Gladiators, hazing, gay spies and justice

a news compendium
with a gay bias
issue 65 | June 2010

||| Ever wonder what happened to former Gladiator Tornado (a.k.a. David McIntosh)? Of course you did. Fortunately for us, those tireless hacksjournalists at The Sun have found out for us. The big lad is a mercenary in Iraq.

||| Iran, Jamaica... and anywhere in Africa. The GBLT community is
under attack in developing countries, and it's not just because of "local culture".

||| International Mr. Leather - the largest annual leather event in the world - has this year
outlawed "marketing that promotes unprotected sex". Right, Justin Terry-Smith at the event.

||| Was everyone too quick to cry "Homophobe!" when hip-hop artist Wale cancelled DC Black Pride? Or is his
u-turn merely damage limitation?

||| These four boys - Indiana high school basketball players -
stand accused of hazing and sodomizing, while their coaches (who've now resigned) looked the other way.

||| A lesson in anonymous bloggers: When A Gay Hockey Kid

||| US Senate committee
votes for repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Right, Major Alan Rogers, a gay soldier who sacrificed himself to save his fellow soldiers.

||| OMG! The end of Don't Ask, Don't Tell
means more gay rape in the military!

||| Maybe they should look harder at their straight soldier,
like the one who asked these innocent Iraqi boys if they were gay and had gay sex, with the sole intent of humiliating them on camera. Towleroad has video.

||| Bad ideas for gay porn movies: The CIA's Saddam Hussein skinflick.

||| 78% of Americans
support allowing gay men and women to serve in the military. One in five oppose.

||| "Muslims are calling for the executions of homosexuals in America." These are the words of Bradlee Dean, speaking for rightwing Christian group You Can Run. Christians and Muslims united against gays...

||| Too gay (left) for Details magazine?

||| There
goes the neighborhood (right)...

||| Allan Gassman, the O Boys co-founder and safe sex activist,
is dead. He was 47.

||| Malawi: Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga have been
pardoned by President Bingu wa Mutharika, following his meeting with UN chief Ban Ki-moon, and intense international pressure. Last week, the couple were sentenced to fourteen years hard labour on charges of homosexuality.

||| Malawi: Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell - who has personally supported the couple -
told UKGayNews, "Steven and Tiwonge should never have been arrested, let alone jailed for five months, convicted and sentenced to 14 years hard labour. They love one another and have harmed no one."

||| Malawi: Couple
returned to their own seperate villages and forbidden to see one another; relatives hope they have "learned their lesson".

||| Malawi: Prior to their release, South African President Jacob Zuma
condemned the couple's sentencing - but had refused to intervene. Actions speak louder than...

||| Malawi: Gay man, female or transgender?
Why we have to guess about how Tiwonge Chimbalanga identifies.

||| Gay Travels in the Muslim World: the Eastern versus Western paradigm of gender, sexuality and identity.

||| Zimbabwe:
No gay rights advance for new constitution.

||| Uganda:
Is it as homophobic as everyone thinks? Watch journalist Mariana van Zeller's documentary Missionaries of Hate to find out.

||| Uganda: The Family
and Uganda's anti-gay legislation.

||| Ugandan anti-gay bill creator wallows in the filth of his own homophobia, Alvin McEwen

||| Uganda: Germany pledges aid conditional upon no anti-gay legislation. Uganda takes the money and runs.

||| Zimbabwe: Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe staff Ellen Chadehama and Ignatius Mhambi, arrested last week on trumped up charges of possessing pornography (and insulting president Robert Mugabe),
were tortured in police custody.

||| Kenya, Malawi, Uganda... What are things like for our brothers and sisters
in Ghana?

||| And
meet Bahaa Saber (right), the Egyptian human rights activist persecuted for being gay.

||| Pushing gay sex underground is
causing HIV to sweep Africa like wildfire.

||| Homophobia in Africa is not a single story, Keguro Macharia
writes. "We must question the idea that homophobia in Africa is unique and understand it within a broader global context."

||| But Africa isn't alone in failing to get to grips with its bigots. 19 out of 48 countries in the Asia Pacific region
criminalise male-to-male sex.

||| As a result, HIV rates among gay men
are reaching alarming highs throughout the region.

||| Cape Town, the gay capital of South Africa, is flush with the "pink rand".

||| And in India, entrepreneurs
are chasing the 'pink rupee'; the High Court recently stuck down the ban on homosexual acts in place since British colonial times.

||| This is a truly wonderful story: The GBLT community in Moscow this weekend got the better of bumbling police to defy a ban on Moscow Pride by that city's homophobic Mayor. UKGayNews writes: "Activists paraded a 20-metre long Rainbow flag along a busy street in central Moscow. The police were totally outwitted after falling for all the 'mis-information' put out over the last few days. There was not a policeman in sight as the long flag was paraded for about 500 metres. One cop car arrived about five minutes after the activists has dispersed - and the media were by then doing interviews with both Russian and foreign participants." Video here.

||| Peter Tatchell was there, and he writes about our
Gay Pride triumph in Moscow!

||| But
why did the EU, UK and US all fail to condemn the ban?

||| Contrasting sharply with the "cowardice" of Western diplomats,
is the courage of our Russian GBLT brothers and sisters.

||| Romania: Bucharest holds its sixth annual GayFest. In pictures.

||| Careless pillow talk: Former German spy and his male lover
sentenced for leaking state secrets.

||| So, how did the boardroom discussion go? "Say, Bill, let's use an image of Hitler, dressed up in pink, to sell our cheap rags. The kids'll love it, and the ensuing controversy will generate bags of free publicity! It's a win-win!"

||| The first casualty of Britain's new coalition Government - the ConDems - is a weak man "terrified" of
being outed. Pathetic - and a true indication of this administration's character.

||| But something about it doesn't make sense. Of course it doesn't. It's an an excuse.

||| The British Government
opposed the promotion of "practising homosexuals" as recently as the mid-70s because they feared they were susceptible to blackmail.

||| Spandex, the gay superhero comic,
has been nominated for an Eagle Award, for Favourite British Colour Comic.

||| Thinking of travelling to Australia? Be warned. Australian customs officials
now have the right to search electronic devices (laptops, phones, cameras) for pornography.

||| An Australian court
has rejected the asylum claim by a gay Pakistani man. Australia has little tolerance for gays seeking asylum.

||| Not enough lube
on the Tube?

||| "Like a lot of gay men, I seem to be stuck doing guys I don't want to date and dating guys I don't want to do." Mike Alvear
writes about the real reason why so many gay men are single.

||| Does Gaydar
really exist? Research suggests it does: Dutch boffins have found "gays are much more detail-oriented".

||| Are you a Mummy's boy? Apparently you'll have better relationships in later life.

||| Chocolate that
fights wrinkles, aging.

||| Pun

||| Does the use of lubricants during anal sex
make it easier for HIV to be transmitted?

||| And does sunscreen actually increase the risk of skin cancer?

||| Today in shock ads:
Mom Drinks, Baby Drinks.

||| This "Dracula fish" is one of the Top 10 new species discovered in 2009.

||| Meanwhile, this lovely little bird - the Madagascar rusty grebe -
has been lost forever.

||| Polar bears and grizzly bears are
breaking all the taboos.

||| THAT volcano
blows a smoke ring. Must have been good, then.

||| The Big Picture: Oil reaches Louisiana shores, below
(38 more pictures)

||| Facebook's new privacy settings.

||| A Tupac Shakur biopic: just don't mess it up.

||| Just when you though 50 Cent couldn't get any more

||| Still, there's always JLS to pretty up the world.

||| Who says the camera doesn't lie?
How the internet tried to turn Justin Bieber into a homophobe.

||| Spartacus: Blood and Sand
makes its UK debut. Is it the Oz for the new decade?

||| And in EastEnders
this week...

||| ...And have a butchers at former Footballer's Wives' super-bitch Zoe Lucker,
who joins the Walford soap on 4th June.

||| Coronation Street
gets a new title sequence...

||| Bonhams, the auction house, will be auctioning more Doctor Who props on 23rd June. How about the original cover artwork for The Dalek Book from 1964?

||| As Lost ends, its creators explain
how they did it.

||| Actresses Tyne Daly and Sharon Gless (or Cagney & Lacey)
reunite on the red carpet.

||| Gary Coleman, the actor,
is dead. He was 42.

||| Gay Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul
has won the Palme d'Or - the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival. His film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives took the prestigious award.

||| "I'd heard that a lot of professional actors were gay. Acting seemed like a chance for me to meet like-minded people." Sir Ian McKellen
on the benefits of an actor's life.

||| The new A-Team movie's Mr T, Rampage Jackson (left): "Acting is kind of gay." Oh, so it's like that is it?

||| Blimey! I think I've found someone who hates Sex and The City more than I do! From
The New Gay: "Once again the grim spectre of Sex and The City has botoxed its way into the national queer consciousness, whether we want it to or not."

||| You might not know, and I kinda didn't, but the 2010 Blatino Awards were held last month. "I contacted Joe Hawkins, the creative force behind the Blatino Oasis Awards," Victor Hoff writes at MOC Blog, "and pestered him into giving me something, anything to report on about this year's ceremonies. He was kind enough to send me two links to videos he found on YouTube." Here's one - head over to MOC Blog for the other.

||| Say it ain't so! D.O. - the model/porn star (above left), and one of the sexiest men in the world - has allowed a beard to grow across is previously exquisite face.

||| Presented without comment, because that would be too easy: Twinklight.

||| The New York City subway map gets a facelift.

||| The monster skyscraper
due to cast a long shadow over Central Park.

||| The Big Picture: Lighter than air, above (30 more pictures).

||| Plastic boy slut
isn't happy Vanity Fair photoshopped him into a hot duo scene with fellow ball kicker Didier Drogba. Never mind, Cristiano - at least it wasn't a group scene.

||| Meanwhile Vanity Fair features Mario Balotelli - Italy's first born-and-bred black footballing superstar - on its cover

||| And finally, a lovely little ad from France, that'll have you reaching for a Big Mac (thanks to
Niyi Maximus Crown for the tip!)...


||| ka-os|theory, ONE YEAR AGO: 30.05.09

Issue 65 of ka-os|theory covers the period
24 - 30 May 2010 - plus some stuff I missed!

ka-os|theory is not responsible for the content
of external websites.

"You know, we might just as well not have bothered to come.
The whole thing's been ridiculous."

© 2010

On one issue, at least, men and women agree: they both distrust women


It's rare that I agree with London's Evening Standard newspaper, a tabloid so awful they now have to give it away free. It's written by the snide, English middle-class bourgeoisie for equally snide, self-regarding Londoners who think they're the centre of the universe. In fact, Londoners who'd very much like to emulate the characters in Sex and the City, yet simultaneously feel the need to be horrid about them. Anyway, this isn't about my loathing for the middle-classes, it's about a review of the Sex and the City movie, which encapsulates everything I want to say about that fetid franchise.

Sometimes I get accused of being a misogynist. I'm not. I just loathe the kind of shallow scum portrayed in Sex and the City. I love Mae West. Jo Brand is a joy. Jocelyn Esien is utterly wonderful. People who think, who have something to say. Clever people. As for the "materialistic whores" who defile the screen in Sex and the City? Uh uh. It's they who would incite misogyny in me. Andrew O'Hagan, writing for the Evening Standard, says it best...

"These girls are so hung up on looking great they’ve forgotten there are several ways to be ugly. At one time, around the year 2000, their whole gay cult of youth thing seemed quite funny and quite ripe in Sex and the City. Their love of handbags and designer labels appeared gleeful and sometimes satirical in an American Psycho kind of way, and their dreams, oh, their dreams, appeared to chime with those of many a late-twenty something looking for love. Now, though, Carrie Bradshaw is 45 and Samantha, her blonde slut friend, is 53, and it’s more than difficult to love them. Why? Because they are greedy, faithless, spoiled, patronising, women-degrading morons who confuse their common vulgarity for camaraderie, that’s why. When we last saw Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) and her gaggle of gay impersonators they were suffering the ups and downs of having the New York society wedding of the year. But Carrie got her infamous Mr Big (Chris Noth) and they all lived selfishly ever after. Except not. Two years into their marriage, Carrie is beginning to get bored. She lives with her dream man in a bling apartment with walk-in wardrobes (the soundtrack shimmers when she opens its doors, as if a hundred years of women’s suffrage had found its Nirvana in an expanded shoe-drawer) and they have more money than the entire state of Iowa. But Carrie wants more. She misses her old cocktail life and resents the fact that her husband wants to watch TV. A bit rich that, in one way or another, the screenwriters imagine the unglamorous life to be represented by people staying in and watching TV. Producer Darren Starr’s addled brain has spent a whole decade feasting on the fantasies of such little people. Meanwhile, Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), the ginger one, is failing to cope with the work-baby thing, feeling undervalued in her job while feeling under-present in her son’s life. Not content just to get on with it and thank the Lord for nannies, she packs in her job to become a better person, an ambition that falls at the first post, with the assumption that working mothers are bitches. Charlotte (Kristin Davis), the brunette one who was always so easily shocked, is kind of unshockable now when it comes to the depths of her own venality. She has babies and one of them is always crying. Perhaps he knows, by child osmosis, how terrible a movie he’s in, and hot tears of shame come a-spouting. Charlotte can’t cope and she is jealous of the bra-less Irish nanny. Ho hum. It is not enough to have everything: other people must have less. But there is nothing less about Samantha (Kim Cattrall), the erstwhile diva who is Stonewall on Ice. Bette Davis, in the days when narcissistic fantasists knew how to earn their keep, could show the world how to grow old disgracefully, but Samantha, good God, she makes you want to cancel the Botox appointments and take up macramé. She has been on the run from the school run for so long she looks haggard with false optimism, yet still holding out for the next mega-shag with the kind of man who looks like he was rejected for being too buff for the cover of Men’s Health. Samantha’s inner life stops at her labia but I’ve never met a real-life woman who would envy her. For all her put-downs, for all her junk jewellery and swishy frocks, she is a quagmire of denuded self-worth, a mature woman of means with the desperate mentality of the School Bike. To escape their complicated lives, the ladies go on a junket to Abu Dhabi, a place chosen, one presumes, because it might be the only place on earth where the nasty antics of this quartet might be mistaken for feminism. And sure as nuts, it’s not long before the condoms come out and the Dior T-shirts come out, every frame driven by the dull-minded assumption that any country without slingbacks is a nation in chains, that any country where the women don’t shout about screwing, or behave like materialistic whores, is a country where women are enslaved. This is the point at which the last drop of old-style, nostalgic jollity associated with Sex and the City drains away. It has become a neo-con fantasy, an Anne Coulter-like reversal of radical politics to suit the spirit of the age, where Western “values” must be imposed on savage nations. At the lowest point in the film, Carrie and her mates enter a room full of women in burkas, and the latter remove them, as if compelled by the power of moral example to reveal their own big-label gear, which they are wearing underneath, closer to their true selves. “We too can be American, like you, Carrie,” they seem to say. The insult to Arab women is an insult to all women, to all people: it lies there, festering in the suggestion that without the right kind of currency you are nobody at all. It confuses liberation with imperialism, as if George W Bush and Rush Limbaugh, dressed top to toe in Oscar de la Renta, had suddenly found their way into the heart of a gay sensibility. I wanted to walk out of this film. It is certainly the most disgusting thing I have seen this year. In a time of economic slump, a time that might make us contemplate certain shortcomings, here is a film steeped in late Nineties, you-are-what-you-buy selfishness. These characters are aliens, at one giant remove from everyday life, and the producers should not compliment themselves with the notion that Sex and the City 2 provides “escapism” in difficult times. We know about escapism and this is the opposite: it spits in the face of struggle and difference, and asserts a repulsive red-rope mentality when confronted with any life, or part of life, that stands outside Carrie Bradshaw’s wind-tunnel miasma of selfish needs. Yuck. This could be the most stupid, the most racist, the most polluting and women-hating film of the year, with a variety of ugliness that no number of facial procedures could begin to address."

Title quote: "On one issue, at least, men and women agree: they both distrust women." Henry Louis Mencken, American journalist, 1880-1956.

Latin boys go to hell


Youth is easily deceived, because it is quick to hope


This beautifully evocative shot, "1980s London lad at Severn Bridge", is by photographer Mike Stokes. He writes, "A photo from the 1980s, a boy from London on a visit to South Wales tries to look disinterested as the photographer sets up his shot!

Taken at Severn Beach on the English side of the river on a Mamiya C330 with 250mm lens, FP4 film. The film was "overcooked" and almost possible to print in the darkroom, but by digital methods a very atmospheric photograph has been produced.

The teenage lad from London was staying with me at the time; he visited Wales frequently during the early 1980s and was a legacy from my London years."

I wonder what became of this 1980s boy?

Title quote: "Youth is easily deceived, because it is quick to hope." Aristotle, Greek philosopher, 384 BC – 322 BC.

Whenever the wheel turns there is suffering, delusion and death

2|entertain, the company behind Doctor Who on DVD, have announced the forthcoming release of Mara Tales, a box set comprising of the 1982 serials Kinda and Snakedance.

Worth getting just for the frightening dream sequences in Kinda, these gems from the 80s are the perfect antidote to Doctor Whoin 2010, which has become, sadly, a completely unwatchable piece of shit.

Of Kinda, The Discontinuity Guide says:

"One of the best Doctor Who stories ever, astonishingly directed and written as a theatrical piece brimming with allusions and parallels. It's not really an allegory, as, unusually for Doctor Who it's a very original piece of genuine SF. It's 'about' boxes (the healing device that cures colonialism, the tank that the colonists wander about in, the pigeonholes where they want to put the Kinda) and male/female relationships, with the Doctor the only man wise enough to know he's foolish."

Don't believe it? Just check out the trailer above - and keep your eyes peeled for the new, improved CGI snake. Wow...

Kinda also features troubled gay boy geek Adric, of whom I'm a huge fan. A quick Google image search for this article led me to some... surprising cartoons of Doctor Who characters in action, which I feel duty bound to share. One of my favourites is the cartoon below, showing the fourth Doctor with Adric, and the fifth Doctor with Turlough, comparing pecs. Or something.

Below, we have this deliciously dark image of the Master with a nude, terrified Adric, and a thoroughly subjugated Turlough. Fabulously creepy!

Next we have the Doctor and Turlough (clearly my own aversion to gingers isn't universal) using the TARDIS console in ways it hasn't seen since Ben and Jamie were aboard the Ship in the '60s... Presumably Tegan was off sharpening her tongue in the TARDIS workshop.

Another Turlough piece follows (who knew he had it in him?) but I'm not sure who's supposed to be ravishing him in this one. Is it Nyssa?

Lastly is this cute tribute to (a much younger) Adric by FireFiriel... Now someone needs to draw his big brother. Wouldn't that be something?

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