SPoD calls for solidarity against hate rally targeting LGBTQIA+ community in Istanbul
The Social Policy, Gender Identity, and Sexual Orientation Studies Association (SPoD) has strongly condemned the “Big Family Meeting”, a scheduled event that explicitly targets the LGBTQIA+ community in Istanbul on September 17, 2023.
The SPoD, which has been at the forefront in advocating for the rights of the LGBTQIA+ community, has issued a rallying cry for unity and solidarity against the blatant display of hatred that is expected to transpire during the event. The association urged all political parties and democratic institutions to join them in condemning the event publicly and standing in solidarity with the LGBTI+ community at Saraçhane Park, Istanbul at 3:00 PM on the day of the event.
In a detailed statement, the association denounced the breach of constitutional norms by the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) which has permitted the preparation and broadcast of a public service announcement for the event that overtly alienates and targets a section of the society based on their gender identity and sexual orientation. They highlighted the clear endorsement of hate speech manifested through the organization's call and criticized the governmental body for amplifying its visibility rather than mitigating it.
The association expressed deep concerns over the spiraling impact of hate politics on the lives of LGBTQIA+ individuals, making it imperative not to overlook how hate rallies and crimes feed off each other in the current political climate. They emphasized the grave consequences of the campaign, which not only incites hatred and animosity towards a section of the society but threatens to spill over to other social existences.
They further highlighted the growing instances of violence and discrimination, where even police officers are witnessed participating in open acts of violence against the community. The SPoD also underscored the suspicious coincidence of the increase in hate rallies amidst talks of a constitutional amendment to label the LGBTQIA+ community as “deviant”.
The SPoD cautioned against the dangerous path the governing authorities are treading by trying to reshape society's memory and codes through a lynching culture aimed against theLGBTQIA+ identities. They stressed the urgent need for a united stand to staunchly defend LGBTQIA+ rights, which is synonymous with upholding democratic values and human rights for all.
As a crucial call to action, the SPoD reiterated their plea for all political entities and democratic institutions to condemn the event publicly and stand united with the LGBTQIA+ community on September 17 at Saraçhane Park, marking a significant step in the fight against discrimination and hate.