Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Is South African media homophobic? When was the last time you heard of Mr Gay SA being promoted? Have your say and find out more

By Denisia Adams
v. enunciated, enunciating, enunciates
1. To pronounce; articulate.
2. To state or set forth precisely or systematically: enunciate a doctrine.
3. To announce; proclaim.

Clumsy Museumgoer Damages Picasso Painting
A woman attending an art class at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art lost her balance and fell into a century-old Picasso painting, creating a 6-inch-long (15-centimeter-long) vertical tear in the large canvas. The painting, called The Actor, dates to Picasso's Rose Period, when he shifted from the cool tones of his Blue Period to warmer, more romantic hues. According to the museum, the damage did not affect the "focal point of the composition" and the painting will be repaired in time for a major Picasso retrospective featuring some 250 of the artist's works.

How to Have a Great Conversation
Listen. This is the most important part of any conversation. Pay attention to what is being said. Make acknowledging noises or movements to indicate that you are still listening. A conversation will go nowhere if you are too busy thinking of anything else, including what you plan to say next. If you listen well, the other person's statements will suggest questions for you to ask. Allow the other person to do most of the talking. They will often not realize that it was they who did most of the talking, and you get the credit for being a good conversationalist - which of course, you are!
Find out what the other person is interested in. Do some research in advance when you know you will have an opportunity to talk with a specific person, but don't sound like a stalker. Complimenting them is a great place to start. Everyone likes sincere compliments, and that can be a great ice-breaker.
Make a good first impression. Smile, ask questions that require more than a yes/no answer, and really listen. Maintain eye contact and keep as friendly and polite as possible.
Ask questions. What do they like to do? What sort of things have they done in their lives? What is happening to them now? What did they do today or last weekend? Identify things about them that you might be interested in hearing about, and politely ask questions, but again, don't sound like a stalker. Remember, there was a reason that you wanted to talk to them, so obviously there was something about them that you found interesting. However, try to space out your questions or they'll feel like you're interrogating them which is very bad and closes off friendships.
Forget yourself. Dale Carnegie once said, "It's much easier to become interested in others than it is to convince them to be interested in you." If you are too busy thinking about yourself, what you look like, or what the other person might be thinking, you will never be able to relax. Introduce yourself, shake hands, then forget yourself and focus on them instead.
Practice active listening skills. Part of listening is letting the other person know that you are listening. Make eye contact. Nod. Say "Yes," "I see," "That's interesting," or something similar to give them clues that you are paying attention and not thinking about something else - such as what you are going to say next.
Ask clarifying questions. If the topic seems to be one they are interested in, ask them to clarify what they think or feel about it. If they are talking about an occupation or activity you do not understand, take the opportunity to learn from them. Everyone loves having a chance to teach another willing and interested person about their hobby or subject of expertise.
Paraphrase back what you have heard, using your own words. This seems like an easy skill to learn, but takes some practice to master. Conversation happens in turns, each person taking a turn to listen and a turn to speak or to respond. It shows respect for the other person when you use your "speaking turn" to show you have been listening and not just to say something new. They then have a chance to correct your understanding, affirm it, or embellish on it.
Consider your response before disagreeing. If the point was not important, ignore it rather than risk appearing argumentative. If you consider it important then politely point out your difference of opinion. Do not disagree merely to set yourself apart, but remember these points:
o It is the differences in people--and their conversation--that make them interesting.
o Agreeing with everything can kill a conversation just as easily as disagreeing with everything.
o A person is interesting when they are different from you; a person is obnoxious when they can not agree with anything you say, or if they use the point to make themselves appear superior.
o Try to omit the word "but" from your conversation when disagreeing as this word often puts people on the defensive. Instead, try substituting the word "and", it has less of an antagonistic effect.
Consider playing devil's advocate - which requires care. If your conversation partner makes a point, you can keep the conversation going by bringing up the opposite point of view (introduce it with something like "I agree, and..."). If you overuse this technique, however, you could end up appearing disagreeable or even hostile.
Do not panic over lulls. This is a point where you could easily inject your thoughts into the discussion. If the topic seems to have run out, use the pause to think for a moment and identify another conversation topic or question to ask them. Did something they said remind you of something else you have heard, something that happened to you, or bring up a question or topic in your mind? Mention it and you'll transition smoothly into further conversation!
Know when the conversation is over. Even the best conversations will eventually run out of steam or be ended by an interruption. Smile if you're leaving, and tell them you can't wait to talk to them again soon. Ending on a positive note will leave a good impression and likely bring them back later for more!

Coenie Kukkuk, director of media legal of the South African Mr Gay pageant as well as a member of SA GLAAD (South African Alliance Against Defamation). I invited Coenie Kukkuk to discuss the whole controversy of Mr Gay South Africa not getting coverage as suppose to Miss World etc. This has now caused the South African media to be accused of being homophobic baring in mind that South Africa was one of the first countries to implement that there may not be discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. What was discussed in the interview is that in general whenever there are gay events taking place in South Africa it never gets coverage and allegedly editors and reporters’ reasons are it’s not of public interest. Kukkuk says, “The only coverage we do get is if there is controversy, controversy in the sense that there’s an outrageous drag queen…” The interview then went into the crux really of a situation of this magnitude, human rights.

Kukkuk continued to inform us about the situation in Uganda where there is an anti-homosexuality bill before their legislative assembly. It not only sends gay individuals to prison for life there is a death sentence if gays engage in any sexual activity with anyone HIV positive, underage or disabled. Kukkuk believes that if South Africa doesn’t act on this since South Africa is in fact a role model to other countries when it comes to gay rights, our constitution is at risk.

Kukkuk continued to enlighten but stating that when the president of PAYCO (Pan Africanist Youth Congress of Azania) Pitso Mphasha said, “We are saying to hell with the South African Constitution for giving rights to gays and lesbians….”, he’s actually saying to hell with everyone, rights of children, rights to religion, the list goes on. Gays are usually the minority yet in someway or the other we all form part of a minority which means for instance that if gay rights are at peril, any human right in SA may be in danger.

Lastly Kukkuk mentioned a charge has been laid at the South African human rights commission in Mpumalanga for hate speech against PAC youth league’s comments toward gays and lesbians. Kukkuk was in fact contacted today by the South African human rights commission to confirm they have received the complaint and the situation is being investigated.


**Have your say comment on today’s blog

Myrtle Reed, American writer
If we all tired to make other people’s paths easy, our own feet would have a smooth even place to walk on.
That’s it for the Morning Cruise, where we cruise through your weekday here on BushRadio 89.5fm live on your stereo between 9am – 12pm with me Denisia Adams. Take Care ... make the best of your day and Keep the Faith. Stay Real!!!!!!!!!!

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