foreign policy

Why It’s No Big Deal Gays Weren’t Added To The United Nation’s Special List Of People Not To Slaughter

With conservative Arab nations like Morocco and Mali being fingered for successfully excluding “sexual orientation” from the list of inexcusable targeted killings — a resolution the United States abstained from voting on in its final form — arrives the argument that it’s actually no big deal. You think a U.N. resolution is going to keep gays safe?

“[A]bhorrent as this amendment was – and I condemn it utterly – it is questionable whether it will actually make things worse on the ground,” writes Patrick Strudwick, the British journalist who infiltrated secretive ex-gay therapy groups. “Although the ‘sexual orientation’ wording had been in place for years until this U-turn, many governments did nothing as the screams of gay people being butchered echoed all around. Furthermore, gay people are still theoretically included under the resolution’s condemnation of killing for ‘discriminatory reasons on any basis.’ No, there are deeper problems here that undermine the integrity of the UN and quell optimism about the organisation’s ability to secure positive change.”

Deeper problems? Like what?

First, there is a delicate diplomatic dance taking place between member states, and few want to disrupt it, whatever the cost. The motion to delete “sexual orientation” was introduced by Morocco and Mali “on behalf of African and Islamic nations” (according to Reuters). As Amnesty International explains: “The repression that gay and lesbian people face is often passionately defended by governments or individuals in the name of religion, culture, morality or public health … Same-sex relations are dubbed ‘un-Christian’, ‘un-African’, ‘un-Islamic’, or a ‘bourgeois decadence’.”

Britain and the US condemned the motion, and voted against it, along with 68 other countries (the US abstained from the final vote for the resolution). But, it would seem, another 79 countries would rather anoint other members’ cultural sensitivities – by which I mean bigotry, prejudice and hate – than try to protect vulnerable citizens. South Africa, for example, voted for the amendment despite its proud history as the first country to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. Thus, the UN resembles a middle-class 1970s dinner party. When a guest makes a joke about “coons” everyone laughs nervously and looks down at their prawn cocktail.

Indeed. Rather than calling these nations out of their utter intolerance for certain classes of people, supposedly Western and progressive nations stand idly without so much as a peep. (That South Africa supported the amendment, sans sexual orientation protection, is particularly galling.) And while we can all sit here and bash the U.N. as being some meaningless, ineffective bureaucracy (and in many ways it is), it is still responsible for setting international tone. Which it just did, with inequality.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #mali #morocco #murder stories and more


  • Cam

    “”[A]bhorrent as this amendment was – and I condemn it utterly – it is questionable whether it will actually make things worse on the ground,” writes Patrick Strudwick, the British journalist who infiltrated secretive ex-gay therapy groups.”


    It isn’t the thought that this would stop all problems, it’s that getting it down on paper would be the first step. However, the U.N. has proved once again that it will always fall to the level of it’s least civilized members.


    Those ‘Christian’, ‘African’, ‘Islamic’ subhuman savage scumbags sensibiliteis are “protected” while deeming it ok to kill Gay people………

    We are born Gay, they all adopt their hatred……..

  • Daez

    Exactly how many wars do you think the United States can fight at one time? Lets be honest here, the United States is the real enforcement arm of the UN. The countries that want to kill gays and lesbians aren’t going to just stop doing it because they are slapped on the wrist and told no. Most of them are already being sanctioned by the UN for various reasons, so its not like that is going to work either. Its going to take actual warfare and removing the powers that be, but much like in Iraq, the “will of the people” will just replace that power with someone just like it. The best we can do is encourage other countries to treat gays and lesbians from these backwards countries (that have been fighting for 1000+ years as refuges.

  • Daez

    @PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS: In all fairness, they are “born” that way as well. There are very few people that are raised with no religion that later adopt religion. They were indoctrinated into their religion and hatred by their parents and their grandparents and the cycle continues. Even those that have broken away from the church can not break away from their religious “values” gained through their upbringing. That includes many gays and lesbians themselves.


    @Daez: Sorry: Epic Fail

    I was raised a catholic. I knew from a very early age that simply by using common sense much of the dogma the leaders of the religion were attempting to fill my young cranium with was simply wrong. Every person knows whether they admit it or not what is right and what is wrong. If your religion or culture encourages the killing, beating, torturing, imprisoning, and degrading another group of people and you accept it you belong to my definition of a subhuman savage scumbag.

    I won’t even demean the animal kingdom by calling such scum animals, because animals kill only for self preservation, not because someone tells them its something they should do to follow a deranged rhetoric…

  • PaulR

    Strudwick should avoid writing about politics – he doesn’t understand it.

  • Fagburn

    He’s right about how this story was over hyped by some in the UK, so well done on that.

  • Devon

    I wish the US, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Israel, Western Europe, and the rest of the civilized world would break off, form their own league, kick what’s left of the U.N. out of the building in New York, and focus on solving actual problems while the countries of Africa and the middle east keep passing silly, obnoxious resolutions based on their stone age belief system.

  • ait10101

    True that theoretically gays are included, but many people think that gays act out of choice, and are thus not protected. I try to remind such people that religion is almost always a choice — many shifts from one to another — and that this is a specious argument. Even so, I am pretty sure that being gay is not a choice. If it were, many gays would choose not to be. Sorry, it does not work that way. The UN should recognize this basic fact, shown over and over and ….

Comments are closed.