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From left to right: The banner of “Shams”, association for the decriminalization of homosexuality in Tunisia, the rainbow sky banner of the LGBT community and the flag of the Republic of Tunisia (Photo Credit: Shams / Facebook )

I just can’t understand all this hatred and this reject of the LGBT (Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgenders) in Tunisia.

Undoubtedly, as a heterosexual, I don’t share the same affinities and sexual orientations with the members of this community, but I can’t accept the insulting and degrading remarks directed at this minority.

What right do abusers have to allow themselves to drag them through the mud, to treat them as if they were subhuman, pestiferous or criminal?

It is nonsensical to compare them to “zoophiles” or to “pedophiles”, particularly in a country where its new Constitution guarantees freedom of conscience in its Article 6.

Same for Article 24 of this Constitution which emphasizes “the protection of privacy, inviolability of domicile and privacy of correspondence, communications and personal data.”

Therby, this sort of verbal misconduct must be sanctioned; otherwise our Second Republic’s motto of “Liberty, Dignity, Justice and Order” wouldn’t have any meaning.

Tunisia is a democratic country and when we say “democracy” we say respecting minority rights. We surely don’t mean majority hegemony.

In Gulf countries, liberticidal legislation against the LGBT community, along with the religious dogma, has created an underground society where homosexuals and lesbians find sanctuary.

In Wahabi countries, gender segregation has further exacerbated the situation so that we could witness same-sex erotic and even pornographic scenes between supermarket shelves and in car parks.

In the USA, a country known for its diehard conservatism and its attachment to its Christian/Protestant identity and whose national motto stipulates “In God We Trust”, the most productive and economically-reliable state in the country is California, a state that was among the first to respect and guarantee the rights of this community.

In the city of San Francisco, for instance, Castro District (an LGBT neighborhood) is one of the cleanest and the most productive areas of the USA according to US government statistics.

I don’t think Tunisia who adopted the Personal Status Code (Published on August 13, 1956 following a Beylical decree) and who legalized abortion in 1973 much earlier than many other countries that respect individual rights (like France, the Netherlands, Scandinavian countries, Ireland, etc.) could accept such hateful misconducts on its territories.

Is not it came time to repeal section 230 of the Penal Code (adopted in 1913 and extensively amended in 1964), which provides up to three years in prison for sodomy between consenting adults?

Besides being a relic of French colonial protectorate, this law of discord is a pure violation of Human Rights.

Recall that in 1982, the French Republic has finally abolished its homophobic law, which is still not the case in Tunisia.

After all, Homosexuals or Lesbians holding a Tunisian passport or a national ID card are Tunisian citizens…They don’t come from another planet or another world.

They have the right to be respected like all other citizens; otherwise it would be another kind of apartheid that we would be implementing in this country.