LGBTQ World News

Alexsenia Ralat

First Legally Married Same-Sex Couple in Russia Under Fire

Evgeny Voytsekhovsky and Pavel Stotsko traveled to Copenhagen, Denmark to get legally married. Both men are Russian citizens and were forced to travel to a different country for their marriage to be recognized by the registry office in Moscow. Despite Russia’s stance on gay marriage, flaws within Article 14 of the country’s Family Code allowed the men to receive passports that designated them as married.

Article 14 itself “prohibits marriages involving people who have a close family relationship, people who are currently married, and people who have been designated mentally incapable by a court of law,” according to LGBTQ Nation. Article 158 of the Family Code says that Russia can only refuse the marriage of two individuals in a different country if the marriage violates Article 14. In Voytsekhovsky and Stotsko’s case, their marriage did not.

The men have since been interviewed by Rain TV, a news station in Russia who required its viewers to prove that they were over the age of 18 in order to watch the interview online. The men admit that they were surprised that they didn’t really have to fight with the registry in order to get their passports stamped. But, it seems that the men spoke too soon.

“We will urgently create a working group in the State Duma [the lower house of the Russian legislature], which will amend the Family Code as to which marriages can be recognized in Russia.” Internal Affairs Minister Vitaly told Parliamentary Newspaper after hearing about the case.

As of Janurary 27, the police surrounded the couple’s apartment. The Russian LGBT Network dropped the news on their Facebook Page.

“Right now they cut off the electricity and internet connection.” The organization wrote. Before then, Stoksko told a the radio station Skovoba that police had visited his parents’ house, searching for him.

Minister Milonov assured that the legislature will fix the flaw within Article 14 and close the loophole. Voytsekhovsky and the Ministry has declared Stotsko’s passports invalid.

Transgender Athlete Rejected By Special Olympics

Tennis Player Zach Brookes says that the Special Olympics’ British delegation has rejected him because he is transgender. Brookes said that the organization originally sent a polite rejection letter saying that they “had received some excellent Tennis Applications.” But Brookes soon found the real reason for his rejection after calling them.

Because the 2019 Special Olympics will be held in Dubai, a country where members of the LGBT community are often jailed or deported, the board told Brookes that they were worried for his safety. They also told him that they feared that his testosterone treatments would disqualify him from the competition.

Brookes talked about his rejection and how he feels about it in a Youtube video. He said that he had always been isolated because he was transgender and that he almost quit tennis because he was worried that people would not accept his true gender identity. The rejection hurt Brooke greatly. “I don’t understand why you put my transition as a negative barrier,” said Brooke in his video.

Reba Dresses Like Colonel Sanders, People Not Happy

Country music legend Reba McEntire has received some negative comments from conservatives after starring in a KFC commercial as the Colonel himself. The country star dressed in drag for the role, and spends the commercial as the Colonel singing about how great the new KFC chicken is and that he is not Reba McEntire and even goes so far as to throw a hat into the crowd and onto McEntire’s head to prove it.

Despite the seemingly harmless lyrics and attire, the commercial has come under fire. It has more dislikes than likes on Youtube and has received comments like “Still pushing the gender agenda, huh? Come on KFC, ” from Youtube user OUdaveguy, “I’m not gonna eat at KFC anymore after this” from user Itz Dread, and “Why do Jews and Gays destroy classics?” Neither KFC or McEntire have commented about the controversy at this time.