Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-05-24
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Council on Global Affairs holds LGBT-rights conversation
by Melissa Wasserman
2017-05-03

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


The Chicago Council on Global Affairs hosted a conversation-based event titled "The Global LGBTQ Rights Movement" on April 27.

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is an independent, nonpartisan membership organization that provides insight on global issues and is committed to bringing clarity and offering solutions to issues beyond borders and transform how people, business and governments engage the world.

The event was a conversation between Frank Mugisha, executive director of Sexual Minorities of Uganda ( SMUG ); and Jane M. Saks, founding president and artistic director of Project&. Topics included Mugisha's start in activism, his strategies and developing reliable networks around the world, religion and culture's role in LGBTQ rights, particularly in Uganda and his thoughts on SMUG's crimes against humanity lawsuit, among other issues.

According to Saks, this event, part of the Women and Global Development Forum, was the first LGBTQ-focused program that the Council has ever done. While, same-sex marriage has been legalized in the United States, countries like Uganda, are facing the opposite in which laws that criminalize homosexuality are passed. The evening's discussion provided some insights in the experience of the backlash sexual minorities face.

"I think events like this remind people what it is to be human and what it is to be the same," said Mugisha. "We could be different, but we all want the same thing."

A Q&A portion where attendees could engage followed Mugisha and Saks' discussion. The event was also livestreamed and allowed for at-home viewers to ask questions.

"The LGBTQ communities in Chicago are incredibly active and really fierce and I'm really proud to be a member," said Saks. "I think that this is an important city to go to. It's very diverse and it's also very segregated and we've had some real tragedies happen here—a lot of murders and hate crimes and then we've also had great successes and strides and so I think that that's an important way to start conversations is to really think about 'ok, where are we, where have we been and where are we going.' It's what I call living in all tenses of the verb as an activist; past, present and future and you can't stay in one or the other."

Saks' Project& is a Chicago nonprofit organization that supports art with social impact.

SMUG is an LGBTI, non-government network, formed in March 2004, that addresses Human Rights issues surrounding sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. The network's mission is "to monitor, coordinate, and support member organizations to achieve their objectives aimed at the liberation of LGBTI people."

"I have to show people that homophobia isn't a Ugandan or an African problem, it's a global program," said Mugisha. "So, people coming to listen to me is not about Uganda, it's about their friends here, it's about their relatives and family here and also any other LGBT person around the world. That's why sometimes in most of my talks, you'll hear that it's not only about politics, but it's about me as a person and my lived realities or experiences because then those touch people to think, help and engage."

Mugisha shared that, by chance, his work in activism found him. While he was appointed to his role with SMUG, he explained when one experiences vulnerability and discrimination, it pushes for the need to work hard to change people's minds. In tune with that concept, he said he believes he is saving LGBT people every time he speaks out, holds a meeting, or even does a workshop.

"It's very challenging for activists to work, especially when it's very hostile," said Mugisha in the conversation with Saks. "The only thing that we relied on as protection was international pressure. International organizations talking about what is going on all the time, which is happening now. And I think most importantly being in touch with the activists on the ground and listening to them and asking them what exactly should we do, how should we respond. I think political pressure is very good if it is done in a very strategic way."

Mugisha commented that some people don't see the progress being made, but if it is you who is doing the work, you see the progress. He adding there are many ways one can support the LGBT movement.

"You have to make very specific choices to do the work that Frank does," said Saks, who developed a friendship with Mugisha some time before the event. "You can't get too high up and you also can't just be on the ground and he has to balance the two staying very close to his community and what the struggle is and also developing a large visionary perspective and that's a very hard way to live while your life is being threatened."

"I believe you still have to have really fierce activism, you have to fight like hell, you have to be willing to take risks, you have to really be courageous, you have to honor everybody that's come before you, who has made it possible, so these kind of personal connections, are not in lieu of really fierce advocacy and activism, but the fact is, there are these kinds of quiet moments and sometimes it's social moments, where people don't say things," said Saks. "They don't say things about race, they don't say things about poverty, they don't say things about gender, they don't say things about being queer and at that moment, you could actually could really crack something open, as well as through the real strategic activism and policy shifts."

For more information and to watch the conversation, visit www.thechicagocouncil.org/event/global-lgbtq-rights-movement .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

HRW issues report on Chechen anti-gay abuses 2017-05-26 - A 42-page report by the international rights-advocacy organization Human Rights Watch ( HRW ), released May 26, details the brutal treatment that gay ...


Gay News

Human Rights Watch issues report on anti-gay purge in Chechnya 2017-05-26 - ( New York, May 26, 2017 ) — Police in Chechnya rounded up, beat, and humiliated dozens of gay or bisexual men in ...


Gay News

Illinois House Passes Bill to Modernize State's Birth Certificate Law 2017-05-26 - SPRINGFIELD — A measure to modernize Illinois law allowing people to change the gender marker on their birth certificate, House Bill 1785, passed ...


Gay News

NBA returns 2019 All-Star Game to Charlotte, HRC responds 2017-05-24 - RALEIGH — Today, Equality NC and the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) responded to the NBA's decision to bring back the All-Star ...


Gay News

Ald. Dowell, Chairman City Council Committee on Human Relations, addresses hate crime 2017-05-24 - Alderman Pat Dowell, Chairman of the Committee on Human Relations, together with colleagues introduced a Resolution, at the May 24, 2017 City Council, ...


Gay News

Treatment Action Group Condemns White House Budget Cuts to Health, Research 2017-05-24 - New York, NY, May 24, 2017- The full disclosure of President Trump's FY18 budget yesterday reaffirms the current administration's intention of scaling-back critical ...


Gay News

GUEST COLUMN On I Am Not Your Negro 2017-05-24 - "People invent categories in order to feel safe. White people invented black people to give white people identity...Straight cats invented faggots so they ...


Gay News

Chicago Equality Rally on June 11 2017-05-24 - The Chicago LGBTQ community and allies will be gathering Sunday, June 11, at 11 a.m. at Andersonville Midsommarfest in solidarity with the Equality ...


Gay News

9/11 friar to be honored June 10 2017-05-24 - Father Mychal Judge—an openly gay Franciscan friar who was one of the first responders who showed up to the twin towers once disaster ...


Gay News

Dignity/Chicago marks 45 years with dinner, awards ceremony 2017-05-24 - DignityUSA Executive Director Marianne Duddy-Burke was the keynote speaker at Dignity/Chicago's ( the advocacy organization for LGBTQI Catholics and their allies ) 45th ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.