From Right Wing Nation (see blogroll at left) I learned about the International Day of Action Against Homophobia in Iran, which will fall not-so-coincidentally on the one-year anniversary of the public hanging in Iran of two gay teenagers. I blogged about that last year. From the first link:
They are calling for worldwide protests against the “murderous homophobic Iranian regime” and “in commemoration of Asgari and Marhoni, the two gay teenagers executed in the city of Mashhad on 19 July last year.”
The US coordinator of the 19 July protests, Michael Petrelis of SanFrancisco, said: "Only one American city joined last year’s the international protests against Iran's hanging of the two gay teenagers. This year, gays in at least three US cities will take to the streets on July 19. We hope more cities will join us and organise vigils for gay and lesbian Iranians. American gay rights organisations should devote more energy to tackling homophobic persecution beyond our borders. The protests on July 19 are a step towards greater US support for the global struggle for queer freedom," concluded Mr Petrelis.
All this is good. I offer my best wishes and hopes to Mr. Petrelis and all those who stand against true tyranny.
Apparently, not everyone on the left sees this protest as a good thing.
I'm sorry for what happened to those boys. However, I will not protest in the current political environment lest my actions be mistaken or misinterpreted as support for regime change in Iran (emphasis mine--Darren). I will not add any kindling, no matter how small, to the mad fires of U.S., Israeli and Western imperialism and the quest for world domination, which want very much to torch Iran to the ground, its institutions, civil society, museums, libraries, schools and mostly its people, as has been done in neighboring Iraq...
I will bear witness, here. Please forgive and understand my absence from your demonstration against Iran. On the other hand, I wonder how many of my fellow queers who will be out protesting the Iranian execution ever even once saw fit to protest the death penalty in their homeland. Why is that?
The reason, you waste of gravity, is that these youths died for who and what they were, not what they did. They didn't deny life to others, as death penalty recipients here in the US have done. Are you really so foolish not to see that, or do you just use that excuse to hide behind your hatred of President Bush and "US, Israeli, and western imperialism"? The way I read it, you hate your own government--one that doesn't execute gays as policy, I might add--more than you despise Iran's. By your own words you don't want regime change in Iran; you'd rather have the religious zealots who control that country stay in charge, whilst no doubt decrying the "religious right" here in your own country.
I don't have foul enough words to describe you.
Update, 7/1/06: I guess I could have been a little more succinct. I support Mr. Petrelis because he's putting his morality before his (probable) political convictions, whereas the second guy subjugates his morality to his political convictions. His moral equivalence argument disgusts me, as does his outright lying about Iraq and US intentions in Iran.