Main | Thursday, December 05, 2013

LGBT Groups React To Mandela's Death

National Gay & Lesbian Task Force
Nelson Mandela was an inspiration to the millions of people who yearn for freedom across the world. With great personal sacrifice, he fought Apartheid and state-sanctioned racism. His principled approach, his willingness to reach out to former enemies, led to the introduction of multi-party democracy and real change in South Africa. Indeed, South Africa's post-apartheid constitution was the first in the world to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. His legacy is hope; hope that people can achieve peace and freedom in a world with more than its fair share of conflict.
Human Rights Campaign
Nelson Mandela tore down oppression, united a rainbow nation, and always walked arm-in-arm with his LGBT brothers and sisters—and with all people—toward freedom. Though every man, woman and child who seeks justice around the world mourns this loss, his vision of an equal future lives on undimmed. Mandela, who was South Africa’s first post-Apartheid president, was an outspoken advocate for LGBT equality. He appointed an openly-gay judge to South Africa's High Court of Appeal and during his presidency, South Africa became the first nation in the world to constitutionally prohibit sexual orientation-based discrimination. Mandela will be remembered for his social justice activism and commitment to equality for all people.
Lambda Legal
Lambda Legal joins others around the world in mourning the loss of Nelson Mandela, one of the 20th century's giants in the struggle for justice and human dignity. Every one of us who continues the fight for equality and civil rights in our own communities labors in the shadows of this man who withstood imprisonment as a consequence of his courageous leadership and grew only stronger, more resolute and more dignified. As South Africa's first elected black president, he led the people of his country toward reconciliation and forgiveness. Under his leadership, the new constitution of South Africa included explicit prohibitions against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation - a degree of legal protection that LGBT people still do not have in the United States.
All Out
We are deeply saddened to hear about Nelson Mandela’s passing. Yet, we are hopeful his legacy of tolerance and mutual respect will live on for generations," Andre Banks, Executive Director and Co-Founder of All Out said. “As All Out continues to work with partners throughout Africa to free those who are oppressed and imprisoned for who they are and who they love, we will be inspired by Nelson Mandela’s story and words.”

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