On Saturday night Moscow’s largest gay club was besieged by some 100 assailants, who frightened patrons, stole equipment and destroyed the club’s roof. Andrei Lishchinsky, the owner of Central Station, says the attack was provoked by growing anti-gay animosity in the Russian capital.
In a letter to President Vladimir Putin, Lishchinsky complained that police haven’t even begun an investigation. “The building was seized by a professional raiding company that served the interests of unknown foreign legal entities that ordered multiple illegal actions against LGBT visitors of the club,” claims Lishchinksy. “These actions were obviously motivated by hatred toward representatives of the LGBT community and had a clear extremist tone.”
Speaking of Russia, French President Francois Hollande is joining a growing number of European leaders who are skipping the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi. While Hollande, who oversaw the passage of marriage equality this year, didn’t release a statement about boycotting the games, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told Europe 1 radio that “top French officials have no plans to be there.”
Hollande joins German President Joachim Gauck in skipping the games, though both countries are sending delegations of athletes to compete.
In the 1980s and ’90s the Limelight was one of New York’s most legendary gay clubs. Now it’s poised to become one of the Big Apple’s gayest gyms: The former church, which has been a high-end retail marketplace in recent years, will be transformed into a David Barton Gym next year.
Barton himself parted ways with his trendy fitness chain in November, but new owners are moving the chain’s flagship gym from 23rd Street to the iconic temple on Sixth Ave and 20th Street. The new location is expected to open in fall 2014.
A judge in Utah has struck down a portion of the state’s polygamy ban, leading right-wingers to claim its part of the “slippery slope” caused by same-sex marriage. On Friday, Judge Clark Waddoups ruled that the law prohibiting “cohabitation” violated due process and religious freedom. A suit was brought by the stars of TLC’s Sister Wives, Kody Brown and his four blushing brides, Meri, Janelle, Christine and Robyn.
The ban on bigamy will stay intact, Waddoups declared, defining the act as “the fraudulent or otherwise impermissible possession of two purportedly valid marriage licenses for the purpose of entering into more than one purportedly legal marriage.”
On Saturday two lesbians became the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Jalisco, Mexico. Zaira de la O and Martha Sandoval had been, but were granted a civil marriage through a court injunction. “We are happy, relishing the moment we sign, with the same nerves as any couple about to marry for the first time,” Zaira told CNN.
In November 2012, legislators in Jalisco approved a civil-unions measure for gay couples, but it only afforded some of the benefits given to married heterosexual couples.