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April 2015 Issue

OUT52APR2015_coverTropical paradise, Phuket is the perfect place for you to celebrate Gay Pride this month and we have a special report on the serious charitable achievements that are behind all the fun and spectacle that spreads over April 19th to 26th. We have an important update on where Thailand currently stands on same sex civil unions and as April 15th sees the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, Kenneth Dobson reveals the president’s secret gay love.

On a personal note, I would like to thank all of you who messaged, emailed, posted and called with your support following the vicious attacks that followed my ‘5 Things They Don’t Want You To Know About Gay Thailand’ that was part of the OUT This Week strand at www.out-in-thailand. com. While we are talking about the website, not only can you get up to 40% off luxury flights with Poshberry but you can also search and book your hotel in Thailand with us too!

Happy Songkran- hope you have a wet and wild time!


Out This Week

Out-in-Thailand’s Editor in Chief James Barnes: thoughts for the week

 

    What is it all about?

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    By James Barnes

    A guy approached me the other day and asked why a gay magazine is relevant in 2015. Surely, he stated, the campaigns are all but over now and society at large is so accepting of gay people, there is just no real call for a gay publication. Many of the hippest bars for the young are now populated by a very mixed crowd and that demonstrates, he pointed out, the extent to which integration is defeating the requirement of what he called, ‘The Gay Ghetto.’ He made some good points but I assured him that there was still a vital job to be done by the gay press. “Alright,” he said, “What is it all about?”

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    You can help… now!

    By James Barnes.

    The HIV Foundation has been doing a truly wonderful job for years. Not just for Thais. They are also a lifeline for reliable information, testing and healthcare advice and management for foreigners in the Kingdom. Their practical, non-judgemental approach is level headed, well informed and deeply caring. Their main source of finance was US AID but since the coup in Thailand last year, that support has been withdrawn for cynical and selfish political reasons. This means that the foundation has had to cut back on its essential work and people are suffering. In fact, things are now so bad that their whole operation is at risk of shutdown. The current emergency is real and you can help… now!

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    I remember, back in the early days of HIV/AIDS, the gay community mobilised and showed its quality, compassion and generosity. It is time for that example to emerge once more. Without our support, vulnerable people will go untested, untreated and die. People, gay and straight, who cannot afford to provide for themselves will get sick, suffer and face an unnecessary death. The message to you is simple: please help now. It does not matter if your donation is just a few hundred baht or thousands. Every single penny counts. 

    This is a real cry from my heart. I am sure that you will hear it and be as generous as you possibly can. It’s easy. Just click on this link: http://hivfoundation.com/donate

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    Very little Pride in Thailand

    700761722_72329b8988By James Barnes

    As soon as we have all dried out from our Songkran soakings next week, the next big thing on the Thai gay calendar is Phuket Pride. Patong’s Paradise will be jumping with a plethora of prideful events between April  19th through 26th, all organised by a small but dedicated band of dilettantes, dedicated to raising money for good local causes and making merry. And they do a fantastic job. Pattaya peppers it’s Pride throughout the year, culminating in a spectacular street party on World Aids Day. But apart from that… nothing. So why is there so very little Pride in Thailand?

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    Are you ready to be spontaneous?

    935933_389047667866993_62333598_nBy James Barnes.

    As I get older- and I am assured that is better than the alternative- I notice that I am a little more stuck in ‘my ways’. When I was young and lovely (now I am just lovely!) I was up for anything at a moment’s notice. I could drop everything- steady- at the drop of a hat. Unplanned and extemporaneous were exciting watchwords that resulted in many a fabulous adventure. Now I have to ask myself: Are you ready to be spontaneous?  If, as they say, life is not a rehearsal, I always made the most of the unrehearsed. Now I tend to plan my time more carefully and impulse seems to have got up and gone along with my get up and go.

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    Sorry Elton, I can't join your boycott.

    84e6d297_464293020.xxxlarge_2xBy James Barnes

    Gay fashion gurus Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana face a backlash of controversy for saying they oppose gay “marriage” and adoption, find in vitro fertilization unnatural, and believe procreation “must be an act of love. We oppose gay adoptions,” the two told an Italian magazine. “The only family is the traditional one. You are born to a mother and a father – or at least that’s how it should be,” Dolce said. The family is not a fad. In it, there is a supernatural sense of belonging,” Gabbana added. They also expressed their vehement opposition to IVF, a technology that gay couples use to have children. “No chemical offspring and rented uterus: life has a natural flow, there are things that should not be changed,” they said. Dolce said he opposed changing nature to create “children of chemistry, synthetic children, uteri for rent, semen chosen from a catalogue.” Oh really?

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