Homophobia and transphobia in Europe

21 March, 2013
0 Comments 47 Reports
Claire Uszynski
March 21, 2013 at 9:56 pm
France

The next focus of the Hate Speech Watch will be discrimmination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The 17th May is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. The Hate Speech Watch will look into the present situation of online hate against LGBTQI groups in Europe in May.

You can make action! You can respond to hate speech! Read details in Focus Online Action against Homophobia and Transphobia.

Disclaimer: The following suggestions are varied, some of them are informative, some of them are humorous and some of them are provocative. It is for you to determine which are appropriate for you and any organization you may represent...

‘R‘Respond to hate speech which targets people’s gender identity & sexual orientation. Below you can find 5 simple ways to respond to hate speech encountered online. You can find inspiration or simply choose one to act! (1)Etymology of ‘homophobia’ is homo (=same, in Greek) and –phobia (=fear of, in Greek). Is it not sad to be afraid of who we are? Do I sense some self-loathing? Arachnophobia; homophobia; acrophobia; agoraphobia; mysophobia; transphobia... all phobias are irrational fears. (2)There is no ‘cure’ for homosexuality/bisexuality or even heterosexuality. Or stupidity. (3)Gender does not signify the genitals you are born with. If that was the case, you’d always be a dick! Such comments only serve to further hate and exclude certain groups and/or individuals. Such hateful expressions can have severe consequences and lead to more than just verbal abuse, like death. (4)I hate homophobia, biphobia and transphobia; they are absurd, ignorant and small minded…like you I guess! [inspired from STOP Homophobia’s Hate Mail responses] (5)You can also use: quotes, statistics and personal experiences.  Background: Following other initiatives such as the National Day Against Homophobia created in 2003 in the Quebec province of Canada by the Fondation Emergence and celebrated in June, Louis-Georges Tin, a French university lecturer, campaigner for Black and LGBT Rights and chief editor of the «Dictionary of Homophobia», launched in August 2004 an initiative to create an International Day Against Homophobia that is global in scope. He launched an appeal « For a universal recognition of the International Day Against Homophobia » (IDAHO) and proposed that this day be fixed on May 17th, to commemorate the World Health Organisation’s decision to remove homosexuality from the list of mental disorders.  By May 17th 2005, as a result of a year long campaigning effort, 24000 people worldwide and reputed international organisations like ILGA, IGLHRC, the World Congress of LGBT Jews, the Coalition of African lesbians, to name but a few, had signed the “IDAHO appeal”. In May 2005 already, the IDAHO saw some activities take place in many countries in the world. The first LGBT events ever were organised in Congo, China and Bulgaria. Josepp Borrell, President of the European Parliament made a statement supporting the IDAHO and invited Tin to the conference the EU Parliament organised for IDAHO 2006.

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