In good news, this last week (Friday June 18th) the UN passed a gay rights resolution. This historic bill was pushed for in particular by South Africa, which this blogger finds to be both fascinating and hopeful news. It is good to know that regions that have historically been excessively homophobic are pushing for equal treatment & protections for its LGBT citizens, this is great news and a truly historic occasion.
The bill, which passed narrowly w/23 for and 19 voting against, didn’t mix words and expressed ‘grave concern’ for the various discriminatory laws and violent abuses of the global LGBT communities citizens. According to Amnesty International, consensual same-sex relations are illegal in 76 countries worldwide, and discrimination exists in virtually all countries, manifesting in one form or another. A few of those backing this resolution include the European Union, Brazil and other Latin American countries, and the US. While a few of those who voted against this measure include, unsurprisingly, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and Pakistan and others. One other issue this resolution addresses is the establishment of a formal UN process to document human rights abuses against gays, including discriminatory laws and acts of violence.
I think this is excellent news and it came right in time for our local pride weekend. Unfortunately, historically speaking, the UN has a difficult time enforcing their various resolutions. One in particular that comes to mind is the UN Declaration of Human Rights, article 25 Pt.1, which states: “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.” By those standards set, we should have proper health care in this country, but we don’t and the UN isn’t going to step in and insist that we change that because, this is the US and, politically, our country really likes to throw their weight around. Further more, the US believes that our way is the BEST way and if you don’t like it, leave.
Now please NOTE, I like living here (most of the time), I ENJOY living in a country that, while still fairly up tight, is relatively accepting of people like me and a country that affords me the freedoms to lead a life that makes me happy (to a greater or lesser degree), so don’t tell me I don’t appreciate what we’ve got here, I DO. I’m just saying, things could be a lot better here and the only argument those who want the status quo to continue to be such, re-health care etc, is that ‘if things can’t be perfect then, why bother?’ which is just ridiculous. So things aren’t going to be perfect, NOTHING EVER IS OR EVER WILL BE, get over it. That is NO EXCUSE not to improve on what exists and try to make it the best it can be. That sort of mind set is just plain lazy.
I apologize for getting a little more into general politics but, hey, health care is something we all need, gay or straight, and I was mostly using it as an example of resolutions/declarations that the UN has but can’t fully enforce.
I hope this actually works to improve the global political social environment regarding the rights of LGBT citizens, I really do. Events such as this and news like my high school from my home town (Pendleton OR) establishing a GSA (gay straight alliance), fill me with hope that maybe, some day, the world will change. One step at a time, with small & then progressively larger ripples, we’ll achieve our goals locally, nationally & globally if we just STAY STRONG and stand our ground. We’re not second class citizens and we do NOT deserve to be treated as such. Stand strong, be out & open and have the back of your friends, remember to keep our alliances strong w/our hetero counter parts in the community, the more we pull together, the more support we have to offer each other. GAY PRIDE!
Ok, I’m done politicking you to death. NOW, for a little laughter…as I feel laughter is the best medicine. Weird Al just released his latest video/single ‘perform this way’ and it is PURE GOLD! I laughed so hard I fell out of my office chair, it is utterly priceless, the master of musical parody has done it again. Kudos to you Mr. Yankovic, you’ve STILL got it! Enjoy!