The happiest and saddest stories of 2017

The happiest story was about a gay Kurdish refugee’s Christmas. The saddest story was about a gay Bangladeshi man whose family forced him to marry.


The happiest story:

Kurdish refugee Saleh Al-Bayati played Baba Noel this month in San Diego. (Photo courtesy of Linda Miles)
Kurdish refugee Saleh Al-Bayati played Baba Noel this month in San Diego. (Photo courtesy of Linda Miles)

Christmas cheer: Refugees helping refugees

Saleh Al-Bayati, 29, a gay Iraqi Kurd refugee, never could have imagined that he would someday dress as Baba Noel in the United States. But this month he did just that, to the delight of 16 children of two Muslim Afghan refugee families in San Diego. (Read more.)

 

The saddest story:

Kd-Sajjad-Hossain
Kd Sajjad Hossain (Photo courtesy of Facebook)

Family forced him to marry; he chose death instead

Sajjad, a young Bangladeshi man, was full of life, forever beaming with a smile and good humour, who never stopped battling through life’s tempests and making time to serve people around him. Until one day the battle became too much for him. (Read more.)

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at info@76crimes.com.

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