Isn’t it Time for the LGBT Community to Unify in Post-revolutionary Tunisia?
The Tunisian society has a different idea of “tolerance” than the western countries. Tolerance in Tunisia is here often called “respect”, but is not a tolerance by conviction, but by tradition and expectations of the society.
Well this is a question that I want to address to everyone who believes in Human Rights. Do Gay People have the right to exist and enjoy their rights in Tunisia?
If you ask this question to a religious person (not necessarily a true believer), he will over load you with arguments from the Koran all of them revolving around killing all gay people, ex-communicating them from society or worst stoning them to death. Please don’t be shocked because a religious person in Islam is programmed to say so. Thus, the answer to my question will be mechanical and predictable.
However, if I ask the same question to an intellectual, who knows that difference, is a right and not a peculiar way of self-expression, we will get a balanced view of how gay people in Tunisia had to affirm their existence.
Between those two controversial opinions I remain standing still. I as a young North African guy want all the best and freedom for the entire world. Isn’t it time yet to have LGBT organisations in Tunisia and North African that defend our rights?
Why should we be silent and keep looking at the world changing around us and not making a part of this change?? I hereby affirm that the LGBT issue in North Africa and in the Arab world is not going to be a TABOO issue or an issue of shame. I really need your support to speak for myself and to tell the world that, I as a Homosexual, I want to have my share of the Arab Spring that washed away all corrupt Arab regimes that butchered our dreams and crashed our sexual identity.
We LGBT people want more activism more space to act and to seek the best for our community. Up to now, LGBT people remain scattered in a huge bulk of gay web sites. We only have gay virtual chat rooms, but never got the opportunity to meet in a public place to tell the world the kind of injustice that we are experiencing.
In Tunisia, most part of the society is conservative and we are more and more becoming victims of this stance. In these days, our Assembly is forging our constitution and in that constitution there is no single word mentioning our right to exist. I still want to inform you that a radical religious party came to power to add to our misery and to turn the country to an entire mosque.
This party did explain to Hilary Clinton (US Foreign Secretary) that their coming to power will not ruin our community’s rights, but who believes them here??? We really want religion to be on the side of all those who want to live together in harmony and share the benefits of tolerance .Stop making religion hostile towards our group.
Help us merge in the main stream. However, up to this date, we are from time to time attacked, humiliated and jailed because of religion and the absence of tolerance. Here in Tunisia, after the end of Ben Ali’s regime, we started to believe in liberation and freedom, but all of the negative signs that we have depicted from the actual government (interim and future government) were frightening, it seems that all of the LGBT had to pack and file asylum somewhere before the crusade against those who are difference will be set in motion. Please read my words with care and leave a comment or your opinion. I need it more than ever.