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From the streets of New York City to the townships of South Africa, the LGBT rights movement and its opposition are engaged in an unprecedented international battle. GlobalPost presents an ongoing series of reports from key locations at this pivotal time in history, telling highly personal, often overlooked stories from the fight.

About This Project

This year presents a turning point in a global struggle for the right of as many as 600 million people around the world to be openly homosexual without fear of humiliation or violence.

An international community of human rights activists have made hard-won gains for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) rights in traditionally conservative countries such as Spain and Argentina and rapidly changing societies like India.

But a well-mobilized counterassault from evangelical Christians and conservative Catholics across Asia, Africa and Latin America is seeking to thwart those gains out of religious belief that homosexuality is a mortal sin, one that society should control.

Such is the nature of what GlobalPost has dubbed “The Rainbow Struggle.”

It is a struggle that has slowly intensified in the last decade, spanning from The Netherlands‘ landmark gay marriage legalization in 2001 to the end of the U.S. military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy this September. But it is a movement for human rights with a counter-movement for ‘traditional values.’ And this counter movement is far better funded and equally fervent, tending to see homosexuality not only as a threat to humanity but also humanity’s relationship with the divine.

The result is a global culture war steeped in religion and politics, and it is a battle that is now at a critical juncture.

This GlobalPost “Special Report” sets out to break new ground in documenting this struggle, offering powerful human stories as a lens for the audience to view a larger, interconnected picture. GlobalPost will explore the ideological, legal and financial roots of the conflict while tying powerful international stories of joy and agony with those here in the US. We will tell these stories using an array of integrated rich media technologies: interactive maps, video, and photo slideshows and data presentation.

As part of its groundbreaking Rainbow Planet series, GlobalPost’s stellar team of correspondents will take readers inside these stories in a way they have never been told. We hope you will follow us on the journey.  

Additional Special Reports