While Pastor Solomon Male and Reverend Thomas Musoke led an Easter kill-the-gays hate march near the home of slain gay-rights activist David Kato, members of Parliament maneuvered to debate Uganda’s kill-the-gays legislation in closed session.
According to The Observer, polls indicate that Ugandan voters have turned against a different bill establishing basic women’s rights in marriage and divorce, but remain steadfast in demanding hasty passage of a bill allowing the execution of LGBT Ugandans and imprisonment of their families and allies. At the same time, lawmakers fear international condemnation, and their constituents want the law passed without public discussion of a shameful subject. Hence, the effort to make parliamentary debate secret.
Antigay members of Parliament and hate-based preachers enjoy ongoing support from the U.S. Christian Right, according to Political Research Associates. Richard Lusimbo, research manager for Sexual Minorities Uganda, told Gay Star News:
I believe that (Pastor) Male is being pushed and funded by U.S. evangelical groups to preach anti-gay hate – he made allegations to incite fear and hatred, saying that homosexuals are recruiting children, scaring local parents.
‘The idea is to distract people from reality and create a moral panic about the “West” giving money to “homosexuals” to “recruit” members, bolstered by declarations such as “homosexuality is unAfrican”, creating a scary image of LGBT people as something alien imposed by the west.
All this next to David Kato’s mother home who bore witness to the rally. She’s an elderly woman in her mid 70s, who is still grieving for her son.
She was strongly affected emotionally; hearing abuse shouted about her son was really heartbreaking for her.
It is imported homophobia from US evangelicals which is unAfrican, not homosexuality.
These religious leaders must respect the dead and those who lost their loved ones.
It is very African to leave the dead in peace and respect the elders, like Kato’s mother.
It is unAfrican to disrespect people in this way, it is unAfrican to expose children to pornography in public, this abuse and hate incitement is uncalled for.
U.S. Christian professor and former ex-gay advocate Warren Throckmorton notes that parliamentary secrecy will do little to reduce international criticism — though it might help conceal ulterior motives and self-contradictions among the bill’s supporters.
For regular updates, follow Uganda gay rights activist Frank Mugisha on Twitter.