We begin with the assertion that the lives/relationships/bodies of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people should not be criminalized anywhere in the world.
This kind of rejection takes place largely because religious leaders and organizations misuse people’s sacred faith to spread the lie that LGBTQ people are outside the Kingdom/Community/Household of G_d/Allah/The Divine. To stop these so-called religious leaders’ support of laws and systems of societal discrimination that lead to the imprisonment and death of LGBTQ people around the world, we must be vigilant in calling attention to these thought leaders’ immoral messages, and aggressive in insisting on the conditions of our various treaties with nations around the world.
We must also be vigilant and aggressive in identifying religious broadcasters in the United States who use their FCC licenses and claims to freedom of speech to defend their systematic exportation of stigma of LGBTQ people to other parts of the world, which leads to persecution and murder.The criminalization of people based on their sexual orientation and gender identity goes against international human rights treaties. Such systematic discrimination reinforces the disadvantages experienced by LGBTQ people and can be used as justification for violence against them, whether on the street, at home, or in prison.
People detained or imprisoned solely because of their homosexuality – including those individuals prosecuted for having sex in circumstances which would not be criminal for heterosexuals — or for their gender identity or expression, should be considered to be prisoners of conscience.
We call for the decriminalization of homosexuality where such legislation remains, including a review of all legislation which could result in the discrimination, prosecution and punishment of people solely for their sexual orientation or gender identity.
- “Sodomy” laws or similar provisions outlawing sexual conduct between people of same-sex or transgender individuals;
- Discriminatory age-of-consent legislation;
- Public order legislation used as a pretext for prosecuting and punishing people solely for their sexual orientation or gender identity;
- Laws banning the “promotion” of homosexuality which can be used to imprison lesbian, gay, bisexual, same-sex practicing and transgender individuals and human rights defenders.
- All legislation under which a person may be killed by the state on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
In countries where these laws are present, homophobic and transphobic individuals or groups use these legal shields to target LGBTQ organizations and events. Amnesty International and the Human Rights Watch have documented cases where law enforcement officials have arbitrarily arrested individuals on the basis of allegations about sexual orientation, rumors of sexual behavior or objection to gender presentation, with few, if any, consequences for torture or other ill-treatment of these prisoners.
WE CALL FOR RELIGIOUS BROADCASTERS HOLDING USA FCC LICENSES TO CEASE AND DESIST FROM ALL BROADCASTS THAT SUGGEST THAT BEING LGBTQ IS “OUTSIDE” THE FAVOR OF GOD AND DESERVING OF PUNISHMENT OR DEATH. WE CALL FOR MINISTERS WHO VISIT NATIONS OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES TO CEASE AND DESIST FROM ANY SUPPORT OF ANTI-GAY LEGISLATION AND FROM PREACHING OR TEACHING THAT LGBTQ PEOPLE ARE OUTSIDE THE FAVOR OF GOD AND DESERVING OF PUNISHMENT OR DEATH.