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Nobel Laureates, including Desmond Tutu, call for global LGBT equality

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  1. Desmond Tutu is a true hero.

    And all trade and aid to countries like Uganda should be halted until they commit to human rights for LGBT people.

    1. Yes, but he is also on the advisory board for the UN rapporteur on the Convention on Genocide, where we could do for him to press for the UN to monitor the advocacy of hatred, etc., against sexual minorities as part of genocide too. But it seems to be a blind spot.

      The convention emerged in 1948 from the events in which sexual minorities were also killed, but we were not explicitly listed as many leading signatories, including the UK, then persecuted us. Nonetheless the general wording is inclusive and clearly covers the sort of stirring that is done against us in Uganda, just as it was done against ethnic minorities in next-door Rwanda. Claiming threats to children, for example.

      It isn’t a widely known convention because it has been largely stymied by Turkey, but the monitoring is significant, and our safety needs to be taken that seriously.

  2. Demond Tutu is a man of great honour and integrity. Those who join him in signing this declaration are people of great stature and dignity.

    This is another step along the road towards equality.

    Those who oppose equality – largely do so either out of fear of loss of power, the icky factor or ignorance.

    Insight such as that shown by Tutu should be communicated rapidly globally. Governments need to be held to account until they engage in equality and make demonstrable change to ensure equality and fairness.

  3. I’m sure the village idiots (of which the Ugandan government is made up) will denounce Mr Tutu as ‘unAfrican’ for his support of equality.

    Thereby proving how even though you can take the idiot out of the village, you can’t take the village out of the idiot.

    Welcome to Uganda, where time stopped in the year 2010 … (2010 BC I mean).

    1. Is it possible (for once) that you could make your point and avoid being racist at the same time please…?

      1. Where am I being racist?

        The government and church leaders of Uganda are behaving like village idiots from prehistoric times.

        How can it be racist to point out this fact?

        (And since when has Ugandan been a race by the way?)

        1. Hear! Hear!

        2. you made the equation linking village and idiot ie implying undeveloped with backward or retarded. It was an indelicate use of language that has racist undertones, whether consciously intended or otherwise.

      2. One can find plenty of racism, much of it unconscious, on these forums but I don’t see how dAVID’s post can be seen as racist. It’s not racist to observe that the Ugandan government appears to be made up of persons of limited intelligence (several far stronger words come to mind).

      3. Jock S. Trap 26 Jun 2012, 10:55am


        Please explain what the racism was in dAVID’s comment?

        Is it possible that, yet again, your seeing something that isn’t there to create a problem to justify yourself?

      4. Staircase2 – what was criticised here was the behaviour of the Ugandan government not their race or nationality. Perhaps you should inspect your motivation for leaping to the conclusion so quickly that the post was racist and whether it’s down to projection on your part.

  4. Desmond Tutu is an absolute diamond. I’ve never once known him to be less than completely sympathetic to the exploited and socially excluded. He is also completely above the pettiness of identarian squabbling.

    Whatever your feelings about the Nobel committee (I have serious issues with them myself), I think this is a historic statement. Many activists are starting from the ground up, but we did it before and we can do it again elsewhere.

  5. I love Desmond Tutu :o)

  6. Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela are probably the greatest men alive.

    Role models for the rest of the world. If only the world would listen. They have inspired us all.

    Thank you for your support

  7. Thank you Desmond. Now, let’s publish this in the ‘developed’ countries.

  8. It is always great religious leaders like Desmond Tutu that make life better for everyone. Wish we had more real religious leaders like him to make the world a better place.

  9. Thank you for your support. These are the kind of news that will shed some hopes to struggling gay youth around the world. Kudos to these folks!

  10. Thank you very much Desmond Tutu and the other Nobel Laureates who support the LGBT Community for what you have said and done. Let us pray that the world listens and acts according to the example you have set.

  11. Tutu is a real star, and how wonderful that a South African man, a woman from the USA, a Bangladeshi man and an Iranian woman issue a statement like this. If only people would listen, though I fear it’ll have little effect in Uganda.

  12. Desmond Tutu; desperately trying to keep Christianity Christian. Keep fighting the good fight!

  13. Desmond Tutu is a shining example of how people of the Church should be.

    Just such a shame that he is in a minority, if only others of all the other religions were as compassionate about all walks of life as he is.

  14. That There Other David 26 Jun 2012, 10:16am

    If every religious leader was more like Desmond Tutu the world would be a far nicer place for all. An absolute legend of a man, one who shows others who openly hate up as the charlatans they are.

  15. Cardinal Capone 26 Jun 2012, 10:29am

    Desmond Tutu is a global treasure. I wish he would come out of retirement and be head of the Anglican Church, putting the present clique of intolerance to shame.

    Thanks too to the other three nobel winners; though I don’t know who they are, I will certainly google them and find out about their works.

    1. Cardinal Capone 26 Jun 2012, 10:41am

      They are a very impressive and inspiring group of people. Worth the google.

  16. Granting the LGBT-group the equality it should have had ages ago is the only decent thing to do. The opponents only have their hollow arguments, camouflaging their bigotry. I’m not religious, but I admire Desmond Tutu greatly.

  17. Jock S. Trap 26 Jun 2012, 10:53am

    So great to see and hear. Such inspirational people!

    Esp Desmond Tutu has never been afraid to speak out and support the LGBT community. If only more in the African countries would listen to his incredible man.

  18. A hero to me is a person that gives courage – courage to live strong. A hero should always be able to give hope even though there is none to give. In my mind, a hero should always support and defend – be loyal. Also, when I think of heroes, the word perseverance comes to my mind. A person who is truly a hero in the world today is Desmond Tutu.

    This is my favourite article about Tutu:

    “Through the South Africa–based Desmond Tutu Peace Centre and other efforts, Tutu, now in his 80s, is continuing to work for peace, social justice, and human rights. He makes it clear that he believes, as some political figures have stated recently, that LGBT rights are human rights. And the retired Anglican archbishop of Cape Town, once the primate of his church in South Africa, also makes it clear that he believes LGBT people are equal to their straight brethren in the eyes of God.

    “We have strange images of God

    1. he says. “One is of a God who is waiting to club us. We don’t seem to understand the image of a God who says, ‘I created you because I loved you.’” Later, he elaborates, “God’s dream is to embrace all of us, an embrace we are not allowed to escape out of, including the gay, lesbian, and so-called straight.”

  19. Spanner1960 26 Jun 2012, 11:21am

    I was fortunate enough to meet Archbishop Tutu many years ago, and I think he is a true Christian and an inspiration to millions. Senmatu and many others should take a leaf out of this man’s book and stop reading the words of the Bible and try understanding the meaning behind them.

  20. Tutu issued a statement recently expressing his incomprehension that his god would create people just to hate them. When so many church leaders are saying the opposite, he stands out even more as a beacon of kindness and compassion.

    1. Tutu’s words are often powerful, I like this comment he made in a speech in March 2010 ““People are again being denied their fundamental rights and freedoms. Men have been falsely charged and imprisoned in Senegal…In Malawi, men have been jailed and humiliated for expressing their partnerships with other men…Kenyan religious leaders, I am ashamed to say, threatened an HIV clinic…because the clerics wanted gay men excluded. … Gay people, too, are made in my God’s image. I would never worship a homophobic God … [Politicians should] stand up for the principles of universal dignity and fellowship. Exclusion is never the way forward on our shared paths to freedom and justice … [W]e struggled for years against the evil system of apartheid that divided human beings, children of the same God, by racial classification and then denied many of them fundamental human rights. We knew this was wrong. Thankfully, the world supported us in our struggle for freedom and dignity. It is time to

      1. stand up against another wrong.”

  21. What a truly inspirational man and someone we should remember when we think that Christians are all against us.
    I’m not sure about the cutting of aid to countries that don’t respect LGBT human rights. It is the idiots at the top who are the problem but such aid tends to be aimed at clean water, disease prevention and famine relief. Those who suffer most as a consequence have little to do with the position of their government.
    The aid is often the difference of life and death to millions and it does not sit comfortably with me to apply such oppression to those who may not have a direct responsibility for the oppression members of our community suffer.

    1. what alternatives are there that can apply pressure on a government bent on the elimination of homosexuals that does not at the same time impact the rest of society?
      Winning the hearts and minds of the general populace to become less homophobic is a rather long term effort, and right now we need short term solutions to the impending Kill the gays bill in Uganda.

      1. Uganda is one country in Africa but the policy will cover all who receive aid. Every 3 seconds a child dies, each day 30,000 children die 3000 of them from malaria. Most of these deaths are preventable, if we stop the aid we currently provide these figures will not improve.
        Homophobic abuse is intolerable but amongst these figures are people who identify as LGBT. Even at 0.1 % potentially being LGBT this is 30 children each day loosing there life. This is not an appeal for charity but a request that the money the government has been used to giving and that we don’t necessarily miss does not get stopped.

  22. GingerlyColors 26 Jun 2012, 3:45pm

    Desmond Tutu can teach our Archbishops a lesson or two in tolerance. He really knows how to blow his trumpet, sorry, vuvuzela when it comes to human rights. He was one of the driving forces in the ending of Apartheid in South Africa and today the former Apartheid State deserves it’s new title as the ‘Rainbow Nation’ and it is a beacon of hope in the otherwise homophobic African continent. Maybe he should lecture that dictator next door in Zimbabwe about human rights.
    Unfortunately I do have a niggling feeling that when Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela pass on a future leader of South Africa will not have them to guide them in the right direction and that we could end up seeing the end of the Rainbow Nation should it go the same way as Zimbabwe. We were involved in South African politics during the Apartheid era. We must continue engaging with that country to make sure it does not become another basket case.

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