“Ignorance leads to fear, fear leads to hate, and hate leads to violence.” Averroes (ابن رشد).
What tops the list ?! Ignorance
This correlation has been confirmed throughout history and even presently through horrible tragedies, such as: slavery, racism, inquisition, deportation, colonization, genocides, religious wars, witch-hunt, persecution of the physically and mentally disabled, and cruelty to animals, etc.
Similarly, in today’s Lebanon, the LGBT individuals are considered outlaws! They continue to face an unjustified violence and persecution because of their sexual orientation or gender identity that represents a scary unknown to a society lacking basic awareness and empathy. While, the Lebanese legislator and authorities (incl. religious) are indifferently maintaining outdated laws, tolerating non-fact based fictions and allowing social behaviors that – in the best case – could be described as clear violations to human rights.
LGBT individuals are harshly, gratuitously, prejudicially attacked, rejected by their families, excluded by their environment, mocked, harassed, insulted, discriminated (in education, healthcare and employment), arbitrarily arrested and detained (1mon -2y), and in some cases raped, tortured and physically abused, with consequences leading to death.
This ill and immoral behavior toward LGBT individuals, that aims at depriving them from their human dignity, finds its roots in ignorance and is reinforced via unfounded myths.
… let’s deconstruct some of those myths
If your motives of discrimination are personal. Learning is the path to deal with a situation that intrigues you, not violence. But also, bear in mind that you have no moral authority over any one else than your imperfect self.
If your motives are religious. For the sake of heaven, just remember god’s merciful character to gain empathy, and leave to that god – that you believe in – the delicate tasks of judging and punishment.
Footprint of homosexuality criminalization (Source: ILGA, Details in Referenced Link)
In June 2011, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a landmark resolution aimed at spotlighting violence and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. A significant milestone in the long struggle for equality, and the beginning of a universal recognition that LGBT persons are endowed with the same inalienable rights, and entitled to the same protections, as all human beings.
The measure of every nation is whether it threatens or enhances the life and dignity of the human person. Thus, the question is: When would Lebanon be daring to take that step ?
The list of the 76 countries/territories where homosexuality is illegal (Source: ILGA)
For now, this social question is not even on the conventional political strata’s radar screen, and is dealt with irresponsibly. As a result, Lebanon remains shamefully listed alongside tail countries which are surprisingly holding – as well – the poorest records in human rights, women’s rights, children’s rights, freedom of speech, transparency, privacy rights, capital punishment and democracy!
Still, it is too early to give up…
This article is a tribute to the LGBT brothers and sisters in humanity, who are greatly suffering, enduring a specially hostile environment and living in wretched conditions. Whatever how rough is the sea, don’t give up !
(LGBT): lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender
Les idées reçues sur les personnes LGBT déconstruites
Discriminatory laws and practices and acts of violence against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity (Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights)
International Human Rights Law and Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity (fact Sheet)
Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and International Human Rights Law (International Commission of Jurists)
ILGA May 2017 Report