Uganda President Blocks Anti-Gay Bill
SEXUALITIES, 20 Jan 2014
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has refused to approve a controversial bill that would see homosexuals jailed for life, saying there were better ways to cure the “abnormality”, a report said Friday [17 Jan 2014].
In a letter to parliament, the president said homosexuality was caused by either “random breeding” or a need to make money. And lesbians, he said, choose female partners because of “sexual starvation” and the failure to marry a man.
But he said the best cure for the condition was to improve the African nation’s economy, the independent Daily Monitor newspaper said.
“The question at the core of the debate on homosexuality is what do we do with an abnormal person? Do we kill him/her? Do we imprison him/her? Or we do contain him/her?” the president was quoted as writing in a letter to parliament.
“Even with legislation, they will simply go underground and continue practicing homosexuality or lesbianism for mercenary reasons,” he argued.
The anti-gay bill cruised through the Ugandan parliament last month after its architects agreed to drop a death penalty clause.
Although he has refused to sign off on the legislation, Museveni left little doubt that his homophobic outlook remained intact.
“You cannot call an abnormality an alternative orientation. It could be that the Western societies, on account of random breeding, have generated many abnormal people,” he said, adding that other people became gay for “mercenary reasons”, or, in the case of lesbians, a lack of sex with men.
The report said the president believed that improving Uganda’s economy — including rapid industrialisation and modernising agriculture — was the best way to “rescue” young people from the risk of “disgusting behaviour”.
Homophobia is widespread in Uganda, where American-style evangelical Christianity is on the rise. Gay men and women in the country face frequent harassment and threats of violence, and rights activists have also reported cases of lesbians being subjected to “corrective” rapes.
In 2011, prominent Ugandan gay rights activist David Kato was bludgeoned to death at his home after a newspaper splashed photos, names and addresses of gays in Uganda on its front page along with a yellow banner reading “Hang Them”.
AIDS activists say that if passed the bill would have prevented gays from having access to essential public health information, such as how to protect themselves from HIV and how to access life saving treatment and support services.
DISCLAIMER: The statements, views and opinions expressed in pieces republished here are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of TMS. In accordance with title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. TMS has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is TMS endorsed or sponsored by the originator. “GO TO ORIGINAL” links are provided as a convenience to our readers and allow for verification of authenticity. However, as originating pages are often updated by their originating host sites, the versions posted may not match the versions our readers view when clicking the “GO TO ORIGINAL” links. This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
One Response to “Uganda President Blocks Anti-Gay Bill”
Click here to go to the current weekly digest or pick another article:
- Brilliant New Film ‘Pray Away’ Picks Personal Stories of ‘Ex-Ex-Gays’ to Expose Faith-Based Conversion Therapy as a Religious Sham
- Pope Francis Calls for Creation of Civil Union Laws for Same-Sex Couples
- Chechnya Is Trying to Exterminate Gay People--Our Silence only Emboldens Vladimir Putin and Ramzan Kadyrov