What Africa thinks of Gays

Published May 3, 2012 by Tjchase

Why Homosexuality in Africa is a Death Sentence

FRIDAY JAN 28, 2011 – BY 

From The Grio – “A threat to just anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The wisdom of Dr. Martin Luther King has perhaps never been better applied than to the brutal murder of Ugandan gay rights activist, David Kato.

According to reports by the Associated Press, Kato was bludgeoned to death with a hammer on Wednesday after a man entered his home with the express intent of killing him. Homosexuality in Uganda is illegal, and like many states on the African continent, gay men and women are harassed, not embraced. Insulted, not respected. Shunned by family, friends and their religious communities. The outcry against their supposed immoral character and behavior reflects the ignorance inherent in a disparately unequal society: that somehow it is justifiable to deny others the simple joys of humanity. The African sun has set, and this is a sad day in Uganda.

In October 2010, David Kato was featured on the cover of a local newspaper called Rolling Stone (not to be confused with the American publication of the same name) in a story titled “100 Pictures of Uganda’s Top Homos Leak”. In a nation with such unbridled hatred of homosexuals, the article was more akin to a “hit-list”. Kato’s photo was placed under a yellow banner which read “Hang Them”. The visceral sentiment expressed was reflective of a significant majority of the nation’s bigoted attitudes on homosexuality: conflating gays with deviant sexual acts and going so far as to allege that they intend to “recruit” Ugandan children.

The publication garnered international attention and criticism from human rights organizations, such as Amnesty International and the Human Rights Watch. According to activists, a wave of attacks ensued against those mentioned in the article and others throughout the country presumed to be homosexuals. Some gays and lesbians have simply gone missing and are assumed to be dead. The police arrest and imprison others with no regard to their human rights. David Kato and two other gay activists sued the newspaper involved, claiming that it had violated their constitutional rights to privacy and won the case earlier this month. But his victory proved bittersweet — as he became a martyr for his cause.

What strikes me most is the indifference with which the news of his murder was met. The police officers assigned to the case dismissed his death as a robbery, claiming it had nothing to do with his homosexuality. The editor of the Rolling Stone newspaper that had published Kato’s photo as a target, said that he intended for the government to punish Kato and the other gay men and women listed. The editor’s only regret was that civilians had chosen to murder him. This kind of homophobia is commonplace and rampant in the African world and among blacks in the greater diaspora — from North and South America throughout the Caribbean and Europe. In Nigeria homosexuality is punishable by death. Uganda is considering a similar anti-homosexuality bill, and South Africa — the most liberal of the African states on this issue — have tolerated gangs who perform “corrective” rapes on lesbians. What is wrong with our people? Where did this begin and why does the African-American community, in particular, remain silent on such horrific human rights abuses?

Black Americans have led the way on the campaign for international civil rights protections, but we have one rotting skeleton in the closet. It seems we are deeply uncomfortable with homosexuality — both as a concept and an action, as a noun and a verb.

Like our African neighbors, brothers and sisters — we simply choose to ignore it even exists. Many Ugandans questioned on Kato’s death, claimed that homosexuality was imported by Europeans, as if it was a staple food group or mineral. As if the construct of love and desire was capable of being manufactured. Sadly, this level of ignorance is not unique to Uganda or Sub-Saharan Africa. Many black Americans, when confronted with the realities of a gay lifestyle within our own community strike out against it with visceral hatred and disgust. I have read many reactions on theGrio’s notice boards and Facebook comment’s page, in which the commentary is so divisive and the rhetoric so heated any time the word gay is used, that a meaningful conversation is hardly possible.  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34331632/ns/world_news-africa/#.T6KsoLM3t1I

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Ajah Dharma

om... may the great spirit bless you

Raven Starhawk

Sacred Garden: Herbs & Botanicals

What a Witch

I am not nice, but I am honest and that is more important.

Witches Of The Craft®

"Witchcraft For The 21st Century"

RealityShifters Blog

Live your best possible life. How good can it get?

Dear Cis People

The ramblings of a non-binary Latino.

moonshaman

The realms of Spirit, Breath, Life ~ Shamanic Endeavors

Stephanie Nicole

Righteous Health

Church of the Cosmos : Temple of Light

WE ARE IMMORTAL TIMELESS BEINGS OF LIGHT IN AN INFINITELY EXPANDING OMNIVERSE FILLED WITH INTELLIGENT LIFE

UMHS Gender Services

comprehensive gender services program for gender variant people and their families

DISMANTLE THE BEAM PROJECT

Real conspiracies - all original content

Mystery of the Iniquity

Truth is inspiring, it is guarded by GOD, and will triumph over all opposition!

wildeoats

Quality gay-shaded & m/m stories, articles & art

Josh Derke for State Representative

Democrat for Michigan's 93rd House (2014)

djmilosz

Just another WordPress.com site

Edge Induced Cohesion

A Historian's Eye View of the World

HandyBob's Blog

Making off grid RV electrical systems work

The Journey

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas

Daily Queer News

LGBTI News and Politics

evoL =

Allies for equality.

Finding my way back

How do you cope with the loss?

Mr. Moon's Meditation Chamber

The Official Blog of Hip Hop Artist Tony Moon

Different People

Being gay with a mental illness(Bipolar) is a HUGE task to undertake!

The Catbox

Musings on modern Druidry in the UK

The LGBT community and the journey ahead

Being Gay is not a choice, we are born that way

GAY MARRIAGE USA

fb.com/GayMarriageUSA

News and reviews

sharing with others

The Dream Faire

Enchanted Jewelry Designs & Magical Creations by ♥Kat

Gay Polyamory Blog

My thoughts/adventures in polyamory and life.

The Dark Bard

Sharing my thoughts, and my soul, through the medium of poetry and prose.

%d bloggers like this: