On Wednesday, Biden spoke at length urging Americans to stand for LGBTQ rights in an op-ed for The Washington Post in honor of International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia. Biden, who is set to receive the LGBT Hero award at the Democratic National Committee's annual gala, has long been praised for his work advocating for the LGBTQ community.
While we've made a lot of progress in terms of equality in recent years, he wrote, there's still work to be done.
"In 28 states, you can still be fired for being a lesbian, gay or bisexual — 30 if you’re transgender," he wrote.
Elsewhere in the world, he pointed out, LGBTQ individuals face terror and torture in Syria and Iraq, and in many parts of the world, an extreme means of conversion therapy called "corrective rape" is used to try to turn women straight. He also cited horrors of the reported concentration camps in place for gay men in Chechnya, which he previously issued a statement to condemn.
All of this, he said, is precisely why we all need to do our part in standing up against LGBTQ hate.
"Progress doesn’t happen by chance," he wrote. "It happens because good people come together and demand change. And any person of conscience, regardless of their religious or partisan beliefs, should be able to agree: Violence against any person, in any form, is intolerable. No one should be killed, tortured, assaulted or harassed because of who they are."
To that point, Biden wrote that while governments and the foreign policy community have the power to promote and protect equality, it's also on all of us to speak out and to work until "equality, at home and around the world, is fully realized."
"For my part, I will continue to speak out for the full equality of all people," he wrote, adding that The Biden Foundation has prioritized promoting LGBTQ equality.
"Until then, to all those suffering discrimination and violence simply because of who they are or whom they love, know this: The American people are on your side," he concluded.
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