Stand Up for Chechnya

*I wrote the following piece after the anti-LGBT purge in Chechnya in early 2017 and performed the following at a “Hong Kong Loves Chechnya” Fundraiser event.

This is a fight
For basic human rights
Our brothers in Chechnya are being tortured JUST because they are gay
They have been stripped naked, detained, tortured and electrocuted

The authorities are DENYING they exist, but we cannot stay silent and we must resist

We will NOT surrender
Because love
Is about love
NOT about the gender of who we love
Here tonight
We stand TALL
We stand PROUD
We will NOT let them STRIP US off our identities
We will NOT let them BEAT us down

We have to break this cycle
The cycle of hate
And the cycle of oppression
We need to break it in Russia, in Hong Kong, in Indonesia and the rest of the world
So may we ask you tonight
STAND UP for what is right
Help STOP Homophobia

Society must learn this:
IGNORANCE is a choice
HATE is a choice
Love should be a free choice

One that we should all respect