In recent years, the world has seen enormous human rights gains with respect to sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. However, there have also been substantial setbacks.
When Uganda's parliament voted for this Act in December 2013, it declared open season on Uganda's LGBTI communities. In my country there's now a culture of extreme and violent homophobia whereby anyone is free to persecute LGBTI people with impunity.
We can only get married because millions of people took a stand to defend and protect us. The gay people of Brunei -- and Russia, and Uganda, and many other countries -- need us to take another stand today.
Mr. Secretary, as a global citizen who still cherishes and believes in the ideals of the United Nations, I urge you to do the right thing and revoke Mr. Kutesa's visa.
The remarks about Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Law made by Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana at a recent conference on human rights organized by the Vatican are a welcome intervention in a debate that has become dangerously overheated.
First a reputation stain, then the pocketbook strains. That's what lawmakers the world over learned to expect recently when efforts to penalize LGBT people move forward.
In order to have a fair, balanced, and academic dialogue, more than one view must be present. We all step into more growth, more love, and more humility when we listen to the diversity of voices that make up the family of God.
At its most basic level, the recent legislation is a violation of the sovereign principle that healthcare is a human right. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote from jail in 1963 that "injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
As a community -- whether that means LGBT or of a particular city/town -- we can stand up and make our voices heard. Whether you live in Denver or Dublin, London or Newark, we can stand in solidarity with our Ugandan brethren.
Lest anyone suggest discrimination in the United States is benign in comparison to what has unfolded in Uganda, we should take a closer look at the pain and suffering -- and yes, the hatred -- laws like these fuel.
I have never been to Uganda, but I have been to Arizona, and now I am not wanted in either, apparently. It's not because I am white, or because I am American, or because I make darn-good money and could contribute to tourism. Rather, I'm not wanted because I'm gay.
We know the path to equality is an uneven course, which is why we, along with our many partners, work tirelessly in more than 170 countries around the world.
It's sometimes hard to believe that the year is 2014. For all of our advances, tech developments, innovations, achievements and progress, we are watching elected officials enact laws and propose others that are simply unbelievable.
The new discourse within the gay community should be one of a right to sexual autonomy, and unadulterated acceptance of one's sexuality.
The madness never stops, but we can pull back from it on occasion to count our blessings. That is a luxury our brothers and sisters in Sochi and Lagos and Kampala might like to taste.
While you and I may disagree on the nature of homosexuality, Mr. President, I know we can agree that the bill before you now would violate the God-given dignity of too many Ugandans.