New York Mural Touts Israel's Gay Record

By JTA

Published May 18, 2012.

A mural contrasting gay rights was completed Friday in New York’s West Village.

The mural, on a parking lot wall, show the outlines of two men holding hands, according to The New York Times. Above them are the words, “Who Would YOU want at Your Wedding?” The figures also hold two balancing scales.

Above one scale on the side of the mural that reads “Israel,” the text notes that Israel allows same-sex couples to adopt children, that Tel Aviv’s 2011 Pride Parade drew more than 10,000 people and that “gay people serve openly in the military and government” in Israel.

Above the scale on the side of the mural labeled “Israel’s neighbors,” the text notes that homosexuality is illegal in Syria and punishable by death in Iran. “There is no pride parade in Egypt, Jordan or Gaza,” the mural reads.

The mural was commissioned by Taglit-Birthright Israel’s alumni community. Artists 4 Israel collaborated on the design. Chris St. John, a former graffiti artist, did the artwork.

Adem Carroll, a member of the steering committee of the Muslim American Civil Liberties Coalition for Truth and Justice, called the mural “blatantly divisive, opposing Israel against its neighbors in the region,” the Times reported.

Keren Gelfand, senior press officer for the Consulate General of Israel, told the Times that all of the statements in the mural regarding gay rights in Israel were accurate.



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