10,000 march against anti-gay laws (boosted by this blog)
Ten thousand people marched through Amsterdam last month to seek the repeal of 76 countries’ anti-gay laws. Many of them wore “Erasing 76 Crimes” T-shirts as they carried placards honoring 59 heroes of the worldwide struggle for recognition of the human rights of sexual minorities.
In a “Flags of Shame” protest, marchers carried the flags of dozens of countries with anti-LGBTI laws.
The ambassador of Canada, co-chair of the international Equal Rights Coalition (ERC), spoke to the crowd. Among the demonstrators were 125 participants from 14 embassies of countries that are members of the ERC. Protesters included three ambassadors, two consul-generals, other high-ranking officials, and some 100 diplomatic staff members.
During the closing ceremony, Pride Walk organizer Hans Verhoeven expressed thanks to the Erasing 76 Crimes blog for its work. The blog helped compile information about countries with anti-gay laws and nominated many of the LGBT rights movement’s heroes. March organizers honored a total of 59 activists from Africa, the Americas, the Middle East and Asia. Those activists represented the thousands of “Heroes of Our Community” working for justice throughout the world.
Pride Walk was celebrated on July 28, marking the beginning of Pride Week in Amsterdam.
Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.