UN Comes Out for Gay Rights for the First Time in History UN Comes Out for Gay Rights for the First Time in History
The GOOD Life

UN Comes Out for Gay Rights for the First Time in History

by Cord Jefferson

June 22, 2011

Earlier this month the United Nations came out to declare the internet a "human right." Late Friday, prompted by barbaric anti-gay laws in Uganda and other nations, the organization again positioned itself as a modern thought leader dedicated to solving modern problems. On Friday, in a statement that announced a forthcoming report on discrimination against gays, the UN expressed "grave concern at acts of violence and discrimination, in all regions of the world, committed against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity." It was the first pro-gay statement in the body's history.

Though 23 nations voted in favor of the declaration, 19 others, including Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan, were against. A representative from Africa's Mauritania said the resolution was "an attempt to replace the natural rights of a human being with an unnatural right."

Despite being somewhat controversial, the UN's pro-gay stance is reflective of changing global attitudes toward LGBT issues. Not only are gay issues no longer negligible, they're critical to progress, and acknowledging them is a litmus test of an organization's seriousness.

It's true that most Americans are becoming more accepting of their gay neighbors. But it's only a matter of time before our president looks like a dinosaur for not coming out and saying he supports gay marriage.

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UN Comes Out for Gay Rights for the First Time in History