Thursday, April 23, 2009

HRC Lobbies State Dept Over Iraqi Gay Violence;

Not a Fake Release!

I have never posted a full statement from the Human Rights Campaign because I generally find it is a nominally effective wing of the Democratic Party, nor am I in the habit of praising the group. But today I am sharing their full blog post about the torture and murder of Iraqi gays.

Let me also say, on the public record, Thanks, HRC. Thanks for ending the silence from part of Gay Inc over the brutality facing our brothers and sisters in Iraq. I hope HRC will actually pressure the State Department on this matter, and will expend more HRC resources on global gay issues.

Oh, and nice of HRC, like in the phony NGLTF condemnation piece, to give credit to us activists who hit the streets of NYC and SF recently for our queer family in Baghdad.

Frankly, I'm shocked HRC has said anything about the situation over there for LGBT citizens, and that they did so while the much more progressive NGLTF is silent.

Maybe it's just my ego, but I really sense from the wording and content of the piece that my fake NGLTF release influenced the structure and tone of HRC's blog post:

Increased persecution of and violence against LGBT people, particularly gay men, in Iraq has been widely reported by the traditional media, stirring action by the LGBT community and our allies on the Hill.

Recently, openly-gay Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) travelled to Iraq and witnessed the dire situation of Iraqi’s LGBT community firsthand. He returned to raise his strong concerns with the State Department.

The Council for Global Equality, of which HRC is a member organization, has been in communication with the State Department in Washington, as well as the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, calling on them to investigate this critical situation and to intervene with the Iraqi government.

Our fellow Council member, the International Lesbian and Gay Human Rights Commission, has also directly called on the Iraqi Minister of Human Rights to take action. Grassroots activists have organized protests in New York and San Francisco.

Last month, the U.S. abandoned the past administration’s opposition and joined a UN resolution supporting the human rights of LGBT people. It is imperative that the State Department now put that commitment into real practice.

HRC, working with the Council for Global Equality and our coalition partners, will continue to lobby the State Department to condemn the violence against LGBT people in Iraq and pressure the Iraqi government to end the persecution.

Did you ever think you'd live to see the day I was praising HRC and posting their words to my blog? Well, you're seeing it today.

I am more than willing to work with mainstream gay organizations, even praise them, on global gay issues that are not receiving the attention they deserve from LGBT Americans.

Now, if only HRC had coughed up some dough for Iraqi LGBT . . . I would really shout some hosannas for the group!

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