Hiliary Clinton, US Secretary of State makes a statement at the UN on LGBT rights

Excellent Speech by HE Hilary Clinton, Secretary of State of the United States of America. Many phrases that will be forever etched in my mind, and remind me that much must be done, and must will be done in the fight of universal human rights.

Even if you believe that gay people are somehow different, or if you think there is something fundamentally wrong with homosexuality, you cannot disagree with the fundamental belief that everyone has the same set of rights outside of their sex lives. That they should and must be treated equally and with respect and dignity. It should never be the case that someone is criminalised for being different, and in this scenario, just like the rights of indigenous people, women, religious and racial minorities, there is no difference.

Believe in Free and Equal Rights, Believe in the Dignity of all Humanity.

Excerpts:

All human beings are free and equal.

Because we are human, we therefore have rights, because we have rights, governments are bound to protect them.

I come here before you with respect, understanding and humility.

We cannot delay acting.

Like all people, they share a common dignity.

We are honouring rights that people always have.

Gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights.

It violates human rights when people are killed.

It is a violation of human rights when governments declare it to be illegal.

Being gay is not a western invention, it is a human reality.

It is not something only Western governments do.

There are costs to not protecting these rights.

For as long as LGBT people are kept in the shadows, there cannot be an effective public health programme to tackle HIV/AIDS

No practice or tradition trumps the human rights that belong to all of us.

Progress starts with honest discussion.

Some believe all gay people are paedophiles,… gays recruit others to become gay, these notions are simply not true…

No one has ever abandoned a belief before he was forced to do so. Even if our words or beliefs denigrate the rights of others.

Progress comes with changes in laws.

Laws have a teaching effect, laws that discriminate validate other kinds of discrimination… laws must change before fears of change must change.

To bring a world who embraces all people.

Acting along minorities cannot achieve the majorities required for change.

When we do act, we send a powerful moral message.

South Africa took the lead… on violence against LGBT people… 

Now we must go further, and work here and every region of the world to gather more support for those in the LGBT community.

I ask you to consider this, leadership asks you to be out in front of all people… It also means ensuring all citizens are treated as equal, before the law.

It should never be a crime to be gay.

It begins in the small places close to home.

These places are your domain…

Be on the right side of history. 

Let us be on the right side of history, for our people and our future generations.

I come before you wiht great hope and confidence, no matter how long the road ahead, we will travel it successfully together.

JJ

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