Uganda still working on “Death penalty for gays” bill

Uganda Still Considering Death Penalty for Gays

We’d reported last week that Uganda was on the verge of passing the death penalty for gay people and anyone who “helps” them be gay, such as landlords, or parents who refuse to report them to the police.

Following that news, many in the mainstream media believed the Ugandans’ claim that the death penalty part of the legislation had been dropped. And of course, as always happens when Uganda says it’s dropped the death penalty part of the bill, the media dutifully reports it as true, and then we find out that the death penalty is still in the bill.

It’s like Lucy, Charlie Brown and the football – except in the end they all die.

US Expressing Concern to Ugandan Counterparts

The good news, as it is, if that the US government seems to be grasping the seriousness of the situation. This is from a State Department briefing today:

QUESTION: Do you have anything to add to what – the Uganda answer you gave yesterday? Has there been any more contact, do you know, between – since Ambassador – since Assistant Secretary Carson was there on this – the anti-homosexuality law?

MS. NULAND: Just a little bit more on Assistant Secretary Carson’s conversation: He did talk to parliamentary leaders and to President Museveni very directly about our concerns, the concerns of the international community. Our understanding is that President Museveni certainly took onboard the fact that this could have a serious impact on the way Uganda is perceived, the way Uganda is supported in the international community. There are many hoops for this thing to go through, as you know. I think yesterday we said that the bill had passed the parliamentary committee. My understanding is that’s incorrect. It hasn’t even gotten to that stage. So we just need to continue to highlight the issues.

Right, and as Chris Johnson noted in the Blade article I linked to earlier, the fact that the legislation hasn’t gotten that far yet means that they couldn’t have yet removed the offending language, which they were apparently claiming they had.

Even Without Death Penalty, Ugandan Bill Is Still Hideous

Of course, even if they drop the death penalty provision, the legislation is still hideous.  Jim Burroway, of Box Turtle Bulletin, has really shined as the American expert on this particular legislation in Uganda.  And Burroway told me by email that even if the death penalty provision is dropped, it won’t change the underlying bill nearly enough.

The rest of the bill is still so draconian that dropping the death penalty really doesn’t change much. Especially if the death penalty is merely replaced with life imprisonment. Is lifetime imprisonment in Uganda’s notorious Luzira prison that much of an improvement?

And lifetime imprisonment as a “homosexual,” or just as bad, a homo-lover.  You’ll be lucky if you live a lifetime – or perhaps lucky if you don’t.

Burroway also points out another troubling aspect of the bill – it’s impact on anti-AIDS efforts in Uganda:

Remember, it also outlaws “aiding and abetting” homosexuality and it also outlaws “promoting homosexuality,” meaning that all AIDS programs targeting the gay community will be outlawed, all advocacy for or on behalf of gay people will be criminalized with prison sentences, along with, potentially, doctors and lawyers. The 24-hr reporting requirement is still there, the “don’t rent to gay people” provision is still there, etc. Remember, the death penalty is only one of the nineteen clauses.

So a gay Ugandan’s landlord will still go to prison for renting the room to them, but if they’re “lucky,” they won’t be put to death for it.  Same goes for mom and dad who don’t report their gay child to the government.

Ugandan “Death for Gays” Effort Lauded by US Religious Right

And just as sick, America’s hate leaders in the religious right – the folks who are regularly welcome on all the TV networks and are greeted as simply “Christians,” are lauding the “death to gays” legislation in Uganda.  Scott Wooledge over at DailyKos caught this from the Family Research Council’s Gary Bauer:

Actually, American liberals are upset that the legislation imposes the death penalty on gays.  The question is, why aren’t you upset about, Mr. Bauer?

Interestingly, a number of people in Washington, from Dana Milbank to an NPR reporter, have defended Bauer against accusations by the Southern Poverty Law Center that his organization is a “hate group.”  But what else do you call an organization that hates gays so much it sides with people who want to put them to death?

More later today on the Republican party’s extensive ties to the most extreme anti-gay elements in Uganda.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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17 Responses to “Uganda still working on “Death penalty for gays” bill”

  1. Alex Carlson says:

    God country on earth kill the queries haha, thank you Uganda for saving humanity

  2. karmanot says:

    I can Imagine you complaining about waxy grey flakes ruing your pure white Aryan laundry in a suburb just outside Auschwitz.

  3. Badgerite says:

    “Salvation”, if it exists at all, is and should be a very personal thing. Why do these people persist in making society as a whole, somehow responsible for their own personal salvation. Like if they don’t kill gay people and get everybody else to do the same, they will go to hell. What really comes out in Mr. Perkins post is a sort of mean- spirited, even murderous rage that they can’t get people in this country to do as they want by using the power of the state. But then, this is supposed to be the ‘shining city on the hill’ isn’t it. The world leader. Not Uganda. Anyway, the mask comes off and what you see is a ‘Christo-Facist’. Isn’t that right?

  4. BeccaM says:

    Your bridge misses you.

  5. BeccaM says:

    Er… that tweet in the post isn’t from Gary Bauer. It’s from Tony Perkins.

    And actually, the tweet from Bryan Fischer is worse: “Homosexuality is now against the law in Uganda, just as it was for 200 years in the US.It can be done.” It’s followed by a link to a article about the bill. (Never mind the fact that homosexuality has been against the law in Uganda for decades now.)

    I truly don’t think the word ‘genocide’ is an overstatement with respect to what these radical wingnuts ultimately want for LGBT Americans.

  6. Skeptical Cicada says:

    The plight of gay people everywhere is the business of gay people everywhere. Period.

  7. mirror says:

    Hey you sick troll. Your tax dollars are supporting this government. By arguing we shouldn’t try to influence against these proposed criminal acts, it suggests you support your tax dollars supporting their enactment and execution.

  8. samizdat says:

    Yes, but the degenerates who advocate for this law are from this country. And besides, “Myra”, ALL of humanity is my business, you foul-smelling excuse for a human being. You would have been quite comfortable in Nazi Germany. Hell, you’d have been whistling a tune loading up the ovens.

  9. Myra says:

    So how is this your business? Uganda isn’t part of America.

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  11. samizdat says:

    Not surprising, if one looks at their rhetoric surrounding other issues, such as those we read about regarding abortion. Hell, one doesn’t even need to look at the words of the Teabangelicals. Look at their actions: bombing clinics, murdering doctors and nurses, death threats. Taken to its logical conclusion, it’s a wonder gays haven’t been rounded up and sent to labor camps. It’s obvious that this is what those sick fucks at AFA and FRC have been shooting for all along. Thank goodness that the next generations below us (48 yrs old here) just don’t really give a flying fuck about whether someone is gay or straight.

    It’s sad, really, when one looks back as little as ten-twelve years, and sees that Uganda was leading most of the African continent in battling the runaway AIDS epidemic…until the filthy reiligionists from the US came along and bollocksed-up the whole thing. Degenerate Christians.

  12. Jim Olson says:

    If it was up to some of the American Talibangelicals, we’d be rounded up and sent to death camps as well. This is not surprising.

  13. Drew2u says:

    I think the coined term is ‘talibangecal” to express the religious fanaticism and condoned terrorism by the religious reicht.

  14. A_nonymoose says:

    These people are fanatics; that can’t be said often enough. Their ilk consigned people to the ovens 70 years ago, and they will do it again, given the chance.

  15. Repeat as many times as needed: Tony Perkins goes to work everyday on the pile of DEAD Gay Kids

  16. Indigo says:

    That’s prosperity?

  17. kevinbgoode says:

    What would Tony Perkins know about God? Just because the media pretends he has some connection with a divine, and clearly malevolent spirit doesn’t mean the rest of the universe regards that as some superior connection to “God.”

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