Anti-Gay Pastor Charged With Crimes Against Humanity Gets On Ballot
For the first time, a federal US judge has ruled a persecution of LGBT people is a crime against humanity.
This sets a precedent ensuring the fundamental human rights of LGBTI people are protected under international law.
It comes as a Ugandan LGBTI advocacy organization filed a lawsuit against prominent US anti-gay extremist Scott Lively.
Accused of helping to play a part in the persecution, arrest and murder of gay people in Uganda, Lively’s lawyers requested to dismiss the lawsuit.
Michael Ponsor, the US District Judge in Springfield, Massachusetts, said: ‘Widespread, systematic persecution of LGBTI people constitutes a crime against humanity that unquestionably violates international norms.’
‘The history and current existence of discrimination against LGBTI people is precisely what qualifies them as a distinct targeted group eligible for protection under international law.
‘The fact that a group continues to be vulnerable to widespread, systematic persecution in some parts of the world simply cannot shield one who commits a crime against humanity from liability.’
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Scott D. Lively, a Christian pastor best known for his anti-gay activity, has submitted the necessary signatures and paperwork to qualify as an independent candidate for governor. He will appear on the November ballot, according to Brian S. McNiff, a spokesman for the Massachusetts secretary of state.
Independent candidate Evan Falchuk, a businessman, qualified earlier this summer. Venture capital investor Jeff McCormick, the third non-party gubernatorial candidate in the race, today submitted more than the 10,000 certified signatures needed to qualify and will be on the ballot once he submits another piece of paperwork, McNiff said.
That means voters are likely to have five choices in November when they choose who will succeed Governor Deval Patrick: a Democrat, a Republican and the three non-party candidates.
The state primary is Sept. 9.
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