Politics

‘Basic Human Rights’: US May Share Less Intelligence With Anti-LGBT Countries, Intel Chief Says

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Mary Margaret Olohan Social Issues Reporter
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President Donald Trump’s administration might share less intelligence with countries that criminalize homosexuality, Richard Grenell, acting director of National Intelligence, said.

Grenell, who is considered the first openly gay cabinet member, said the U.S. intelligence community should be pushing countries the United States works with to embrace American values, The New York Times reported Wednesday. The acting director of national intelligence has prioritized fighting discrimination.

“We can’t just simply make the moral argument and expect others to respond in kind because telling others that it’s the right thing to do doesn’t always work,” Grenell said, according to TheNYT, adding, “to fight for decriminalization is to fight for basic human rights.”Media outlets have often charged POTUS with showing anti-gay discrimination, but Grenell said Trump is fully backing the endeavor.

“We have the president’s total support,” he said. “This is an American value, and this is United States policy.” (RELATED: LGBTQ Groups Warn They Are ‘Particularly Vulnerable’ To Coronavirus Due To Smoking, Cancer, Discrimination Rates)

Former Speaker of the New York City Council Christine Quinn addresses attendees during a gathering of the LGBTQ community and supporters protesting U.S. President Donald Trump's agenda in Manhattan, New York, U.S., February 4, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly - RC1CBED31C90

Former Speaker of the New York City Council Christine Quinn addresses attendees during a gathering of the LGBTQ community and supporters protesting U.S. President Donald Trump’s agenda in Manhattan, New York, U.S., February 4, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Many countries in the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Africa criminalize homosexuality — about 69, TheNYT reported. Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Kenya also criminalize homosexuality.

“If a country that we worked in as the United States intelligence community was arresting women because of their gender, we would absolutely do something about it,” Grenell added. “Ultimately, the United States is safer when our partners respect basic human rights.”The acting director of national intelligence has also brought up using foreign aid to bait countries to remove their bans on homosexuality, Lebanon’s Beirut Pride group founder Hadi Damien told TheNYT. (RELATED: Democratic Candidates Speak Out On Christian Faith’s Compatibility With LGBTQ Issues)

“While the U.S., or any other country, cannot influence how other countries process their domestic affairs, the U.S. can push toward change through the voice of its officials and through the implementation of its programs,” Damien said.

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