The government must make real reforms to protect gay rights if they are going to
use those positions to promote Israel, writer and director Gal Uchovsky said at
a gay pride conference in the Knesset on Monday.
“Our prime minister is
using freedom for gay people to advertise Israel around the world, while
left-wing organizations have called it ‘pinkwashing’ – using our community to
cover up crimes,” Uchovsky stated.
The director, who has written for The
Jerusalem Post, told the MKs and LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual and
Queer) activists at the conference organized by MK Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz) that
the government cannot use them to lie.
“They have to take real action, or
their dirty laundry will start to stink,” Uchovsky said.
Reuven Rivlin faced a hostile crowd, when he said that Israeli society is too
conservative and would not accept gay marriage.
Responding to a question
about US President Barack Obama’s support for gay marriage, Rivlin said a bill
on the issue would not pass, and pointed out that Israel recognizes marriages of
gay couples who were wed abroad.
“I believe every person has a right to
his sexual preferences. Homosexuality is not a perversion, and everyone
has the right to a relationship with whoever they want,” Rivlin
Horowitz slammed Rivlin’s opposition to gay marriage, saying he is
denying people the basic right to a family and treating LGBTQ people as
“The lesson is clear: We must continue our battle
and reach full equality,” the Meretz MK stated.
“Everything looks so nice
and liberal and we are all sitting together,” opposition leader Shelly
Yechimovich said of the Meretz, Labor, Kadima and Independence MKs
However, she said most MKs in the coalition oppose gay rights,
and that the general public is more “open and accepting” than the
“We must influence decision- makers,” Yechimovich
Horowitz opened the conference by introducing its theme: Education
and youth. He read aloud a letter from a 15-year-old gay teen who said he faces
homophobia, asking Horowitz to visit his school and try to help his
“I see statistics of youth who attempt suicide, start doing
drugs or become prostitutes because of the humiliation they are subjected to
[after coming out],” he said.
“Even though there have been achievements,
there are still major battles for our community.”