The above color coded map represents a snapshot of the state of acceptance of homosexuality as it is right now world wide. I discovered this while researching how much Clay Aiken’s coming out will affect his future UNICEF missions and later came to expand that thought to how it will affect the chances of both his and Adam’s International fans ever seeing them in concert in their respective countries.
As you can see there are countries, marked in brown, where being gay is punishable by death. Red countries can impose life in prison and orange countries have harsh penalties that vary. These countries are dangerous places for gay persons and if you are a fan of either Clay or Adam, and you live in any of these countries, don’t count on them touring in your area.
Clay Aiken went as a UNICEF ambassador to 3 of the countries that carry the death penalty for homosexuals, Uganda, Somalia and Afghanistan. He also spent time as a UNICEF ambassador in Kenya, Malaysia and Singapore where life in prison is the penalty for being gay.
Coming out has changed his life more than most people realize, it doesn’t just affect him personally but his ability to work for UNICEF in the future has been compromised. What a sad situation. How many of the people who so harshly criticized him for not coming out realized that one of the reasons for keeping his sexuality private was not only for his safety when traveling but because UNICEF is very important to him and it will restrict his ability to be effective in some areas of the world.
Kudos to Canada, Spain, South Africa, Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, Holland, the states of Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut and Iowa and the latest place to pass marriage equality laws, as of December 21, 2009, Mexico City.
- In New Hampshire, same-sex marriages will begin on January 1, 2010.
- In Washington, D.C., same-sex marriages could begin as early as February,2010 
- In New York, same-sex marriages from other states or foreign countries are recognized but they are not performed.
- In Rhode Island, two opinions of the attorney general suggest that same-sex marriages should be recognized, but a state Supreme Court opinion appears to contradict this position; same-sex marriages are not performed in Rhode Island.
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