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Elton John speaks out against Suella Braverman’s call to ban gay asylum seekers from UK
Elton John has spoken out against Suella Braverman’s calls to ban LGBTQ+ asylum seekers from coming to the UK.The home secretary faced backlash this week after she said that “simply being gay, or a woman” is not enough of a reason to gain refugee status in the UK.Addressing a US think tank on Tuesday (September 26), she said (via Sky News): “There are vast swathes of the world where it is extremely difficult to be gay, or to be a woman. Where individuals are being persecuted, it is right that we offer sanctuary.“But we will not be able to sustain an asylum system if in effect simply being gay, or a woman, and fearful of discrimination in your country of origin is sufficient to qualify for protection.”Music icon John has now responded to the home secretary and accused her of “legitimising hate and violence”.A post shared by Elton John (@eltonjohn)In a statement released alongside husband David Furnish through their AIDS Foundation, they said: “We are very concerned about the UK Home Secretary’s comments stating how discrimination for being gay or a woman should not be reason enough to qualify for protection under international refugee laws.“Nearly a third of all nations class LGBTQ+ people as criminals and homosexuality is still punishable by death in 11 countries.”It went on: “Dismissing the very real danger LGBTQ+ communities face risks further legitimising hate and violence against them.”The statement concluded that leaders “need to provide more compassion, support and acceptance for those seeking a safer future”.John has shared statements via his foundation in the past to call out homophobia.
Louise Redknapp pulls out of Eternal reunion over LGBTQ row
Louise Redknapp has pulled out of a reunion tour with her band Eternal over a row about LGBTQ+ rights.The ’90s pop group were set to reunite in 2024 for a series of tour dates, but members Easther and Vernie Bennett have allegedly refused to play a number of Pride events and LGBTQ+ festivals as part of the tour.As a result, Redknapp and bandmate Kéllé Bryan have dropped out of the reunion, with Redknapp taking to X/Twitter to share a photo of a trans-inclusive Pride flag and text that reads: “Always and forever.”Confirming Redknapp and Bryan’s departure from the tour, Redknapp’s publicist told the BBC: “A message was sent to the team putting together the Eternal reunion stating that if it was to go ahead, neither Vernie nor Easther would perform at Pride shows or LGBTQ+ festivals.❤️— Louise Redknapp (@LouiseRedknapp) September 24, 2023“This was because the duo felt that the gay community was being hijacked by the trans community and they do not support this.The statement added: “Louise is a huge supporter and ally of the LGBTQ+ community and both herself and Kéllé told the duo they would not work with anyone who held these views, and as such the reunion as a four would not be going ahead.“The team behind the proposed Eternal reunion are gay including management, PR and tour promoter, and neither myself nor any of the team would work with artists who held such views about the trans community.”Earlier this year, Redknapp released a new greatest hits album and began a role in the West End production of Grease.The singer released her new best-of compilation on June 2 via Tag 8/BMG.
The Riley Roundup: Cleveland Catholic Diocese’s LGBTQ Crackdown
News 5 Cleveland.This has raised questions about whether such a provision relies too heavily on gender stereotypes about clothing and behavior that could also impact non-LGBTQ students. The policy prohibits students from transitioning genders or using gender-affirming pronouns, bars same-sex couples at school events, and prohibits students from “advocat[ing] or celebrat[ing]” the LGBTQ community, including displays of the Pride flag or rainbows.A student’s biological sex will determine bathroom usage and membership on single-sex school-sponsored sports teams, although girls may join boys’ teams “when deemed appropriate.” Parents will also be notified if their child is believed to be gender-nonconforming.The new policy has been criticized by some who have claimed it appears to conflict with more welcoming remarks by Pope Francis regarding the inclusion of members of the LGBTQ community within the Church.The diocese has defended the policy as a request from church and school leaders, emphasizing the importance of training and education youth in Church teaching — even as it continues to claim that “each and every person is welcome and invited to be a part of the Church,” according to The Hill.DignityUSA, a group for LGBTQ Catholics and their families, and the organization’s Northeast Ohio chapter, have said the diocese’s policy appears to “betray the essence of Catholicism.”“The policies that our bishop has recently released send a clear message that welcome in our schools and churches is conditional,” Susan Russell, the President of Dignity Northeast Ohio, said in a statement.
Jann Wenner removed from Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame board after controversial interview
The New York Times this week, Wenner said female and black artists aren’t “intellectual enough” to be interviewed for his new book, The Masters.In response, the Hall Of Fame decided to remove Wenner from the board, and the Rolling Stone founder shared a statement of apology.Shared via the publisher of his book, Wenner said: “In my interview with The New York Times I made comments that diminished the contributions, genius and impact of Black and women artists and I apologise wholeheartedly for those remarks.“The Masters is a collection of interviews I’ve done over the years that seemed to me to best represent an idea of rock ’n’ roll’s impact on my world; they were not meant to represent the whole of music and its diverse and important originators but to reflect the high points of my career and interviews I felt illustrated the breadth and experience in that career.”He added: “They don’t reflect my appreciation and admiration for myriad totemic, world-changing artists whose music and ideas I revere and will celebrate and promote as long as I live. I totally understand the inflammatory nature of badly chosen words and deeply apologise and accept the consequences.”Within his new book, Wenner asks questions of seven “philosophers of rock”, notably all white men – Bono, Bob Dylan, the late Jerry Garcia, Mick Jagger, the late John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, and Pete Townshend.In the introduction of the book, Wenner writes that women and artists of colour were not in his zeitgeist.