Trump’s anti-LGBT agenda continues to grow

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Trump’s anti-LGBT agenda continues to grow

Art by Grace Summers

Art by Grace Summers

Art by Grace Summers

Alexis Perno, Staff Writer

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Most people believe they would notice if a genocide was going on. Surely it would make every news station: regular updates blaring through every radio, social media crowded with support and cries for peace.

However, there has been near radio silence for months, despite the continuing persecution of gay men in Chechnya, a republic in Russia, similar to a province.

The terror began roughly around December 2016 with a wave of seemingly random arrests that grew increasingly more targeted, yet did not receive attention until approximately March 2017. Homosexual men, or those who appeared to be, were abducted and ruthlessly tortured until they revealed the names of others.

These mass raids – which have occurred in waves, the latest reports describing the third beginning in early August – have sparked protest both in the States and abroad. Despite these horrendous events gradually becoming more known, our President still has not addressed any aspect of the crisis.

In fact, while Canada has quietly been accepting asylum seekers, Trump has been doing the opposite for the LGBT community: supporting Mike Pence, someone who condones the violent, traumatizing practice of conversion therapy, jokes about hanging gay people and speaks at events hosted by anti-LGBT groups such as the Heritage Foundation.

His proposed rollbacks on legislation on workplace safety for LGBT individuals and banning noble, courageous people from the military only adds another hurdle the LGBT community has to face in their lives. We already started behind others in the race to the finish line, why must our government continue to push us back farther?

Despite the seemingly relentless issues LGBT Americans must deal with daily, the nightmare that gay Chechens are facing at this moment desperately needs the attention it is not getting.

Besides through the Russian LGBT Network, there isn’t much information readily available in order to protect those who potentially could be affected; even if they aren’t detained, the Chechen government encourages families to perform honor killings if they discover a loved one is LGBT, saying that they will not face prosecution.

There have been reports of authorities forcing imprisoned gay Chechens to out themselves to their families, and fatalities from the consequences of this have reportedly occurred. Still, throughout all of this horror, the current face of America not only turns the other cheek, but makes his anti-LGBT sentiment clear.

At one point, some may have believed Trump when he voiced mediocre support on “The Today Show” during the election, but actions speak louder than words, and what one doesn’t do is just as important as what one does – and Trump has not done enough for the LGBT community.

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