Monday, September 24, 2007

Gays don't exist in Asia, Africa, or the Middle East. It's only the West that's Fabulous.

As a follow-up to my last post, or perhaps more appropriately a follow-up to this post, President Ahmadinejad would have us believe that there are no gays in Iran.
President Ahmadinejad's contention during a speech at Columbia University that there are no homosexuals in Iran drew a swift rebuke from human rights organizations, with one activist challenging the president to explain how he, a gay Iranian, exists.

In response to a question on the treatment of gays in Iran, Mr. Ahmadinejad said: "We don't have homosexuals like in your country. We don't have that in our country. We don't have this phenomenon I don't know who's told you we have it."

The response drew derisive laughter and booing from the assembly of 600 faculty members and students.

Said many gay Iranians (who had to flee because of, y'know, the persecution and all): "Then what am I?"
The executive director of the Toronto-based Iranian Queer Organization, Arsham Parsi, who said he fled to Turkey from Iran in 2005 to escape arrest, had a question for the president today.

"Who am I," he said. "Who am I? If we don't have any queers in Iran."

[Edit] Ezra Klein has a video of Ahmadinejad being laughed at and booed.

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