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Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Gay Pride Parade Murder Should Prompt Pro LGBT Reforms in Israel #HNNGayVoices

Shira Banki

The murder of 16-year-old Shira Banki and stabbing of five other people whose only sin was participating in Jerusalem’s Gay Pride Parade elicited shock and denunciations from across the political spectrum.

In a video clip released after Banki died of her wounds, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “Shira was a brave girl. She was murdered by a scoundrel because she supported a simple idea: Every person is entitled to live his or her life in dignity and safety.”

But Israel’s legal and political reality doesn’t match Netanyahu’s message of equality. Aside from the fact that one of the Knesset’s deputy speakers is the man who organized the “beasts’ parade” in response to the Jerusalem Pride Parade, and that members of the same party – one that has systematically thwarted legislative efforts to grant equal rights to members of the LGBT community – serve as the education and justice ministers, Israel’s legal code still suffers from embarrassing signs of discrimination against this community’s members.

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