How American evangelicals may be responsible for Uganda’s anti-gay law

13

While Ugandan President Museveni accuses the United States of trying to import social imperialism into Uganda by defending homosexual rights, who do you think is behind some of the anti-gay hysteria in Uganda right now?

A group of evangelical Christians from that very same hotbed of social imperialism: the United States of America.

Museveni on Monday signed into law a bill that toughens penalties against gay people and defines some homosexual acts as crimes punishable by life in prison.

Roger Ross Williams belonged to an organization called International House of Prayer in Missouri, whose missionary zeal fell on gays in Uganda. He decided to make a film about what he learned called “God Loves Uganda.”

Someone like evangelist Scott Lively is “an extremist in America,” Williams said, “but when he goes to Uganda he gets taken seriously because of what he represents.”

“He’s an American evangelical, and what an American represents in a place like Uganda – it represents power and wealth.”

Written By: Christiane Amanpour
continue to source article at amanpour.blogs.cnn.com

13 COMMENTS

  1. We on this website know all about Scott Lively and his evangelical type who having spread their poison back home, decide to export it to places like Uganda. The outcome of this vile religious bigotry is a savage and unjust law and now newspaper witch hunts,it is sadly only a matter of time before some local decides to do god’s will and take the law into his own hands.

  2. Gays are in for a very tough time in Uganda. This is a country where, still, children are quite regularly kidnapped and sacrificed in witchcraft rituals.

    Today, no doubt, Scott Lively is celebrating the success of the Bill he basically wrote. I hope he is reminded of his responsibility once the witch-hunts start in earnest.

  3. As Dawkins joked in one of his speeches, one of the first recorded incidents of the Nuremberg Defense — “I was only following my superior’s orders.”– would have been when Abraham took his son Isaac to the mountain to make a child sacrifice of him. In that case, Abraham’s probable defense, had he not been stopped in the nick of time from following through with the sacrifice, was that he was merely following God’s orders.

    But there’s a problem with this “defense.” It begs the question: where does personal responsibility come into the equation? As the British lawyer Showcross, who was on the prosecution side during the trials of Nazis at the Nuremberg court, said: “There comes a point when a man must refuse to answer to his leader if he is also to answer to his own conscience.”

    It’s true that anti-gay sentiment can be found in the Bible; that the British colonial rulers of Uganda introduced, as far we can tell, its first sodomy laws; and that Evangelical Christians, who, btw, have been in Uganda since the early part of the 20th Century, planted seeds of homophobia in the country and, more recently, watered its blossoming flowers.

    But the Ugandan president and his supporters cannot hide behind the Nuremberg Defense for this odious law: they cannot hide behind unnamed scientists who, they claim, failed to “prove” homosexuality is “inborn,” to use the president’s phrase; they cannot seek cover behind their Celestial Leader’s commands; they cannot cower beneath long-gone colonial masters or present-day Evangelical buddies for decisions they made themselves.

    Like with all haters throughout history, the president and his supporters will have to answer to their own conscience, as well as to history itself, for the acts of violence (and yes, imprisoning someone for their nature is a gross act of violence) they themselves decided to meet out to others. No hiding, no ducking for cover, no sheltering behind (imaginary) beings, former superiors, or faith-based friends.

    For what it’s worth, Ugandans like myself couldn’t be more disgusted with this recent turn of events.

  4. People who think it just dandy for folk to be tormented eternally because they refuse to worship a petty, jealous, imaginary tyrant, would probably shrug their righteous shoulders, and think that gays are just getting their just deserts.

    Shame on them! They pay lip-service to ideas of love and forgiveness (not that there is anything to forgive here)but their track record is one of hatred, vindictiveness and cruelty.

    • In reply to #6 by Christiana Magdalene Moodley:

      They pay lip-service to ideas of love and forgiveness (not that there is anything to forgive here) but their track record is one of hatred, vindictiveness and cruelty.

      I have no idea why it took me so long to realise this but the modern religious front that is presented of a loving and caring community is really just a veil behind which hide the most sadistic evil you can imagine. It is clear to me that religion is all about power, domination, and instilling fear into believers and (where possible) into non-believers too.

      While modern day religions tend to try to hide behind a veil of respectability their (indeed our) ancestors either openly inflicted or where subject to tremendous psychological and physical torture. The fact that in some enclaves, from Uganda to church run schools and children’s homes, this continues to this day should not be a surprise.

      It does not matter to me if the Church leaders permit these actions in their name out of genuine belief or as a grand scale fraud, we need to rid society of the evil. In the UK there are a number of people openly critical of the fanatical Muslim preachers who spout hate to the devout. We are calling for these people to be imprisoned and then removed from the country. America should do the same with this preacher.

  5. We in the west can rail against this travesty of justice all we want and it will change nothing, at least in the near future. The Ugandan heirarchy will not change their minds because a bunch of whites say they should. Instead, we should be congratulating them, telling them how proud of them we are. I can think of nothing which will change their minds than those same whites telling them how wonderful it is that they are following the dictates of their colonial masters of the past. Tell them it is great they recognise the tremendous civilising influence the 19th and early 20th century colonial administrators had on the savage tribes.
    The only danger I can see is, if we patronise them too much they might make gayness compulsory.

    • In reply to #9 by Frank:

      Why do these homophobes act as if homosexuality is a life choice?

      Are you saying that it matters that it might not be a life choice? Frankly Frank I don’t care if a person is gay out of choice or internal compulsion, their actions do not harm me and I have no reason or right to object. Those that argue that we should tolerate homosexuals because they are inflicted with a genetic difference are missing the point. It is not the business of anyone else what life choices other people make so long as their actions affect only themselves.

      • In reply to #10 by naskew:

        In reply to #9 by Frank:

        Why do these homophobes act as if homosexuality is a life choice?

        Are you saying that it matters that it might not be a life choice? Frankly Frank I don’t care if a person is gay out of choice or internal compulsion, their actions do not harm me and I have no reason or rig…

        I second that! From a scientific point of view I’m of course curious whether homosexuality is mainly due to nature or nurture. But, from a social point of view it should not matter. I consider myself a liberal and some of my liberal friends get really upset merely by the suggestion that homosexuality might not be an entirely inherited trait. I know some homosexuals who regard it as a personal insult to even imply that homosexuality might be something that you are not actually born with. This obsession with whether homosexuality is something you are born with or not makes it almost impossible to have a rational discussion about it. You are sort of forced to choose a camp. Either you are with the conservatives who hate gays and think homosexuality is a choice or you are with the liberals who think homosexuality is something you are born with. There’s seems to be few shades of grey in between.

      • It seems to matter to anti – gays that homosexuality & those who choose it are a threat to the good of society .I believe that a better understanding would help tone down this hatred.In reply to #10 by naskew:

        In reply to #9 by Frank:

        Why do these homophobes act as if homosexuality is a life choice?

        Are you saying that it matters that it might not be a life choice? Frankly Frank I don’t care if a person is gay out of choice or internal compulsion, their actions do not harm me and I have no reason or rig…

  6. Yes, American evangelicals sure have had a negative impact in countries like Uganda. That is of course despicable in itself. Still, I think many fail to see the big picture. This is not a isolated problem in Uganda. In fact an overwhelming majority of African countries have laws that discriminate against homosexuals, regardless of religious affiliations. This is an African problem.

    The utter ignorance that is the main character of this continent is just breathtaking. Yes, there are signs of improvement in certain regions. But, as a whole Africa is unfortunately the lost continent. I really can’t see any hope for major improvements in the foreseeable future. The only cure is of course education, but the western world has failed miserably in this regard. Despite almost a century of charities, political and social programs little has changed in Africa. I’m not sure whether it’s due to “white guilt” or a general culture of misguided political correctness, but it seems few people in the west are willing to see the current situation in Africa for what it really is. An utter disaster. A failure for humanity as a whole.

Leave a Reply