Scary Mary Harness Releases Single!!!

Okay just had to post this its so fab!!

It can be viewed here

Its a disco version of Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights!!!

Have been listeing to it all mornin!!

I am – Anonymous


I am the girl kicked out of her home because I confided in my mother that I am a lesbian.

I am the prostitute working the streets because nobody will hire a transsexual woman.

I am the sister who holds her gay brother tight through the painful, tear-filled nights.

We are the parents who buried our daughter long before her time.

I am the man who died alone in the hospital because they would not let my partner of twenty-seven years into the room.

I am the foster child who wakes up with nightmares of being taken away from the two fathers who are the only loving family I have ever had. I wish they could adopt me.

I am one of the lucky ones, I guess. I survived the attack that left me in a coma for three weeks, and in another year I will probably be able to walk again.

I am not one of the lucky ones. I killed myself just weeks before graduating high school. It was simply too much to bear.

We are the couple who had the realtor hang up on us when she found out we wanted to rent a one-bedroom for two men.

I am the person who never knows which bathroom I should use if I want to avoid getting the management called on me.

I am the mother who is not allowed to even visit the children I bore, nursed, and raised. The court says I am an unfit mother because I now live with another woman.

I am the domestic-violence survivor who found the support system grow suddenly cold and distant when they found out my abusive partner is also a woman.

I am the domestic-violence survivor who has no support system to turn to because I am male.

I am the father who has never hugged his son because I grew up afraid to show affection to other men.

I am the home-economics teacher who always wanted to teach gym until someone told me that only lesbians do that.

I am the man who died when the paramedics stopped treating me as soon as they realized I was transsexual.

I am the person who feels guilty because I think I could be a much better person if I didn’t have to always deal with society hating me.

I am the man who stopped attending church, not because I don’t believe, but because they closed their doors to my kind.

I am the person who has to hide what this world needs most, love.

I am the guy who came out to the entire school in his senior speech and got a standing ovation for his courage.

I am the girl who kisses her girlfriend on the sidewalk and laughs at those who glare.

We are the couple who planned and studied and got a damn good lawyer and BEAT the state that wanted to take our child away.

We are the ones who took martial arts classes and carry pepper spray and are just too dangerous to gaybash.

I am the transgendered person who uses the bathroom that suits me, and demands that any complaining staff explain their complaint to my face in front of the entire restaurant — and shares with my other trans friends which restaurants /don’t/ raise a stink.

I am the mother who told her lesbian daughter to invite her girlfriend over for dinner.

I am the father who punished his son for calling you a fag.

I am the preacher who told my congregation that love, not hate, is the definition of a true follower of God.

I am making a difference. Hate will NOT win.,

Give Blood because we cant

On the 6th of December, the Irish Blood Transfusion Service will come to UCC for its annual blood drive. At this time, LGBT students and the Students Union, using recently outed and former poster boy of the IBTS, Westlife member Mark Feehily as their own poster boy, will begin an awareness campaign to draw attention to their outdated and discriminatory policy of refusing blood from gay men. The campaign is a peaceful one and does not want to interfere with the very important business of the IBTS. In fact, it is precisely because of the importance of blood donation that the campaign hopes to change IBTS policy.

The lifetime ban on donation from gay men stems from an emergency policy at the height of the AIDS panic around 1985 when the FDA in America imposed a blanket ban on gay men giving blood. At the time, procedures for screening HIV looked for antibodies for the virus, which could take weeks of months to develop. Policymakers had worried
that during this window, HIV-tainted blood could go through the screening process undetected. Today, there are superior testing procedures so that the window from infection to detection has been cut to 10 days. This means that if blood is donated 10 days after a possibility of infection, there is no reason to refuse the blood. According to the IBTS, they “test every donation received for a number of diseases”, including Hep B, HIV and Hep C. Based on this, there is
no reason for a blanket ban on ‘men who have ever had sex with men’.

The IBTS tries to excuse their discriminatory policy by pointing out that because a HIV emergency originated from the gay community in the 80’s, it is possible that a new, unforeseen disease may emerge in the future by the same route. This argument is clearly flawed: a new disease may emerge from any source, whether or not it has in the past. It is this attitude which is homophobic. The IBTS excludes someone based on their sexuality and because eventually they may be prone to some new, unknown virus. This is highly controversial and not a justifiable discrimination.

“Monogamous gay couples in long-term stable relationships, who are tested regularly and have a history of safe sex are barred from donating blood forever, by stark contrast, and revealing the contradictory values of the IBTS, the same policy allows a single heterosexual to have many partners and who doesn’t practice safe sex to donate blood” This awareness campaign is asking the IBTS to re-examine their policy and allow healthy and safe people to donate.

The fact is there is no appropriate reason to refuse the blood of gay men on such blanket terms. LGBT Auditor Diarmuid Angland says “Double standards are at play and the reasons the IBTS gives for this are not in touch with modern day studies”. And considering the current blood supply crisis, there can be no justification for needlessly turning away blood like this. The Swedish Prime Minister is now the first world leader to call for a review of the blood ban and we applaud this progressive call to keep in step with the times. Let us not forget that any man need only have had sex with another man once in his whole life for this ban to be effective. So what we are calling for in our campaign is a review of IBTS policy. A cautious measure we would like to suggest is to impose a ban on anyone giving blood a year after engaging in risky behavior. UCC LGBT have produced a document in relation to this matter which is entitled “Give Blood because we Cant”, which is also the name of the campaign, if you would like to learn more about this matter they can be contacted on ucclgbt@gmail.com

Gay blood is safe blood and gay people are healthy people. This must be recognized. Lives are in the balance.

THE GRINCH THAT STOLE XMAS


Young FG Launch Pre- Budget Campaign on Youth Rip Off.

Young Fine Gael (YFG) will today Monday 5 December launch a poster campaign to highlight the Rip Off of young people in Ireland. The poster entitled “The Grinch that Stole Christmas” depicts Bertie Ahern (as Santa), Mary Harney and Brian Cowen (as reindeers) removing rather than delivering gifts.

YFG will also launch a cost of living survey based on goods and services consumed by the 18-30 year old age group throughout Europe. Across every sector of consumer spending, Ireland finds itself at the top of the European rip off league. All the main commodities associated with socialising and entertainment in this country are completely over priced using the Eurozone average consumer price index. For example,

•Ireland is the second most expensive country in the Eurozone for alcoholic beverages from off-licences and in restaurants and pubs.
•Ireland is the most expensive country in the Eurozone for non-alcoholic beverages in retail outlets.

Energy costs are far more expensive in terms of electricity and especially in terms of gas for an Irish household than their British counterparts.

•Fairy lights in Ireland are 26% more expensive to run than in the UK.

One of the most damming aspects of the YFG study is in the area of home entertainment goods, mobile phones and CD’s which are among the most popular Christmas gifts. The price differences between Ireland and the rest of Europe are startling.

•Nokia 6020 pre-paid mobile phone costs €99 in Germany but €169 in Ireland.
•Top 40 new release album on CD costs €9.99 in France but €18 in Ireland.
•A shopping basket of home entertainment goods such as Playstation 2, DVD players and digital cameras is 10% cheaper in the UK than in Ireland.

“Young people in this country are the most vulnerable sector of consumer when it comes to price increases. Every sector of consumer activity that young people will engage in this Christmas represents a rip off when compared with the rest of Europe” stated Young Fine Gael Vice President, Elizabeth Munnelly. “YFG are calling on the Government to use this budget to give Ireland’s youth a break by creating an environment where they will no longer be ripped off”.

THE GRINCH THAT STOLE CHRISTMAS

How Young Ireland is being ripped off this Christmas

Introduction

Christmas is the busiest period for consumer spending. In an environment which is already high-cost by European standards, the Irish consumer is a sitting target in an all pervasive rip off culture. Young people are particularly vulnerable and it is in the context of Young Ireland that we focus our attention in the following study.

Each of the headings below sets out a different product which will find itself in the shopping basket of a young person this Christmas. The conclusion that we can draw from this study is that Christmas in Ireland for young people is more expensive than in most other European countries and that the Irish consumer is faced with expensive choices at every juncture this Christmas.

1.Typical Christmas Gifts
(a) Pre-Paid Mobile Phones
An ever popular stocking filler. The Nokia 6020 pre-paid mobile phone retailing in Vodafone stores across the European Union is a case in point of Rip-Off Ireland. The 6020 can be bought in the UK with Vodafone for €129 in Germany it is available for €99, in Ireland the same phone with the same package from Vodafone costs €169.
(b) CD
A new release Top 40 Album in France on CD retails for €9.99, in the UK it costs €14.45 in Ireland it costs over €18.
(c ) Home Entertainment Goods
A comparison of home entertainment goods prices including products such as Playstation 2 consoles, Xboxes, Nintendo Game Cube, Digital cameras, Philips DVD Players had Ireland almost 10% more expensive in this sector than the UK. Home entertainment goods are cheaper in France, Spain, Holland and Germany than in Ireland.

2.Alcohol and Tobacco
Your glass of Christmas cheer in Ireland comes in near the top of the European price table. In terms of off-licence sales the latest survey from the National Competitiveness Council (NCC) makes for sober reading. Ireland flew by the UK and Sweden and lies behind only Finland and Denmark. Finland is the only Eurozone country that is more expensive than Ireland in this regard. Ireland is the second most expensive country in the Eurozone for alcoholic beverages from off-licences and for restaurants and pubs.
In terms of the 25 member state European Union, Alcohol and Tobacco consumer prices are higher in Ireland than the EU Average. Irish prices are 12% more expensive than in the UK and 10% more expensive than Germany.
In light of the pre-Christmas road safety campaigns it is noteworthy that Ireland is the most expensive country in the Eurozone for non-alcoholic beverages in retail outlets.

3.Food basket
A recent analysis of consumer prices using a basket of 100 international brands (prices included all taxes) was undertaken in 15 European countries by Eurostat.
Taking 100 as the average European price the price of food products, fruit, meat, fish and vegetables, at the stalls and on the supermarket shelves of Denmark rose by 130,6%. The Norwegians suffered almost as much at 125%. The next worst case is Ireland with 114.5%, Switzerland with 112.8%, Finland with 109.5% and Sweden with 108.6%.
The country that remained closest to the European average was Portugal where the price of food products was a mere 1.0% under the average at 99%. France and Germany also find themselves mid-table with respectively 95.6% and 95.8%.
The Austrians are best off as they spend a mere 93.1% compared to the European average. The Dutch do even better paying 93%, the British 92.9%, the Italians 91.7%, the Spanish 89.3% and the Belgians with 88.9%. And most surprisingly the most fortunate are the Germans whose shopping basket costs 18.4% less than the European average at 81.6%.

4.A “quiet night out” – The Cinema
A night out at the cinema in Ireland is more expensive than in any other Eurozone country. This Christmas, two adults will have little change (€2 to be precise) out of a €20 note for two tickets for the new Harry Potter film, In Belgian cinemas prices are considerably cheaper averaging around the €5.50 mark, in Spain and Portugal the cost is a fraction of the Irish admission fee, ranging from €2 to €4 per person.

5.Eating out (Hotel and Restaurant)
Ireland does not fair any better in the realm of eating out in restaurants and hotel accommodation coming in almost 20% more expensive than the Eurozone average. For example a hotel family meal this Christmas that would cost €200 as a Eurozone average would cost €240 in Ireland, in France it would about €8 less than the Eurozone average but almost €50 cheaper than Ireland.

6.Gas
One of the most spectacular areas of price increase in Ireland this Christmas will be seen in the gas sector for home heating and energy. This Christmas sees a 25% increase in the price of natural gas in Ireland.

7.Electricity
For those of you that want to keep up with the Jones’ this Christmas, fairy lights are 26% more expensive to run in Ireland as they would be across the Irish Sea.
It’s taken for granted by consumers that Christmas time sees the average household using more electricity than usual. The British Gas standard tariff rate for electricity charge across the UK this Christmas is 10.2c cents per kwh, in Ireland the ESB Day Rate is 13.85 cents per kwh.

HIV/AIDS a Problem for All of Us

The first of December each year is designated World AIDS Day since 1988. Since then HIV/AIDS has yet to be brought under control and is decimating the population of under-developed countries.

HIV/AIDS is not just Africa’s problem. HIV infection rates are on the rise in Asia. Only recently have infection rates stabilised in Western and Central Europe.

Between 2002 and 2004 in Western and Central Europe:

  • 29% of the people newly diagnosed with HIV were less than 30 years of age
  • 58% of new HIV cases were infected through heterosexual sex, 40% through gay sex and 11% through sharing equipment for injecting drugs
  • 91% of women with HIV were infected through heterosexual sex
  • Women account for 59% of all reported heterosexual cases
  • 48% of men overall were infected through gay sex
  • Migrants from sub-Saharan Africa account for 26% of all new cases diagnosed and 47% of those infected through heterosexual contact.

In Ireland alone 100 people died of AIDS related illnesses in 2003 (Source: CIA World Fact book).  

This years work Campaign being run by the World AIDS Campaign which took over the organising of the day from the UNAIDS programme is ‘Keep the Promise’

Closer to home the Terrence Higgins Trust, a leading campaigner on AIDS issues in the UK and Europe, campaign this year is ‘Wise Up, Wear it. Where’s yours?’

World AIDS day ribbons will be sold on UCC campus this year. Please support this campaign by buying a ribbon and wearing it.

Report shows 3% rise in suicide rate in last year – Neville

– 457 deaths by suicide in 2004
– 356 men and 101 women took their own lives
– Highest rate of suicide (22%) between ’98 and ’02 was among 15-24 year olds

Fine Gael Deputy Health Spokesperson and President of the Irish Association of Suicidology, Dan Neville TD said today (Friday) that the 2004 Annual Report of the National Suicide Review Group confirmed that the suicide rate had increased again in 2004. Deputy Neville said that resources available for suicide prevention were deeply disappointing and that it was vital that the new National Office for Suicide Prevention was funded to a level which could make real change.

“This latest report makes for grim and distressing reading, especially in that it shows that there has been no serious reduction in suicide rates since the publication of the recommendations of the National Taskforce on Suicide in 1998. Analysis of suicides between 1998 and 2002 shows the average annual number of suicides was 490. It also shows that the rate of death by suicide is 4.5 times higher for men than women. Tragically, 22% of the people who took their own lives in this period were aged between 15 and 24.

“This is the last report of the National Suicide Review Group, as it will be replaced by the National Office for Suicide Prevention, and we thank the group for the work they have done. However, it is extremely disappointing that the group was never financed in a way that could bring real change and it is vital that the new body is funded to a level that can make a real difference to dealing with suicide and attempted suicide.

“Funding for suicide to date has been a pittance in relation to the great need which is out there. I will be calling on the Government in the Dáil next week to clarify the role of the National Office for Suicide Prevention as what is more certain than ever is the urgency of real, comprehensive, professional and resourced input into suicide prevention in Ireland.”

YFG new advertising campaign

This is the new advertising campaign for Young Fine Gael.
The aim, to increase membership to 4000 members
With most colleges having their societies day soon the membership drive is well under way!!

ATTENTION UCC STUDENTS!
UCC YFG will have a stand at Socs Day on Wednesday 28th from 9 to 5 in the Multi Functional (Devere Hall) in the Student Centre!!
Come up and join us!
The craic is 90!!!!

Is the role of religion dead in today’s society?

Religon is dead in today’s society to the majority of the population. The number of people attending services and making vocations as priest and ministers are declining.

There a number of reasons for this. Allegations of Child Abuse and allegatiosn of cover-ups have damaged the catholic church.

Other people seam to think that money is the new god.

Other people view the established churchs as old-fashioned with nothing to offer them. Others including myself view most relgions as very discriminatory towards groups they find themselves being part of due to their sexuality or habitation status.

Is this the way christians are supposed to be treating others due to the fact they are gay or single mothers.

Religon is not completely dead as many immigrants are very religous so attendences at mosques and some churches are increasing across europe. This has the affect of making others, including myself, to try and rediscover there spirituality weather it by joining a new church or by becoming reinvigorated within their own church.

National Strategy for Suicide Prevention Must be Properly Funded For It to Be Effective-Neville

Received the following Press Release from Fine Gael National Headquarters about the Governments Suicide Prevention Strategy

Following the launch of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention, Fine Gael’s Deputy Spokesperson on Health and Children, Dan Neville TD, today (Thursday) welcomed the new proposals as a step towards highlighting and dealing with this very serious public health issue and urged the Government to ensure that the necessary funding would be made available.

“It would be unrealistic to expect a magic formula to reduce suicide levels but the proposals outlined today are welcome. In particular, I am delighted that there is a proposal to promote positive mental health and to implement a national intervention skills training programme.

“The recommendations within the National Strategy published today are similar to the 1998 recommendations of the National Taskforce on Suicide.

“The National Suicide Prevention Office that is to be set up to implement strategy, for example, is similar to the 1998 recommendation of the establishment of a National Suicide Review group. That group was given a similar task but it was not suitably resourced by the Government.

“Fine Gael urges the Government on this occasion to provide the necessary resources to implement today’s recommendations. Otherwise, the Strategy will gather dust and the Prevention Office will be ineffectual.

“It is somewhat disappointing that the recommendations are not costed as this would allow for an evaluation of resource allocation. Suicide reduction targets are a feature of most suicide prevention policies in other countries and it is also a pity that these are not included. I urge the Tánaiste to honour her commitment that she gave at the Strategy’s launch, to bring such targets to Government as soon as possible.”

‘Talk’ YFG Anti-Suicide Campaign launched in Cork


The Cork City Branch of Young Fine Gael (YFG) recently launched their ‘Talk’ campaign in Cork City. The ‘Talk’ campaign us a campaign to raise awareness of mental health problems and remove the stigma surrounding them in Ireland. The stigma that surrounds mental health problems makes it difficult for some people to seek help or discuss their problems with friends. This causes further problems for people and can lead to many more problems such as; alcoholism, drug addiction or attempt to commit suicide.

Suicide is a major problem in Ireland. Every 45 minutes, the time it takes to watch half a soccer match, someone in Ireland aged between 16 and 25 attempts suicide. This is a shocking statistic and something must be done.

When the current Government came to power in 1997 they commissioned a report into the problems of youth suicide in Ireland. This report made a number of recommendations to try and solve the problem of youth suicide. The Government has yet to implement any of the recommendations made in this report.

YFG is calling for the problems of mental health and youth suicide in Ireland to be tackled competently by the Government by implementing recommendations in current reports and increasing the mental health budget which has decreased over the past number of years in comparison to the overall health budget.