London 'Pride' Calling
The question of how free people really are to express themselves and their sexual orientation in particular is a complex one. In the UK at least it seems like a very long time ago that it was actually against the law to be gay although as we know prejudice and discrimination never seem to go away that easily, and Amnesty continues to campaign for peoples right to express themselves freely and raise awareness around some of the issues that the LGBT community face.
There was some really positive news yesterday from India, reported widely in the media, where Delhi’s high court has delivered a landmark ruling overturning a law, known as Section 377, which criminalised homosexuality and gay sex, so ending a legacy of 19th century British colonial law. Amnesty has welcomed this as a huge step forward as up until now India was one of the few democracies to have such a law still in place and it’s a breakthrough for campaigners and the gay community there.
In other LGBT news, this weekend is the annual Pride London festival, and to coincide with this year’s festival last night saw the launch of the Gay Icons exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in London followed by a political debate featuring, among others, Ben Bradshaw, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. Amnesty and the TUC were at the event to show support for Pride after protesters had gathered outside, although here we don’t often tend to see the same kind of aggression, and angry mobs that bedevil Prides in places like Riga or Moscow,there is always a small contingent who will try to disrupt a peaceful event and people celebrating their basic human rights.
So why not join us at Pride If you’re in London tomorrow. It’s a hot ticket – apparently even our first lady Sarah Brown is coming! We’re meeting at 12pm at Baker Street or you can find us at any time during the afternoon in the middle of the Pride parade marching with a large inflatable rainbow and ‘love is a human right’ placards. Gay, straight, single, spoken for – all welcome!
see for more information on Amnesty at Pride
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.