Freshly Doug Thursday WE DID!!

Short and sweet today after all yesterday’s euphoria.

Congratulations to our LGBTI family in the USA: not only did the best man win the Presidency – Romney would have been a complete nightmare, and not just for gay folk – but overall, GLBTI candidates had a good election: not all the results are finalised at the time of writing but there’s a running tally here. 

We scored big wins in six states: Maine, Maryland and Washington State all legalised gay marriage, while Minnesota failed to pass a measure to amend the state constitution to ban it. In New York and Iowa, Tea Party Republicans with a virulently anti-gay agenda failed to gain control of the state senates. And the anti-gay candidate who was slammed by his own family in a full page newspaper ad lost.

Will this give the currently demoralised gay marriage campaigns in Oz a boost? That’s the question I’ll be asking on my radio show tonight at 7pm Australian Eastern Daylight Saving Time: listen online or via the free app.

Less weighty but no less influential, at least in Oz: the gay bloke won Big Brother, and promptly proposed to his boyfriend live on national television, with his grandmother’s engagement ring. As I always say, the more visible we are, the better it gets, so good onya Ben.

The French equal marriage bill has finally been published: it’s proving tougher going than expected as the Vatican has instructed the church to dig its heels in and fight to the death.

The Jimmy Saville child abuse inquiry in the UK has been widened, with accusations that underage boys were abused as well as girls. The accusation links with another inquiry into child sex abuse at a children’s home where boys were allegedly abused by prominent members of the Conservative Party. There are calls to dig up the late stars corpse and cremate it, after people with relatives buried in the same cemetery said they wanted the body moved. Police say Saville may have abused more than 300 children.

It’s hard to explain what an impact this case has had in the UK: Saville was such a prominent figure in the entertainment industry for so many years, who was lauded for all the work he did for charity, and for children. It’s a bit like finding out that Mother Teresa was the star attraction at an S&M dominatrix brothel. Which she ran.

And finally, while we’re in the UK, they’ve finally picked themselves a new Archbishop of Canterbury – a former oil company executive turned evangelical preacher, Bishop of Durham Justin Welby edged out Archbishop of York John Sentamu, an outspoken opponent of gay clergy and gay marriage. Welby is also an opponent, though somewhat less strident: and he is thought to favour the ordination of women, so it’s not a total loss.

About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)