This June the United States joins millions of people around the world in celebrating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex (LGBTI) Pride Month. Pride Month is about recognizing a fundamental truth – that human rights are universal. It is about accepting LGBTI individuals as equal members of our society, with the right to live freely without the fear of discrimination or violence.
LGBTI persons, in all corners of the globe, continue to face discrimination, intimidation, and even violence – often for no other reason than simply existing as LGBTI individuals. Attacking someone based on their identity is wrong, and I take great pride in serving a government that recognizes this. In the words of Secretary of State Michael Pompeo in his 2018 Pride Month declaration, “LGBTI persons – like all persons – must be free to enjoy their human rights and fundamental freedoms.”
This Pride Month I encourage you to reflect on tolerance, dignity, and equality. These fundamental principles underpin our society and allow us to live in peace with our neighbors. We must all be free to enjoy them regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity. This is why the United States stands with LGBTI individuals and celebrates their right, and the right of all human beings, to a life of dignity, inclusion, and equality. I encourage you to join us in this stand, and to celebrate Pride Month by supporting the basic human rights we all, including the LGBTI community, deserve.
– Luis E. Arreaga, U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala