Aim high, but stop dreaming
Paloma Hernández | Day 3
When a global agreement is about to be reached, there is always the doubt on whether it will be appropriately fulfilled or just end up being nothing more than a useless piece of paper. When the contract is not very specific, and it is left opened for each to make its own reading, this risk gets exponentially increased. But, what else could we have expected from a Committee where even coming to terms on abolishing death penalty for LGBTQ+ people was perceived as an implausible achievement?
Resolutions eventually arrived at Human Rights Council today, but Arab countries’ refusal to pass them came as no surprise. They tried, nobody can say the opposite, but their moral values and religious beliefs seem to come undoubtedly before freedom of love. They were down-to-earth, and they should be acknowledged for it, as being too optimistic makes no difference if things are not ready to change so much yet.
Does this mean we should settle for sexual diversity being oppressed forever? No. Please no. Punishments are needed for those who dare to undervalue a girl for loving a girl. Or a girl for feeling a boy. Social pressure must put an end to those who feel powerful enough to guarantee that a kid is only fully grown if raised by mummy and daddy. And not by daddy and daddy. Governments cannot make society change, but society cannot change if governments do not want them to do so. Please, governments, please.
If discussing LGBTQ+ Community’s rights brought hostilities to this Council, wait and see the war that talking about environmental security is about to trigger. Positions stated, it took no time for delegates to bring up those so expected matters: Australian fires, the burning of the Amazonas, deforestation, plastics, the melting of the poles and, of course, global warming. And also hot was the atmosphere today at Human Rights Committee. Guilty smiles and spicy looks accompanied every gossip, as there seems to be a quite better chemistry between delegates than between countries. Maybe that is what we all should keep from these intense days of debate: people come before nations, before beliefs and before differences.
Respect must be learnt, not enforced
Paloma Hernández | Day 2
How ethical is it to defend global equality towards the LGBTQ+ Community when, in your nation, homosexual people still have to come out of the closet? Are developed countries really such a huge step ahead from those cultures where sexual diversity is yet punished with death penalty? Do Western governments actually deserve the right to speak from a position of moral superiority? Or are they just as needy of achievable measures as any other society of the world?
Building a large bridge
When the first session was about to begin, one delegate told another: “if by the end of this week I have not cried during any of the debates, there is something we will have done badly”. Although the Chairs proposed the second topic, referred to environmental security, as the first one to be tackled, LGBTQ+ Community’s rights seemed to be a much more attractive subject for the delegates. And this is not a surprise of any kind, as actions for and against LGBTQ+ people are the order of the day everywhere around the globe.
Manuel Ródenas, a recognized lawyer who is specialized in sexual diversity, encouraged delegates in the Human Rights Committee to take significant decisions during this week, avoiding those typical banal conversations we are used to when topics related to LGBTQ+ Community’s rights are addressed. In this day and age, saying all human beings are equal and defending their liberty to choose who they love makes no difference if there are no specific suggestions on how to make this belief turn real. And that’s what Ródenas insisted on the most.
Religion and traditions appear to be the main obstacles in the way to making sexual diversity be completely accepted and respected. Some Western countries understood this as a headstrong threat, and kept criticizing underdeveloped nations’ inability to adapt to the modern world. But this approach only shows that there is something they are not interiorizing correctly. “African countries are not ready to talk about minor topics while there’s people who still do not have anything to take into their mouths”. An unquestionable truth that cannot be omitted if real solutions want to be achieved.
While some talked about freedom, others spoke of persecuting people for love. Some concerned about adoption by same-sex pairs, while others were just worried about keeping their citizens safe and healthy. Countries in the Human Rights Committee live in different worlds, and they must join their atmospheres and build a huge bridge between their cultures if they really want to reach any kind of agreement this week.