The U.S. Institute of Peace held a forum on May 26 featuring LGBTI campaigners from Kenya, South Africa, Ireland, Fiji, and Grenada to discuss the topic "Expanding Constitutional Rights to LGBTI Communities: International Activism and U.S. Diplomacy." The keynote speaker was Ambassador Randy Berry, U.S. Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT Persons. The panel was co-hosted by the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA). Content in the video above begins at about 13:00. Below are some photos I took.
Matt Baume of AFER has the latest on the struggle for marriage equality.
I don't really care about the Eurovision singing contest, but I thought the tweet below was funny. Apparently, people were so determined to keep Russia from winning that a homophobic Swede won.
Hopefully now everyone really gets how out of touch the homophobes who run NYC's St Patrick's Day Parade are with Ireland— Joe Sudbay (@JoeSudbay) May 23, 2015
Joe Sudbay is right. It is time for the aggressive homophobia of so many American Hibernian organizations to be challenged more and more to end their anti-gay bigotry. Their attitude was just overwhelmingly rebuked back in their motherland.
At such a joyous moment, the proper mode of celebration for a true son of Ireland (and on my mother's side I am a Gildea and a Fitzgerald) is to play a beloved old air and have a good cry. Here, then, is "In Derry Vale," sung by the lustrous Maureen Hegarty.
Oh, Derry Vale, my thoughts are ever turning
to your broad stream and fairy-circled lea.
For your green isles my exiled heart is yearning,
so far away across the sea.
I celebrated the news after Ugandan activist and trans man Pepe Julian Onziema won a GLAAD Media Award for his interview last year on Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, but I hadn't seen the video. Here it is. Jussie Smollet of Fox's musical drama Empire presented the award. Pepe's poise, eloquence, and courage are once again on display here. What an asset he is to his country, his continent, and the world. Congrats again, @Opimva.
Today was the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. Here are a few observances. Check out the hashtag #IDAHOT for more.
U.S. Special Forces Kill Senior ISIS Commander in Syria Raid, Defense Department Says http://t.co/ERcsWBPq26— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 16, 2015
President Obama seems to be going after ISIS pretty aggressively, considering the far right's claim that he wants the terrorists to win. Below, 19-year-old college student Ivy Ziedrich confronts Jeb Bush on the campaign trail, saying, "Your brother created ISIS." You will perhaps not be shocked that a college student appears far better informed on recent Middle Eastern history than the scion of a distinguished political family who wants to be our next president.
May 17 is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, hashtag #IDAHOT. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights says of this video:
This video from the United Nations Free & Equal campaign celebrates the contributions that millions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people make to families and local communities around the world. The cast features "real people" (not actors), filmed in their workplaces and homes -- among them, a firefighter, a police officer, a teacher, an electrician, a doctor and a volunteer, as well as prominent straight ally and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Observances of #IDAHOT around the world are taking many forms. Here is one, from London.
With a week to go, here's an update on the Yes Equality Campaign in Ireland from Co-Director Grainne Healy.
Defying the U.S., Colombia halts spraying the crop used to make cocaine, citing concerns that the spray causes cancer http://t.co/g0aAX1y4Tn— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 15, 2015
Good. The war on drugs is a colossal failure. But America is exceptional, so how can we be wrong? This is just pathetic.
Jamie Kirchick has an interesting piece in Slate on Sy Hersh's ill-sourced alternative version of the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Also, A blunt interview of Hersh by Isaac Chotiner.
This is hard to watch. So many desperate people are perishing at sea.