Republicans win, gays lose (United States)
A sound victory for the Republicans in Tuesday’s midterm elections was generally bad news for gay people. Now that Republicans control the Senate, Salon notes that marriage equality will no longer have majority support there. Mike Michaud, the gay candidate for the Maine governorship, lost narrowly. One of the gay Republican hopefuls for the House, Richard Tisei, has lost, while the other, Carl DeMaio, has a small but indecisive lead. Texas, Kansas, Florida and Oklahoma all elected predictably anti-gay governors. In one bright spot, Maura Healey has become the first gay American attorney general, in Massachusetts.
Gay marriage ban struck down in Kansas
And Kansas joins the club. A federal judge has confirmed a higher court’s ruling that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. Gay couples in Kansas should be able to marry on Nov 11. Kansas’s attorney general says he will appeal the ruling, but he’s probably out of luck: the 10th Circuit Court of Appeal, which serves Kansas, has already ruled that such laws are unconstitutional.
Olympic rower Robbie Manson is gay (New Zealand)
New Zealand Olympic rower Robbie Manson has come out publicly in OutSports and writes about how he used athletics to cover up his sexuality. “In a strange way, I looked down on other people who were gay, and to a degree felt sorry for them, thinking to be gay was to be ‘less than,’” he writes. “I knew I was gay too, and I hated myself because of it.”
Iranian gay people pressured to change gender
Iranian authorities do not recognize homosexuality, but they do recognize that a person may be “trapped” in the body of the opposite sex. As result, the BBC reports, many gay people are pressured into sex reassignment treatments, including hormones or surgery, they don’t really want. Some gay people are forced to flee the country to avoid surgery.
Gay rights group: Conversion therapy is torture (Switzerland)
An American gay rights group will make the case to the United Nations Committee Against Torture that conversion therapy, efforts to change a person’s sexual orientation through psychological intervention, amount to torture. The committee is holding a month-long discussion on torture in Geneva.