JACKSON--Today, the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, responded to a disturbing message advocating for violence against LGBT people spray-painted in big letters on the wall of a building in downtown Jackson. The shocking statement, “NO 2 GAY MARRAGE [sic] KILL THEM,” has disturbing echoes for LGBT people in a state where they are disproportionately likely to face discrimination and harassment. In light of the hateful message, HRC Mississippi is calling for religious, community, and political leaders to condemn the graffiti and reaffirm their commitment to the dignity and worth of all Mississippians.
“This hateful message does not represent Mississippi values. We are all God’s children, but we have a long way to go to make sure everyone is being treated fairly and decently in the state we all love,” said Rob Hill, Director of HRC Mississippi. “We urge all Mississippians to stand up and make it clearly known that these kinds of messages of hatred have no place in our society. We are so much stronger together than when we're divided, and we’ve got to work together to make sure that Mississippi is a state that welcomes all families, including our LGBT brothers and sisters.”
The location of the graffiti is on a building at the intersection of Capitol and Lemon Streets in downtown Jackson.
According to a 2014 HRC survey in Mississippi, 57 percent of LGBT respondents have called Mississippi home for more than 20 years. However, almost half have experienced harassment in public establishments; more than one in five have experienced harassment monthly or more at their respective houses of worship; and almost half have experienced harassment at school. HRC Mississippi is working to advance equality for LGBT Mississippians who have no protections in housing, workplace, or public accommodations; legal state recognition for their relationships and families; state rights to jointly adopt children; and state protections from hate crimes.
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