A new video is out from the United Nations, which is hitting home the impact of discrimination – “Lesbian”, “gay”, “bisexual”, “transgender”, “intersex”, “queer”: can you see past the labels?
The video is from the United Nations Free & Equal campaign which celebrates the contributions that millions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people make to families and local communities around the world. The cast features “real people” (not actors), filmed in their workplaces and homes — among them, a firefighter, a police officer, a teacher, an electrician, a doctor and a volunteer, as well as prominent straight ally and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
It challenges you to look beyond the label and see these people for what they truly are, just normal people going about their daily lives.
The video was launched in Times Square in New York City, where it will play throughout the day, and on YouTube.
Ki-Moon, the Secretary-General of the UN, said:
We should all be outraged when people suffer discrimination, assault or even murder simply because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. We should all speak out when someone is arrested and imprisoned because of who they love or how they look. This is one of the great neglected human rights challenges of our time. We must right these wrongs!
Some may oppose change. They may invoke culture, tradition or religion to defend the status quo. Such arguments have been used to try to justify slavery, child marriage, rape in marriage and female genital mutilation.
I respect culture, tradition and religion, but they can never justify the denial of basic rights. My promise to the lesbian, homosexual, bisexual and transgender members of the human family is this: I’m with you. I promise that as Secretary-General of the United Nations I will denounce attacks against you and I will keep pressing leaders for progress.”