Quorum is a live journalism forum focused on LGBT experiences around the world. Its mission is to lift up the voices of non-Western LGBT activists defining the struggle for justice. Visit Quorum.TheDailyBeast.com for more stories of persecution, triumph, adversity, and strength.
When Americans see LGBT people being persecuted around the world, we naturally are moved to respond. Ironically, many of the efforts to help sometimes make things worse. What are the “best practices” in supporting LGBT populations elsewhere in the world? What are the levers of change we possess to do so?
At The Daily Beast’s first installment of Quorum: Global LGBT Voices last December, the Daily Beast Editor in Chief John Avlon talked with three different U.S. activists—Sarah Kate Ellis (GLAAD), J. Bob Alotta (Astraea Foundation), and Rev. Joseph Tolton (The Fellowship Global)—about their challenges and hopes for LGBT advocacy around the globe.
“We all have our own social graphs, we all have our outreach, and we can use that to leverage change and to create a culture that changes hearts and minds,” said Ellis.
Meanwhile, Alotta pushed the audience not to judge entire countries by a few sound bites. “There are wins alongside of losses and we see them in the United States just as often as we see them abroad,” Alotta said. The key, in her view, is to support local initiatives already in place, rather than rush in with ideas of our own.
Watch this roundtable with three very different activists.