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support to the LGBT community from kurdistan

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dear all members of ahwaa.org,

i have always known that there are people within the kurdish community who are homophobic and cannot tolerate other sexual orientations than heterosexuality.

but i never fully understood that kurdish activists who fight for freedom could be homophobic too. it makes no sense to me.
kurdish activists say they fight for freedom and for human rights but how can that be when they are part of the oppression of the LGBT community?

i wrote an article about this matter on mideastyouth. you can read it here: http://www.mideastyouth.com/2012/04/06/the-kurd-an-oppressor-of-kurdistan/

i am a kurd and oppressed in turkey, iran and syria. but those who are kurd AND gay must suffer more than heterosexuals. they are not only discriminated against based on ethnicity but also on sexual orientation and that is horrible!

from now on, when kurdish activists say they fight for freedom, i will ask them if they fight for gay rights too.

i want to shed light on the double standards among kurdish activists, so if you are a kurd and part of the LGBT community, i would be glad to hear about your experiences.

i support you! people who does not tolerate the LGBT community are ignorant people. .

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  • 51-65_f_f_h1_f3
    Comment

    A beautiful message beautifully said, hopefully people will listen to and learn from you.

    Reply to Butterfly
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    Anonymous
    Experience

    I really enjoyed reading this, thank you for Naila. It's going to be a tough journey. We face enough oppression from our regimes that we don't need to face it from those whose struggles we share.

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  • 17-24_m_w_h3_f2
    Advice

    Just stop being homo , People will praise your right decision and you will be in the spot light (everyone will go ask you , what/who convinced you to return to the right path....etc)
    i really don't want to go through that -100% my win- debate and show u Medical, Religion & Social facts about homosexuality.. so , 3 words
    Gay is bad

    • you just proved how intellectually crippled you are , nothing more , nothing less

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    • I'm not so sure you will win in the "medical" arguments Mirage, psychiatrists argue that homophobia itself is a mental disorder that requires treatment like any other phobia.

      The religious arguments are subject to different interpretations too.

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  • 17-24_f_b_h1_f3
    Comment

    This is wonderful, Naila, thank you! Being a queer minority really does intersect in different ways. And I think there needs to be a lot more light on it. Its hard, because when a group is already oppressed, bringing up something like homophobia or sexism is seen as being distracting, or divisive. But its not, it'll make a group so much stronger!

    Reply to arabsest
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  • 17-24_f_w_h3_f1
    Comment

    it will indeed make us stronger. allow people to love! why is love discriminated against?
    my mom & dad who are conservative and muslims are also having a bit trouble with homosexuals but when we discuss the subject they seem understanding. i think we can talk homophobia into dying. it helps if the parents get to know people from the LGBT community. my danish friend (a girl) just got married to her girlfriend and my parents are delighted because she is happy. they truly forgot it was with a girl and then they said: well, she's happy, right?
    so, yeah, as people have concluded many times before: enlightenment! we need to enlighten people about what freedom really means. you fight for freedom and the right to your identity, you also fight for LGBTs.

    your fight is my fight.

    • 17-24_f_b_h1_f3
      Comment

      Cheers and love to you. I think, especially because Arab and Kurdish communities, and really most Middle Eastern communities, are so community based. We learn things through our families, through our support networks. I think that, if my family hadn't dealt with the stress of realizing that I was queer (through some unfortunate incidents that I DIDN'T want to disclose), they'd be more open to discussing the issue of homosexuality with me. When I open other more controversial topics with them (such as, unfortunately, the role of Kurdistan in the ME), they're surprisingly receptive to debate, but when they see it as a threat to their own daughter, they shut down.

      This is why people like you can be the cornerstone of the LGBT movement in the ME, and why sites like ahwaa are so important. We need so many more advocates like you!

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    • 17-24_f_w_h3_f1
      Comment

      i will do my best! and try to engage others! kurds on twitter ( #twitterkurds) have talked about starting a mass campaign for LGBT rights in a week or so. and when i have read more about LGBT in the middle east ( ahwaa.org is great!), i will write more articles.

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    • 17-24_m_w_h4_f4
      Comment

      thank you naila

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  • 17-24_f_w_h3_f1
    Comment

    april 20th #twitterkurds will mass tweet for LGBT rights in kurdistan. tell me if there is anything you want us to raise awareness of. if you want to participate you can follow updates on #twitterkurds or write me a message.

    • 35-50_f_w_h3_f4
      Comment

      Hi Naila, how did the twitter campaign go?

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    • 17-24_f_w_h3_f1
      Comment

      we were only two to begin with who mass tweeted in order to make our tweets noticed. we had prepared our tweets so it was not just a meaningless rant but included articles, quotes, etc.

      then more people joined in, even people who said they did not know anything about LGBT but that they would retweet and read the articles themselves in order to learn about this.

      i was dissapointed because many of the kurds who were online did not tweet even once for kurdish LGBT rights.

      when i ended the campaign an hour later, i began to see the effect. someone from pakistan who supports LGBT contacted me, someone from turkey did, another from the US really engaged herself in it, others started looking for video that a kurdish channel had made about transsexuals & i was told that the campaign did have an effect on some and that is good.

      it wasn't something big, this campaign, but we have begun and we will never stop to talk about LGBT rights. we will demand freedom for all when we fight for the freedom of kurds.

      thanks for asking, joon. if you want, you can search twitter for the hashtag #KurdishLGBTRights and read the tweets yourself. : )

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