Coming Out Day celebrates farmers, pansexuals
The internet celebrated National Coming Out Day on Oct 11 with a usual flood of supportive messages from celebrities. Vocativ noticed a remarkable rise in the number of people coming out as “pansexual” this year, and NPR shared the story of a gay man who learned how to be proud from his farmer dad.
Blowback over gay gene study
Last week, a team of scientists at the University of California said at a conference they had found epigenetic marks that could predict homosexuality. The protests from other scientists have been intense, however, over the study’s methods and claims. “Ultimately, what we have is an underpowered fishing expedition that used inappropriate statistics and that snagged results which may be false positives,” writes Ed Yong in the Atlantic.
France gives up on gay Vatican ambassador
After a nine-month standoff, France seems to have given up on sending a gay ambassador to the Vatican. Without publicly rejecting the potential ambassador, former chief of protocol Laurent Stefanini, the Vatican quietly refused to accept his credentials. The appointment was seen in France as a test of Pope Francis’ attitude toward gay people.
South African church to recognize equal marriage, gay clergy
Leaders of the South African Dutch Reformed Church have voted to recognize same-sex marriages, ordain gay ministers and to no longer require celibacy. “With this decision we actually are at a point where there can be no doubt that the Dutch Reformed Church is serious about human dignity,” said church moderator Nelis Janse van Rensburg. “And you know that we are living in this country where we have so many problems with the dignity of people.”
Estonia faces legal partnership mess
While the parliament of Estonia passed a law last year allowing a form of civil union between same-sex couples, the result will be a mess unless the government can pass “implementation” laws to make it work. Implementation would work out details such as how partnerships would end, and how to make sure a person is only signed up for one at a time. The government is likely dragging its feet on implementation because of angry debates during the last round of legislation.