The Best of O-Blog-Dee-O-Blog-Da 2012

As the year closes, a big thank you to readers and those who follow my work for your ongoing support.

By Melanie Nathan, December 30, 2012. Nathan@privatecourts.com

OFFICIAL GAY FLAG OF SOUTH AFRICAI would like to think that O-Blog-Dee-O-Blog-Da has made a difference in the lives of some and hope that it has helped those stories which may have gone unreported and untold.  What many people may not realize is that the blogging here is a platform for the advocacy work behind the BLOG.   My personal work extends to LGBT persecution around the world, so called “corrective rape,”  asylum for LGBTI people, the quest for FULL equality in the U.S.A, as well immediate relief for same-sex binational couples seeking green cards for foreign born spouses.

The stats speak for themselves and if I may say myself, what has been a one person unfunded show has done really well for  its first fully operative year, 2012.  I started the BLOG back in 2009, and built my visibility on other sites first, for a few years, before devoting regular time to O-Blog-Dee back in December  2011. It must also be remembered that I gave some of the bigger or select stories to more visible  third party publications such as The Advocate, LGBTQ Nation, GAY Star News,  SDGLN and others.

This 2013 year will be the year that I invite other writers to join the O-BLOG-DEE quest to showcase Global LGBTI human rights advocacy work, using O-Blog-Dee as a platform.

As I have said, this is a BLOG drenched in real life day to day advocacy! Thank you for your readership and encouragement.

O-Blog-Dee has been read in 195 countries in all! Most visitors came from The United States. South Africa & The United Kingdom were not far behind.

1. Most Popular by Viewership:

These are the posts that got the most views in 2012.

  • Ugandan LGBT Coalition urges extreme caution when foreigners advocate against the Anti-Homosexuality Bill

    While the Ugandan Anti-homosexuality Bill is about to pass, I have had many readers express outrage and a desire to tackle the Ugandan Government with protests and petitions. However as I have said all along, this could do more harm than good.  If the Bill passes, indeed we will be outraged as an international LGBT community.  The Ugandans are fully aware of what the international community thinks about the Bill. However the Ugandan LGBT community is urging caution at this time.  While this is a tough course to agree to, as we may feel remiss when the Bill does pass,  we owe it to the local groups in Uganda to respect their direction.

  • Clayton County Detectives Fail to respond to missing Lesbian Lisa Lawson’s Disappearance  –

    It is with the greatest level of sadness that I have to come to you all and let you know that Lisa has been found, but she is no longer with us.

  • AIDS Ride Cyclist injured in Hit and Run on Golden Gate Bridge | Authorities Fail to Report

    Imagine waking up in hospital, after being transported by paramedics to ICU Emergency, in a metropolis such as San Francisco, unconscious, with broken bones and not a single policing authority has any record or clue what happened to you? That is what happened this weekend to Patrick Shortle and the incident occurred, of all places, on the greatly popular Golden Gate Bridge.

  •  Mr. GAY South Africa’s Coenie Kukkuk Threatens Gay Man with Lawsuit

    Coenie Kukkuk is a man who wears many hats. He is a founder and director of the South African for profit all male beauty pageant, Mr. GAY SOUTH AFRICA (PTY) LTD; he is the director of the lucrative annual Pink Loerie festival in Knysna, and also a practicing attorney in Pretoria, South Africa, who writes an opinion column for a South African Blog, Queerlife, titled “Coenie Kukkuk’s African Fairytales” where he described himself as “Lawyer, activist and a member of South Af(r)ica’s gay social elite….” But in truth what we have is a wardrobe of interchangeable hats that have served to silence a portion of  the gay community.

  •  South Africa’s Shocking Constitutional Review of its Sexual Orientation Rights

    Since the end of Apartheid and the inception of South Africa’s new constitution some twenty years ago, the country has been lauded for its lead on the entrenchment of anti-discrimination rights that renders it one of the few in the world to protect sexual orientation and gender identity in its Constitution. Gays and lesbians (LGBTI) enjoy full equality in South Africa. Notwithstanding this South Africa has never managed to escape the brutality of rampant homophobia which is underscored by the high incidence of so called “corrective” rape in its townships, the deployment of an anti-gay ambassador to  homophobic Uganda,  and its failure to lead the decriminalization of homosexuality in the rest of Africa.

  • Most Popular in One day: Clayton County Detectives Fail to respond to missing Lesbian Lisa Lawson’s Disappearance

2.  Most Controversial:

3. The Most Impact

4.  Readers Choice

Screen Shot 2012-12-30 at 4.54.49 PMThe Flag Boys best Dressed at The JB Met
http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2012/01/27/south-africa-prestigious-jb-met-gay-activists-to-protest-zulu-king-hate-speech-dressed-as-zulu-warriors/

So I took it on- alone. I took matters into my own hands and the two women have just arrived at their destination… but will not be secure and truly safe until we are able to ensure a…http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2012/09/25/lesbian-couple-under-siege-flee-african-country/

IMMIGRATION Equality Fails Binational Same-Sex Couples –
http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2012/02/23/immigration-equality-fails-binational-same-sex-couples-again/

Calling on Andrew Sullivan to Boycott Maggie Gallagher Debate  –
http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2012/03/29/calling-on-andrew-sullivan-to-boycott-the-maggie-gallagher-debate/

5. Most Popular by Contributor

6. The Best of LGBTI Entertainment Stories:

7.  Most Popular by Melanie as Contributor to other Publications:

  • SDGLN“Bullied gay teen’s suicide note: Insight on EricJames Borges’ tragic death at age 19 — In an exclusive story on SDGLN, Contributor Melanie Nathan of San Francisco wrote about the tragic suicide of bullied gay teenager EricJames Borges, who worked for The Trevor Project and advocated against bullying of LGBT youth. Nathan attended one of the teen’s funerals, met his family and obtained a copy of one of his suicide letters. SDGLN Editor in Chief Ken Williams and Nathan discussed at length the merits of sharing Borges’ final thoughts, and came to the conclusion that his message needed to be shared for its insight and as a way to publish suicide-prevention tools for vulnerable teenagers. More than 21,000 people read the story, 384 people liked the story on Facebook, 34 people tweeted, another 37 shared on other Social Media, and dozens of people commented via Facebook. The story was picked up by countless LGBT and mainstream media sources.” http://www.sdgln.com/news/2012/12/28/top-read-stories-sdgln-2012
  • The Advocate: FROM UGANDA WITH PRIDE  This year I wrote an article and acquired unique photos from a photographer in Uganda, David Robinson, to use with the article, in a photo essay. I gave The Advocate  first choice and they accepted. We agreed to do the article using my writing and David’s amazing photographs.  We received permission from SMUG and FARUG to post the pictures and went to great lengths to ensure a tight copyright statement.   Judging from my research on The Advocate this joint photo essay received a record breaking amount of Facebook shares, in excess of 14,000. (the Average for most good articles is 200-400)  It is clear that the article may well have broken Advocate records, at least for the year.  (I noticed other high profile articles seemed to top at 9,000.)Unfortunately the  Advocate did not give any recognition to the story as the Editors did not include the Ugandan Beach Pride story  in this years “Big Story” accolades.   The Big Stories of the Year seem to all be US centric.  This failed to acknowledge the importance of the  Ugandan Pride event and how it has impacted us all around the world, in terms of interest, activism, advocacy, courage. Especially that the Ugandan activists went to such great risk of arrest and persecution, flying in the face of the American evangelicals that set off the heightened persecution in Uganda in the first place.  Given the numbers and stats for this particular article, I wonder if the Advocate’s failure to include  it in their year end tally amounts to ignoring the contributions of unpaid Contributors such as myself , a snub of the Ugandans or a mere over sight .It was also excluded from their “People Places and Events that shaped us in 2012, even though it scored higher in readership than all those featured, focusing on celebrity and U.S.A.This article resulted in hundreds of inquiries directly to me for permission to use the photos elsewhere and David and I provided such permission to numerous other outlets who we felt would use them responsible and not as a target against gays. The article was picked up by numerous high end publications, for both print and online pieces.    http://www.advocate.com/arts-entertainment/commentary/2012/08/08/see-photos-ugandans-both-proud-and-brave
  • GAY U.S.A.the Movie and Blog: This article and others which we worked on for GAY U.S.A.  the Movie was picked up by most major outlets, See Press Page /  and Bachmann & Associates had no idea that they were the target of yet another undercover gay advocate visit, and this time it was in the form of a young lesbian, a filmmaker from GAY U.S.A. the Movie. While the visit was contrived, and the character expounded upon, the reality and the seriousness of the possible harm to young gays and lesbians cannot be overstated. Last week as co-producer on the film, I helped Kristina Lapinski set up and pursue a counseling session at one of the two Bachmann clinics in Minnesota, where she played the part of a confused 24 year old lesbian who had just moved from California to Minnesota to marry her long time male friend, Jake, all to please her Christian parents. http://gayusathemovie.com/2012/04/lesbian-filmmaker-prays-the-gay-away-at-bachmann-associates/

8.  Melanie’s Favorite comment and response:

Comment by Martin Ssempa PhD December 29, 2012 at 1:59 AM 

Melanie I am afraid that you need to do Anthropological research to know more about Africa and why we have a 5000 year old tradition and values which find sodomy an abominable and barbaric culture. You are either ignorant or grotesquely misled to claim that Europeans taught us that sodomy is evil in the last few decades. This paragraph below shows that your sources are biased fringe sodomites who are ranting for you what you want to hear. I invite you to come and spend some time with our Tribal and Clan elders so you can understand. We can travell to Karamoja where sodomy, adultery and beastiality is punished instantly, West Nile, Bunyoro, Toro, Buganda, Busoga or the sons of Bamasaba who circumcise. You will get a better view of who we are not the San Francisco view. You may even get a real Mugishu man to marry you and cure you of having to resort to bananas or vibrators for conjugal relations.

“Not as likely to happen here as it seems in Uganda where it enjoys a 96% favorability rating thanks to the decades of lies spread throughout the African continent about how the American and European gays are coming for their children to recruit them into homosexuality, and how pray-away-the-gay really works, no really, and a whole host of other ridiculous unfounded claims easy to dispel if you have access to facts.”

Reply   by Melanie Nathan December 29, 2012 at 2:42 AM 

Martin Ssempa – I am presuming you are the Pastor Ssempa that:

1. has co-authored Uganda’s 2004 “Abstinence and Being Faithful” AIDS policy and so while purporting to be a general in the fight vs AIDS is probably responsible for it on many levels

2. in October 2012, Ssempa and five other individuals were convicted in Buganda Road Court of conspiring to tarnish a rival pastor’s reputation by falsely accusing him of engaging in homosexuality. The guilty verdict stemmed from a May 2009 incident in which Ssempa and the others engaged in a conspiracy to coerce a male church member at Robert Kayanja’s Rubaga Miracle Center Cathedral to claim that he had sexual relations with Kayanja. The six individuals, including Ssempa, were sentenced to a fine of one million shillings each (about US$390) and one hundred hours of community service;

3. Ssempa is the Pastor who a source informed me may have gone through reparative therapy to try and cure his own homosexuality – but continues to be obsessed with sodomy, of course this remains unverifiable,

OH and let me remind you,

1.I was born in Africa and grew up amongst the Xhosa people, I saw Makweta, I know Shaka Zulu allowed his men msm so that they could bond in war, my mother is buried in the Chieftains grave of the Tswana people in Africa there is nothing you can teach me ; I studied anthropology at an African University …I could go on;

….read more of my comment and others at http://oblogdeeoblogda.me/2012/12/23/why-we-must-attend-the-smug-v-scott-lively-lawsuit-in-court-january-7-2013/Screen Shot 2012-12-09 at 3.35.37 PM

Screen Shot 2012-12-18 at 10.36.28 PM Screen Shot 2012-12-20 at 7.51.55 AM Screen Shot 2012-12-18 at 9.56.34 PM Screen Shot 2012-12-02 at 9.11.47 PM 2012-12-09_11-00-53_641


7 thoughts on “The Best of O-Blog-Dee-O-Blog-Da 2012

  1. It is a bit daunting to think about adding attention catching discourse to this BLOG which is already so rich with content, but it is a challenge I will welcome. Thank you for the opportunity, Melanie.

    Cathy

  2. It is so amazing how u touch people,how ur words and actions helped and still helping people,with no exageration-All over th World-
    This Blog hav helped so many to find themselfs. To hav the courage of fighting fr their right. To,Raise voices.
    U r an amazing Human Being.
    U r such an inspiration.
    As I alwasy tell u… Words can never discribe u.
    Thank u for everything angel( u know who we r)
    We love u. 🙂

  3. Melanie, when most are sleeping, you are typing away, making calls and saving lives. A life that few people on earth can relate to. Your amazing work is appreciated around the world. Greetings from Cape Town, South Africa

    1. Sweet of you to note Thank you and yes – sometimes I get woken up at 3 am with a call for help from somewhere in Africa and most the time I feel useless. The plight of LGBTI Africa is indeed a plight! A lot of the time…. Thanks so much acknowledgment is always appreciated especially from fellow hard working activists

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