“The 9”. News Curated Weekly. Cruel Russian Police Raid Moscow Gay Venues Amid Holidays

Your guide to the queer media circus.

As usual… 5.5 minutes to read. Your guide to the queer media circus. A weekly digest of the most important queer news in your backyard!  Exclusively for paid subscribers every Monday, “The 9” is curated weekly by Taylor Abbot + the GenZ editorial team.

Looking back, 2023 was nothing short of pure chaos.

This year alone saw the election and ousting of the same person as USA speaker of the house, simultaneous labor strikes from writers and actors in the entertainment industry, boycotts against the world’s top beer brand, criminal indictments against a former USA president, the disappearance of a submersible looking of Titanic and filled with millionaires, an unprecedneted conflict in Gaza with thousands of people killed and approximately one million other once-in-a-generation stories that dominated the news cycle.

After a challenging and demanding year during which we introduced numerous new journalistic features to our readers, we are taking a vacation.

We will return on Monday, 8th of January 2024.

Rest assured, we will keep you informed if any breaking news emerges.

Wishing you a fabulous New Year!

 

This week, Russian police raid gay bars, and then:

GAY45 announced the 2023 Annual Report

GAY45, a prominent queer media outlet, revealed its 2023 Annual Report, highlighting substantial growth from 30,000 to 200,000 readers per month. The publication introduced a new mascot and ensign, garnering praise from the German press, recognizing GAY45’s market value exceeding 1 million euros. In a groundbreaking move, the magazine released its inaugural “engagement report,” providing insights into reader preferences—a first for a European queer publication. Vienna’s Wirtschaftsagentur Wien announced support for the Queer Journalism Campus initiated by GAY45. The company also underwent leadership changes, with the appointment of a new Deputy Editor in Chief and a new CEO, signalling a dynamic phase for the media platform. The full report is available by email request.

Russia. Politics. Police Raid Moscow Gay Venues Following Supreme Court’s “Extremist” Label

In a coordinated crackdown, Moscow police targeted several gay-friendly nightclubs and a men’s sauna in simultaneous raids, just days after Russia’s Supreme Court labeled the “international LGBT movement” as “extremist.” The raids, which included the interruption of a dance party at a nightclub on Malaya Yakimanka Street, saw officers scrutinizing patrons’ passports. At least three bars and a central Moscow men’s sauna were reportedly raided. The Supreme Court’s recent decision has raised concerns about an impending wider crackdown on LGBT+ communities. Last year, Russia had already prohibited “LGBT propaganda,” effectively banning the representation of LGBT+ individuals in public and media.

Uganda. Justice. Activists Challenge Draconian Anti-LGBT+ Law in Constitutional Court Appeal

Ugandan civil society groups are set to meet constitutional court judges this week as they launch an appeal to overturn the country’s severe anti-LGBT+ law. The legislation, which imposes the death sentence and life imprisonment for specific homosexual acts, received overwhelming support from MPs in March. Activists, including LGBT+ advocate Clare Byarugaba, argue that the law is unconstitutional and perpetuates hate and discrimination. The move follows recent US visa restrictions on hundreds of Ugandans involved in enacting the law. Despite international criticism, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni dismissed the restrictions, emphasizing the nation’s commitment to sovereignty. The law has been linked to a surge in violence against LGBT+ individuals.

USA. Art. Symposium at Brooklyn Museum Honours James Baldwin Beyond Legend

A symposium at the Brooklyn Museum on Saturday will pay tribute to the multifaceted legacy of James Baldwin, the renowned writer and civil rights activist. The event coincides with the publication of “God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin,” featuring contributions from influential figures such as Hilton Als, Barry Jenkins, and Jamaica Kincaid. Thelma Golden, Director of the Studio Museum in Harlem, recalls her formative engagement with Baldwin during her college years. The symposium will delve into various aspects of Baldwin’s identity, exploring the politics of queer life, his impact on visual artists, and a performance by Meshell Ndegeocello of “The Gospel of James Baldwin.” The event aims to move beyond Baldwin’s folklore, encouraging a comprehensive understanding of his profound influence.

USA. Politics. ‘Queers For Palestine’ Protesters Block Manhattan Bridge in NYC

Hundreds of demonstrators supporting the “Queers for Palestine” cause staged a protest on Monday, causing a temporary blockage of the Manhattan Bridge in New York City. The pro-Palestinian march began at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and crossed the bridge into Manhattan, advocating for a “Free Palestine.” The protesters displayed LGBT and trans pride flags while chanting slogans such as “queer, trans, no peace on stolen land” and “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” Banners with messages like “Queers for Liberated Palestine,” “No Pride in Genocide,” and “Queer Jews say: Fuck the West. Let Gaza Live” were visible. The demonstration drew attention to the complex dynamics of supporting LGBT+ rights in regions where homosexuality is punished.

Germany. Justice. Violent Criminal from CSD 2022 Attack is Deported.

The Administrative Court of Münster has upheld the deportation order for the perpetrator involved in the tragic incident at Christopher Street Day (CSD) 2022, where a young trans man lost his life. The convicted Russian citizen, originally from Chechnya with Ukrainian family ties, was sentenced to five years of juvenile punishment. The court rejected the individual’s urgent application against deportation, emphasizing the city of Münster’s lawful decision. The perpetrator, responsible for the fatal attack, must now leave the country. This ruling underscores the gravity of LGBTIQ*-hostile acts and signals a commitment to addressing such incidents with utmost seriousness.

Italy. Politics. Rainbow Families Fear for Children’s Rights

Amid legal challenges in Italy, same-sex parents in rainbow families face uncertainty over their children’s rights. Despite recognizing same-sex civil partnerships since 2016, Italy denies full adoption rights to same-sex couples, and surrogacy remains illegal. Recent instructions from Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni halted the practice of listing both same-sex parents on birth certificates, prompting concerns about parental rights. Rainbow families, fearing potential legal challenges, are contemplating self-imposed exile. Legal ambiguities surrounding parental rights for same-sex couples persist in Italy, with calls for legislative clarification and concerns about potential infringements on LGBT+ rights under the current right-wing government led by Meloni.

A man walks down a street past a bar in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ni-chome district on November 16, 2023. Thomson Reuters Foundation/Elaine Lies

Japan. Entertainment. Surge in Demand for Bars in Tokyo’s LGBT+ District

Tokyo’s LGBTQ+ district, Shinjuku Ni-chome, experiences a surge in demand to open bars, with prospective business owners drawn to the area’s cultural significance. The pandemic has fueled interest in new establishments despite concerns over the aging infrastructure and potential redevelopment threats. Despite Japan’s LGBTQ+ advancements, Ni-chome remains a vital haven for the community. The district, comprising around 400 small bars in five blocks, holds the world’s densest concentration of gay and lesbian bars. The rise in demand has led to a shortage of available properties, challenging those like Melvin Muranaka, whose dream of opening a bar in Ni-chome faces hurdles amid the property scarcity.

Argentina. Politics. The New Far-Right President Dissolves Diversity Ministry

Javier Milei, Argentina’s newly inaugurated far-right president, has swiftly dismantled the Diversity Ministry just days after assuming office. The self-proclaimed “anarcho-capitalist,” often compared to Donald Trump, was sworn in on Sunday, following his victory in last month’s presidential election. Milei, known for conservative stances like anti-abortion advocacy and relaxed gun laws, pledges to “Make Argentina Great Again.” His cost-cutting measures include eliminating ministries deemed non-priority, such as the Ministry for Women, Gender, and Diversity, established in 2019. The decision to transfer its responsibilities to the Ministry of Human Capital has sparked concerns among LGBTQ+ advocates, emphasizing the significance of addressing gender and diversity issues.

 

Recommendations from our favourite newspapers. This week NYT.

Cook: Braise chicken with tomatoes and potatoes.

Gift: What to get the person who has everything.

Groove: Enjoy the ideal holiday music playlist.

Cope: It’s common to get acne in your 30s, 40s and beyond. At-home treatments can help.

Play the Spelling Bee. And here are today’s Mini Crossword and WordleYou can find all puzzles here.

Curated every week by our news editor Taylor Abbot & GAY45 editorial staff. Exclusive for subscribers on Monday through Substack and Wednesday on the website.

Taylor Abbot is a 23 y.o. staff writer for GAY45 and MA student at the University of Oxford. Previously he studied at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He is passionate about journalism, contemporary literature, poetry, technology, socio-political involved art forms and queer implications in society. He wrote previously for several magazines as Bay Area Reporter or Männer. Nerdy curious, passionate about the weird parts of life and the good stories written by great journalists. Taylor decided to delete all his social media accounts two years ago. Lives and works between Berlin and London.

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