Foreign secretary advice to LGBT fans.... Be respectful

maniak

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Let me explain this. Let's say we all accept Qatar and the LGBT situation is exactly as described by some. So Qatar is evil. What is obvious to me is that no one cared and for me still don't. It's just a case of bandwagons, virtue signalling and ultimately clinging to a stick to beat them with over what is essentially a list of things people went through. Corruption being the first then workers them women and finally LGBTQ.
:rolleyes:
 

Rood

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What is he trying to say here? I read it as saying that drawing attention to the bigoted behaviour against certain groups is disliked by said bigots?
He's saying that people in the West campaigning for gay rights in Qatar are actually making things worse for the LGBT community in the region

Heard similar from other sources
 

moses

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I have no idea either, yet.
He's saying that people in the West campaigning for gay rights in Qatar are actually making things worse for the LGBT community in the region

Heard similar from other sources
Isn't that like an abused child placating the abuser so it doesn't get worse?
 

Rhyme Animal

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He's saying that people in the West campaigning for gay rights in Qatar are actually making things worse for the LGBT community in the region

Heard similar from other sources
That really speaks of just how bad it must really be there tbh, ‘shut up or they’ll get it worse’ is such an utterly depressing message when talking about a basic human right that it’s almost surreal.

I think also it really needs to be stressed, the World hasn’t shown up at qatar and said, ‘change your ways immediately’… that simply has not happened.

What’s happened is the World has shown up at qatar, been told, ‘gays and women aren’t equal here, please respect that’, and Europe has said, ‘ok, fair enough, but we want to make clear by wearing an armband that they’re equal to us’, and qatar / fifa said, ‘no, you can’t do that’.

That is what has happened - no one has ‘disrespected’ qatar’s actual laws.

We should be honest about that and not allow the narrative to slide into dishonesty at the behest of an oppressive and unjust regime / media.
 

Rood

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Isn't that like an abused child placating the abuser so it doesn't get worse?
Maybe

Or maybe there is no abuse as the LGBT community there choose to stay underground so are left alone - but now this kind of spotlight makes them worried about being outed which makes problems more likely

I heard this idea that the Qatari gay community don't want to see rainbow flags, tshirts etc on this podcast - worth a listen:
 

moses

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I have no idea either, yet.
Maybe

Or maybe there is no abuse as the LGBT community there choose to stay underground so are left alone - but now this kind of spotlight makes them worried about being outed which makes problems more likely

I heard this idea that the Qatari gay community don't want to see rainbow flags, tshirts etc on this podcast - worth a listen:
Absolutely, and it's a danger if we just waltz in to any delicate situation, in a house or a foreign country, but none of this is saying there isn't a problem, just this is not the way to deal. Which is why soft pressure like saying you're not having the world cup with these laws in place is the way to go.

Expecting people who care once they are aware to stfu is unreasonable.

A wider selection of those guardian podcasts proves to be quite critical of the whole thing..
 

Rood

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Absolutely, and it's a danger if we just waltz in to any delicate situation, in a house or a foreign country, but none of this is saying there isn't a problem, just this is not the way to deal. Which is why soft pressure like saying you're not having the world cup with these laws in place is the way to go.

Expecting people who care once they are aware to stfu is unreasonable.

A wider selection of those guardian podcasts proves to be quite critical of the whole thing..
Yes exactly, it's a question of the right way to deal with the problems

But negative political reaction in the media to this football tournament is overdone in my opinion and the message here is that this will not help the cause

Of course there is criticism in the Football Weekly podcasts but there is a range of opinions and they go more in depth than superficial reporting elsewhere - then you form your own opinion based on the facts
 

NotThatSoph

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Maybe

Or maybe there is no abuse as the LGBT community there choose to stay underground so are left alone - but now this kind of spotlight makes them worried about being outed which makes problems more likely

I heard this idea that the Qatari gay community don't want to see rainbow flags, tshirts etc on this podcast - worth a listen:
https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/10/24/qatar-security-forces-arrest-abuse-lgbt-people

A transgender Qatari woman said that after security forces arrested her on the street in Doha, Preventive Security officers accused her of “imitating women” because of her gender expression. In the police car, they beat her until her lips and nose were bleeding and kicked her in the stomach, she said. “You gays are immoral, so we will be the same to you,” she said one officer told her.
“I saw many other LGBT people detained there: two Moroccan lesbians, four Filipino gay men, and one Nepalese gay man,” she said. “I was detained for three weeks without charge, and officers repeatedly sexually harassed me. Part of the release requirement was attending sessions with a psychologist who ‘would make me a man again.’”
Another Qatari transgender woman said she was arrested in public by Preventive Security Department forces because she was wearing makeup. “They gave me hand wipes and made me wipe the makeup off my face,” she said. “They used the makeup-stained wipes as evidence against me and took a picture of me with the wipes in my hand. They also shaved my hair.” Security forces made her sign a pledge that she would not wear makeup again as a condition for her release, she said.
A Qatari bisexual woman said: “[Preventive Security officers] beat me until I lost consciousness several times. An officer took me blindfolded by car to another place that felt like a private home from the inside and forced me to watch restrained people getting beaten as an intimidation tactic.”
A Qatari transgender woman, arrested by Preventive Security in public in Doha, said: “They [Preventive Security] are a mafia. They detained me twice, once for two months in a solitary cell underground, and once for six weeks. They beat me every day and shaved my hair. They also made me take off my shirt and took a picture of my breasts. I suffered from depression because of my detention. I still have nightmares to this day, and I’m terrified of being in public.”
In all cases, LGBT detainees said, Preventive Security forces forced them to unlock their phones and took screenshots of private pictures and chats from their devices, as well as contact information of other LGBT people.

A Qatari gay man who has experienced government repression, including arbitrary arrest, said that security forces surveilled and arrested him based on his online activity.

All those interviewed provided strikingly similar accounts. The repressive climate around free expression in Qatar, including around the rights of LGBT people, has made many people who may have experienced mistreatment afraid to be interviewed because of the risk of retaliation, Human Rights Watch said.
 

Raoul

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The thing is who's to blame for the backlash? Homophobes that are protested against and perpetrate violence, or the ones protesting homophobia?
Indeed. It was an attempt to deflect attention from the problem by blaming those who are shining a light on it.
 

adexkola

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Indeed. It was an attempt to deflect attention from the problem by blaming those who are shining a light on it.
To be fair I've seen you make a similar argument in the Israel/Palestine thread: calling the situation apartheid doesn't do anything to aid the situation and may make things worse.
 

Raoul

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To be fair I've seen you make a similar argument in the Israel/Palestine thread: calling the situation apartheid doesn't do anything to aid the situation and may make things worse.
My point there is specific to that situation where protests have clearly not worked and never will because of the power structure of the Israeli-US relationship. This is clearly not remotely in that category since the Qataris have already capitulated and will continue to do so to avoid further embarrassment during the tournament
 

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moses

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I have no idea either, yet.
But negative political reaction in the media to this football tournament is overdone in my opinion and the message here is that this will not help the cause
Personally I'm not sure you can call a media overreaction to human rights issues while they are still human rights issues. Isn't the media's job to highlight issues so we can fix them?

What's your take, that they've said enough, now stop banging on about it?

The idea that this highlighting human rights abuses makes things worse is the one media take you post here because it's the one you prefer, because it stops the negativity. It's grimly like many other scared oppressed peoples. Black people were terrified of people making a civil rights stand in the USA because they feared their oppressor. To take that as a signal to stop the human rights marches would have been your suggestion?

I'm interested in why you engage with the bad press on this world cup across the threads and want it to stop.

Just ignore it if you want to focus on the football? I'm wondering why it seems to bother you so much. I get not being interested in opposition but you have been constantly trying to quiten the criticism. Very odd.
 
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reelworld

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Personally I'm not sure you can call a media overreaction to human rights issues while they are still human rights issues. Isn't the media's job to highlight issues so we can fix them?

What's your take, that they've said enough, now stop banging on about it?

The idea that this highlighting human rights abuses makes things worse is the one media take you post here because it's the one you prefer, because it stops the negativity. It's grimly like many other scared oppressed peoples. Black people were terrified of people making a civil rights stand in the USA because they feared their oppressor. To take that as a signal to stop the human rights marches would have been your suggestion?

I'm interested in why you engage with the bad press on this world cup across the threads and want it to stop.

Just ignore it if you want to focus on the football? I'm wondering why it seems to bother you so much. I get not being interested in opposition but you have been constantly trying to quiten the criticism. Very odd.
I think the issue is less with media overreaction but more with the western media. The messenger, not the message kind of thing.
The Western countries already got a bad rep in the region and justifiably so. And now their media comes in and try to change what they believe.
It's like hearing advice from someone who you already hate. The advice maybe sound, but there's no way you're gonna listen and follow it.
I think that poster who said changes must comes from within is right.
 

moses

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I have no idea either, yet.
I think the issue is less with media overreaction but more with the western media. The messenger, not the message kind of thing.
The Western countries already got a bad rep in the region and justifiably so. And now their media comes in and try to change what they believe.
It's like hearing advice from someone who you already hate. The advice maybe sound, but there's no way you're gonna listen and follow it.
I think that poster who said changes must comes from within is right.
Unless the media are lying, I have no issue. Are the media disingenuous pricks? Yes. But if they are telling the truth then you can't ask for more in this instance. Media bias exists and I am very aware of it and critical of it but there does seem to be human rights issues, so lets just focus on that, for the sake of the oppressed.

Yeah, change from within would be the best scenario. But there is a bit of that that is out of context therapy speak, the reality is different. Throughout history, oppressive power has rarely been changed or defeated from within. Almost all of our human rights have been a violent struggle to achieve. Power is rarely conceded with a quiet word in someone's ear. Slavery wasn't ended from within it's cultural stronghold or led by black people. Irish freedom was pushed along by the educated Protestant class inspired by the French revolution, which in turn was a peasant Revolt inspired by aristocrats. None of that was accepted as right by the oppressors at the time.
 
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Rood

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Personally I'm not sure you can can a media overreaction to human rights issues while they are still human rights issues. Isn't the media's job to highlight issues so we can fix them?

What's your take, that they've said enough, now stop banging on about it?

The idea that this highlighting human rights abuses makes things worse is the one media take you post here because it's the one you prefer, because it stops the negativity. It's scarily like many other scared oppressed peoples. Black people were terrified of people making a civil rights stand in the USA because they feared their oppressor. To take that as a signal to stop the human rights marches would have been your suggestion?

That particular podcast has been very critical of the world cup but that's the one you post.

I'm interested in why you engage with the bad press on this world cup across the threads and want it to stop.

Just ignore it if you want to focus on the football? I'm wondering why it seems to bother you so much. I get not being interested in opposition but you have been constantly trying to quiten the criticism. Very odd.
I'm not trying to quieten criticism at all - would I have posted that podcast if I was? I would encourage people to listen to it and actually learn more detail about the situation

Read my posts, I've been plenty critical of Qatar and the World Cup where I feel it is warranted but there is a huge difference between constructive criticism and a lot of the foaming at the mouth hysteria I see on here (not accusing you of that BTW)

Also I have no interest in discussing 1950s Black America in the World Cup forum, the situations are completely different so not comparable to me - Ive not posted much in here as the majority of the recent discussion isnt directly relevant to the World Cup, Qatar or the wider region

And I don't claim to have all the answers but I think it's a very important point being bought up regarding Western activism against this World Cup and what it might acheive which I why dipped back into this thread.

 

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The idea that "doing X to prevent Y is actually an empty gesture that makes Y worse" is a really tired argument that gets trotted out about literally everything. Don't raise taxes because it'll cut GDP and government will have less money. Don't raise minimum wage because companies will just cut jobs. Don't protest because the backlash will set back your cause.
 

Abizzz

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Imagine being so insecure in yourself and your country, your sexuality and your religion that you have to beat up some homosexual neighbors because some westerner said something.
 

moses

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I have no idea either, yet.
I'm not trying to quieten criticism at all - would I have posted that podcast if I was?

Read my posts, I've been plenty critical of Qatar and the World Cup where I feel it is warranted but there is a huge difference between constructive criticism and a lot of the foaming at the mouth hysteria I see on here (not accusing you of that BTW)

Also I have no interest in discussing 1950s Black America in the World Cup forum, the situations are completely different so not comparable to me - Ive not posted much in here as the majority of the recent discussion isnt directly relevant to the World Cup, Qatar or the wider region

And I don't claim to have all the answers but I think it's a very important point being bought up regarding Western activism against this World Cup and what it might acheive which I why dipped back into this thread.

On the bolded, that's fair enough., it's just that the oppressed rarely champions meeting the oppressor head on. Ever.

My only issues is with the idea that there is hysteria. Where ? Nobody is boycotting it. Keane attends as a pundit and speaks out and is called a hypocrite. There is no actual material opposition by anyone to actual human rights abuses.

What is the appropriate column inches for human rights abuses before it's hysteria? I'm appalled at the lack of action and you think there is hysteria with the exact same data available. Humans are a complicated bunch.

Also there is century old campaign for gay rights, so the idea that it's just to make the west look good is utter nonsense and disrespectful to the victims and the many people who have dedicated their lives at sometimes great sacrifice for gay rights. One tweet doesn't alter the reality of 100 years of slow hard won progress.
 

Rood

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On the bolded, that's fair enough., it's just that the oppressed rarely champions meeting the oppressor head on. Ever.

My only issues is with the idea that there is hysteria. Where ? Nobody is boycotting it. Keane attends as a pundit and speaks out and is called a hypocrite. There is no actual material opposition by anyone to actual human rights abuses.

What is the appropriate column inches for human rights abuses before it's hysteria? I'm appalled at the lack of action and you think there is hysteria with the exact same data available. Humans are a complicated bunch.

Also there is century old campaign for gay rights, so the idea that it's just to make the west look good is utter nonsense and disrespectful to the victims and the many people who have dedicated their lives at sometimes great sacrifice for gay rights. One tweet doesn't alter the reality of 100 years of slow hard won progress.
Well that's the crux of it! I guess it's all about perception and what angle you are coming from.

I was referring to hysteria on this forum - you asked why I post counter arguments and it's mostly to provide balance to that and to correct a lot of misinformation I see posted.
But this is extended into the wider media, perhaps not hysteria but I think the balance between football and politics has gone too far one way at this World Cup.

Plus some prominent players say they are boycotting from Cantona to a several Lionesses. And I personally think it's idiotic that the likes of Neville and Keane are accused of hypocrisy, I think they are doing exactly the right thing in going out there to see the situation for themselves and then report on it.

On a simple level I'm sure we can agree that the situation for LGBT in Qatar is not good and needs improving but then it's a question of how best to achieve that.
That's exactly what those Twitter posts are asking, he's not trying to shut anyone down either - it's a discussion point and surely the most important one in this case.
 

NotThatSoph

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Read my posts, I've been plenty critical of Qatar and the World Cup where I feel it is warranted but there is a huge difference between constructive criticism and a lot of the foaming at the mouth hysteria I see on here (not accusing you of that BTW)
You suggested that Qatari LGBT+ people maybe aren't oppressed at all, that they're left alone to do what they like as long as they stay underground. This goes against all available evidence.

I remember you brought up Nasser Mohamed a while ago, saying that it's a huge step forward for LGBT+ rights in Qatar that he is openly gay - even though he was granted asylum in the US because of the fear of persecution. Mohamed is the campaigner mentioned in the following Guardian article: Gay Qataris physically abused then recruited as agents, campaigner says

Here his experience matches those from the human rights report I linked you yesterday, but also goes further: Not only are Qatari LGBT+ people spied on, they're sometimes forced to spy on their own community to avoid torture.
 

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You suggested that Qatari LGBT+ people maybe aren't oppressed at all, that they're left alone to do what they like as long as they stay underground. This goes against all available evidence.

I remember you brought up Nasser Mohamed a while ago, saying that it's a huge step forward for LGBT+ rights in Qatar that he is openly gay - even though he was granted asylum in the US because of the fear of persecution. Mohamed is the campaigner mentioned in the following Guardian article: Gay Qataris physically abused then recruited as agents, campaigner says

Here his experience matches those from the human rights report I linked you yesterday, but also goes further: Not only are Qatari LGBT+ people spied on, they're sometimes forced to spy on their own community to avoid torture.
No I didn't - that's just your misinterpretation of what I was saying

I'd already read the HRW article you posted weeks ago
 

NotThatSoph

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No I didn't - that's just your misinterpretation of what I was saying

I'd already read the HRW article you posted weeks ago
Ok, my bad. Do you mean that they are oppressed but not abused, or am I misinterpreting that as well?

Maybe

Or maybe there is no abuse as the LGBT community there choose to stay underground so are left alone - but now this kind of spotlight makes them worried about being outed which makes problems more likely

I heard this idea that the Qatari gay community don't want to see rainbow flags, tshirts etc on this podcast - worth a listen:
 

Rood

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I'm saying they try to avoid abuse by staying underground but the media spotlight is making that more difficult, hence making abuse more likely

In fact it's not even me saying it - I'm just repeating things from those with more knowledge from Twitter, the podcast etc
 

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On a simple level I'm sure we can agree that the situation for LGBT in Qatar is not good and needs improving but then it's a question of how best to achieve that.
That's exactly what those Twitter posts are asking, he's not trying to shut anyone down either - it's a discussion point and surely the most important one in this case.
It's an important discussion to have, but El-Baghdadi doesn't really offer any alternative or even evidence that the Western media is actually making things worse. I don't doubt that he's noticing more outspoken social/online backlash against the LGBT community in response to the attention it's gotten, because for the average person in the region LGBT people might have been "out of sight, out of mind". But that homophobic sentiment existed anyway, outspoken or not. Any hypothetical "organic" or domestic push for a semblance of equality from the Qatari queer community would be met with even more resistance, ignoring the fact that any such push would be suppressed and cracked down immediately by the authorities with the Qatari public not even hearing about it.

However I disagree with the notion that this is merely a Western media campaign working against the interests of the queer community in the region. I imagine some LGBT people there would rather not have the attention out of fear of backlash, but many of the reports we're getting are based on accounts of gay or trans people who are telling their stories of abuse and oppression to human rights organisations and the media. Would it be right to ignore their voices because pragmatically it's possible it might make things worse in the short term? I think the people brave enough to come forward deserve to be heard.

It's probably true to some extent that for many LGBT people in Qatar life is bearable as long as they keep their heads down, but for many it's clearly not the case. El-Baghdadi seems to be arguing in favour of preserving the status quo in which living in the shadows is the best possible outcome, but blaming the West for upsetting that delicate and arbitrary status quo isn't that great of a point when clearly there are people in the country who don't feel that situation is worth preserving and wouldn't have a voice otherwise.

I can understand the idea that the Western media barging in with good intentions potentially might not be best course of action, and speaking for the silent/silenced Qatari LGBT community, parts of which would rather be invisible than become the focus of attention, could be seen as presumptuous and hubristic. But who are we to decide not to support the people that have spoken out anonymously because they fear for their own safety? What's the alternative here?

Besides, for the longest time the media focus was primarily on the abysmal treatment of migrant workers which is directly linked to the world cup. For better or worse, I don't believe there were any huge plans to protest for LGBT rights beyond fairly tame gestures of support like wearing those armbands and some rainbow flags in the crowds. The "hysteria" mainly started after FIFA's and Qatar's sudden and disproportionate departure from their own reassurances on the matter. It's worth discussing whether pushing for LGBT rights in this way might lead to a worse outcome, but on the other hand Qatar should have known that cracking down on benign symbols of solidarity would lead to huge Western media backlash.
 

Rood

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I think you have probably misunderstood El-Baghdadi's intentions - it's a bit messy to follow but worth reading through all his Tweets on the subject. The limited nature of Twitter means it's not the best platform for nuanced discussion and he himself acknowledges this and it's an ongoing process with no conclusions reached as yet


I do agree that FIFAs heavy handed approach has made the hysteria worse, if they had simply allowed the captain's to wear the armbands I think there would have been less exposure for the whole issues than the way it has eventually played out
 

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I think you have probably misunderstood El-Baghdadi's intentions - it's a bit messy to follow but worth reading through all his Tweets on the subject. The limited nature of Twitter means it's not the best platform for nuanced discussion and he himself acknowledges this and it's an ongoing process with no conclusions reached as yet


I do agree that FIFAs heavy handed approach has made the hysteria worse, if they had simply allowed the captain's to wear the armbands I think there would have been less exposure for the whole issues than the way it has eventually played out
I saw those tweets and I don't think I misunderstood El-Baghdadi's intentions. Admittedly saying "El-Baghdadi seems to be arguing in favour of preserving the status quo in which living in the shadows is the best possible outcome" was poorly phrased, but I somewhat disagree with the way he reasons in terms of cause and effect.

Mainly because I don't think there is a way to address LGBT issues, by the West or anyone else, that wouldn't initially lead to massive social backlash. Even in campaigns in football in recent years that weren't specifically about this world cup or LGBT rights elsewhere, for instance the rainbow laces campaign in the Premier League, social media abuse is absolutely vile. Of course a lot of that from within the UK, but also a lot from people outside of the country.

While El-Baghdadi might not endorse the views, using examples like
"As a person from Qatar, I can tell you the way society sees the rainbow symbol shifted from an “LGBT” symbol to a symbol of western racism trying to tell us they care about humans more than us barbarians. That shift happened after the organized european media campaign.".
to support his point that western media is causing more damage seems somewhat disingenuous. I'm sure that narrative has gained traction more recently, but I don't think at any point were LGBT rights and the rainbow flag not seen as a Western thing in many parts of the world. Pretty sure Putin also has used similar rhetoric recently, implying LGBT issues are Western corruption or something along that line. Branding it as neocolonialism or racism is just a convenient defence; the actual attitude towards the issue remains the same whether you reject LGBT people on religious grounds, or supposedly in protest to Western self-righteousness.

Not everything I'm saying here or in my previous comment are directly tied to or opposing those tweets, and maybe I'm wrong on some points. I just think LGBT rights have gained a lot of traction and support in Western Europe over the past decade, and at least superficially as well in football. And as with most causes, more visibility often causes more outspoken reactions from people with differing viewpoints. Ideological polarisation, or at least the perception thereof online, is something we're seeing in many forms on different topics around the world. Maybe it's always been like that, the constant action and reaction back and forth between traditional values versus progressive (for lack of a better word) values, maybe it's happening more than ever. That's why I don't know if it's right to pin increasingly vocal anti-LGBT rhetoric that much on western media in connection with the world cup.

Of course it shouldn't be up to the West to decide to unleash that backlash on the local queer community, but as other tweets under his have pointed out, even as an experienced human rights activist El-Baghdadi also doesn't speak for the local LGBT community. It's a complicated topic for sure, and as with many things there's really no right answer. I'm curious to see what he has to say after speaking to LGBT Arabs
 

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