Africa / Americas

Video: Challenges, hopes for LGBTI rights worldwide

John Avlon (left) was moderator of the Quorum panel discussing worldwide LGBTI advocacy. (Click image to see the video.)

John Avlon (left) was moderator of the Quorum panel discussing worldwide LGBTI advocacy. (Click image to see the video.)

Challenges and hopes for LGBTI advocacy around the globe are the focus of this week’s video in the “Quorum” series of 11 discussions of international LGBTI issues.

In the Daily Beast video titled “Levers for Change,” a panel of three United States-based activists considers LGBTI rights advocacy in the world at large, especially other societies’ relationships with the United States.  Some excerpts from the video:

Sarah Kate Ellis of the LGBT media advocacy organization GLAAD, quoting a Uganda activist:

“When Obama says that what’s going on in Uganda is terrible, it’s Western imperialism. When Jay-Z says it, it’s important.”

Ellis on social media:

“Social media is very powerful and the Internet is very powerful, especially in closed societies, because  at some point that’s the only avenue that they have to get in information and put out information and so it’s very important that we listen to them and reflect that back and follow their lead on that, because we’re not on the ground necessarily and we don’t know what’s going on.

J. Bob Allota of the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice:

Homophobia “serves to keep society closed or it serves to not have conversations about why the economic situation is such in a particular country.”

The Rev. Joseph Tolton of the Fellowship of Affirming Ministries. (Click image to see the "Levers for Change" video.)

The Rev. Joseph Tolton of the Fellowship of Affirming Ministries. (Click image to see the “Levers for Change” video.)

The Rev. Joseph Tolton of The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries, an organization of LGBT-friendly churches in the United States, doing work in Africa:

“I would actually advocate that we not give up on God. Bad theology is the glue to this enterprise of global homophobia. A fresh wind of a new theology can be that tool that dismantles it and can really lead us as an incredibly dynamic avenue of change.”

The “Levers for Change” video is the third of 11 discussions of international LGBTI issues that overall are designed to “reverse the megaphone,” allowing activists from abroad to tell Western viewers about the challenges that LGBTI people face worldwide. The videos were recorded at a December 2014 meeting in New York.

The series, under its full title “Quorum: Global LGBT voices,” is presented by The Daily Beast. The Erasing 76 Crimes blog, as a member of the advisory board for the project, helped The Daily Beast select Quorum speakers.

The video is on the Quorum page and on YouTube.

7 thoughts on “Video: Challenges, hopes for LGBTI rights worldwide

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