The Gay group Stonewall has announced the nominees for its annual Hero and Bigot of the Year Awards. The charity's 7th Stonewall Awards take place at the V&A on 1 November, and celebrate people who have made a positive impact on the lives of
Britain's 3.7 million lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
The Hero and Bigot of the Year awards are voted on by Stonewall's supporters.
Shortlist for Hero of the Year.
An individual who has encouraged, inspired or
achieved the most for lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the last year.
Ben & Jerry . Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield founded Ben & Jerry's ice cream in 1978 in Burlington, Vermont. Long-time supporters of equality for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
. Jackie Crozier was Manchester Pride Festival Director between 2005 and 2011.
Tim Franks . Tim's work with the lesbian and gay community began more than 20 years ago with his involvement in a peer run youth
project in Nottingham.
Rev Giles Fraser . Giles Fraser came to national prominence in October 2011 as Canon Chancellor of St Paul's Cathedral during the Occupy London protests. He's long been an outspoken advocate of
equality for gay people and tolerance within the church.
Jessie J . It's been another incredible year for Jessie J. As well as joining BBC One's The Voice as a celebrity judge she wowed a global audience at the Olympic
Closing Ceremony. She tackled tabloid gossip about her sexuality head on, proudly reaffirming that she was bisexual and dismissing rumours as boring and untrue.
Shortlist for Bigot of the Year.
An individual who has gone out of their way to harm, hurt or snub lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the last year.
Alan Craig . In October 2011 Alan Craig caused outrage by comparing gay equality advocates to the invading forces of Nazi Germany and dubbing them the Gaystapo . In an incendiary Church of England Newspaper article
he claimed gay-rights storm troopers take no prisoners as they annex our wider culture and that the modest measure to extend marriage to same-sex couples was proof that Nazi expansionist ambitions are far from sated .
Simon Lokodo . Simon Lokodo, the Ugandan Ethics and Integrity Minister, disbanded the meetings of gay equality groups and arrested activists. According to Lokodo gay people are sick and seek to pervert children.
For a so-called Ethics and Integrity Minister to peddle such inflammatory propaganda is an ironic tragedy for Uganda's gay population.
Lord Maginnis . Lord Maginnis made headlines by referring to same-sex marriage as
unnatural and deviant behaviour and questioning if marriage equality would mean that every deviant practice has to be accommodated? Will the next thing be that we legislate for some sort of bestiality?
Cardinal Keith O'Brien
. Keith O'Brien has been a prominent opponent of marriage equality and made headlines with deeply offensive comments about same-sex couples. He's stated that same-sex relationships are harmful to the physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing and compared equal marriage to slavery and child abuse.
Archbishop Philip Tartaglia . Philip Tartaglia caused outrage in July when he claimed that the late David Cairns MP had died due to the fact he was gay and that a conspiracy of silence prevented people from
stating that being gay directly led to premature death.
Update: Christians Concerned about being seen as bigots
31st October 2012.See article from
Those nominated for Stonewall's Bigot of the Year award include a Cardinal, an Archbishop, a member of the House of Lords and the former leader of the Christian Peoples Alliance. They have all spoken out against gays in connection with government
plans to extend marriage to gay couples.
Christian Concern have found a way to fight back against Stonewall's highlighting of nasty comments from senior Christians.
According to Stonewall's website, the Awards evening is supported by high
street bank Barclays, global professional services firm PwC, the Queen's bank Coutts & Co and internet search engine Google.
Now in response to emails from christian campaigners, Coutts has informed Stonewall that it will withdraw its support
for the event unless the Bigot of the Year Award is dropped. Barclays has also told Stonewall that unless the Award is pulled, it will not support the event in the future.
Update: Calling a Bigot a Bigot
November 2012. See article from bbc.co.uk
Cardinal Keith O'Brien has been awarded the Bigot of the Year award by Stonewall. His extreme stance on gay marriage was singled out at the awards ceremony in London.
Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson won Politician of the Year, but was booed for
also criticising the bigot award. Davidson, who is gay, has been among cross-party support for a same-sex marriage bill which is being brought forward by the Scottish government, while Cardinal O'Brien has been a strong critic of the plans.
said it was important for young people to see that politics, gender or sexuality should be no barrier to success:
But where I disagree with Stonewall in these awards is the need to call people names like 'bigot'. It is
The case for equality is far better made by demonstrating the sort of generosity, tolerance and love we would wish to see more of in this world.
Stonewall Scotland director Colin Macfarlane said:
It's fitting that Stonewall's 10,000 supporters voted decisively to name Cardinal O'Brien as Bigot of the Year.
We've never called anyone a bigot just because they don't agree with us, but in
just the past 12 months the cardinal has gone well beyond what any normal person would call a decent level of public discourse.