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Someone’s at home eating warmed-up soup

So it seems the leader of a certain political party in the Faroe Islands has his knickers all in a twist because our PM Jóhanna is visiting his country with her spouse. And [GASP!] Jóhanna is gay.

The dude, Jenis av Rana, who leads Miðflokkurinn, apparently a right-of-centre party, has loudly declared that he will not be attending a banquet this evening to which all the party leaders were invited because Jóhanna and Jónína will be there and he will not share a table with them. Because, um, by living together they’re opposing the teachings of the Bible [or something].

Later in the day, another MP for the ruling party spoke up and said that he, too, would be declining the invitation to the banquet because Jóhanna’s visit with Jónína was “a provocation”.

Sheesh, guys! Get with the 2010s already!

To the Faroe Islanders credit, a few of them were interviewed on the news this evening and they were all suitably embarrassed. This guy, for instance, is mortified.

Be that as it may, makes you wonder if the Faroe Islanders had lent us that money back in the day if Jóhanna had been PM.

Meanwhile, I think the Gay Pride people should extend a formal invitation to Jenis av Rana to be guest of honour at their parade next August. That would probably do him in completely.

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  • JB in San Diego September 7, 2010, 11:20 pm

    The writer of the article you reference points out a detail of which I was not aware, that the story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah in the bible had more to do with a dearth of hospitality than with sexual perversion. Interesting and useful argument to counter biblical-based gay bashing. I also agree that this “incident” is worthy of no more than a chuckle and a shake of the head at this point in history; progressive attitudes supporting non-traditional relationships and lifestyles are only getting more widespread.

  • Max Naylor September 7, 2010, 11:24 pm

    I’d heard the Faroes were a bit backwards in this respect, due to a deeply-entrenched Christian heritage. I wonder how many young Faroe Islanders feel this way.

  • sylvia hikins September 7, 2010, 11:44 pm

    The Faroe Island offical website tells us that in the 2007 National Geographic sustainable tourism survey it came top in as the most appealing destination in the world. To quote: ‘The islands earned high marks for preservation of nature, historic architecture and local pride.’
    Obviously, local pride does not include gay pride. Does that mean that gay people have no rights under the Faroe Island’s constitution? I hope that Johanna’s spouse continues to accompany her on all official overseas visits. And sustainable or not, I’ve just taken the Faroe Islands off of my ‘must see’ list.
    sylvia from viking wirral

  • kevin oconnor,waterford ireland September 8, 2010, 12:31 am

    Strange I thought this gay thing was done and dusted back in 1978 with the village people, maybe they could turn up wearing their outfits, perhaps the biker getup for Jóhanna and her intended in the construction worker, no make that the red indian outfit, all set to the music of Y.M.C.A

    Now that really would get Jenis av Rana going ha ah ah. 🙂

  • Kris September 8, 2010, 1:21 am

    Who cares which way the wind blows for Fake Lefty Johanna. Being a lesbian does not make her an less of a fraud and a con artist. Granny, a Bolshevik and true lefty, would have been offended by the little trollop for her lack on political conviction and courage. And me too! She is probably not even brining home a doggy bag for the people. By doggy bag I mean trade deal. Don’t she have any work to do? Don’t you want to foster economic ties with people who have money (them) and people who don’t have any money (us)? Pride (gay pride included) does not close a lot of deals. Not that she there to make any deal, evidently.
    I guess I’m still upset that she drove the get-away car for the IP by supporting the nationalization of the banks.

  • Nat September 8, 2010, 2:22 am

    That’s just bull, everyone has the right to be who they are, or maybe whats his face and the others are just jealous, seeing two outstanding women who love each other and who are not afraid. Or maybe they are jealous because they are not “getting any” at home from their spouses and they know damn well Jóhanna and Jónína are busy.
    Plus, I was always taught, Judge not lest ye be judged.

  • PeterRRRRR September 8, 2010, 3:04 am

    I suppose this is one of those rare instances when Icelanders can make fun of some place smaller and even less populated than their own country. Doesn’t happen very often 🙂

  • andy KJ September 8, 2010, 8:50 am

    Their beliefs…don’t mock. Don’t like it but would support their right to hold them.

  • Petri Aho September 8, 2010, 9:41 am

    Wife pointed this story out to me yesterday and certainly boggled my mind. To me it would just seem that when nations officials attack the person of another nations democratically elected leader they are also attacking the nation as a whole. I suppose he’s feeling brave since Iceland doesn’t have an army.
    Everybody should be entitled to an opinion, but when you are in official position of the state, would think one had some restraint and diplomacy. Don’t attend the banquet if it is such a big deal for you, but not raise a fuss about it.

  • RLJ September 8, 2010, 11:58 am

    @JB:
    er… yes, and I think part of the poor “hospitality” pertained to them refusing to allow the guests access to their daughters.

  • alda September 8, 2010, 12:03 pm

    Ordinarily I would have deleted a comment like the one above, but I thought I’d let it speak for itself about the character of the person posting.

  • RLJ September 8, 2010, 1:10 pm

    Alda,
    Do you mean MY comment? That was not a joke; I really think that is what the biblical passage is about; and if it isn’t that passage, then it is lurking somewhere in the old testament (and I apologise for the mix up). I am a feminist and a Christian and would not even use the world “tolerant” to describe my view over same sex unions. I don’t HAVE views on same-sex unions any more than I have views on opposite-sex unions.
    I wanted to emphasise the selectivity of the use of the Bible to support people’s prejudices. You can publish this comment, or not; but your comment in response to mine is rather offensive, as it does indicate an attack on my “character” (as well as some ignorance on the subject on your part).

  • Alexander E. September 8, 2010, 1:12 pm

    Jenis av Rana is in his full rights to think the way he thinks is right. I see no problem with his decision (should I mention “being in Rome…” rule?).

    PS. To Petri Aho. I wouldn’t use the definition “democratically elected leader” cause Icelanders don’t elect “leaders”. They are allowed to vote for political parties only – then political parties are virtually free to do whatever they like. And by no account Johanna is a leader. She wouldn’t get +50% in case of direct vote. I would rather call her “hired by the nation to serve” (if this could be applied to politicians).

  • rlj September 8, 2010, 1:56 pm

    Sorry, Alda,
    I did get it mixed up. Here is the biblical quote. In fact, Lot DID offer his daughters; and they were refused. (But God had already had enough of S&G long before the incident in the passage.)
    I don’t see any of the gay-bashing community suggesting we hand over our virgin daughters to nasty mobs though. Selective use the bible, etc., etc.

    Genesis 19:1-13
    “The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground. “My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning.” “No,” they answered, “we will spend the night in the square.” But he insisted so strongly that they did go with him and entered his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate.

    Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom both young and old– surrounded the house. They called to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.” Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof.” “Get out of our way,” they replied. And they said, “This fellow came here as an alien, and now he wants to play the judge! We’ll treat you worse than them.” They kept bringing pressure on Lot and moved forward to break down the door. But the men inside reached out and pulled Lot back into the house and shut the door. Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door. The two men said to Lot, “Do you have anyone else here–sons-in- law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here, because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to the LORD against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it.” “

  • Joerg September 8, 2010, 2:51 pm

    It’s a particular nuisance these days that Christian right wing fundamentalists  get the headlines far too often. I would expect a very clear statement that this is not the position of the Faroese government. Otherwise, I couldn’t understand, how they dare to promote this place as “the most appealing island community in the world”. This is an extremely backward and off-putting attitude.

    Apart from this, I doubt that this is a widespread attitude among the Faroese people in general. I visited the Faroe Islands this summer for a couple of days. One evening there was a well attended concert of Elton John in Tórshavn. Either they didn’t check before they invited him or they didn’t care in this case.

  • andy KJ September 8, 2010, 4:08 pm

    Alda – judgy? Live and let live. Playing into domestic Faroese politics is no different to complaining about the activities of a PR person.

  • Kris September 8, 2010, 7:39 pm

    Joerg — isn’t that how Iceland is promoted 😉
    I couldn’t help myself:)
    Do you think society will be more tolerant of homosexuals once cloning becomes the standard way of producing humans? Just a thought.
    As far as the Bible goes, my buddy LT was of the opinion that the Old Testament was the bathwater and the New Testament was the baby. So, don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater.

  • alda September 8, 2010, 8:25 pm

    RLJ — If I’ve misinterpreted your comment, I apologize.

  • RLJ September 8, 2010, 9:46 pm

    No worries; I think we’ve both learned to READ the Bible before we comment on it 😉 (Not that it stops most of the haters.)

  • James September 8, 2010, 11:37 pm

    Perhaps this is actually documentary footage from the Faroe Islands:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEOQqnHMSMc

  • sylvia hikins September 9, 2010, 12:09 am

    andy KJ (your first comment)…their beliefs…don’t mock.
    Sure I agree. It’s OK to hold and express diverse beliefs. But when you use your beliefs to discriminate, that’s another matter. Johanna -your Prime Minister- and her partner were discriminated against when on an official visit. Frankly, I think Iceland deserves an apology.
    sylvia from viking wirral

  • George September 9, 2010, 2:29 am

    I would join KJ and a couple of others here…I personally don’t give a flying f… who marries whom. But I fully respect the right of a religious Christian to object to a same sex union. There is NO discrimination involved. By definition, discrimination would mean that Johanna and her spouse were denied a service or a product. They were denied nothing. A political leader chose not to attend a function – that’s the long and the short of it. It is Johanna’s full right to be married to a person of the same sex. It is the Faroese politician’s full right to attend or not attend any party he pleases.

    On a broader note: to throw around labels such as “right wing fundamentalist” is unhelpful. It says more about the one labeling than the one being labeled. My motto is “live and let live and for God’s sake, get the government off my back!” 🙂

  • idunn September 9, 2010, 8:47 am

    Jenis av Rana, and anyone else of the same ilk, serves only as an embarrassment to himself.

    Jóhanna and Jónína will surely be fine, as big girls understanding perfectly well the vagaries of this world, and people within it.

    With luck they will enjoy a lovely dinner.

  • Kris September 9, 2010, 6:06 pm

    I don’t see why she is getting support for anything she does. As far as I can tell she supported the nationalization of the banks. A.k.a, she threw you under the buss, and your kids! She burned down your house and sold you to the IMF just as much as DO and the IP. In my book she gets zero sympathy. They could have fed her to the sharks for all I care. Why, because she showed how much she cared about me and my family. Ask her about her business dealings and off-shore bank account. Now that would be interesting!

  • Easy September 9, 2010, 10:06 pm

    Well said Kris!!!

  • Michael Lewis September 9, 2010, 11:42 pm

    @RLJ .. I think there was some confusions because the posts aren’t ‘threaded’ there is no context to your post just above Alda’s comment. Taken in isolation its easy to misread it.

    Anyway, seems a bit of a fuss about nothing. People will hold their views and of course they are entitled to them. I think its wrong to mock them for their views. Which to them are sincere.

    To others perhaps ridiculous. As neither MP are in the government or representing the Faroe Islands government, it’s hardly a snub. And refusing to visit a country because you don’t like the views of two of their MPs (presumably playing to an audience as all politicians do, all of the time) is taking retribution a step too far.

    As for the whole question of Lesbians, let me just say, some of my favourite films … oh hang on …

  • wally September 10, 2010, 12:40 pm

    @Michael Lewis
    Porn jokes are not funny, just ask our mayor!

  • hildigunnur September 11, 2010, 1:20 am

    Michael rofl!

    Kris, really, try to do it differently! Trying to save the rest of the banking system thousands, tens of thousands of us have our money in the banks. Yes, some have only debts. The majority of us actually depend on the little money we kept in there! I’m pretty sure she hasn’t got a huge nest egg in the Caymans.

    Jóhanna, Steingrímur & co didn’t inherit a great system or an easy solution. Deal with it!!!

  • Kris September 11, 2010, 4:11 pm

    Hildigunnur, I was thinking about that and there are solutions that could have been in place to safe the savings of people like you and %80 of the country without incurring the massive debit, AND letting the swindlers loose everything. A gov program to insure the first $100k is one. So that when the banks failed, the investors lost everything and the depositors lost very little. Banskter controlled media (MB and FB) and their cronies peddled the only one solution propaganda through relentless fear mongering, if I recall correctly.
    Industry that was privatized with the ‘funny money’ could have been re-socialized to save jobs. Co-operative ownership of key industries, etc. Lotteries on housing ownership. Lot’s of options. Small countries can move fast.
    What was done was essentially the opposite. The investors saved and depositors ruined. People in your situation are like boiling frogs. The sovereign debit will eat up your savings in the form of IMF enforced privatizations and austerities (pay more get less). Something you need to fight against tooth and nail. I stand by my condemnation of the Johanna and the rest of the Fake Lefties.
    If I have 50k in the bank and am debit free I 50k in the black. Add 50k debit and I’m broke. Taking on the bankers debit wiped out most peoples savings and then some. The bansters are just playing a parlor game with the money now. Don’t be fooled. Maybe they should rename Landsbanki the Bank of Mirrors!
    This is how I see it, right or wrong.