According to a press release issued late yesterday, openly gay State Rep. Brian Sims will be traveling to Japan during the Pennsylvania legislature’s Thanksgiving recess, at the invitation of recently appointed Japan U.S. Ambassador (and U.S. royalty) Caroline Kennedy.
Rep. Sims Chief of Staff Mason Lane clarified that Ambassador Kennedy reached out after recognizing Sims’ regional and national work with civil rights.
During his week-long trip, Rep. Sims will tour Osaka and Tokyo, completing a litany of human-rights advocacy tasks: meeting with students, conversing with forward-thinking attorneys on the issue of disability rights, consulting with members of Japan's legislature and eventually wrapping it all up with a speech at the Tokyo American Embassy alongside Ambassador Kennedy. Sims will embark on his trip this weekend.
The cherry on top of his human-rights sundae, Rep. Sims will introduce a resolution when he returns to the House on Dec. 9 that officially cements Dec. 10 as "International Human Rights Day" in Pennsylvania. The point: to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights.
Safe travels, Rep. Sims -- and do us proud.