Friday, July 22, 2005

HRC pushes Secy. Rice to condemn executions of Gay Iranian Teens

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According to an article on, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has urged Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to condemn the execution of two gay teenagers in Iran. On Thursday, July 21, news about the two teenagers, one 18 and the other said to be 16 or 17, came to light. According to the Iranian Student News Agency, the two teenagers were found to be guilty of the "crime" of homosexuality by a religious court in Iran. The English langauge Iran in Focus also reported about the executions, saying that the two were executed by hanging in the public square of the city of Mashhad July 19 and had been held and tortured before their execution. It is reported that they also received 228 lashes. According to the article:
"This crime warrants an immediate and strong condemnation from the Department of State," said the Human Rights Campaign in a letter Friday to Rice. "Atrocities committed by foreign governments against all people must be condemned swiftly and forcefully by the world’s greatest democracy. We urge you to do so. "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was signed by the UN General Assembly in 1948, declares that every human should be guaranteed the fundamental right to life, liberty, and security of person and every human should be free from torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Tragically, this guarantee of basic human rights does not exist for GLBT individuals in certain regions of the globe." The letter, signed by HRC President Joe Solmonese goes on to say that research done by organizations such as the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission and Amnesty International, shows that human rights abuses are perpetrated against the GLBT community in all corners of the globe. "As we have seen in recent weeks, the barbarous punishments for sexual acts in these countries run contrary to the letter and the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. For that reason, these acts must be condemned," the letter from Solmonese said. The State Department said that it had not seen the letter and would not comment on it until it had been studied.
======= With all that is happening in American society surrounding the issue of LGBT rights and abuses of those rights, it is easy for us to forget about the abuses which LGBT persons across the globe face on a dialy basis. In many parts of the world, the abuses which LGBT Americans face are nothing compared to the abuses of others, such as the executions of the two gay Iranian teenagers. Our world has a very long way to come in order for LGBT people to be treated equally and fairly. We have much further than that to go before LGBT people will not only be treated equally and fairly but also respected and valued as equally as straight people. May God help our mere mortal souls to know the difference between right and wrong and may He also guide us to love our neighbor as ourselves and treat others the way Christ Himself treated us.