GLN HOMOPHOBIA & BIGOTRY NEWS
Chicago Joins I.D.A.HO. Events in 70 Countries
GLN permalink 5-19-2011
Chicago's Gay Liberation Network organized the city's fifth annual observation of I.D.A.HO. - International Day Against Homophobia, Bi-phobia and Trans-phobia on Tuesday evening. Activists from across the area came to mark the city's most international Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) event.
Courage Nigeria's John Adewoye addressed the crowd and passersby about the situations facing LGBTs in Africa, where South African lesbian and bisexual women face threats of what's been dubbed "corrective rape" by heterosexist men, and Ugandan LGBTs face a notorious "kill-the-gays" bill and incitements to murder by a local publication.
A photo of Uganda's gay leader David Kato appeared on the front page of a newspaper next to the caption, "Hang Them." As The Guardian newspaper reported on January 27th, "One of Uganda's most prominent gay rights activists has been murdered in his home weeks after winning a court victory over a tabloid that called for homosexuals to be killed. David Kato, the advocacy officer for Sexual Minorities Uganda, was bludgeoned to death in Mukono, Kampala, yesterday afternoon."
Vickie Cervantes of the Latino international solidarity group La Voz de los de Abajo told the crowd about the wave of LGBT murders that has hit Honduras since the U.S.-supported coup in June 2009. Many of those murdered were leaders in the country's LGBT and pro-democracy movements.
GLN's Bob Schwartz noted that anti-LGBT discrimination is a truly international problem, including in the United States. Not only have U.S. evangelicals played key roles in promoting homophobia in Uganda, they are also presently pushing a Minnesota bill which would put a vote for an anti-gay constitutional amendment on that state's 2012 ballot.
GLN co-founder Andy Thayer reported that Moscow, Russia authorities had just that day banned gay pride again in that city, despite a unanimous European Court of Human Rights ruling last fall that previous bans were unconstitutional. GayRussia (www.gayrussia.eu) has pledged to go forward with a public gay pride event on May 28th despite the ban.
Thayer and other international activists will be traveling to Russia next week to participate in the "illegal" event. Pro-LGBT people in the United States are asked to support Russian LGBTs by phoning the Russian embassy in Washington and demanding that the authorities not only permit the event, but protect it from probable violent attacks by neo-fascist thugs. Please call the embassy at either 202-338-3263 or 202-232-5988
I.D.A.H.O. events were held in some 70 countries on Tuesday, on every inhabited continent.
The recently retired Art Gursch -- activist in LGBT politics for over 40 years.