Thursday, July 05, 2007

July 19: Light Candles for Hanged Gay Iranians, All Living LGBT Iranians
When July 19 comes around in little more than a week from now, my boyfriend and I will be lighting candles of hope and remembrance all day and evening to mark the two-year occasion of Iran's hanging of two gay teenagers, Ayaz Marhoni and Mahmoud Asgari.

Last year I was part of an international gay human rights coalition that organized vigils and the like, in dozens of cities and countries, including three cities in Iran, to call for an end to the death penalty, respect for LGBT people in Iran, and global gay solidarity.
But this year, for many complex reasons, no such worldwide action will happen, which saddens me but that won't stop me from making sure at least two gay men in San Francisco remember the barbaric hangings of the gay Iranian teens.

On July 19 my partner and I will keep candles lit for a few damn good reasons, starting with in memory of Ayaz Marhoni and Mahmoud Asgari, personally recommitting to work against capital punishment, and acting in solidarity with gay Iranians who one day may live as same-sex loving people, free of government and religious persecution.

If you're so inclined, please do likewise on July 19 and light a candle or two.

And should you be interested in working on international gay solidarity in a much more public display of activism, then join in the actions planned in Mexico City, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Stockholm, and Washington on August 4.
The idea for a day of coordinated global LGBT solidarity grew from gays in Stockholm who will march on foreign embassies to call attention to our brothers and sisters around the planet. As in Stockholm, activists in the other cities will hold similar actions on consulates, embassies and in gay neighborhoods.
We would welcome any new organizers and cities to join us on August 4, as we reinvigorate global gay human rights activism.

(This photo is one of three taken in Iran on July 19, 2006)

No comments: