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article imageJohn Barrowman at the Commonwealth Games (Vine video)

By Mathew Wace Peck     Jul 24, 2014 in World
At the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, the Scottish actor and singer John Barrowman has delivered a rebuke to the 42 Commonwealth countries where homosexuality still remains illegal, by kissing a man in full view of everyone.
Barrowman was part of the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony. He, together with the comedian Dunbar entered the stage from beneath a giant kilt, before singing "Welcome to Scotland."
As reported by the Huffington Post, Barrowman, who is openly gay, "kissed a male 'bride' at a 'mock Gretna Green,' before being whisked away on a sea of 'heather.'"
A popular entertainer in the UK and US, Barrowman is best known for playing the omnisexual character, Captain Jack Harkness, in Doctor Who and Torchwood. He also plays Malcolm Merlyn in Arrow, the American superhero television drama series starring Stephen Amell.
"Speak up," says Speaker Bercow
Human-rights groups have been pressuring both British Prime Minister David Cameron and Scotland First Minister Alex Salmond to speak out against those member countries of the Commonwealth (42 out of 53) where same-sex relationships are still outlawed.
And, as reported in the Guardian, prior to the Games commencing, the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, challenged the British government on the issue.
"Shamefully, it is estimated that 4 out of every 5 countries in the Commonwealth criminalise homosexuality," Bercow said. Surely, it is time for the Commonwealth to do more to support lesbian, gay, transsexual and bisexual people, to ensure they are not discriminated against, no matter where they live?"
Earlier this week, gay-rights campaigner Peter Tatchell called on Scotland's First Minister, Alex Salmond, to "appeal to all participating countries to adhere to Article 7 of the Commonwealth Games Federation constitution, which prohibits all discrimination."
Tatchell, BBC News reports, continued: "Countries that refuse to support Article 7 – or that perpetuate discrimination in access to sports facilities, training camps or team selection – should be barred from participating in the Commonwealth Games. If they are not prepared to abide by Article 7 they have no right to come to Glasgow or future Commonwealth Games."
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