~ Aderonke Apata, Nigerian feminist, human rights, and LGBT activist to the Independent UK on seeking asylum. Apata is currently a nominee for the National Diversity Awards 2014 Positive Role Model Awards.
Legislation and court rulings: While Uganda's anti-gay politicos are working to reinstate the Anti-Gay law recently struck down by the Constitutional Court, President Museveni signs into law the "HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Act" that further criminalizes people living with HIV. Civil society and key AIDS institutions are denouncing the move. Meanwhile an appeal has been launched by Rosemary, the HIV+ Ugandan nurse recently sentenced.
In Kenya, the Committee on Legal Affairs and Justice met and rejected a proposed bill for the stoning of gay foreigners. Activists expect the anti-gay caucus to return with another version of hate legislation. And after 9 months awaiting trial, 2 Cameroon lesbians have been convicted and released on a suspended sentence.
The daughter of Cuban President Castro, LGBT activist Mariela Castro breaks tradition and votes "no," voting against a bill she felt doesn't protect PLWHIV against discrimination. Meanwhile, in India the BJP Chief Ashish Shelar promises Indian laws will not be used to discriminate against gays.
Hate knows no borders. Hate crimes continue around the world: from the gay Azerbaijan boy set on fire by his parents to the lesbian South African girl murdered during a "corrective rape." Though justice for LGBT attacks won't always come, Russian anti-gay vigilante, Maxim Martsinkevich, who used social media to lure and abuse gay youths, has been sentenced to 5 years in penal colony.
Marriage equality: In Sweden, Iranian Muslim lesbians marry in first of its kind religious ceremony, and in Nepal there are plans to legalize same-sex marriage. Meanwhile, defeated U.S. conservatives are taking their anti-LGBT priorities to Latin America to prevent same-sex marriage from spreading south. Israel allows non-Jewish same-sex spouses to immigrate. The Ecuadoran Civil Registry will now recognize same-sex unions, giving the community legal protections, though not marriage rights.
Community: Over 3,000 civil society activists put aside their differences to unite and bring about radical reforms to Uruguay. Two new high level reports emerge from Asia documenting the struggles of LGBT in eight Asian countries. A new report from IRIN looks at the unique issues LGBTI face during humanitarian emergencies.
The AIDS quilt has returned after a decade to New York City and author Mary Moss describes finding a summer camp that accepts trans* kids for her son. California saw its first transgender police cadet graduate from the Academy, and in the Philippinesa well-known singer-actor comes out as transgender.
In Jamaica, a new film captures the heroic efforts of Yvonne McCalla to help homeless LGBT youths. Kenyan Mary Muthui describes how being gay is akin to living as a refugee and Marianne Tshihamba is using Facebook to promote a movement of African women against homophobia.
Meanwhile, gay Palestinians find themselves enemies on both sides of the conflict and Lebanon police are cracking down on gay men with raids on bathhouses. AnIranian report shows youths are having sex, and 17% are having gay sex, despite suffering a possible death penalty. Though Iranian officials deny accusations, human rights agencies report on public hangings of gay men.
Religiosity: The UK's Bishop of Buckingham is calling for the Church of England to support same-sex marriage while Ugandan Archbishop Odama is asking Ugandans to "avoid harming" gays despite their "deviation" from God.
Meanwhile the anti-gay Inter-Religious Council of Uganda has fired all staff as they lost 90% of their funding from U.S. and European donors. Christian rock star, Vicky Beeching admits she tried exorcism before coming out to support struggling LGBT Christians, and a former Jihadist describes his changing views on women and gays.
Technology: a new app helps users find nearby AIDS clinics and international dating app Grindr kicks off a PrEP campaign to educate gay men looking for love, despite reports of ongoing "Truvada whore" stigma among doctors. Openly gay pop star Sam Smith urges singles to abandon dating apps all together, while an op-ed from Samantha Allen describes how to talk to trans* people on site OkCupid.
Meanwhile, Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson is launching a campaign to bring computers and tablets to low-income LGBT youth.
Entertainment & Sports: The 2014 Gay Games kicked off this month drawing over 65 participating nationalities, including athletes that are stigmatized at home. Right wing groups attack Archie comics, a staple of U.S. comic books for over 70 years, that made waves this summer with progressive gay story lines. Robin Williams' untimely death left fans with several movies in production, including a portrayal of a man struggling with his sexuality late in life.
Watch as Sir Ian McKellen invites you to party for the Albert Kennedy Trust for homeless LGBT youth. Check out a beat poet's take on being black, lesbian, and a woman. Or just catch up with a few good LGBTQ friendly baby books.