Go back to being fabulous
Ignore the pain inside
Find some compensation
for all the love denied
After all that we’ve been through
only tears can tell the truth
– – “For All of Us” – from the musical “Closer To Heaven” by Pet Shop Boys
Last Saturday a masked gunman opened fire in a gay youth club in Tel Aviv, killing a 26 year old male and a 16 year old female and injuring eleven others, before fleeing the scene. The event rendered me speechless. I have been searching for the right words ever since and just now decided to give up that and use this platform to call people to action instead.
This coming Saturday a demonstration will be held in Tel-Aviv, supporting the gay community. Titled ‘Continuing With Pride’ this event will mark one week since the shooting and will be a more organized event, as opposed to the impromptu rallies that were held all over the country in the last few days. Singers will sing (Rita, Ninet, Ivri, Margol, Dana), speakers will speak (Mayor, ministers, MKs), but most importantly people will stand. Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and loads of straights will make a stand for democracy, pluralism and freedom. Worldwide solidarity events are planned for the same time in Warsaw, Paris, Berlin, Bern and Madrid.
What: LGBT Demonstration
Where: Rabin Square, Tel-Aviv, Israel
When: Saturday, August 8, 2009 at 8:30pm
Why: Stand against homophobia and transphobia
Who: You, me, all of us
How much: Admission is free
In light of the 2007 Israeli Pride Parade, commencing today at noon in Tel-Aviv, and later this month in Jerusalem (God willing), and in light of two recent articles discussing the ‘Glass Closet‘ (Michael Musto for Out Magazine, Gal Uchovsky for Time Out Tel-Aviv), I just wanted to convey it is a shame that successful people in the media cannot summon up the courage it takes to come out of the closet, and become a role model for teenagers struggling in life. Izhar Cohen missed the opportunity to tackle gay invisibility in the seventies, Ofra Haza missed the opportunity to raise AIDS awareness in the nineties, but it is never too late to be a hero in the eyes of Israeli teens. I reckon that singers with sold-out events and songwriters who write hit songs about love, have no business avoiding what everyone in this tiny country already knows.
Here are some positive role models:
And others who can be positive role models:
In a changing world
There’s so much you could be
Why can’t you choose your self
Like your enemy?
Have you ever imagined
A new you?
I could be someone else
I want a positive role model
– – From The Musical ‘Closer To Heaven’ by the Pet Shop Boys
Update: On December 23, 2009 singer-songwriter Yehudit Ravitz finally came out as a lesbian. This post was joyfully updated to reflect the news.
Update #2: On March 18, 2010 singer-songwriter Yehuda Poliker sorta-kinda came out. In a Channel 10 documentary film he used wording that left many disappointed. On July 16, 2010 in a newspaper interview in Yedioth Ahronoth, Poliker finally admitted falling in love in the past with men. Only then was this post finally updated to reflect the news.
Update #3: On October 22, 2010 singer Harel Skaat came out as gay. This post was joyfully updated to reflect the news.
Update #4: On December 30, 2011 comedienne Orna Banai came out as a lesbian. This post was joyfully updated to reflect the news.