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Community responses to Tahkik episode on Homosexuality

Beirut, (Raynbow Media Monitor) – Lebanon’s MTV screened a documentary on Homosexuality in Lebanon on Nov. 3rd, 2010

You can watch the full episodes here. Judge for yourself and leave you comments below.

The first response from the Lebanese blogosphere came from activist Georges Azzi. In his “Tahkik” on MTV he wrote: “Watching the show tonight on MTV, I felt like being on a rollercoaster, every interesting message or scene was followed by a meaningless and useless one!”. He went on to list the “good” and “bad & frustrating” moments of the show.

Beirut-Boy Blog expressed their disappointment and presented a detailed run down of the content with their own commentary. Read MTV’s “Homosexuality in Lebanon”: Hot Mess with a Nice Ending

On The Rainbow Experience Karim N. started off by “This show was disturbing and off topic.” The only positive aspect about Tahkik in his opinion was “a gay man, a transgendered woman and a gay couple talked on national TV”. Karim ends his post by thanking the Lebanese LGBT Media Monitor for actively engaging and mobilizing the community on Twitter and Facebook.

Lebanon Rebel Blog comments on the three recent TV shows on homosexuality. “Zaven’s episode of Sire we nfata7it is a disgrace… Ta7kik is well done, mostly when it comes to testimonies by homosexuals but otherwise, the opinions of these doctors aren’t quite so good… my personal favorite is ta7ta ta2ilat el mas2ouliya”.  She talks about same-sex marriage and how she might be planning to do so in on eof the countries that allows it. I agree that it is not a “fantasy” anymore. I Personally know a handful of same-sex marriages among Lebanese and few planned for this coming season.

One of Raynbow’s volunteers commented on the show in لبنان MTV خرافات وحقائق! تحقيق, an Arabic article that we published today.

The LGBT community was divided in how individuals viewed the show and its impact on the LGBT movement. This was clearly reflected in comments tweeted or left on our Facebook page.

It was the first time, gay cruising in Lebanon was fully exposed. They went to cruising areas, a lesbian bar, and even logged onto a gay meeting site, Manjam. They searched for “Lebanese men” on the gay social site. To their surprise they found 10043 Lebanese gay man online! The figure appears shocking at first, but with a population of 4 million, you expect 400,000 to be homosexual and 200,000 to be gay (Following the 10% rule, even though one study from the nineties, showed that about 20% of Lebanese men had an orgasm at least once with another man). Using simple calculation, about 5% of Lebanese gay men were online at that moment. It is believable! As the Lebanese LGBT media Monitor puts it:

“‎10043 gay Lebanese men were online on Manjam in MTV Lebanon‘s documentary. Add those offline, then multiply by 2 to account for lesbians & you get a VOTING and BUYING power that politicians must start taking into account.”

Regardless of the controversy, no one can dismiss the “happy ending” with the presenter’s closing comments:

“Is homophobia justified? This rejection by society and family brings deep suffering to those people, making them feel rejected and marginalized, leading for some teenagers to commit suicide and for others to boast their sexuality. Isn’t it time to amend the Lebanese law which regards homosexuality as crime punishable by law, especially considering that in any family there might be a gay person. So do we reject a brother? Do we get disgusted by a sister? Do we ignore a friend? Do we kill a neighbor, just because their sexual orientation is different from ours, and the way they feel towards others is different from our feelings?”

Will this “Happy Ending” make the community forgive the presenter for the false medical information strongly propagated through her show, or the detailed focus on usually “undercover” social meeting areas and facilities?!

Raynbow founder,

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