France: Gay magazine refuses to disqualify ‘Mr Gay’ contestant over racism allegations

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A French magazine has refused to disqualify a man from their ‘Mister Gay 2014’ competition, after he endorsed a far-right party and was accused of racism.

Têtu, a gay lifestyle magazine, runs the monthly Mr Gay competition and the annual Mr Gay pageant in the country.

Last month, Matthieu Chartraire, 22, was voted ‘Mr Gay May’ by online readers.

However, he faced allegations of racism after he endorsed extremist far-right party Front Nationale.

Chartraire shared a video on Facebook of a white woman being assaulted by a black man, and wrote: “This is why I would vote for FN”.

Têtu editor-in-chief Yannick Barbe dismissed calls for him to be disqualified, saying in a statement: “The fight against homophobia can’t be separated from the fight against any other form of discrimination.

“We strongly condemn the statements and other racist comments or promoting racism held by him.

“[However] it’s his right to vote for FN, even if we don’t share his beliefs.

“This is a beauty pageant, and our readers’ vote was only based on a single criterion!

“He only stands for himself, and certainly not for the gay community. [Excluding him] would be censorship, and the best way to victimize him.”

The Front Nationale made huge gains in the European elections last month, winning 25% of the vote and 24 of France’s 74 seats.

The group has been denounced by UKIP leader Nigel Farage, who accused leader Marine Le Pen of of “anti-Semitism and general prejudice”, ruling out any alliance in the European Parliament.

Le Pen last year paid tribute to writer and historian Dominique Venner who shot himself dead after denouncing equal marriage and immigration in a blog post.