I have great admiration for U.S. President Obama. I love how he has stood up for LGBT people around the world, calling on nations to end discrimination against gays and lesbians. I think some countries have listened, notably France and England. He has even inspired Canada’s government to speak up and encourage nations to end discrimination against, and oppression of, LGBT people. American presidents can be the most influential leaders in the world, and President Obama has certainly used his position for noble purpose. (Indeed, when he is done serving as president, could you send him up here to Canada to be our prime minister, please!)

President Obama has his work cut out for him during his trip to Africa next month. As we all know, being gay is a criminal offence in many African nations, and the penalities are quite severe. It stinks, and the president will basically have to hold his nose while making nice with less-than-noble African leaders. According to an Associated Press report on the CTV News site, The White House wouldn’t say what role gay rights would play in Obama’s trip but noted that the administration “unequivocally advocates against violence and discrimination” against gays and lesbians, both in Africa and elsewhere around the world.

I have no doubt that President Obama will speak up on behalf of LGBT people during his trip. But I’m not sure we can expect any miracles from African leaders.

I suppose we can hope . . . and pray.