Clinton: ‘Gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights’


In an historic policy speech delivered Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called for LGBT human rights protections around the globe.

Clinton outlined several steps the United States government will take to advance equal treatment of LGBT people under the law, and outlined in a Presidential memo that was released today by the White House.

“Today, I want to talk about the work we have left to do to protect one group of people who’s human rights are still denied in too many parts of the world today,” Clinton said.

“In many ways, they are an invisible minority. They are arrested, beaten, terrorized, even executed. Many are treated with contempt and violence by their fellow citizens while authorities empowered to protect them look the other way — or too often, even join in the abuse,” said Clinton.

“They are denied opportunities to work and learn, driven from their homes and countries and forced to suppress or deny who they are to protect themselves from harm. I am talking about gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people: human beings born free and given, bestowed equality and dignity who have a right to claim that, which is now one of the remaining human rights challenges of our time.”

Notably, Clinton also acknowledged the shortcomings of the United States, and said that LGBT people still remain vulnerable under U.S. state and federal laws.

Watch the full 30-minute speech here:

Clinton’s speech, delivered to members of the U.S. mission to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, was in recognition of Human Rights Day, marking the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on Dec. 10, 1948 by the U.N. General Assembly.

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