’Uganda: Homosexuality is a ‘Western Import’’
Where: Join using Zoom from anywhere in the world
When: Saturday 22nd April
Time: 3pm UK time, 6pm Uganda / East Africa Time
(Saturday is the best day to ensure the time is suitable for people in the UK and East Africa where most of our members presently reside)
Introduction to the topic:
With the recent passing of the updated Homosexuality Act in Uganda that proposes a death penalty for certain homosexual acts, this topic has aroused huge interest locally and worldwide.
On 21st March 2023, all but two of the 389 legislators in Uganda voted to introduce capital and life imprisonment sentences for gay sex and “recruitment, promotion and funding” of same-sex “activities”. Uganda is not alone, with 32 out of 54 African countries criminalising homosexuality, 3 with the death penalty.
Museveni, the President of Uganda famously called homosexuality a “Westerm import”, and claimed recently that the west was seeking to compel other countries to “normalise” what he called “deviations”.
When the West shows support for gay rights and threatens to cut aid for example, this supercharges the issue further and Ugandan politicians use the matter to show defiance to the former colonialists. The West’s desire to support gay rights in Uganda and Africa, might have actually caused more harm than good.
The history of homosexuality in Uganda and Africa at large is an interesting one, but you can do your own research.
It seems like the “Western import” was most likely the ANTI homesexuality laws that the British & French, introduced in the early 20th Century… as previously Uganda and Africa was pretty tolerant and accepting.
With 90% of a very religious (Christian and Muslim) population in Uganda supporting the criminalistion of homosexuality, it’s an easy way for the political elites to stoke up hate and to win votes, and the LGBQ community in Uganda is increasingly isolated.
Most Ugandan’s would make their case against homosexuality on religious and moral grounds, citing the Quran and the Bible as their evidence. However, even the Pope recently claimed that criminalising homosexuality is wrong, so the African countries for some reason seem to be rather out of kilter with the moving times perhaps?!
Ubuntu is a famous African philosophy that places emphasis on ‘being self through others’. It is a form of humanism which can be expressed in the phrases ‘I am because of who we all are’, and seems to be at odds with the Continent’s strong anti gay sentiments.
Ugandan people are amongst the friendliest people in the world, and the Ubuntu philosophy offers hope that Uganda and other African countries will find their own way and path towards becoming more liberal and tolerant societies in due course.
Ultimately however it’s up to them now isn’t it?! And expressly NOT the west!
I’m just offering up some early food for thought to set the context for the debate – feel free to disagree, and start a debate in the comments, or sign up to the debate of course and we’ll hear you and your thoughts at the event itself.
Format for the debate:
After a brief introduction to the debate by myself, and an initial vote on the motion to see where the present mood lies – an informal discussion will ensue, with contributions made by anyone who wishes to share their views or raise any thoughts or questions on the topic.
If you would like to set off the debate with a 2 minute talk presenting your view, then get in touch with me. I’m happy to have a bit of structure to kick off the debate, if some decent contributors come forward in advance.
After an hour of discussion and debate, we will take another vote to see if the motion is carried or defeated, and more importantly to see if anyone changed their mind!
EVERYONE IS WELCOME AT THIS DEBATE!
Research the topic more in advance?
Homosexualaity is not “Un-African”
Homosexuality in Uganda: The Paradox of Foreign Influence