LGBTQ+ not about human rights, says political analyst

Joshua Jebuntie Zaato believes that LGBTQ issues have been falsely clothed to make them look like they are about human rights

Political analyst Joshua Jebuntie Zaato challenged the prevailing narrative surrounding discussions on LGBTQ rights. Zaato argues that framing the debate as about human rights is misleading, asserting that deeper values, interests, and political motivations are at play.

Zaato, who was speaking on the Forum on Asaase 99.5 Saturday (2 March), contends that the global discourse on LGBTQ+ issues has been erroneously draped in the cloak of human rights. Contrary to popular belief, he asserts that the crux of the matter lies in conflicting values, divergent interests, and entrenched political ideologies.

The political analyst emphasised the ideological and philosophical underpinnings of the LGBTQ+ debate, highlighting its lack of universality.

He argued that by framing it solely as a human rights issue, proponents overlook the nuanced cultural and societal contexts that shape attitudes towards LGBTQ+ rights globally.

“The global discussion or the universal discussion about LGBTQ+ has been falsely clothed under this umbrella; that it is to protect human rights. It has been falsely clothed to make it look like it’s about human rights. I disagree with that fundamental argument.”

“LGBTQ+… is not about human rights. It has never been. It’s about values, it’s about interests, and it’s about politics. So, wherever you see it being done, wherever you see it being promoted, these are the driving forces behind it,” Zaato remarked.

“It is also an ideological and philosophical question that means it is not universal … it is not about human rights. When you make it look like it’s about human rights, you are saying that there is universality and we all agree on it, we don’t. In fact, if you listen to the conservative argument very well, they are saying that America was built on Judeo-Christian values, and they are saying that conservatism means protecting those values.”

Moreover, Zaato suggested that branding contentious issues like LGBTQ+ rights as matters of human rights serves as a convenient tactic for advancing particular agendas.

He said by attaching the human rights label, proponents effectively position dissenters on the defensive, making it challenging to oppose without appearing morally reprehensible.

“Dominant forces and dominant players can take any subject and one day clothe it under human rights and go and pursue it because sometimes it becomes the easiest way to propagate what you want to do, because it is difficult for anybody to say, ‘Oh, I am against human rights’…So the moment you put the human rights stamp or label on something, then you put anybody else that is against it on the defensive, and that is what you’ve seen…”

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