LGBT rights took a step backward in countries such as India and Australia this week while gains were made in Japan and Germany. Here's a roundup of LGBT news from across Canada and around the world.
There will be one less relative at Kim Jong-un’s dinner table this Christmas.
North Korean media announced today (December 12) that the country has executed Jang Song Thaek, a former state official and Kim Jong-un’s uncle, calling Jang “worse than a dog”.
According to the CBC, this announcement comes days after Jang had been removed from his post—as North Korea’s second-most powerful person—due to allegations of corruption, drug use, gambling, womanizing, and “generally leading a ‘dissolute and depraved life.’”
Former Vancouver resident Craig Cobb allowed himself to be videotaped last month in Leith, North Dakota, while carrying a rifle with fellow racist Kynan Dutton.
Along the way, the ex–Downtown Eastside resident got into an expletive-laden war of words with a Christian preacher.
(Warning: the video and article below contain searing profanities.)
Cobb moved to Leith earlier this year to set up an all-white community.
At 2:50 of the video, Cobb walks by the preacher's house and shouts: "Hey, you son-of-a-bitch Christian....Fuck you, you little pussy boy. Come on over here."
Cobb later accuses the man of trying to run him out of "this goddamned town".
The preacher then mutters something unintelligible.
The petition, started by Kaine Delay, points to the 2011 Stanley Cup riot as the reason NYE VAN 2015, scheduled for December 31, 2014 should not go forward.
While much attention has focused on Russia's antigay legislation in the leadup to the Winter Olympics, India has also moved in an unfortunate similar direction when it comes to LGBT rights.
On December 11, India's Supreme Court overturned a 2009 lower court decision to decriminalize homosexuality. The controversial ruling is a major blow to LGBT rights in the South Asian country.
According to Section 377, a same-sex relationship is an "unnatural offence" and is punishable by a 10-year jail term. The law is 153 years old, dating from the country's colonial era.
The 2009 New Delhi High Court ruling stated that the law violated basic human rights. The decision faced backlash from conservative and religious groups.
The B.C. Liberal government has hired Santa’s elves to write recycling propaganda. Let's hope they at least got minimum wage.
What the elves—I suppose that's what they're calling the Ministry of Environment's spin doctors these days—have done is take "’Twas the Night Before Christmas" and turn it into a poem about holiday recycling.
Here's an excerpt of "A Recycling Story":
T'was the night before Christmas and all through the city,
Broken toys were scattered about - oh such a pity....
Participating is easy. According to the Facebook event page, here's how to join in:
Step 1: Go to a store and get food for sandwiches. If you don't want to make sandwiches pick up something snack that is ready to go.
Step 2: Make / organize the snacks.
Step 3: Go out onto the street (maybe in your neighborhood or maybe somewhere new) and give out those snacks and sandwiches to the people who need them the most.
The Abbotsford Police Department has released its holiday greeting card for this year, and it pokes fun at last year's card.
In 2012, the APD received some criticism for its card featuring a heavily armed chief Bob Rich.
However, the APD says its cards, which are sent to some criminals, are about "offering positive options to people".
Are you on the list?
Nelson Mandela will be buried on Sunday (December 15) in Qunu, South Africa, where he grew up.
Organized by the South African Cultural Association of B.C., the memorial will take place at Performance Works on Granville Island from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. (Doors will open at 12:30 p.m.)
Canada Post has announced big plans to overhaul the country's mail system.
Here's what Canada Post has in store for Canadians.
1. Bye-bye home delivery
Canada Post plans to phase out door-to-door mail delivery over the next five years. Eventually, all urban residents with doorstep mailboxes will have to walk to a community mailbox, or "superbox".