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The Your Stories section is all about you! Please take a minute to tell visitors of the ILGA website about what LGBTI life is like in reality. Please submit your personal story and share your experience!

YOUR STORIES
Share your experiences in CANADA - Let others know what it’s like to be LGBTI in your country! If an experience is meaningful for you, it will probably be meaningful for someone else. On whatever topic, whether good or bad, your story is how the world knows about your country and LGBTI life. By selecting tags that mark the topic your story, others can learn from your experience.
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Readers Experiences

This is what people are saying about life for LGBTI people in CANADA...
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showing stories 51-100

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As an ESL/EFL educator, I yearned to create a safe education environment, to deliver curriculum inclusive of GLBT global culture. While Canada as a whole is making progress in this area, smaller less urbanized less culturalized communties are still oppressed thus discriminate GLBT teachers, students and incorporation of related curriculum. While teaching in a rural Canadian public university, I felt extremely oppressed, fearful for my job and my students. My goal is to teach, to educate through example. Canada's laws and legislated policies exists to protect all yet falls short of their true mandate. All human rights and equality depend on education, hope and courage. We,the educators and learners need to feel safe in our educational environment,need to feel free to experience a safe education in a fair playing field. Rather than wait, rather than fight, I have adopted a holistic approach to ESL/EFL -a virtual global teach and learn community that is accepting, fosters choice and embraces differneces among All People from All Nations. We must make it better, we must erase hate, we must advocate, we must EDUCATE; ours is the legacy that we leave to the future.
"The measure of one’s character is not what they get from their ancestors,but what they leave their descendants." ~ AU
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Yachting Gate (user currently living in GREECE) posted for gay lesbian readers on 07/06/2011 tagged with tourism +0
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Introducing S/C Panorama and M/Y Falcon Summer 2011 (available in groups of 45-50 passengers / available in groups of 10 passengers)

The myth comes truth,
Live your myth in Greece and enjoy unforgettable vacations aboard your private yacht. Enjoy the freedom, flexibility, glamour and life style that a professional ‘private’ yacht has to offer and fulfill your expectations. Enjoy the life at sea, sailing, swimming, sunbathing, water sports, gastronomic flavors, island’s night life, with the combination of history and culture.

A world famous destination
Greece with its 4.500 islands amazing coastlines and quaint ports is ideal for small ship cruising, rather than for ships carrying hundreds of passengers. World famous destinations such as Mykonos and Santorini, well known islands such as Syros and colorful ports of call such as Kios, Ios and Sifnos are offering a wide variety of Hellenic Cyclades.

Proposed itinerary
Piraeus – Kea / Kea – Syros / Syros – Mykonos / Mykonos – Dilos – Paros / Paros – Ios / Ios – Santorini / Santorini – Sifnos / Sifnos – Piraeus

Our proposal
Our proposal is to exploit the magnificent Greek Island with the ultimate way: By chartering a unique sail cruiser for larger groups of 40-50 passengers, or a Falcon 100 feet class motor yacht for smaller groups of 10 passengers.

Finally
Our experienced crew always lager to deliver everything you desire, will provide high quality services tailored made to passenger’s needs, offered an upscale environment with safety.

Booking Details (open dates)
Yacht Cruiser Panorama (carries 40-50 passengers). Available only for groups of 45-50 passsengers / booking availibility: one (1) week on July from July 9, 2011 to July 14, 2011 and two (2) weeks on August from August 12, 2011 to August 25, 2011 / Cruising speed: 10 nautical miles per hour / Yacht cost per day: 12.000 € / Cost per passenger 300 € per day X 7 days for 2.100 €

Motor Yacht Falcon (carries 10 passengers). Available only for groups of 10 passengers / booking availibility: July, August, September 2011 / Cruising speed 25 nautical miles per hour / Yacht cost per week: 58.400 € / Cost per passenger 584 € per day X 7 days 4.088 €

For more information visit us at www.yachtingate.gr or sent your e-mail for booking details.

Thank you
The Yachting Gate Group
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natasha fox (user currently living in CANADA) posted for transgender readers on 09/05/2011
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SOCIALLY SPEAKING THE GENERAL MOOD AROUND GLBTI PEOPLE AND GROUPS IS TOLERANT AND ACCEPTING, HOWEVER OUR COUNTRY IS STILL PROGRESSING IN REGARDS TO TRANSSEXUAL RIGHTS, TRANSGENDER RIGHTS, TO BE MADE LAW, THAT ENSURES EQUALITY FOR ALL. WE ARE ONE OF THE BEST NATIONS IN THE WORLD, WE AS CANADIANS HAVE A RESPONSIBLITY TO SET A STANDARD FOR OTHER NATIONS TO LOOK UP TO. IN MANY OTHER REGIONS OF THE WORLD, HOMOSEXUALITY IS SUPPRESSED BY HOMOPHOBIA AND LACK OF EDUCATION, TRANSGENDER EDUCATION IS NECESSARY FOR PEOPLE OF A MODERN PROGRESSIVE SOCIETY TO EMBRACE AND UNDERSTAND THESE ISSUES, AND TO KEEP PEOPLE FROM MAKING IMPROPER ASSUMPTIONS. I ALSO BELIEVE THAT IT IS NECESSARY FOR THE CHURCH TO EMBRACE GENDER DIVERSITY, TO BRING PEOPLE INTO SPIRITUALITY REGARDLESS OF WHO THEY ARE. RELIGIOUS ACCEPTANCE OF GAY PEOPLE IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF MAKING ALL PEOPLE, "EQUAL AMONG EQUALS" ~ NATASHA FOX
NATASHA_FOX 10@HOTMAIL.COM TRANSSEXUAL
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al (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for straight readers in response to this story on 25/04/2011 +3
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maybe you are sick in the head 'think would you work with you'
view entire thread
Gary Allen (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay readers on 16/04/2011 tagged with at the work place
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To Whom It May Concern



I started work on call at The Nanaimo Regional General HospitalHospital in 2006 as a patient porter I was good at my job and I enjoyed it. I had my criminal record check and although I had a criminal record my record check was okay ed it included being cleared to work with children. I am gay and I have bi polar disorder and in 2009 I had a breakdown and had to be hospitalized at the same hospital I worked at. When I was well a few months later my psychiatrist said I could return to work and put it in writing. The new staffing boss for porters was Anna Hills she was aware that I had been a patient in psychiatry.She set me up a start date and arranged orientation for me. She later called in the managenment and then everything she had arranged was put on hold. I got the union involved and they haven't done much I haven't heard from them or management for three months. I was told by management and it was disscussed that they didn't want to give me my job back because of my mental illness and that is discrimination. My doctor continues to back me returning to work and she has provided two letters to that regard to hospital management.When I picked up my 2010 T4 the secretary behind the desk told me I was no longer employed by the hospital. I have had no calls or letters fom either management or the union telling me I was terminated I have not recieved a seperation either, I hope you can help.I callen Human Resources today and found out my termination date was January 06 2011

Thank You
Sincerely

Gary E Allen
104-1275 Dufferin Crescent
Nanaimo, BC V9S 5E8
Phone 250 591-8080
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Mr. Taylor (user currently living in CANADA) posted for transgender intersex readers on 14/02/2011 +5
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Eugenics is in full swing in Vancouver B.C.
There are NO LEGAL or medical RESOURCES for adult Intersex persons in Vancouver B.C, Canada.

The gov't health facility for Trans people doubles for intersex people. Intersex people are treated like trans people. Both are lumped on the same floor as JUNKIES. All Trans and Intersex people in B.C. are funneled into MENTAL HEALTH programs. You HAVE to be a mental health patient if you are intersex or trans here.

There are no legal avenues against the THERAPEUTIC PRIVELEGE nad eugenics policies of the medical "profession" here.

I am intersex, I have had doctors lie right to my face about my genitals. I have had CT scans swapped when I asked to see them.

When I finally got a copy of my CT scan, it wasn't mine. I held my hands a specific way and have a tat. Not in the CT scan I don't.

Intersex and Trans people who go to the Three Bridges, Ravensong, or the new centre in East Vancouver ALL get TARGETED by gangs and threatened until they become junkies or whores.

The police LAUGH. Judges, lawyers, doctors LAUGH.

There are NO SPECIALISTS for adult Intersex people in all of B.C.

You can get a change, but you can't get a specialist to help you understand what mutilation has already been done to you.

The Old Boys Network here pumps money into these facilities
but none of it is helping anyone Trans or Intersex.

There was a Ms. Wheeler trying to get an intersex specialist here in B.C., she was a nurse.

She got murdered for trying to help them!!
A convenient plane "accident"

http://christuusgnosis.blogspot.com/2009/09/intersex-in-media-new-stories-only.html

http://christuusgnosis.blogspot.com/search?q=intersex

http://christuusgnosis.blogspot.com/2008/12/leonardo-davinci-and-cuchulain-would.html

http://christuusgnosis.blogspot.com/2008/10/youll-be-in-wheelchair-but-that-doesnt.html
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(user currently living in CANADA) posted for lesbian readers on 10/02/2011 +5
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I was in the Mall tonight with my girlfriend. I live in Ontario. We were standing out of the way of the mall traffic and she had her hands on my side about three inches above my hips, we were about a foot away from each other. A security guard then approached and told us to separate and sit down if we need to talk. I do not see the issue with this when there's straight couples sticking their tongues down each others throats like 10 feet away from us! I found the situation so wrong.
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I just signed the petition "Gay Suspended february 3, 2011 Without Pay Ontario, Canada for defense of Gay Rights MONTFORT HOSPITAL " and wanted to see if you could help by adding your name.

Our goal is to reach 700 signatures and we need more support. You can read more and sign the petition here:

http://www.change.org/petitions/gay-suspended-without-pay-ontario-canada-for-defense-of-gay-rights

Thanks!
For Team Change
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Guy Lafond (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay readers on 25/11/2010 tagged with sexual orientation
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http://www.algi.qc.ca/forum/quotidien/messages/9435.html
Guy Lafond
guylafond66@bell.net
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Tom States (user currently living in UNITED STATES) posted for gay readers on 13/09/2010 tagged with at the work place, hate crime and violence prevention, human rights, laws and leadership , sexual orientation +5
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Part1:

Saturday, May 30th 2009, Steamworks Toronto, 540 Church St, M4Y 2E1, ON Person(s) presumably acting under the color of state authority in a room adjacent to the one I occupied recorded, using a webcam, me alone in my room masturbating. The management of the establishment informed them that they were in violation of my privacy and Steamworks privacy policy. In response to the manager on duty’s concerns, the person responsible for recording my sex act spoke with a person that he referred to as his ‘leader’.

A couple hours later, two German speaking males checked into the bathhouse. Hearing German spoken, I opened my door and engaged them in conversation. The persons in the room adjacent mine, presumably unable to understand German, approached the gentlemen and involved them in a matter – the details of which I am not fully aware. They went so far as to task the gentlemen with carrying out an act of surveillance.

Taking note that I was fully dressed and planning to leave but not to check out of the bathhouse, the agents asked one of the gentlemen to ask me about my intentions regarding my departure and return. I informed the staff which resulted in the management once again dutifully addressing the matter with the agents.

Upset with my demonstrative knowledge and reporting of the contact that was made with the two German guests, one of the agents voiced his displeasure loud enough from the adjacent room in anger and in syntax structured to make me aware that I was the intended audience.

Part 2:

My experience as a black gay male while working and studying at York University cumulated in the following allegation detailed in my HRTO complaint:

Issues and accusations arising out of a personal homosexual relationship with a fellow graduate student that took place outside of York University were presumably brought to the attention of officials at York University. Initiating and participating in an investigation that included external agents, current students in the sessions for which I was a teaching assistance, faculty and staff, York University became a party to an effort to substantiate allegations made against me prior to and absent any attempt to present me with the accusations made against me or my accuser.

The investigation included surveillance, several attempts at entrapment, violations of privacy, sharing of private information with person not affiliated with York University, contacting friends, family and known associates from among the student body in order to confirm and or provoke behavior or responses to behavior being investigated. The effort that York University became a party to also implicated York University in my being secretly filmed at a gay bathhouse.
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Darius (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay readers on 21/08/2010 tagged with marriage / civil unions +10
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I met my partner while in the US in 2006. We got married in Ottawa in 2008 and finally moved to Canada in 2009. I am extremely thankful that we had a country to go to just north of the border. It is sad that people in the US are still this backward and ignorant. I am glad I left and just renounced my US citizenship last month. Canada is a country that actually does what the US Constitution aims to do but has still not carried out.
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Heather and Jeannie (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay lesbian readers on 29/06/2010
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Hello, my name is Heather and I met my partner five and a half years ago at a Bible College in New Brunswick. She is an American and I am Canadian. We have each taken turns working lots of hours and the other schooling so that we could be in the same country together. WE were married in July of 2008 in Canada, where it was legal. We lived in Maine though because I was finishing school and Jeannie hd like three social work jobs. My visa ended this May (2010) and I was forced to move back to Canada. Jeannie has followed but is not legal yet, because it costs almost a total of $2000, which a social worker can't save up when trying to live and pay for two people to survive. Has anyone else had this issue? Is there another way around the fees?
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posted for lesbian readers on 25/06/2010
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I live in a small town and it is hard to find a woman because they are so tight lipped over this stuff, and really would like to meet some nice woman and take it from there. So I don't understand how this all works and don't know how anyone gets ahold of you but hopefully its from here. Please write and I will answer , Corey
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An Intersex Human (user currently living in CANADA) posted for transgender bisexual intersex readers on 12/06/2010 +0
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In British Columbia, Canada, intersex people who go to the clinics that are supposedly for LGBT (and I) get targeted by gangs involved with prostitution.

They get targeted AT THE CLINIC. Someone on the inside tips off the gangs that they have an appointment, and they get tailed when they leave it and are then targets.

There are NO specialists for Intersexuality in BC.

It took me 8 months of DEMANDING to get a karotype test.

People have targeted me in my home, shortly after I visited the clinic, and no one else knew of the condition.

The police don't investigate hate crimes in BC. Only 2 people have ever been charged in the last 15 years.

Vancouver is one of the top 3 destinations for pedophiles, what people overlook is that all conditions that are fetishized are also cause for being targeted as a victim.

Caroline Wheeler was trying to get specialists for intersex people to get proper care. Her plane was sabotaged, and her murder was called an accident.
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posted for readers on 30/05/2010
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In a newly published novel by Paul Xylinides called The Confessor-Designate a fictional American Pope determines to have canonized a homosexual priest from the 1600's in order to advance the Church's relevance in the 21st century. The theological argument for such a step is a history of making saints of those who were once womanizers and prostitutes, in other words, it is not how one begins one's life but how one ends it that counts. The story follows the relationship of the nun and priest who are conscripted in this cause, the tragedy that befalls them, the events in the life of the candidate for canonization that have brought him to such notice, and it shows the machinations in Rome that underlie the effort. Paul Xylinides is a Montreal writer where much of the story is set; it also takes place in Rome and 17th century France and North America. The book is available at http://www.theconfessor-designate.com.
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Kate Webb (user currently living in CANADA) posted for lesbian readers on 28/04/2010 tagged with teaching lgbt rights in schools
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Catholic girls' school accused of firing lesbian teacher after she became a parent:

http://www.theprovince.com/Catholic+girls+school+accused+firing+lesbian+teacher+after+became+parent/2961810/story.html

The Province will be updating this story throughout the day.
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Val (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 20/04/2010 tagged with lgbt families, laws and leadership , marriage / civil unions
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I live in Nova Scotia, Canada. LGBT activism is alive and well here. Queer folks in Nova Scotia have been very brave over the past 20 years or so with coming out and insisiting upon change. Nova Scotia was one of the first provinces in Canada to have the Domestic Partner Registry System which gay or straight couples could use to register their common law relationships and be afforded some of the benefits of a legally recognized couple. A few years later, all Canadians were given the full and legal right to marry.
I have lived in Ontario and Newfoundland as well. I came out at 28 with two small children. There were challenges along the way of educating teachers, doctors, etc. My children found it quite amusing at times and frustrating at other times. They often wished for a gay friendly community, especially in the suburbs. They could see it in big city downtown areas but not in suburbia in the 80's. I have never hidden the fact that I am a lesbian (once I realized it myself) and have had almost all positive experiences. No one has ever had the courage to say anything negative to me. I am a strong woman. Many people have said thanks for opening their eyes on GLBT issues. My children are grown now and my daughter is lesbian as well. It is our normal and we love our country. Over the last couple of years, I have met lesbian couples who have moved from other countries in the world because of our right to marry and for other great reasons to live in Canada.
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harassment and discrimination in a poision work environment for 18 years (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay readers on 04/03/2010
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For the international day here is my story with an ongoing battle.Check out the link below.

http://www.canlii.org/en/on/ongsb/doc/2010/2010canlii7275/2010canlii7275.html
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Leslie (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay readers on 02/03/2010
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http://www.canlii.org/en/on/ongsb/doc/2010/2010canlii7275/2010canlii7275.html
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Q Hall of Fame (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers on 26/02/2010 tagged with human rights +5
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Q Hall of Fame Canada announces official launch of public nominations
 
Vancouver, BC - On February 19th, 2010, Canada’s LGBT Human Rights Hall of Fame, Q Hall of Fame, is proud to officially launch their website and the public nomination process as promised at the inaugural event in 2009.

“This is the natural progression of a dream that started in 2009 and now the community can actively participate in that dream,” commented Paul Therien, Founder and Chair of the Q Hall of Fame. “We made a commitment to the community that our inductees would come from a public nomination process, and we can now proudly say that is happening.”

Inductees are chosen via a ‘blind’ selection committee who review the nominations based strictly on the merits of their contribution as opposed to who the nominee is.

“We mandated that the Hall of Fame would be unbiased and non partisan. Although that can be challenging, we will endeavor to adhere to that as best we can,” Therien stated. “Our goal is that all inductees are entered into the Hall of Fame based strictly on the work they have done for the community.”

Therien encourages all members of the community, no matter where they are located in the nation, to participate.

“We want to hear from all across Canada, not just people in the major centers. That is why we decided to go with a simplified online nomination process – it needs to be accessible to everyone.”
 
Inductees are role models. not just for members of the LGBT community, but for all Canadians. The Q Hall of Fame inductees are a true source of pride, admiration, and dignity for us all. It is through the vision and accomplishments of such pioneers that future generations may better understand and embrace our community and culture.
 
Over the years, inductees have become persons of great achievement in the LGBT community making significant efforts to ensure our collective freedoms. Their extensive work with human rights and charitable organizations has garnered the widespread public support of fellow citizens and tremendous admiration by their peers.
 
Q Ball, the official induction ceremony and black tie event will be held Sunday August 01, 2010 Westin Bayshore Resort and Marina in Vancouver.

Tickets are $100 in advance and scheduled to be released in in the spring.

For more info and to nominate your hero, please visit www.qhalloffame.ca
ABOUT THE Q HALL OF FAME:

The QHall of Fame is a national resource headquartered in Vancouver to house and commemorate the diverse history of the LGBT community. The Hall of Fame is about both honouring those who have pioneered the rights of the LGBT community and documenting and remembering the accomplishments and lives of these amazing people. Inductees are selected by an independent committee from nominations received from people across the country.

www.qhalloffame.ca
 
ABOUT Q BALL:
Q BALL is the annual fundraising event and Q Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Although it is being hosted in Vancouver in its first two years, it is the goal of the Hall of Fame that Q BALL travel across Canada.

As Q Ball travels across the country, its goal is to raise much needed funds for local community groups in the host city.

www.qhalloffame.ca
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Gordon Sawyer (user currently living in CANADA) posted for readers on 21/02/2010
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Hello,
Have you people heard about this one ?
Totally unacceptable.
Please, react !

Canadian commentators fail to cool it with Johnny Weir jokes
By Neate Sager
If Scotty Lago has to excuse himself from the Olympic scene for buffoonish behavior, maybe broadcasters should have to, too.
The Canadian Press reports that the Quebec Council of Gays and Lesbians is going to make a complaint about French-language RDS, whose commentators Alain Goldberg and Claude Mailhot decided to go for the gold for trading in stale Johnny Weir jokes.
The pair called Weir "a bad example" and suggested he go through gender testing, like the runner Caster Semenya. After all, in no way is the latter a touchy subject.
RDS's apology addressed "tactless comments on the appearance and manner of a figure skater." The crux of the grievance, though, was the comparison to Semenya, the Canadian Press says:
[T]he mea culpas are insufficient, according to council president Steve Foster.
"They only apologized for the comments they made on his outfit," he said Saturday. "We hadn't even asked for an apology for those remarks. It's the rest of the comments: on his masculinity, his femininity, the fact he should skate as a woman."
Who knows what makes professional broadcasters think racial or sexual humor is acceptable? Being able to read off a teleprompter doesn't make you Russell Peters, pal. For the record, here is how the wire service reported it:
"This may not be politically correct," Mailhot said during the segment, in which Weir ... was shown sporting a semi-sheer, pink-and-black costume he designed himself.
"But do you think he lost points due to his costume and his body language?"
Goldberg replied that Weir's feminine style may reflect badly on other male figure skaters.
"They'll think all the boys who skate will end up like him," he said. "It sets a bad example."
Well, at least Mailhot qualified it may be inappropriate.
"In the earlier RDS coverage of Weir, Goldberg and Mailhot also brought up South African runner Caster Semenya, who was forced to undergo gender testing following her 2009 win at the world track and field championships in Germany.
"We should make him pass a gender test at this point," Goldberg said, and Mailhot then jokingly suggested Weir should compete in the women's competition.
Brutal. The point is that broadcasters don't have the right to assume everyone watching agrees with their own strict definition of manhood. Stick to sports.
"Hockey Night in Canada" had a representative of EGALE come on the show last year for a discussion after Mike Milbury made his "pansification" remarks. Perhaps RDS should think about granting equal time.
Meantime, let's have a call for a total Johnny Weir joke moratorium. Not because the jokes are politically incorrect, but because they're stunningly unoriginal. Move on.
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Gordon Sawyer (user currently living in CANADA) posted for straight readers on 21/02/2010
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Hello,
Have you heard bout this one ?
Totally unaceptable.
Please react !

Canadian commentators fail to cool it with Johnny Weir jokes
By Neate Sager

If Scotty Lago has to excuse himself from the Olympic scene for buffoonish behavior, maybe broadcasters should have to, too.
The Canadian Press reports that the Quebec Council of Gays and Lesbians is going to make a complaint about French-language RDS, whose commentators Alain Goldberg and Claude Mailhot decided to go for the gold for trading in stale Johnny Weir jokes.
The pair called Weir "a bad example" and suggested he go through gender testing, like the runner Caster Semenya. After all, in no way is the latter a touchy subject.
RDS's apology addressed "tactless comments on the appearance and manner of a figure skater." The crux of the grievance, though, was the comparison to Semenya, the Canadian Press says:
[T]he mea culpas are insufficient, according to council president Steve Foster.
"They only apologized for the comments they made on his outfit," he said Saturday. "We hadn't even asked for an apology for those remarks. It's the rest of the comments: on his masculinity, his femininity, the fact he should skate as a woman."
Who knows what makes professional broadcasters think racial or sexual humor is acceptable? Being able to read off a teleprompter doesn't make you Russell Peters, pal. For the record, here is how the wire service reported it:
"This may not be politically correct," Mailhot said during the segment, in which Weir ... was shown sporting a semi-sheer, pink-and-black costume he designed himself.
"But do you think he lost points due to his costume and his body language?"
Goldberg replied that Weir's feminine style may reflect badly on other male figure skaters.
"They'll think all the boys who skate will end up like him," he said. "It sets a bad example."
Well, at least Mailhot qualified it may be inappropriate.
"In the earlier RDS coverage of Weir, Goldberg and Mailhot also brought up South African runner Caster Semenya, who was forced to undergo gender testing following her 2009 win at the world track and field championships in Germany.
"We should make him pass a gender test at this point," Goldberg said, and Mailhot then jokingly suggested Weir should compete in the women's competition.
Brutal. The point is that broadcasters don't have the right to assume everyone watching agrees with their own strict definition of manhood. Stick to sports.
"Hockey Night in Canada" had a representative of EGALE come on the show last year for a discussion after Mike Milbury made his "pansification" remarks. Perhaps RDS should think about granting equal time.
Meantime, let's have a call for a total Johnny Weir joke moratorium. Not because the jokes are politically incorrect, but because they're stunningly unoriginal. Move on.
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Matt (user currently living in CANADA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 23/01/2010 +5
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Hello, my name is Matt Tallon. I am a queer student of sociology and activist. Currently I attend Trent University in Peterborough Ontario. Originally I'm from a small city in north-western Ontario called Thunder Bay. In 2009 the queer community of Thunder Bay was rocked by a brutal attack against Jake Raynard, a gay man who now lives in Toronto but was attacked while visiting his and my hometown. The community of my city was galvanised into action in response to this hate crime and staged a rally of support a week after the attack which happened in the beginning of September. Unfortunately, this rally in support of Jake and change for the hate that we see in our community was only to be met with the relative inaction of our police service which claimed in a press release that the crime against Jake was not hate related. This is hard to believe for our community specifically because it happened outside the only known queer-"friendly" bar in our city, was extremely violent and started with the yelling of homophobic slurs. That said, I feel it is time that the queer community of my city "upped the ante" with a larger protest wherein people would not feel as if they need to respond to violence to show that they are proud of who they are and that they deserve respect.

It is for this reason that I am starting to plan a Pride Day in my city. This is exciting because it will be the first event of its kind in the expansive region between Winnipeg and Toronto. So far, I have a group of people with me willing to help me plan this as well as connections to performers and artists elsewhere in Canada to make this a truly fun and unforgettable event that cannot be ignored by our media, our police service, our province, and our larger community.

Since I have at my fingertips ample public space in my city to be used, as well as speakers, performance artists and people to make this event a success the only problem I continue to face in meeting this goal is a lack of help from organisations such as yours as well as funding. This is the reason I am writing this message. If there is any help or funding you can provide me to meet this truly needed end it would be extremely appreciated. Furthermore, it must be noted that I am not simply asking for help and money just to have help and money. I understand that help and money does not come for free thus I do plan to ask all those in attendance at this event to make donations, some of which will come back to you for your efforts. Likewise I plan to advertise, for free, all businesses and organisations that support us.

The primary goal I wish to achieve with this funding is to have advertisements for this event in towns and cities outside of Thunder Bay to assure that this event will be the biggest possible for an area like ours. Also, I will need to pay the performers at this event, especially those who need to travel, and the hotel that I will book in advance for them. Paying for the lodging of the performers should not be too costly as I will assure them free advertising during the event, in posters and in print for any and all of the media that will attend this ground breaking event as well.

Please take this request for help into consideration as I do feel that my city really needs an event such as this.

Best,

Matt
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