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LGBTQI News Roundup – 22 July 2022

Russian tennis player Daria Kasatkina comes out 

Russian tennis player Daria Kasatkina (pictured above right), has criticised her country’s attitude to homosexuality after coming out as gay and also called for an end to the war in Ukraine. Kasatkina, the world number 12, reached the French Open semi-finals last month. 


Homosexuality is not illegal in Russia but the spreading of “gay propaganda” among minors is prohibited and homophobia is widespread. “Living in the closet is impossible,” Kasatkina, 25, said. “Living in peace with yourself is the only thing that matters.”


Speaking to Russian blogger Vitya Kravchenko on Youtube, she confirmed she has a girlfriend. “So many subjects are taboo in Russia,” she says. “Some of them more important than ours, it’s no surprise. “This notion of someone wanting to be gay or becoming [gay] is ridiculous. I think there is nothing easier in this world than being straight. “If there is a choice, nobody would choose being gay, why make your life harder, especially in Russia? What’s the point?” Asked if it would be safe to hold hands with her girlfriend, she replied: “Never … judging by things that are going on now, it will never be OK.”


US Senator Ted Cruz says Supreme Court was ‘clearly wrong’ about same-sex ruling

Ted Cruz believes the US Supreme Court was “clearly wrong” in its landmark 2015 Obergefell v. Hodges ruling that legalized same-sex marriage, the Texas Republican said this week.  “Obergefell, like Roe v. Wade, ignored two centuries of our nation’s history,” Cruz said in a clip posted on his YouTube channel for his podcast. “Marriage was always an issue that was left to the states. We saw states before Obergefell, some states were moving to allow gay marriage, other states were moving to allow civil partnerships. There were different standards that the states were adopting.”

He added: “The way the Constitution set up for you to advance that position is to convince your fellow citizens, and if you succeeded in convincing your fellow citizens, then your state would change the laws to reflect those views. In Obergefell, the court said, ‘No, we know better than you guys do, and now every state must, must sanction and permit gay marriage.'” “I think that decision was clearly wrong when it was decided,” Cruz continued. ‘It was the court overreaching.” 

Cruz, however, is not in favor of overturning Obergefell, saying that to do so would disrupt marriages nationwide, and he also doesn’t believe there’s necessary political interest in revisiting the ruling.


Thailand may be about to recognise same-sex relationships

Thailand appears ready to be the first southeast Asian nation to recognise same-sex partnerships, in the form of civil unions, maybe even full marriage equality. Proposals for both have been presented to the Thai parliament and passed their first reading.

It is almost certain that one, or the other, will become law in Thailand by the end of this year, despite needing the support of conservative parties. Despite its reputation for a relaxed approach to sexual matters, Thailand is deeply conservative when it comes to many social mores, including sexuality – as long as it was confined to the limited sois of Patpong, Pattaya, and Patong. But there has been a quantum shift over the past few decades and, now, there are plenty of LGBT characters on just about every TV soap opera, many film themes, and openly gay celebrities, normalising the issues. The kathoey (ladyboys) are a fixture around Thailand’s red-light districts, popular culture and will be seen in workplaces and shops around the country – Thais barely bat an eyelid anymore.

Now the Thai parliament is poised to pass legislation into law that will recognise civil partnerships between same-sex individuals, often seen as the first step towards full changes to marriage acts in countries around the world. A proposal has also been presented to the Thai parliament to just jump to the ultimate step without transitioning the country through the ‘civil union’ step.

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