Canada Homophobia

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

Alex Abramovich | Posted 03.25.2015 | 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 | 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.

Do We Have To Be Offended By Everything?

Anne Theriault | Posted 03.11.2014 | Canada Living
Anne Theriault

Life is an ongoing exercise in empathy. As a human being, your job should be constantly learning how to make your own way in this world while causing as little harm as possible. Which is why I'm ultimately baffled when people wonder aloud if they're supposed to look at everything critically and worry about its potential to harm others. Because yes, that is exactly what you are supposed to do.

2013: Year of the Persecuted Bigot

Ward Anderson | Posted 03.09.2014 | Canada Living
Ward Anderson

Looking back on 2013, I notice a trend that somehow managed to cling to life from the beginning of the year right up to the final chords of "Auld Lang Syne": The plight of the persecuted bigot. Apparently, people who can't stand bigots are the real bigots.

Anti-Homophobia In B.C. Schools

CBC | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada British Columbia

A strict anti-homophobia policy has been adopted by the Surrey, B.C., school board, little more than a decade after it went to the Supreme Court to k...

Is Racism Actually a Fear of the Unknown?

Diane Weber Bederman | Posted 11.06.2013 | Canada Living
Diane Weber Bederman

You walk into a store and the salesperson is a different colour, a woman wearing a hijab, a young man with piercings and tattoos. You walk into a room and realize that no one looks like you. A sense of anxiety sets in from the fight/flight response to fear. That instinctual response to fear begins because we instinctively fear the unknown -- be it a place, an event, a person.

How I Went From Terrified Gay Teenager to Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

Andreas Souvaliotis | Posted 11.20.2013 | Canada Impact
Andreas Souvaliotis

I feel lucky to be gay in a society like ours, because being "different" is actually a competitive edge in our country -- not a liability. When you're different, you stand out a little bit; and when you stand out, you're already a tiny little step ahead and your brand is already a little bit stronger. You are more noticeable, more memorable -- perhaps even a little more poised for success.

Why Dan Savage Is Wrong To Boycott Stoli

Reive Doig | Posted 10.01.2013 | Canada British Columbia
Reive Doig

Not only is a boycott of Stolichnaya misplaced, if we're to view this fight for gay rights as a battle, then this is friendly fire! SPI, the producers of Stoli, are actually based in Latvia, and that's where their vodka is actually distilled. Their claim to being "Russian Vodka" until 2007 was largely a marketing decision, and since then they've labeled their product "Premium Vodka" instead of Russian. Latvia is a small country, with a population of just over two million people. TWO million. That's less than the population of B.C. Hell, it's unquestionably millions and millions less than the LGBT population of the United States. When you think of it that way picking on poor Latvia almost seems like bullying - something the Dan Savage who pioneered the great "It gets better" campaign would hardly seem likely to get behind.

Denouncing Queer Muslims Violates the Spirit of Islam

Junaid Jahangir | Posted 09.09.2013 | Canada Living
Junaid Jahangir

The overriding objectives of Islamic law include justice, human dignity, equality, removal of hardship, prevention of harm, and realizing benefits for people. It would be against the spirit of Islam to advocate that Islamic law invalidates the prayers of queer Muslims or to condemn queer Muslims to a life without intimacy, love and companionship. How long will conservative Muslim leaders inflict scriptural abuse and channel their prejudice by selectively parsing the religious tradition?

Standing Up For Yourself Is Harder Offline

Anne Theriault | Posted 08.03.2013 | Canada
Anne Theriault

I spend a lot of time thinking about intolerance and the various things that I do to combat it. Being a loudmouth who speaks out against hate on the Internet very rarely results in physical violence. Being a loudmouth who speaks out against hate in the real world is much more likely to result in broken bones, a smashed up face or even worse.

Why Some Homeless Youth Fear Shelters

Alex Abramovich | Posted 07.28.2013 | Canada Impact
Alex Abramovich

The youth I have spoken to over the years have described Toronto's shelter system as a dangerous place for LGBTQ youth because of prolific homophobia and transphobia. I have heard stories of youth living in parks because they did not feel safe in the shelter system due to daily threats of homophobia and transphobia.

Anti-Gay Slurs Forces Restaurant To Close

CP | The Canadian Press | Posted 06.02.2013 | Canada

MORRIS, Man. - When Dave Claringbould and his partner opened a restaurant in rural Manitoba, they knew some people might have a problem with them bein...

Will An Anti-Homophobia Campaign Change Attitudes In Quebec?

CBC | Posted 05.04.2013 | Canada Impact

A new anti-homophobia campaign launched by the provincial government is asking Quebecers if they are really open to sexual diversity. The...

You've Been Robbed By the Supreme Court's Whatcott Decision

Marni Soupcoff | Posted 04.29.2013 | Canada
Marni Soupcoff

Dear Supreme Court of Canada, While I personally find Mr. Whatcott's message repugnant, I am nonetheless in favour of his being able to peacefully express his religious and political opinion without being silenced by the government and forced to pay tens of thousands of dollars in damages. (I'm a little like Voltaire that way, though your decision has moved me to blog rather than to put my life on the line.) Canada, which will lose more in the breadth and honesty of public expression and debate as a result of your opinion than you seem to realize.

Anti-Gay Crusader Shot Down By Top Court

CP | Terry Pedwell, The Canadian Press | Posted 04.28.2013 | Canada Alberta

OTTAWA - A Saskatchewan anti-gay crusader says he'll ignore a Supreme Court of Canada ruling that he violated human-rights rules when he distributed p...

Court To Rule On Hate Speech Case

CBC | Posted 04.28.2013 | Canada Alberta

The Supreme Court of Canada is set to release a decision Wednesday morning in a Saskatchewan case that has pitted advocates of free speech against law...