Happy London Pride!

It’s been raining and there have been car bombs in London but I hope that doesn’t affect the day.
And here’s why it’s still important:
The Observer, Coming out of the dark ages
“For most people the Sixties was a time of sexual awakening and experimentation. But it wasn’t until 1967 that gay and bisexual men could share that freedom. On the 40th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality, we revisit the appallingly repressive atmosphere of the Fifties and Sixties that ruined lives, destroyed reputations and finally sparked a campaign for change”
The situation might have changed in the UK – this has been the summer of Civil Partnerships – but Pride marches are attacked in Moscow, Riga and gay rights are still a dream in many places around the world.

Muriel Bamblett, “chairwoman of the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care, the main body for Aboriginal and Islander Children and Family Services”, writes in The Age: Please listen to us, PM:

The Prime Minister says the “old ways” have failed and the time for talk is over.
We would like to believe you, Prime Minister, but your own “old way” of dealing with Aboriginal people is to disregard our voices. We have been trying to talk with you for years about the lack of services for health, education and child protection. We have been giving you examples of Aboriginal communities that have begun to turn around the drug and alcohol abuse and poor health outcomes, communities that have succeeded because they were empowered and resourced to take action.
We have been talking about a human rights and culturally respectful social investment approach. But the approach by the Federal Government is a policy of disinvestment. It promotes mainstreaming and denies community control. It has no evidence base.
The evidence from overseas and in Australia points to the fact that when there is properly resourced indigenous community control and effective culturally based programs, social dysfunction indicators, such as poor health outcomes and youth suicide rates, decrease.
The Prime Minister says the measures he has announced will stabilise and protect communities. We would like to believe you, Prime Minister, but your measures are disempowering and punitive.

Encouring news: Young Americans Are Leaning Left, New Poll Finds

From the New York Times: Young Americans Are Leaning Left, New Poll Finds

Young Americans are more likely than the general public to favor a government-run universal health care insurance system, an open-door policy on immigration and the legalization of gay marriage, according to a New York Times/CBS News/MTV poll. The poll also found that they are more likely to say the war in Iraq is heading to a successful conclusion.

London is turning into Melbourne – it was beautiful and sunny this morning, and I was even going to venture from my desk and go to the park at lunchtime, but we’ve just had a massive downpour.
I never particularly liked the ‘four seasons in one day’ thing in Melbourne and don’t want it over here too!
(I could also do without hayfever, ta)

BBC: ‘Find of century’ for Egyptology

Egyptologists say they have identified the 3,000-year-old mummy of Hatshepsut, Egypt’s most powerful female ruler.

Hatshepsut was an important 18th Dynasty ruler in the 15th Century BC, having usurped her stepson, Thutmosis III.
She was known for dressing like a man and wearing a false beard, and was more powerful than either of her more famous female successors, Nefertiti and Cleopatra.
Hatshepsut’s funerary temple is one of the most visited monuments around the pharaonic necropolis of the Valley of the Kings in Upper Egypt.

Greenpeace are running at ‘Energy saving [r]evolution – first 7 steps‘ campaign – why not sign up and see how it works for you.
“We need to kick start an energy [r]evolution! By burning fossil fuels for energy, we’re altering our atmosphere – causing climate change. To reverse it, we’ll need to stop burning so much coal and oil. Renewable energy like wind and solar power is part of the answer, but the fastest (and most cost effective) way to reduce our global warming pollution is simply use less energy.”