Saturday, 17 May 2014

Very, Very Much

Yes! Our hero again...

Today is IDAHo (or IDAHoT, as it is now known) - the International Day Against Homophobia (and Transphobia).

Every year, we in the West can see more and more enlightenment among governments in Europe and the Americas (equal marriage legislation is rapidly becoming the "norm", or so it seems; despite the best efforts of loonies standing for local council elections), yet the picture worldwide - the medieval fundamentalism rife in Islamic countries, the fomenting of hatred by Evangelical churches in Africa (and elsewhere) and, most worryingly, the rise of right-wing tyranny and thuggery in the countries of Eastern Europe (in which we held such hope when the iron grip of the Soviets was toppled) - our gay brethren still face a daily struggle just to survive.

Just today comes the announcement that a parade in Russia to celebrate the victory of Conchita Wurst in Eurovision has been banned.

The Guardian, admirably (it has always been a bit of a "friend of the gays"), has published a rather fascinating set of stats:
Being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is illegal in almost 80 countries, and in at least five of them is still punishable by death. [On] the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, explore the legal situation for LGBT people around sex, marriage or civil partnerships, adoption, workplace discrimination and hate crime by region, country and overall population.

Read and absorb the facts
I shan't upset myself, or you, dear reader, with my usual list of examples of the homophobic crimes that are being committed on a daily basis in such benighted regimes as Cameroon, Nigeria, Uganda, Belarus, Malaysia and Jamaica (and the rest) against our peers. That remarkable campaigner, drag queen Panti Bliss sums it up so much more succinctly:

Instead, I shall rely - as I always do on this day - upon the otherwise un-admirable Lily Allen (and, of course, the myriad contributors to this video that uses her song as its rallying cry) to send out a message to homophobes the world over:

International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia

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