from Westlife is representing Ireland this year. We asked him about Eurovision’s large LGBTI viewership. ‘It’s the same as every viewer. To me – gay, straight – it makes no difference. So, everybody is out to have fun, enjoy the show, and vote for Ireland.’

Serhat, the performer representing San Marino was a little more philosophical. ‘They ask me what is the color of life? Life is beautiful with all colors. That is my message.’

Though there are many flamboyant performances, the number of openly LGBTI contestants historically has been very low.

Douwe Bob, the artist representing the Netherlands, is a rare exception and is openly bisexual. ‘I think personally it shouldn’t matter if you are gay or not. If you are a fan of something you love, that’s a good thing. It’s a beautiful thing.’ When asked about being an out contestant, Douwe added: ‘I don’t consider myself out because I’ve never been in.’




Jamala from the Ukraine thinks it’s important that all artists can be authentic. ‘Be real, be yourself. No matter what they say we have important thing that god creates us and we are different and it’s a good thing that we can be different.’ Michal Szpak from Poland added: ‘Just be yourself’

While it is becoming easier to be openly LGBTI in many European countries, it’s still a challenge in others.

Ira Losco from Malta had words of support for LGBTI people in more difficult countries. ‘I hope that coming out isn’t too hard. For some people because that’s always the worst part. Just know that people will love you no matter what. Just keep strong and believe in yourself. People around you love you.’

Christina Lachana, the lead singer from band Argo representing Greece was equally encouraging. ‘Think positive. Enjoy every good stuff in your life.’

Sandhja, representing Finland, see’s Eurovision as a unifying force. ‘It shouldn’t be about being gay or lesbian or straight. Music and love and healing all come together in a holy triangle. I believe that music brings people together.’

Our Eurovision coverage will continue throughout the week. If you have a favorite Eurovision song from this year, let us know.


 

Taken From GayStarNews.Com


Corporate Christ is a Musician and Author from Cardiff, UK.

CORPORATECHRIST BLOG LINK

As A Gay Child Of Fundamentalist Christians, I Was Horrified By The New Jehovah’s Witnesses Video

gayrightsA few days ago, I read an article in one of the more LGBT-focussed online publications about the Jehovah’s Witnesses (hereafter JWs) highlighting the fact that they’ve recently put together a selection of films. In amongst them is a film entitled “One Man, One Woman”, that I’d encourage you to watch – it’s currently listed proudly in the ‘Featured’ section of their very slick website. This video purports to be about gay parenting, but it’s really a direct challenge to the first encounter many children will have with gay people – namely classmates with gay parents.

For anyone who thinks they’ve never encountered the JWs before, you probably in fact have. You’re quite likely to have seen a pair of well-dressed inoffensive-looking middle-aged folk, Watchtower magazines in both hands (and on a magazine stand next to them), holding out both hands with a benign expression in an ostentatious gesture of assumed generous benevolence. In London they’re usually outside major train stations like Oxford Circus or Liverpool Street, but you will also find them in high streets around the country, and of course sometimes they’ll even come a-knocking. Most people dismiss them gently but firmly, although some are gentler than others.




I didn’t grow up a JW, but I was brought up by fundamentalist Christians. We had no television, went to church twice a week, and I spent a good portion of my earlier life almost entirely unaware of popular culture. An insular environment like this can have a profound effect on a child, and gives parents a great deal of control over what the child does, thinks, and is exposed to. For me growing up, my parents were my whole world – I hung on their every word, believed it passionately. I’m sure this is the same for many children, but I think for me it was a little more extreme.


Learning how my parents felt about homosexuality (they definitely weren’t on board with the whole thing whatsoever) took me to quite a dark place, especially for an 11-year-old. My parents were very fond of that catchall quotation from 2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is God-breathed”, taking it to mean that every word in the Bible was literally and directly from God. As they gently and kindly explained to me that how I was feeling could be changed, should be changed, and didn’t fit with what God wanted (going so far as in fact to say that it was the moral equivalent of bestiality), I believed every single word. They were quoting from the Bible, which came from God, and so clearly everything they were saying was indubitable, incontestable and I was just wrong somehow. Sounds pretty absolute, doesn’t it?

In this case it was clear to me that I had somehow been programmed wrong, or maybe I just didn’t understand myself properly – so for the next few years I meandered on in something of a grey, periodically suicidal daze.

“This is ridiculous, imagine believing something like this!” is the reaction from the intellectuals, the secularists, even some mainstream Christians, no doubt. The natural way so many people deal with these messages is with dismissal and ridicule. Articles on LGBT websites reporting on the videos take pretty sardonic stances – Pink News refers to a “Creepy Cartoon Mother” and comes to simple conclusion: “Solid parenting.” Sure, it’s good to laugh – but we’re missing something important here.


Taken From Independent.Co.Uk



Corporate Christ is a Musician and Author from Cardiff, UK.

CORPORATECHRIST BLOG LINK