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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, September 16, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 38
A country of our own?
Section One
ALL STORIES
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A country of our own?

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

A Russian-born German activist wants to set up a separate country for LGBT people, with limited immigration and citizenship rights for straights.

Viktor Zimmerman is the executive officer of Germany's Gay Homeland Foundation, and he believes the only way to ensure LGBT people's safety is by creating a separate homeland exclusively for us.

'We need a cultural and political center, where we can develop new, better ways of Gay living that are more suited to our nature,' Zimmerman told Vice magazine in an interview.

'Bringing gay people together in a creative and affirmative environment will release a tremendous energy,' he said.

'Thousands of gay artists, writers, sculptors, filmmakers, and songwriters will be brought together in one spot. There would be no more cultural oppression from the hetero; all the public spaces would be decorated with gay artwork.'

Zimmerman added that his proposed Gay country will also provide 'a safe haven for millions of gay people' who are currently living in 'dangerous circumstances.'

'Our purpose is to establish a free, independent, and democratic Gay state,' he said. 'We strive to initiate one or more self-administrated settlements for Gay people, and look to promote their economic, cultural, and political development.'

Zimmerman said he had not yet decided where the new Gay country would be located, but 'it should be somewhere where there is sufficiently cheap and habitable land available in a warm climate by the seaside.'

Perhaps South America, he suggested, or 'a friendly Buddhist country in southeast Asia.'

'The next step would be taking a long-term lease on a moderate-sized territory from an existing country,' he continued.

'The territory will be used to establish a settlement on conditions of extraterritoriality. Legally, it would still remain the territory of the host country, but we could administrate it according to our own laws.'

Eventually, Zimmerman foresees negotiating a treaty of independence with the host country.

'Legally, the foundation of the gay state is viable,' he says. 'There have been precedents for the establishment of new states via treaties, such as the creation of the Vatican state, and there have been multiple legal precedents for the peaceful acquisition of land. There have also been precedents for international recognition of non-territorial sovereign entities, such as the Order of Malta.'

Immigration of new Gay citizens will be key to keeping the country viable, Zimmerman added.

'We all know how Gay babies are made - there are millions of them being born into this world year by year, without any effort on our side,' he explains. 'All we need is for a fraction of them to pack their stuff together and move to the Gay state.'

On the other hand, immigration of straight people would be discouraged, he said. '[T]heir numbers will be limited and they will not be in charge.'

There has been at least one previous attempt to launch an all-Gay country. In 2004, a group of LGBT campers proclaimed the 'Gay and Lesbian Kingdom of the Coral Islands,' based on several small coral atolls off the coast of Australia.

On September 13, 2004, the campers proclaimed their independence from Australia and promptly declared war on their former mother country. Since Australia failed to respond, the LGBT rebels claimed, they were legally entitled to independence.

'Homosexual people have honestly endeavored everywhere to merge ourselves in the social life of surrounding communities and to be treated equally,' their declaration of independence begins.

'We are not permitted to do so. In vain we are loyal patriots, our loyalty in some places running to extremes; in vain do we make the same sacrifices of life and property as our fellow citizens; in vain do we strive to increase the fame of our native land in science and art, or her wealth by trade and commerce. In countries where we have lived for centuries, we are still cried down as strangers... in the world as it is now and for an indefinite period&I think we shall not be left in peace.'

Some of the original founders still live in the country's self-proclaimed 'capital,' a campsite named Heaven on the country's largest island of Cato. The country is currently 'ruled' by Emperor Dale Parker Anderson.

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