Global Pulse on LGBTQ+ Equality - Issue #25
Not forgetting the Equality Act, a bizarre Log Cabin summit, Francis'Hungary visit , the "illiberal left" and other stories...
Welcome to this week’s edition of the weekly equality news digest, Global Pulse on Equality from Out Leadership (this time from our offsite in unique Fire Island) where I share important news, updates, and commentary about the LGBTQ+ equality movement globally. As usual thank you for sharing with whoever could be interested.
Can we save the Equality Act? The Equality Act is important enough that LGBTQ+ people and allies should pressure moderate Republican senators that could potentially support the Equality Act’s passage. The Act needs 10 additional votes to overcome the filibuster. Freedom for All Americans can connect you directly to moderate senators such as Lisa Murkowski, Rob Portman or Susan Collins.
HRC: Alphonso David was on MNSBC sunday. Former HRC President Alphonso David was on MSNBC’s The Sunday Show with Jonathan Capehart last week where he claims he was unjustly terminated. Watch the replay here.
Another key LGBTQ+ appointment by the Biden administration. Beth Robinson will be the first female LGBTQ+ federal appeals court nominee to get a Senate hearing. Check out her impressive profile here.
Log Cabin Republicans: Richard Grenell announces the end of the gay liberation movement. At the end of a log Cabin Republicans summit, Grenell (whose effort to drive Gov. Newsom out of office failed yesterday) tweeted “people realize the fight for gay equality is largely over” illustrating this statement with a bizarre picture of a handful of white gay men. This week too, Former first lady Melania Trump was announced as a special guest at their annual “Spirit of Lincoln” dinner .
The figure of the week: 10% of LGBTQ+ people in America reported workplace discrimination. According to a Williams Institute (UCLA) study, this is the number of LGBTQ+ employees that report experiences of discrimination, including not getting hired or getting fired because of their sexual orientation/gender identity.
California leading the way on diversity in business. On Friday (11 a.m. PST room 4202 of the State Capitol), I will testify in front of the California Assembly’s Select Committee on Corporate Board and California Workforce Diversity. California has been a leader on fighting for LGBTQ+ diversity in all levels of employment including through the implementation of AB979, which mandates diversity in their Boardroom, and other diversity-related legislation.
Hungary: the Pope’s visit. Before Pope Francis’ visit to Hungary, there was talk that he would be rather blunt in his rebuke of Orban’s politicization of LGBTQ+ and migration issues.His references to “embracing diversity” were in fact rather underwhelming (read the readout of the visit in the NYTimes).
The UN system’s timid engagement on LGBTQ+ issues. Albert Trithart of theInternational Peace Institute (IPI) wrote a seminal paper on the UN’s engagement on LGBTQ+ issues last year. One of his conclusions, which matches my experience at OHCHR, is that “rhetorical support from leaders has not always translated into political and financial backing” (let alone staffing). Last week, IPI in partnership with OutRight Action International and other partners organized an event on the UN’s engagement on LGBTQ+ issues. You can watch the replay here. This week UNDP hailed Egypt, which routinely violates human rights of LGBTQ+ people, as a paragon of development inclusiveness.
South Korea: a conservative society at odds with its LGBTQ+ youth. This week, a new report from Human Rights Watch, as reported by the Financial Times, highlighted the many issues faced by LGBTQ+ students in South Korea. Pew research shows one of the most pronounced generational gaps on LGBTQ+ issues in the country: 79% of 18-29-year-olds say homosexuality should be accepted by society, compared with only 23% of those 50 and older.
IN OTHER NEWS
The Economist’s warning shot to the “illiberal left”. The Economist’s cover story reads: “Today’s progressives argue that your freedom to express your opinions stops where my feelings begin.” Sentences like these are what feeds the unexpected backlash on LGBTQ+ issues in the UK. The article is also a reminder that there must be room for debate and dissent in our movement.
Crypto currency, the potential for the LGBTQ+ community. Todd Sears, CEO and Founder of Out Leadership, spoke at SALT this week with Out Leadership advisor and former ambassador Rufus Gifford. Everything seemed to be about crypto, which has consequences for non-profit #LGBTQ+ organizations which should be set up to accept bitcoin donations (OutRight Action International, on the Board of which I serve, is). More importantly, an #LGBTQ+ currency could help fund the global LGBTQ+ movement (https://lnkd.in/dS7xy-fY).
The Gender cool kids. Last week, at the #OutGiving Conference, I listened to GenderCool co-founders Gearah Goldstein & Jen Grosshandler and some GenderCool Champions and was very impressed. The GenderCool Champions — youth ages 12-17 such as @landon_richie_, a 4th generation Texan and great activist— are leaders in their community. They self-describe as “articulate, poised, intelligent, talented and ambitious young people” and basically put a new face of the trans community in front of the public. Learn more at https://gendercool.org/
The top queer moments of the 2021 Met Gala. Rumor has it that Fmr. Amb. Rufus Gifford was invited and did not go. Dan Levy did go and sported a very gay outfit (see it on Vanity Fair). Troye Sivan wore a black knit cutout tank dress designed by Joseph Altuzarra for “genderfull” brand Altu. Timothée Chalamet, a co-chair, walked (!) to the Gala in a very queer almost all white sweatpants and Converse ensemble.
The LGBT Foundation in London is recruiting.