Homophobes of the Week

Latest posts by Beyers de Vos (see all)

Let the naming and shaming continue!

Russia. The biggest (not sure of this in terms of surface area or popularity, but it’s probably both) gay club in Moscow has been forced to close after enduring years of attacks by anti-gay vigilantes. Over the last three years the club has apparently been the scene of a range of homophobic attacks that have included shootings, violent assaults and poisonous gas raids. The club’s CEO recently resigned after every single reported incident was ignored by the police. The club’s owner has now confirmed it will close. This is just another in a string of homophobic stories coming out of Russia which in recent months has begun antagonising the rest of the world over issues ranging from gay rights to the Ukraine. Second cold-war anyone?

Google. The internet giant still hasn’t removed “bisexual” from its list of banned words (the list of words that get blocked from being used by the autocomplete feature), a list usually reserved for swear words and pornographic prompters. Google promised to remove the word way back in 2012, but have apparently forgotten to do so. There has been quite a lot in the news lately about the legitimacy of bisexuality and its marginalisation, and there’s obviously no need to ban the word. I am inclined to believe this is probably just an oversight by a company that has a pretty liberal record and not some organised stance against bisexuals, but it is still a little concerning.

Mike Ocquaye. Surprise, surprise, an ex-Ghanian MP, who used to serve as deputy speaker of parliament and also used to serve as a minister of something no one cares about, is using his free time to speak out against homosexuality. Mike Ocquaye recently told some anti-gay protesters who want Ghana to strengthen its laws against homosexuality that homosexuality was comparable to the slave trade and prostitution. “Africa must resist a new sodomy slave trade so that we can nip in the bud a situation whereby lesbian groups, clubs and societies who have huge sums of money will export our youth, use them for improper pleasures of the flesh, infect them with diseases and dump them,” he said, amongst other illogical rantings. Shame though, he doesn’t have a government job anymore and thankfully is not in a position to influence policy.