Being Gay In Iraq: Kamal's Story

"They told me to take off my clothes to rape me or they would kill me immediately. This moment was the worst moment in my life. I was watching them taking off their clothes, preparing to rape me. I did not know what to do, so I started shouting loudly, 'Please do not do that! I will ask my family to give you whatever you want.' The other two kidnappers took off my clothes by force, and, at that time, I saw them as three dirty animals trying to tear my body apart"

A young Iraqi recounts his ordeal at the age of sixteen, when he was kidnapped and raped every day for fifteen days until his family paid a ransom.

Gays and lesbians in Iraq are threatened, tortured, raped and murdered. No doubt you'll be as shocked as I am, given the Middle East's reputation as a liberal, progressive bastion of human rights.

Check out Kamal and Rami's story over at CNN.com.

(Picture depicts men suspected of being gay who were executed by Shia fundamentalist death squads).

That's When Good Neighbours... Are Always White

Television is failing to adequately depict ethnic minorities and cultural diversity, according to a report by the chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, Trevor Phillips. Australian soap Neighbours was specifically criticised for being all white. In fact, in more than twenty years, the soap has never had any non-caucasian faces in its regular cast. Funny that, given Australia is supposedly a multicultural country. The show's executive producer has hit back, pointing out that, "Our core cast are from diverse ethnic backgrounds including French, Italian, [white] South African, [white] Maltese, Danish, [white] Portuguese and Swedish." No Australian Aborigines, then? Any Asians, maybe? You know, that lot from all of the nations surrounding the stolen continent? How about some Afro-Carribeans? Nah. Not in Aussieland. On the lack of diversity, Phillips had this to say: "Most ethnic minority participants felt the media had a responsibility to reflect Britain’s diversity across all genres and was failing to do so in three main ways: by relying on tokenistic and stereotyped representation of characters; by representing extreme and exaggerated characters; and by failing to reflect the realities of contemporary ethnic minority culture. All these shortcomings were attributed to some extent to the perceived lack of a representative power base within UK media."

21

On 17th July, Frederick Moody, an eighteen year old from Stockwell in South London, became the 21st teenage victim of knife crime in London this year. His murder followed an altercation over a water fight in nearby Holland Park.

A sixteen year old has been arrested in Brixton.

Frederick Moody died on Thursday.

He was 18.

Born Into The 90s

When I was a young, innocent, virgin boy back in the nineties, I was smitten by up and coming eye candies like D'Angelo, Tyrese - and perhaps most of all, Tyson Beckford. (Hmm. The things I had them doing in my imagination...)

Unfortunately, some years later I happened to catch some of Mr. Beckford on the American version of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! and was somewhat underwhelmed by his personality. Well, you can't have everything I suppose, and a body and a face like that seems like good compensation to me. If only he'd stick to posing for pictures and keep his mouth shut.

He's nearly forty now and it's good to see he's still got it, as these new pictures over at Socialite Life show. I just wish someone would aquaint him with a Gillette.

Check out the rest of the snaps over at Socialite Life.

20 Teenagers Who Died Before They Lived

This week's fatal stabbings of a fourteen year old in Borough, and a nineteen year old in Edmonton, bring the number of teenagers murdered in London this year to twenty.

To put that in perspective, by 31st December last year, twenty-five teenagers had died. We're only halfway through the year.

Here are the nineteen boys, and one girl, who've died at the hands of their peers in 2008.


1. Henri Bolombi, 17, stabbed on 1/01/08
2. Faridon Alizada, 18, stabbed 4/01/08
3. Louis Boduka, 18, stabbed 21/01/08
4. Fuad Buraleh, 19, beaten to death 26/01/08
5. Sunday Essiet, 15, stabbed 19/2/08
6. Tung Le, 17, stabbed 23/2/08
7. Ofiyke Nmezu, 16, beaten 15/2/08, died 29/2/08
8. Michael Alexander Jones, 18, beaten to death 13/03/08
9. Nicholas Clarke, 19, shot on 15/03/08
10. Amro Elbadawi, 14, stabbed 27/03/08
11. Devoe Roach, 17, stabbed 27/01/08
12. Lyle Tulloch, 15, stabbed 03/05/08
13. Jimmy Mizen, 16, stabbed 10/05/08
14. Rob Knox, 18, stabbed 24/05/08
15. Sharmaarke Hassan, 17, shot 28/05/08
16. Arsema Dawit, 15, stabbed 10/06/08
17. Ben Kinsella, 16, stabbed 29/06/08
18. Shakilus Townsend, 16, stabbed and beaten 03/07/08
19. David Idowu, 14, stabbed 07/07/08
20. Unamed 19 year old, stabbed 10/07/08

Eric Lamar Turner

Rod 2.0 reports on the tragic death of Eric Lamar Turner, perhaps better known as former CocoDorm model Lamar.

Eric was killed in a head-on collision with a semi-trailer on an Indiana freeway. He was returning from Chicago Gay Pride with two others, who also died.

Eric was 23.
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