Canada Homophobia

Stop Hosting Hateful Speakers In The Name Of Religious Freedom

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 01.14.2016 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

University is a place where students can freely exchange ideas but equally feel safe to do so. Students should feel safe in the knowledge that whether they identify as religious, gay, atheist, etc. or as any intersection of these, they would not be subjected to derision and scorn.

LGBT Muslim Leaders Offer Hope For The New Year

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 12.29.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

Against overwhelming odds, LGBT Muslim leaders refuse to let go of hope. They offer vulnerable LGBT Muslims safe spaces, much needed community and a sense of belonging, all that they are denied in mainstream Muslim spaces.

Imagine Spending Christmas Without Family Because You're Gay

Tasheka Lavann | Posted 12.23.2015 | Canada Living
Tasheka Lavann

As we speak, there are thousands of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender folks from across the world who are not able to spend Christmas with their families this year. They have been beaten, cursed at and made to feel like they do not belong, leading them to say goodbye to their family and friends.

No Home For The Holidays

Alex Abramovich | Posted 12.23.2015 | Canada Living
Alex Abramovich

The holiday season is truly a magical time of year. It is a time for giving, reflection, and appreciation. Many individuals and organizations come together and show thanks by donating what they can to those in need. Unfortunately, the holidays will not be magical for everyone, especially not for a high proportion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and 2-Spirit (LGBTQ2S) youth who have experienced familial, societal, and institutional rejection. The holidays can be an especially lonely time for many, particularly for those without a safe place to call home.

The Life Of A Transgender Woman In The Caribbean

Tasheka Lavann | Posted 12.08.2015 | Canada Living
Tasheka Lavann

Transphobia has ingrained itself subtly in the entire system across many Caribbean countries. Magistrates do not impose harsh enough penalties on people who commit hate crimes against trans people. We don't even have hate crime laws here on our books.

Conservative Muslims Must Stop Backing Preachers Of Hate

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 12.07.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

If it is not right to host Islamophobic or white supremacist speakers, then it is not right to host Muslim supremacist, homophobic and transphobic speakers. Indeed, all zulm (oppression) is connected. Muslims overwhelmingly condemn ISIS. However, according to Muslim human rights activist, Shafiqah Othman Hamza, it is not enough to quote Qur'anic verses on peace while ignoring the systemic persecution and discrimination of minorities.

Constructive Self-Criticism Can Stop The Vicious Cycle Of Hate

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 11.17.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

A vicious cycle of hate seems to have been engendered where hatred of the West feeds the hatred of Islam. The way out of this hate is by looking within instead of pointing fingers at others. Some people do not care for such a nuanced understanding. They look for simplistic answers to complex problems.

The Love That Dares Speak Its Name

Ron Levy | Posted 11.02.2015 | Canada Living
Ron Levy

Throughout most of history, homosexuality or lesbianism was so taboo that it was kept well hidden from public view. No wonder such forms of carnal or romantic pleasure were referred to as "the love that dare not speak its name." In reality, however, society was anything but mute on the topic.

Marlon James Is A Ray Of Hope For The Caribbean LGBTQ Community

Tasheka Lavann | Posted 10.28.2015 | Canada Living
Tasheka Lavann

After being chastised by my own country of birth for coming out as a lesbian in April of this year and speaking out against the discrimination and harassment I had endured, I began to think that our Caribbean LGBTQ community would simply have to crawl back into our holes of pain and isolation and with muzzles over our mouths. That was until Marlon James!

Conservative Muslims Must Lead the Dialogue With LGBT Muslims

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 10.25.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

How can Muslim LGBT lead the dialogue if a majority amongst them segregate their lives from conservative spaces? The importance of dialogue within conservative Muslim communities cannot be over-emphasized. Such a dialogue will have to be part of a much-needed internal critique, for outside solutions may be rejected as anti-Muslim bigotry.

We Must Remember Homeless LGBTQ2S Youth During Pride

Alex Abramovich | Posted 06.19.2015 | Canada Impact
Alex Abramovich

The month of Pride is a time for LGBTQ2S individuals to not only say who we are; but to also celebrate and be proud of who we are. Pride month is meant to remind us that we are real and that we matter, however, not all members of our community are seen; not all are celebrated; many are silenced and marginalized, made to feel that they are not real and that they do not belong.

This Homophobic Lebanese Singer Should not Be Playing Canadian Shows

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 06.12.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

According to the open letter of protest by HELEM Montreal, an LGBT rights group focusing on the Lebanese and Arabic-speaking community, three restaurants in Canada are hosting Mohamad Eskandar, a Lebanese singer noted for his homophobic and sexist songs.

There's No Room for Homophobia at Queen's Park

Jonathan Crombie | Posted 05.06.2015 | Canada Politics
Jonathan Crombie

A cabinet minister who said something racist or homophobic would almost certainly be fired. The same should hold true for a shadow cabinet member. If the Conservatives at Queen's Park are serious about being a queer-friendly party, symbolism and slacktivism will not cut it. They should discipline MPP Monte McNaughton for his repeated homophobia, and for breaking caucus policy, which is ostensibly in favour of the new sex-ed curriculum. It is important to note that McNaughton is no backbencher; he has the critic portfolio of international trade. He should be striped of his critic portfolio.

Muslims Struggling With Their Sexuality Should Not Judge LGBT Muslims

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 05.01.2015 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

Some Muslims who struggle between their sexuality and faith internalize the opinions of conservative Muslim scholars. The only way they can address such cognitive dissonance is by accepting their struggle as a test from God.

It's About Time Canada Stood Up for Homeless LGBT Youth

Alex Abramovich | Posted 05.25.2015 | Canada Impact
Alex Abramovich

On March 11, 2015, Toronto City Council finally approved funding for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and 2-spirit (LGBTQ2S) youth transitional housing. Although I am extremely disappointed that LGBTQ2S youth homelessness has been inadequately addressed for so many years, I am grateful that there is more understanding and awareness of this social justice crisis. I am also grateful that more organizations are now committed to developing campaigns and programs for LGBTQ2S youth experiencing homelessness.

Will Firing This Homophobic Cab Driver Stem Hate or Fuel it?

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 02.02.2015 | Canada Impact
Junaid Jahangir

This Sunday, a Yellow Cab driver in Edmonton left a drag queen stranded in below freezing temperature at 2 a.m. Realizing that his customer sat in the cab dressed in drag, the driver bluntly told him to "get out." The taxi company has fired the cab driver. But should the cab driver lose his job over this incident? What if he is merely a product of the culture shaped by fear based morality that teaches hate towards the LGBTQ community? Would firing him stem homophobia or fuel it?

There's Nothing Religious About Banning Gay-Straight Alliances

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 01.29.2015 | Canada Politics
Junaid Jahangir

Recently, Liberal MLA Laurie Blakeman proposed Bill 202 that would allow students to start a Gay Straight Alliance club in their schools. However, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice wants to counter the "unfair and unbalanced approach" of Bill 202. For Canada's LGBTQ youth, whose suicide statistics are startlingly high, GSAs may make a difference between life and death. Indeed, the cardinal principle of many religions is to love our neighbours as we love ourselves. If we cannot show grace for our LGBTQ neighbours and families, are we really living up to that hallowed principle of our own faiths?

Erica Lenti

TVO, Stephen Fry Tackle Homophobia

HuffingtonPost.com | Erica Lenti | Posted 09.09.2014 | Canada TV

It is easy to lose sight of just how rampant homophobia is while living in a progressive, liberal society -- like most Canadian cities. Here, gay marr...

Ottawa Opera Company Fires Singer For Homophobic Facebook Statement

HuffPost Canada Music | Jason MacNeil | Posted 08.29.2014 | Canada Music

An opera singer with Ottawa's Opera Lyra is now looking for work after being fired for remarks he made on Facebook which his employer deemed to be hom...

WATCH: If Gay Guys Spoke Like Straight Guys

Posted 06.27.2014 | Canada Impact

Canadian comedian Daniel-Ryan Spaulding is poking fun at those well-meaning, but completely tone deaf, individuals among us who routinely say the most...

Pride Week Helps Me Cope With a Lifetime of Homophobia

Erica Lenti | Posted 08.24.2014 | Canada Impact
Erica Lenti

For a majority of Torontonians, Pride is just another big-city party. But beyond the booze and the naked leathermen, Pride is an inherently political celebration of freedom -- for LGBTQ people just like me to be who we are without fearing we'll be the target of yet another verbal assault or hate crime. I wake up every day knowing my traditional Italian family will never accept me, watch me walk down the aisle or even meet my future wife. But all those fears seem to slip away when I'm surrounded by a community of people who know the same fear and sense of injustice I do. And when we are banded together, marching down Yonge Street with flags and Super Soakers, we are practically invincible.

Is Homophobia a Religious or a Psychological Issue?

Roger Covin, Ph.D | Posted 07.16.2014 | Canada Living
Roger Covin, Ph.D

Historically, prejudice of any kind could be freely expressed with few repercussions (emotional, legal, or otherwise) so long as there was a reasonable justification. Religion has often served as the justification, and has therefore facilitated an array of prejudice, from racism to sexism to homophobia. Over time, the use of religious beliefs to justify prejudice has tended to decline, but still persists -- especially when it comes to homosexuality.

Being a Bigot Doesn't Come With a Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card

Elizabeth Hawksworth | Posted 07.10.2014 | Canada Politics
Elizabeth Hawksworth

You do have the freedom to say what you want. You don't have the freedom to escape the fallout from your words. When you are a bigot -- and I use the word without malice -- you are trying to block another human being from having the same rights you have. You can feel however you want to feel. There is nothing wrong with your religious or philosophical beliefs, and in our society, you are free to practice them and believe what you wish. But freedom of speech does not carry a get-out-of-jail-free card.

Coming Out As Gay And Brown In The 'Burbs

Alex Sangha | Posted 05.31.2014 | Canada British Columbia
Alex Sangha

Growing up gay and brown in the suburbs was rough. I came really close to flying to freedom towards the end of my senior year of high school when I drove off a cliff near my home. I thought it would be better than the stress of exams and the alienation I felt from being the only gay kid in the neighbourhood.

Don't Just Talk About Diversity, Implement It

Rachel Décoste | Posted 03.29.2014 | Canada Politics
Rachel Décoste

For those who hold the largest piece of the communal pie ― more than their fair share― making room for everyone at the decision table is intrinsically off-putting. Plurality is for bureaucratic hundred-page diversity plans, not for implementation.