THE GAY kiss in the 2014 Games opening ceremony has been hailed as a snub to homophobia in Commonwealth countries which criminalise homosexuality.
Openly gay entertainer John Barrowman kissed a male “bride” at a mock Gretna Green during the Opening Ceremony at Celtic Park last night.
Forty two out of 53 Commonwealth countries represented at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow criminalise homosexuality in some way.
Many people used twitter to praise the kiss.
Fergal McFerran tweeted: “John Barrowman’s kiss was important beyond symbolism, it’s still illegal to be gay in 42 of the 53 #Commonwealth Countries” while Nicola ‘Nikki’ Coles @NikkiJColes wrote: “Watch Glasgow snub homophobic nations with John Barrowman gay kiss during opening ceremony.”
Craig Drummond tweeted: “It makes me strangely proud to be Scottish that John Barrowman can kiss a man on live tv” and Graham Love wrote: “Nice touch with this kiss there by John Barrowman. Taking aim at 42 of the 53 competing nations that criminalise homosexuality #Glasgow2014.”
The kiss came hours after Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg called for greater protection for the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people around the globe on a visit to the city’s newly opened Pride House yesterday.
He met campaigners, athletes and volunteers at the centre, which has been set up to promote diversity at the Games and within the Commonwealth.
Mr Clegg said: “The Commonwealth core values and principles which all Commonwealth countries sign up to are clear.
“They say that ‘We are committed to equality and respect for the protection and promotion of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights’.
“Yet almost 80% of Commonwealth countries (42 out of 53 countries) that are represented here in Glasgow this week criminalise homosexuality in some way.”
He added: “I hope that through places like Pride House we can gently but firmly, respectfully but consistently urge fellow Commonwealth countries to not only pay lip service to the values of the Commonwealth but also honour those values that include respecting everyone in society, regardless of their faith, background and sexuality.”