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“We are the ones who must intercede”: Writers talk about why they’re helping LGBT Chechens

In the past 24 hours, authors participating in Readers and Writers for LGBT Chechens have stopped by several blogs to talk about why they got involved in raising money for the Russian LBGT Network, ILGA-Europe and Rainbow Railroad.

Adriana Kraft wrote a post called You can help!

Beginning in mid April, reports began emerging from the Russian Republic of Chechnya of gay men being arrested and tortured. Humanitarian organizations across the globe are marshalling resources to do what they can about the situation, and international leaders are putting pressure on Putin to intervene. Organizations on the ground have been successful helping a few individuals escape to safety, but more resources are needed. …

It’s simple. We have a gay son who is fortunate to live in a nation where marriage equality is the law of the land, even though bias, prejudice, and discrimination still impact all our lives. This is one small way we can reach out to others whose very lives are at risk.

We hope you’ll join us.

On MM Book Escape, Addison Albright wrote:

Why did I get involved in Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens? I can’t imagine not wanting to do something—anything—to help innocent people who are being tortured and killed. …

I feel helpless, like there’s little I can do to directly help this cause. But I’m glad I can help in some small way by contributing toward raising funds for the good people who can get LGBT Chechens to safety. Fortunately, there are already organizations in place that are well-positioned to help.

On Behind Closed Doors Book Review, Kayleigh Sky talked about the need to fight oppression and cruelty at home and abroad:

In recent weeks, Chechen authorities have imprisoned, tortured and murdered gay men, and even those merely suspected of being gay. Those who protest these atrocities are being rounded up as well, even while a Chechen spokesman has denied the very existence of gay people in Chechnya. Hatred is nothing new; it is, in fact, an old enemy, but it is one we must fight at every turn. …

There is a saying that when you open a door, other doors will open for you. This is said for positive effect, meaning that your efforts will yield an opportunity and the opportunity will snowball into bigger and better things.

Unfortunately, this saying has negative applications as well. As we are seeing, we only need to crack the door on evil and in no time the hordes will push it open and storm through.

We have seen this so often in history. Massive abuse starts with a mere whisper. Who saw Hitler as the mass murderer he was when he started out in politics? Certainly, some people must have had their reservations about his views, but it is human nature to shy away from the worst of our imagination. It won’t come to that, we say. Somebody will intercede, we tell ourselves.

Well, WE are the ones who must intercede, because it will come to that. It has come to that. Apathy is the most insidious of evil’s tools. We look away. Do. Not. Look. Away. Don’t despair either. It doesn’t always take a great effort to make great change. Sometimes, it only takes a multitude of small efforts joined together.

Please take a moment to stop by these blogs and thank them for drawing attention to this issue:

For more ways to help, check out Readers & Writers for LGBT Chechens.

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