Posts Tagged 'Jamaica'

Persecution of all, not selected, groups should be condemned

Michael Guest, The Council for Global EqualityRepost from the Charlotte Observer

From Michael Guest, a former Bush Administration ambassador who advises the Council for Global Equality, a coalition of human rights and LGBT advocacy groups.

Rev. Franklin Graham has suggested publicly a cut off of U.S. foreign assistance to Egypt, in response to the latter’s persecution of Christians.

And so, in light of the State Department’s latest human rights reports, how does Rev. Graham feel about providing assistance to Panama, Cameroon, El Salvador and other countries where officials were implicated last year of unlawfully harassing, detaining, or brutalizing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens?

State’s annual human rights report to Congress, released May 24, is widely regarded as the most comprehensive assessment available of human rights abuse abroad. The report is worth taking in.

In Jamaica, police were implicated in 12 cases of assault or other abuse directed at LGBT people. In South Africa, an average of 10 cases per week was reported of lesbians being subjected to “corrective rape,” generally without police response.

In Nigeria, local authorities failed to act against those responsible for stoning and beating members of an LGBT-affirming Christian church. Authorities in China, Russia, the Dominican Republic and Moldova denied freedom of assembly to LGBT citizens and groups. And in dozens of countries, gay and transgender people were denied employment or basic social services, including health, housing and education – only because of who they are.

Rev. Graham is right to be concerned about abuses directed at Egypt’s Coptic Christians. I stand at his side in expressing outrage, both at what this minority has suffered and at the Egyptian Government’s failure, more broadly, to protect minority rights.

But human rights are, if anything, a matter of principle. They are as universal as God’s love. And if all are created in God’s image, every person deserves respect. Continue reading ‘Persecution of all, not selected, groups should be condemned’

Pamela Bridgewater, US Ambassador to Jamaica Op Ed on Homophobia

US Ambassador to Jamaica, Pamela BridgewaterReposted from The Gleaner

Promote equality

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Having served at home and around the world in the foreign service of the United States for more than 30 years, I have found that, often, those of us who can and should use our influence to promote tolerance fail to do so. In our silence, we inadvertently reinforce prejudices.

Homophobia exists to varying degrees in all societies. Every day, in countries all over the world, people are persecuted, vilified, beaten and even killed because of their sexual orientation and gender identity. Homophobia, either open or hidden, causes enormous suffering for those who perpetrate it, those who are the victims of it, and those who simply tolerate it.

While it is true that the responsibility for hate crimes rests with the perpetrators themselves, we all share a duty to counter intolerance and prejudice wherever we can. Continue Reading

The Global Gay Rights Battlefields

In an article by Max Strasser in the December 20, 2010 issue of Foreign Policy Magazine the author highlights the LGBT rights battles taking shape in countries has diverse as Nigeria, Malaysia and Lithuania.

Read the full article here.


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