28 August 2010


Some of the worst gay bashers over time have been those who are closet gays and who are so afraid of their sexuality that they do their best to denigrate others who have had the courage in a world of homo-hatred to openly declare their sexuality.

What is Akermanis' game??

You decide!

Article in The Age 280810

Gay focus 'puts lives at risk'

By Samantha Lane

August 28, 2010

THE appetite for ''outing'' gay AFL players is putting lives of young Australians wrestling with their sexuality at risk, says an expert in the field who has advised the AFL Players' Association on the topic.

Rob Mitchell, instrumental in the AFLPA's anti-homophobia campaign earlier this year and a member of the state government's Sport Governance and Inclusion project, has called on the AFL to take a stronger lead but believes the league still ''buries its head in the sand'' on the issue.

Mitchell's comments follow reports in The Age this week that Jason Akermanis speculated about individual AFL players who might be gay at a corporate function in Mildura earlier this month.

Akermanis has since defended himself by saying he was merely responding to rumours about certain players that were raised during a question-answer segment. But Mitchell, who has met and spoken with senior AFL figures about how the league approaches homosexuality and homophobia, says that is no excuse. He is particularly incensed given he was involved in providing Akermanis with statistics about youth suicide and depression before the sacked Western Bulldog wrote his now-infamous ''Stay in the Closet'' newspaper column earlier this year. ''It's grossly irresponsible. Because the research tells us, and Jason Akermanis knows this research, that the people who are at highest risk of committing suicide are the people who are thinking of doing so to avoid disclosure of their sexual orientation - whether it's gay, bisexual or whatever. So for Jason Akermanis to be engaging in this sort of behaviour, I think he would seem to be intent on keeping funeral directors busy,'' Mitchell said.

While praising the ground-breaking work of the AFLPA, which signed up roughly 30 AFL players and coaches to front an ''inclusion and diversity'' campaign to mark the International Day Against Homophobia in May, Mitchell believes the AFL's approach to homosexuality generally leaves much to be desired.

A Victorian University research report published this year, ''Come Out to Play'', found Australian rules to be the most hostile and unwelcoming football code for homosexuals.

45 per cent of the 308 surveyed gay men said they would like to play AFL but did not, or felt they could not, because of the environment they perceived to be threatening. By comparison, 10 per cent of those surveyed regarded soccer as Australia's most hostile sporting environment for gay men.

"It escapes me, it eludes me completely, why the AFL is not going at this with hammer and tongs,'' Mitchell said. ''I go back to the Mal Brown and Dipper [race-related] comments. When they came out, the AFL was like a very finely tuned machine swung into action. There was no delay and they were completely on message. They said 'this is unacceptable'. We're not getting that with Jason Akermanis. In many ways it's like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

''At this point there are two things they've [the AFL] got to do. Firstly, they've got make it abundantly clear that they think what Jason Akermanis is doing is incredibly harmful … the second thing they've got to do is genuinely start doing some outward-facing work on kicking homophobia out of football. The problem is not with the players. The problem is with the administration. It's not up to speed.''

An AFL spokesman told The Age this week: "The AFL has made it very clear that everyone is treated equally and no-one should ever be discriminated against on the basis of their sexual preference or identity, and that stance has been enshrined in our rules outlawing vilification. That is a view that is shared by the wider football community."

AFL Players' Association president Brett Burton said it ''flabbergasts me'' that Akermanis would speculate publicly about who, in the AFL playing ranks, may or may not be gay.

''We've worked so hard as a playing group to send a message to the general community that we support differences in the community, whether it be differences in culture or whether it be sexual choice,'' he said.

''We're not trying to 'out' people. It's all about trying to make the environment and the community a place where people can feel comfortable if they choose to come out.

''It's about people feeling more comfortable because we know about the suicide rates in homosexual people and we know the struggles they face with having their sexual choice acknowledged, be it by family or by friends.''

27 August 2010


……..and the biggest anti-semites in the world todays are the zionists, whether in Israel or elsewhere.
By calling Jews like us who don’t toe the “party” line self-hating Jews and anti-semites they propagate the myth that WE are responsible for so much hatred against the Israeli nation and the Jewish people who live in that state, and therefore are responsible for the increase in anti-semitism throughout the world.
The reality is very different.
When Israel stops having the largest concentration camps in the world and attacking the Palestinians, denying them basic human rights, the world – and the USA – and Israel will become different places. And anti-semitism will then be on the decline – but not till then!
Don’t hold your breath!!
Oi vey!!
(See Antony Loewenstein's blog for the rest of the story!)

25 August 2010


From the BDS Web Pages:

Norwegian government pension fund excludes more Israeli companies

Posted by BNC Europe on Mon, 08/23/2010

Occupied Palestine Aug 23rd 2010 - The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) has divested from two Israeli companies, Africa Israel Investments and Danya Cebus, over their involvement in construction of illegal settlements in the West Bank . A government statement quoted the Norwegian Minister of Finance Sigbjørn Johnsen as saying “these companies are contributing to or are themselves responsible for grossly unethical activity.” This decision follows the Norwegian Ministry of Finance’s move one year ago to exclude Israeli military contractor Elbit Systems Ltd. from the Governmental Pension Fund due to the company’s integral involvement in Israel’s construction of the illegal Wall on occupied territory . That move provoked a domino effect among financial institutions.

“Several United Nations Security Council resolutions and an International Court of Justice advisory opinion have concluded that the construction of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory is prohibited under the [Geneva] Convention. I have therefore accepted the recommendation of the Council on Ethics and am excluding Africa Israel Investments and Danya Cebus from the fund’s investment portfolio,” says Norway’s Minister of Finance Sigbjørn Johnsen .

These companies have been target of campaigns from Palestine and around the world. The West Bank Palestinian villages of Bil’in and Jayyous and 11 national and international networks from Europe, Palestine, Israel and the US have sent letters calling on Norway to comply with its ethical guidelines and divest from its pension fund holdings in the company Africa-Israel, owned by the controversial diamond magnate Lev Leviev . A delegation of the GPFG visited Jayyous and witnessed first hand the devastating impacts of the construction of Israeli settlements by Africa-Israel and another Leviev-owned company, Leader Management and Development, on the villages’ agricultural land. Adalah-NY, the New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel, regularly protest outside the Leviev's diamonds shop in Manhattan, named after the chairman of Africa Israel. Last year, the UK Foreign Office dropped plans to move into a building in Tel Aviv owned by Africa-Israel for the same reasons .

In 2005, Palestinian 171 civil society organisations, including political parties, trade unions and NGOs, issued a call for imposing broad of boycott, divestment and sanctions initiatives against Israel until it complies with international law.

Hind Awwad, coordinator of the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) , a Palestinian civil society coalition that acts as a reference for the global BDS movement, said, “We welcome this principled decision by the Norwegian Ministry of Finance to divest from two Israeli companies involved in illegal settlement construction. As the international community continues to fail to take the steps needed to end Israeli impunity, it is becoming clearer that the growing movement to isolate Israel is necessary if the state is to be forced to end its violations of international law and Palestinian rights.”

“The Norwegian government has taken a brave step to ensure the primacy of international law, and we call on it to divest funds from all companies profiting from Israeli occupation and apartheid policies.”

“We would like to give special thanks to Adalah-NY, the New York based campaign for the boycott of Israel who played an instrumental role in campaigning for GPFG to make this decision.”

“Following last September’s GPFG divestment from Elbit, 11 financial institutions have announced exclusion of Elbit from their portfolio, including the Danske Bank, the largest bank in Denmark and four out of six Swedish National Pension Funds. In May, Deutsche Bank, the largest bank in Germany announced that Israeli arms company Elbit Systems, a company involved in the construction of the Apartheid Wall in Occupied Palestinian Territory, does not meet its ethical criteria .

We hope that this Norwegian divestment move will have a similar domino effect and, together with the ongoing campaigns of the global BDS movement, push other financial institutions to withdraw from Africa Israel and Danya Cebus.”

The GPFG owned shares worth NOK 7.2 million in Africa Israel Investments at year end 2009. Africa Israel Investments is the majority shareholder in Danya Cebus.


Panic sets in as the international movement for Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions grow apace.

The latest crack has appeared in Norway in the last few days, and, as with apartheid South Africa over the years, it can only grow and grow until the movement takes hold and Israel starts hurting and getting the message that the world more and more sees it as a pariah state - after 62 years of abusing the people whose land they have stolen and are still busy stealing with a brutality which some of the world's best dictators could only envy!

This article was in The Age on 17 August 2010:

Christians, Jews meet on boycott

By Barney Zwartz

AUSTRALIAN Jewish and Christian leaders have met in Sydney to heal the wounds caused by a call last month for Australians to boycott Israeli goods made in occupied Palestinian territories.

The National Council of Churches in Australia called for Australians to consider the boycott at the request of Middle Eastern churches, but the Jewish community was outraged.

Executive Council of Australian Jewry president Robert Goot wrote to the council that the resolution was a ''most unpleasant surprise … we feel that we have been badly let down by people we have long thought of as our friends''.

Last week senior members from both councils - including the heads of the Australian Catholic and Anglican Churches, Archbishops Philip Wilson of Adelaide and Philip Aspinall of Brisbane - met to restore good relations.

Yesterday both councils released a joint statement saying there had been a ''serious exchange of views'' which helped Christian leaders better understand Jewish concerns and Jewish leaders better understand why the resolution was adopted.

But the resolution - which called for an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestine and to all acts of terrorism, and suggested churches consider a boycott of Israeli goods from the occupied territories - remains in place. Representatives of both groups will meet again to work on a ''more comprehensive'' statement for the Christian council to consider at its next meeting in November.

16 August 2010




Police investigate Sydney gay bashing

Prominent gay rights activist among four men allegedly assaulted by lone attacker on Oxford St.




Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald [New South Wales, Australia], News [website version]
by Paul Ribby, 14 August 2010

A prominent gay rights activist was among four men allegedly assaulted by a lone attacker on Oxford Street in central Sydney on Monday night, in what the activist believes was a homophobic hate crime.

Police have charged a 34-year-old male with assault occasioning actual bodily harm in relation the attack on activist Simon Margan - the co-convenor of Community Action on Homophobia - and three other men.

The attack left Mr Margan bleeding on the ground with a severely fractured left eye-socket.Police will allege it was one of four separate assaults by the same man at different locations along the famous party strip.

Mr Margan was treated at St Vincent's Hospital along with another of the alleged victims who suffered bruising and swelling to his left eye.

"I was walking up Oxford Street toward Crown Street when a flying kick just missed my head," Mr Margan said.

"I thought he might have a knife, so I stepped back to call for help. When I turned away to call down the street he kicked me again - hitting me in the eye."

Mr Margan said the same man had made violent homophobic comments toward him a few days earlier as he put up posters promoting a gay rights rally taking place a Sydney Town Hall today.

"Every time I turned around he was there ranting about eradicating gays on Oxford St. It was more full-on than you usually get, so when I saw him on Monday night I was really scared he was going to do something extreme."

The 34-year-old make was denied bail to appear in Central local court on Monday, where police will allege that he was affected by alcohol. They also will present video footage from CCTV cameras on Oxford Street as evidence.

A police media spokesman said that there was "no indication that the men's sexuality was involved [as a motive] in the attack", but Mr Margan said he was in no doubt about his attacker's motive.

He said gay hate crimes were not uncommon on Oxford Street, but were only occasionally reported.

"People seem to think, 'I've been assaulted, I'll just get on with my life'," he said.

"We need people to call these attacks what they are - hate crimes. If people don't report them, then they're not setting an example for the next time it happens and the next time."

The Town Hall rally is part of a nation-wide action calling for marriage equality.


Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald [New South Wales, Australia], Weekend Edition - News (page 13) [print version]
by Paul Bibby, 14-15 August 2010

A gay rights activist was amongst four men assaulted on Oxford Street on Monday night, allegedly by a single attacker, in what the activist believes was a homophobic hate crime. Police have charged a 34-year-old man with assault occasioning actual bodily harm on activist Simon Margan - the co-founder of Community Action Against Homophobia - and three other men. The attack left Mr Margan with a severely fractured eye-socket. He and another man were treated at St Vincent's hospital. "I was walking up Oxford Street towards Crown [Street] when a kick swooshed by my head," Mr Margan said. "When I turned away to call for help, the

[attacker] kicked me again, hitting me in the eye." He said the man had made violent, homophobic comments to him days earlier as he put up posters promoting a gay rights rally planned for Sydney Town Hall today. "Every time I turned around he'd be there ranting about eradicating gays on Oxford Street. It was more full-on than usual, so when I saw him on Monday night it was pretty concerning." The man was denied bail and is due in Central Local Court on Monday; police will allege he was affected by alcohol, Police said there was no indication sexuality was a motive but Mr Margan said: "We need people to call these attacks what they are - hate crimes."

11 August 2010


6 AUGUST 2010

From The Age newspaper:

Police raid pro-euthanasia office


Pro-euthanasia campaigner and Exit International director. Photo: Nick Moir

DETECTIVES raided Exit International's Melbourne offices yesterday, sparking outrage from the pro-euthanasia group.

Police served a search warrant at the Exit International offices at Doncaster in relation to the death of a South Yarra woman on May 8.

Exit International director Philip Nitschke said the raid was uncalled for and the voluntary euthanasia group would have given police any documents they required.

Dr Nitschke said the documents served were in relation to ''aiding a suicide'' and had been signed by homicide detective Senior Sergeant Ron Iddles.

The woman concerned was in her 60s and is believed to have been terminally ill.
''When a person does end their life, police feel that they need to investigate, to see if somebody has assisted,'' Dr Nitschke said.

He said it was the second time the group's Melbourne offices had been raided. Police had also been to Exit offices in New South Wales, Queensland and Darwin.

''There have never been any charges laid. We are getting a bit fed up with this,'' he said.

''This is not the first time the police have arrived at our [Melbourne] office out of the blue. The same happened in November 2009 over the suicide of another Exit member.
''The police should bear in mind, Exit is not some clandestine organisation that operates underground.''

Senior Constable Jo Stafford said police had taken great care to ensure all protocols were met yesterday and had handled the matter with as much sensitivity as possible.

''It is a sensitive issue when you are dealing with a person's medical records, but we have standard procedures to follow,'' she said.

Dr Nitschke said: ''It is totally unnecessary for the police to pounce on our office unannounced. In reality, they need only pick up the phone if they wish us to provide details about a deceased member of our organisation.''

Exit International has been connected to high-profile euthanasia cases around the world.
In 2005, police launched an investigation into its involvement with terminally ill Point Lonsdale man Steve Guest, 58, who was advised by Dr Nitschke on ways to die.

Mr Guest, who had oesophageal cancer, made a public appeal for a ''peaceful pill'' to end his suffering.

He died at his Point Lonsdale home in July 2005, from an overdose of barbiturates.

For help or information call Suicide Helpline Victoria on 1300 651 251, or Lifeline on 131 114.


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90 years old, political gay activist, hosting two web sites, one personal: http://www.red-jos.net one shared with my partner, 94-year-old Ken Lovett: http://www.josken.net and also this blog. The blog now has an alphabetical index: http://www.red-jos.net/alpha3.htm