Tuesday, March 30, 2010

'Gay Cure' Doctor Charged with Sexual Abuse of Patient

A Canadian psychiatrist who was known as Doctor Shock for experiments on gay people in apartheid-era South Africa has been accused of sexually abusing a male patient.

Dr Aubrey Levin worked as chief psychiatrist in the country's military in the 1970s and 1980s. Most of his reported subjects were young white men, some of whom claimed they had been subjected to electric shocks and hormone treatment to 'cure' them of homosexuality.

Those who could not be 'cured' were instead given chemical castrations and sex changes, it has been claimed.

Levin was also accused of drugging conscientious objectors and soldiers who admitted to marijuana use.

He moved to Calgary 15 years ago and worked at the University of Calgary's medical school.

He was arrested last week after a 36-year-old patient secretly filmed him allegedly making sexual advances to him and is now on bail.

Levin has been suspended from practising and faces charges of repeatedly indecently assaulting a 36-year-old man.

Police are now reviewing 30 other claims from patients and more men have come forward since the allegations were reported.

Attention will now turn to how he was able to enter Canada and continue practising psychiatry.

South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission was told that he was guilty of "gross human rights abuses" but Levin was able to suppress media attention on his past by threatening lawsuits against newspapers which attempted to delve into the claims.

He denies the human rights abuses and has said that he only treated those who wanted to be cured.

Levin is expected to appear in court of April 8th.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

California Republican Homophobe is Gay

The California senator who was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving last week after leaving a gay club has publicly declared his homosexuality. Records show that he has voted against every gay rights measure in the state Senate since taking office, including the Harvey Milk memorial day, recognising marriages performed in other states and a measure to ban insurers discriminating against gays.
He justified this by saying he voted how he expected his constituents wanted him to.

Roy Ashburn said he was gay on a local radio show yesterday. “I am gay. Those are the words that have been so difficult for me for so long", he said. Mr Ashburn, a Republican, was arrested last Wednesday morning when police saw him driving erratically. He was found to be over the alcohol limit and had another man in his car.

The divorced father of four told AM 1180 KERN Radio: “I felt my duty – and I still feel this way – is to represent my constituents, not my own point of view, not my own internal conflict.” He added "I’ve always believed that I could keep my personal life personal and my public life public. But through my own actions, I have made my personal life public."

The 55-year-old would not state whether he would continue living out of the closet, saying: “I would ask people to pray for me. My faith is very clear and very firm. “I pray to God that I can find peace, and I want to go back to work in the Senate and work hard for the people who sent me to the legislature.”

Mr Ashburn is to appear in court next month to answer charges of driving under the influence and driving with a blood alcohol level higher than .08 per cent. He said months ago he would not seek re-election. Not sure if this is in relation to the senate or to heterosexuality!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Gays Erased From Canadian History

The Canadian Press revealed Tuesday that Canadian Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, edited references to gay rights and protection out of a newly released study guide for immigrants applying for citizenship.

Both references to the decriminalization of homosexuality in 1969, and the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2005, were deleted, over repeated objections from senior department officials. The guide's sections on equal rights and protection against discrimination were also eliminated.

"Homosexuality was decriminalized in 1969 and more recently, civil marriage rights to same-sex couples was legalized nationwide in 2005," the earliest draft of the guide says under the section Towards a Modern Canada. In the section on citizenship rights, the early draft said: "Equality Rights - Canadians are protected against discrimination based on race, gender, national origin, religion, sexual orientation or age." Neither sentence remains in the Kenney's revised edition.

Kenney has so far refused to answer any media questions on the study guide, though the day after the Canadian Press story was filed, Kenney discussed his concerns about seven new refugee claims coming out of the Vancouver Olympics.

Kenney is a staunch Conservative from a Calgary riding, who consistently fought gay marriage in Canada, and commented to journalists in 2005 that gays had every right to marry - as long as it wasn't to someone of the same sex.

Gay rights advocates blasted the Immigration Minister on Tuesday. Out gay lawmaker Bill Siksay demanded a re-RE-write of the study guide, and scoffed, "Jason Kenney can't edit gays and lesbians out of Canadian history."

Canada has long been known as a safe haven for the LGBT community abroad who maybe living in fear of persecution in their home country. Liberal MP Marlene Jennings, speaking on behalf of Immigration critic Maurizio Bevilacqua, noted that it was under a Liberal government that protection was granted for refugee claimants entering Canada because of persecution for their sexual orientation.

The new guide, updated from the 1995 edition, was released on November 12th, and citizenship applicants will start being tested on its contents March 15th.

Write your local Member of Parliament, email Kenney directly at kennej@parl.gc.ca, or contact Prime Minister Harper's office to voice your concerns. Email: pm@pm.gc.ca

Monday, March 1, 2010

Pedestrian, Vehicle or Cyclist?

I had this weird situation with one of the army of police officers down at Dundas Square last night. I was biking home and decided to take this route to catch some of the festivities. As I was stopped at the lights on Yonge heading south, people were crossing every which way and police were directing cars through breaks. I started to ride on, when I was grabbed from behind and questioned by an officer - choose one, are you a pedestrian or a vehicle? I answered neither, then the other officers allowed traffic to go through the red light and by blocking the pedestrians to allow vehicles through. The one officer questioning me said, okay you're free to go now. So was I wrong with wanting to ride across the rode with the mass of pedestrians, or should I have waited for the police to allow vehicles through? Was I considered a pedestrian, vehicle, or cyclist and who's rules do I follow in this type of situation?