IMMEDIATE ACTION NEEDED TO
STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST GAY GAMBIANS NOW!
Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches Issues Urgent Appeal
Calls for Global Action to Save LGBT Gambians Now
May 22, 2008
Today, as Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches, I call on people of faith and goodwill across the globe to take immediate action in urging the President of West Africa's Republic of The Gambia to withdraw his threats against the lives of countless gay people in that country and to honor his nation's history of pursuing equality and liberty for all its citizens
On Sunday, May 18, following an earlier warning that gave gay men and lesbians just 24 hours to leave the country, and citing an effort to make Gambia "one of the best countries to live in," President Alhaji Yahja A.J.J. Jammeh threatened to behead any gay person found in the nation.
He promised a "mass patrol" to "weed out bad elements," and linked homosexuality with drug dealing and theft. The President promised dire consequences for gay people remaining in Gambia and threatened to punish anyone offering support or housing to our people.
It is unclear what caused this escalation in rhetoric -- but we do know what can bring it to an end: The united voices of all us who believe in the value, dignity and worth of all life!
PLEASE TAKE THESE THREE STEPS TO SAVE LIVES TODAY!
WRITE TO THE PRESIDENT OF GAMBIA... by sending an e-mail to President Jammeh at firstname.lastname@example.org.
-- Tell him to stop inciting hatred and violence against gay people and to withdraw his threats.
-- Urge him to protect the rights of LGBT people in his country.
-- Ask him to honor the principles of the Universal Charter of Human Rights, which calls on all governments to allow their citizens to live free of threats, coercion, intimidation and discrimination.
WRITE TO THE UNITED NATIONS... by sending an e-mail to Louise Arbour, High Commissioner for Human Rights, at email@example.com. Tell her that the situation in The Gambia is urgent and urge that the United Nations take steps to protect the human rights of LGBT Gambians.
CALL ON NEIGHBORING CONGREGATIONS AND PEOPLE OF FAITH... to join this campaign. Gambia's national motto is "Progress, Peace, Prosperity." Nothing will advance progress toward peace and human well-being more than our common commitment to the basic principles of the Scriptures we reverence across denominational lines. And one of the most basic of those principles is, "Thou shalt not kill." There are no exceptions.
Silence equals death!
That mantra crosses all borders and boundaries of our world.
Speaking up and speaking out holds the promise of life for all our people!
Please -- take action now on behalf of justice and peace for our LGBT Gambian brothers and sisters!
The Reverend Nancy L. Wilson
Metropolitan Community Churches
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, CONTACT:
MCC Communications Director