By Junior Mayema,
Homophobia and Transphobia have reached dangerous level rising to the extent of crime against humanity with countries such as Uganda struggling with an antigay law to put all LGBT Ugandans to death and other countries already executing gay people, few days ago we all witnessed and saw disturbing and shocking pictures of ISIS terrorists throwing gay men to death, this is not a joking issue anymore it is not an issue to play around with or else, we will soon reach genocide, crime against humanity and history will repeat itself once more so in order to prevent crime against humanity from taking place the UN must jump on board and includes LGBT rights in its UN developpment goal.
INTERNATIONAL GAY & LESBIAN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION RESPONDS TO PHOTOS OF ISIS THROWING TWO MEN TO THEIR DEATHS IN IRAQ
It is not about sneaking LGBT rights within the United Nations, it is about restoring the fundamental human rights of all human beings as it is enshrined in the universal declaration of human rights because let me be clear homophobia and transphobia are no difference to racism, xenophobia, sexism and all other scourges that continue to plague and threaten our human family here are the the clarification below ;
Finding Love & Tolerance Instead of Racism & Homophobia
Civil Rights go beyond issues of racial injustice; LGBT discrimination continues for many people in Appalachia. But these last two years have certainly seen some sweeping changes for laws allowing same sex couples to marry. In Appalachia, gay marriage has become legal in West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and Pennsylvania by court decisions. States that have banned gay marriage by law include KY and TN.
Religious extremism and fundamentalism have permeated every aspect of our common life and relying on commonly agreed principles of “human rights” can longer be trusted. Russia’s lead on last year’s “traditional values” clause gives anyone a convenient “opt out” solution and governments can no longer be held accountable on how it treats all its citizens, particularly if their religious beliefs define gender roles and sexual orientation.
Grame Reid’s Human Rights Watch article was written in 2012 when this resolution began to grown roots and he outlines the important connections for gender and LGBT equality. He called it an excuse for legitimizing human rights abuses.
Progressive faith voices rally
This past week, several progressive faith organizations met at Riverside Church in New York City to begin to work together on the intersection of gender and LGBT equality that might help organizations like the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) or the World Bank provide an alternative and supportive voice to augment the human rights approach to both movements.
The public square narrative has been dominated for too long by one particular viewpoint that interprets Holy Scriptures in a patriarchal way, and is often opposed to the kinds of progress that women and LGBT people are working towards. The coalition can be a resource both for the Commission itself and the many side events that are part of the CSW experience, but we hope to provide an ongoing forum for religious and secular organizations that often feel inadequate to respond to religiously motivated push-back.
The major issue facing the Commission and its recommendations to the UN around the future extension of the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) concerns discussions on women’s reproductive rights. These are highly controversial and there is already a robust ecumenical women’s coalition working to ensure there is a scriptural basis upon which to move forward. Quoting from their website:
Ecumenical women at the UN – a scriptural basis for their work
Two scripture passages (1John 3:1-2 and Mark 12:28-31 — See below) are at the core of what calls us forth to advocacy, especially to give voice to the concerns and issues of women and girls who do not currently have a voice in this world. These readings focus on the nature of our relationship with God and how that leads us to be in the world.
1John 3:1-2 reminds us that it is by means of the love of God for us that we are to be called the children of God. This is what we are: children of God, sisters and brothers of Christ, and by this we are also sisters and brothers of one another. By our baptisms we are bound forever to God, in the name of the Holy Trinity. Our walk with Christ informs all aspects of our lives, especially the question of how we are to live this out, individually and working together. In Mark 12:28-31, we can see our way forward to serve both God and this world. We are called to love the Lord our God with everything we have and are, and to love our neighbor as ourselves. The love of us by God and our love toward God propels us forward to care for others, not only those who are in our closest circles, but also those neighbors who are new to us, or different from us, or in great need.
This leads directly to advocacy and to outreach. The work of Ecumenical Women at UNCSW is an opportunity to live this out on a global scale, directly impacting the lives of women and girls throughout the world. UNCSW 59 is a Review Year for the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. It is very important as we go forward that we see what has been accomplished and what is in great need of attention. Together as people of faith we are called to make a difference together, as well as in each of our member organizations. Let us love one another as Christ has loved us.
Let us pray: Almighty God, in you we live and move and have our being: We humbly pray you so to guide us by your Holy Spirit, that in all the cares and work of our lives, especially the work of Ecumenical Women, may we not forget you, but be ever walking in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Episcopal Church’s position
The Ecumenical Women’s position is focused entirely on the role and rights of women and does not specifically call out the need for lesbian, transgender or bisexual women, as we see in the Episcopal Church’s statement:
“The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action brought progress in our societies by raising the level of consciousness and creating a foundational framework with 12 critical areas by which indicators of empowerment could be analyzed. This progress includes heightened awareness and more initiatives and legislation to address gender violence and law enforcement and courts standing against domestic violence, reduction in female genital mutilation/cutting, greater access to primary education for girls within the context of the MDG’s, and more readily available health care, including for reproductive health. We applaud improved protection of human rights for women and girls in general and for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual individuals. We celebrate the improved treatment of girls and the greater access they enjoy to educational and career opportunities.”
Even this statement is controversial and we hope to build greater awareness and dialogue with other faith based and secular organizations who understand what is at stake if the present momentum celebrated by these statements and visions are undermined.
– See more at: http://sdgln.com/social/2015/01/23/rgod2-how-sexism-root-homophobia#sthash.0MUFPGyl.dpuf
And here is what is happening so so far within the UN :
The new UN development agenda is silent about individuals that identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual, but the United Kingdom wants to change that.
The Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United Nations told non-governmental organizations LGBT rights would be part of the new UN development goals ahead of negotiations for the overhaul of the UN development system at UN headquarters this week.
Governments and UN bureaucrats outlined differing visions for the new global development agenda this week during a first round of negotiations at UN headquarters. The post-2015 development agenda, which will replace the Millennium Development Goals, will go into effect next January. This week countries met to broadly outline their positions and kick off the negotiations.
As expected, countries did not deal much with the substance of the new agenda, and LGBT rights did not come into the conversation. This troubles advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual (LGTB) rights, who were at UN headquarters Friday last week to protest during a forum for non-governmental organizations. The groups have gained visibility in recent years following the creation of new funding streams for their activities by the United States and the European Union.
A key element of the new agenda will be the institutional mechanism for monitoring progress on a new set of sustainable development goals, which will very likely be housed within the UN Economic and Social Council. But implementation and review will be a voluntary state-led process. This is especially troubling to LGBT groups because they have yet to gain a normative footing at the United Nations.
When prodded about the issue during the forum, the Kenyan ambassador who is chairing the negotiations for the post-2015 development agenda offered no guarantees that LGBT rights would find a place in the new development agenda, reiterating instead that implementation and review of the agenda will be country led.
His British counterpart at the same event sought to reassure LGBT groups by saying that LGBT concerns will be addressed indirectly under the rubric of “sexual and reproductive health and rights” a controversial term that is currently not part of the agreed goals and targets because it has never been defined in UN policy. Advocacy groups include issues like abortion on demand and LGBT rights under the term.
A controversial report of the Secretary General published in December employed the controversial term instead of the language agreed in the goals last year by the General Assembly, and suggested that countries should listen to LGBT groups.
The overhaul will establish universal goals for social, economic, and environmental issues—unlike previous development frameworks that focused on helping poor countries achieve a basic level of development. Seventeen goals and 169 targets for action agreed last year by the General Assembly are the starting point of the negotiations.
The agenda includes social issues like tackling poverty and hunger, improving health and education, but also claims to drive economic growth while addressing environmental concerns like climate change, deforestation, and marine degradation.
Only a few governments question the usefulness of such an approach. On Tuesday, Canada argued the agenda should focus on the “poorest of the poor” and on fewer goals and targets. But their view is not resonating with other delegations, each wanting their concerns to remain in the spotlight.
For most countries what remains to be decided is how the agreed goals will be implemented and how progress on the goals will be judged, with a sharp divide between developed and developing countries. But there is a lingering disagreement over the level of involvement the Secretary General and the vast UN bureaucracy he commands should have in designing the new development framework.
In the December report, the Secretary General suggested the UN bureaucracy should conduct a “technical review” of each goal and target before the development agenda is finalized. He also proposed a reorganization of the goals through 6 “essential elements.”These actions are widely seen as an intrusion on the prerogative of UN member states to design and decide on the new development agenda. The Group of 77 and China, a bloc of 137 developing countries, delivered stern statements saying the goals “should not be revised behind closed doors by a handful of selected experts.”
The UN bureaucracy’s involvement in developing data and indicators to monitor the goals and targets is widely accepted, so long as countries are able to choose indicators at a national level.
Uncertainty about the details of the post-2015 development agenda will persist until July when an international conference on financing for development will finish. The success of the new agenda rides on reaching that agreement.
We must continue to hold countries accountable for their international obligations at the United Nations this effort can generate the repeal of colonial era holdovers antigay law here are some efforts being made :
Kenya’s Attorney-General, Githu Muigai, responded by explaining that the three divisive issues of abortion, the death penalty and sexual identity had almost led to the scuppering of talks to create the country’s 2010 Constitution.
“What we decided then – and this is our view now – is that these are issues which we shall address as we go along, creating dialogue, creating opportunities to discuss and form social consensus on the issue,” he said.
Muigai argued that Kenya has made “tremendous progress” on LGBTI issues, stating that “we do not have a single individual in Kenya who can cite the application of the criminal law against themselves on the basis of their sexual orientation.”
Despite Turkey’s pledge to implement comprehensive anti-discrimination legislation with the inclusion of the terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” (SOGI) in the first UPR cycle back in 2010, the government of Turkey has not taken any steps to legally recognize or protect these categories. In the absence of state recognition and protection of LGBTI individuals, Turkey does not collect data on crimes committed on the basis of SOGI; while some Judges apply reductions to prison sentences of perpetrators of hate crimes against LGBT individuals. Though homosexuality is not criminalized, homosexuality is often considered “indecent” and “contrary to law and ethics”. Such troubling interpretations of sexual orientation and gender identity have in effect limited the right to free speech and freedom of association for the LGBTI community.
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And in order for us to reach an HIV free generation goal we have to include key populations in the UN new developpment goal on sexual and reproductive health and rights in order to control and prevent new infections after creating a new hiv vaccine by 2030 according to bill gates :