Roughly 250 activists and other LGBTQ community members and allies turned up in Washington Square Park on April 7 to protest the Sultanate of Brunei’s imposition of a stoning death penalty for sodomy between men, along with 40 lashes imposed for lesbian sex and a variety of other draconian sentences announced as part of its Sharia law doctrine. Adam Eli Werner, an organizer from Voices 4, said the death sentence “is not Islam and is not religion.”
Though some celebrities, led by George Clooney and Elton John, are calling for a boycott of luxury hotels — in Los Angeles, London, and Paris — owned by the Brunei government, activist Marti Allen-Cummings said he can’t afford the hotels anyway, but that speaking in the face of oppression every time is the only way to ensure that what today is acceptable in Brunei does not gain wider embrace by bigots.
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