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I approached the impending travel with the same research techniques I'd employed in preparation for Portland, Oregon- namely, blogs.
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She says: LGBT Americans are our colleagues our teachers, our soldiers, our friends, our loved ones, and they are full and equal citizens, and deserve the rights of citizenship. That includes marriage. That s why I support marriage for lesbian and gay couples.
I support it personally, and as a matter of policy and law, embedded in a broader effort to advance equality and opportunity for LGBT Americans and all Americans. She acknowledges the need to find common ground , and encourages an ongoing dialogue on the issue, conceding that not everyone will share the same views on issues such as equal marriage. She concludes that the journey towards equality is far from over , and says we must keep working harder to make this country freer and fairer .
The full speech by Mrs Clinton is available below: A little over a year ago in Geneva, I told the world that gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights. And that the United States would be a leader in defending those rights. Now there were some countries that did not want to hear that, but I believe America is at its best when we champion the freedom and dignity of every human being.
That s who we are. It s in our DNA. As Secretary of State I had the privilege to represent that America.
I will never forget the young Tunisian who asked me, after the revolution in his country, how America could teach his new democracy to protect the rights of LGBT citizens. He saw America as an example for the world, and as a beacon of hope. That s what was in my mind as I engaged in some pretty tough conversations with foreign leaders who did not accept that human rights applied to everyone, gay and straight.
When I directed our diplomats around the world to combat repressive laws, and reach out to the brave activists fighting on the front lines. When I changed State Department policy to ensure that our LGBT families are treated more fairly Travelling the world these past four years, reaffirmed and deepened my pride in our country and the ideals we stand for. It also inspired and challenged me to think anew about who we are and the values we represent to the world.
Now having left public office, I want to share some of what I ve learned, and what I ve come to believe. For America to continue leading in the world, there is work we must do here at home. That means investing in our people, our economy, our national security.
It also means working every day as citizens, as communities, as a country, to live up to our highest ideals, and continue our long march to a more perfect union. LGBT Americans are our colleagues our teachers, our soldiers, our friends, our loved ones, and they are full and equal citizens, and deserve the rights of citizenship. That includes marriage.
That s why I support marriage for lesbian and gay couples. I support it personally, and as a matter of policy and law, embedded in a broader effort to advance equality and opportunity for LGBT Americans and all Americans. Like so many others, my personal views have been shaped over time by people I have known and loved, by my experience representing our nation on the world stage, my devoltion to law and human rights, and the guiding principals of my faith.
Marriage, after all is a fundamental building block of our society. A great joy, and yes, a great responsibility. A few years ago Bill and I celebrated as our own daughter married the love of her life, and I wish every parent that same joy.
To deny the opportunity to any of our daughters and sons solely on the basis of who they are, and who they love, is to deny them the chance to live up to their own God-given potential. Throughout out history, as our nation has become even more dedicated to the protection of liberty and justice for all, more open to the contribution of all our citizens. It has also become stronger, more competitive more ready for the futre.
It benefits every American when we continue on that path. I know that many in our country still struggle to reconcile the teachings of their religion, the pull of their conscience, the personal experiences they have in their families and communities. And people of good will and good faith will continue to view this issue differently.
So I hope that as we discuss and debate, whether it s around a kitchen table, or in the public square, we do so in a spirit of respect and understanding. Conversations with our friends, our families, our congregations, our coworkers, are opportunities to share our own reflections, and to invite others to share theirs. They give us a chance to find that common ground, and a path forward.
For those of us who lived through the long years of the civil rights and women s rights movements, the speed with which more and more people have come to embrace the dignity and equality of LGBT Americans has been breathtaking and inspiring. We see it all around us every day in major cultural statements, and in quiet family moments. But the journey is far from over, and therefore we must keep working to make our country freer and fairer.
And to continue to inspire the faith the world puts in our leadership. In doing so we will keep moving closer and closer to that more perfect union promised to us all. Thank you.
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The judge who convicted Bird claimed that since he was bisexual he would not have killed his male assaulter out of passion, since he would find sexual contact with men normal . Bird was convicted of second-degree murder after he admitted to stabbing Albert Mitchell 73 times. He had met Mitchell while hitchhiking, and stayed at Mitchell s house in British Columbia for a week in 2008.
On the last night of his stay Bird said he woke up to find Mitchell, who he had no previous sexual relationship with, sexually assaulting him. He said he then became frenzied and went to the kitchen, where he found a knife and repeatedly stabbed Mitchell. At his conviction Justice Richard Blair dismissed the claim that Bird was enraged by Mitchell s sexual advances.
The judge claimed that Bird, a bisexual man, would not have lost control in that situation, as he had previously had sexual contact with men. The conviction stated: Bird says that he is bisexual and, as such, appears to accept sexual contact with other males as a normal manifestation of his sexual makeup. Mr Olthuis now says the judge unfairly dismissed the sexual assault element of the case by ignoring that, unlike Bird s previous relations with men, it was non-consensual.
He told the appeal panel: The justice erred in thinking consensual same-sex relationships in the past had any effect on this uninvited advance. Bird changed his story several times after his arrest, claiming Mitchell had threatened him with a knife when he woke up, and that he had killed him as part of a gang initiation. He was sentenced to life in prison in 2011.
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