The Uganda Parliament has passed the infamous Anti-Homosexuality Bill, first proposed in 2009 and condemned by the international human rights community, President Obama, and other international dignitaries.
Political Research Associates, the social justice think tank that first exposed the U.S.-based right-wing evangelicals who proposed and promoted the bill at a 2009 conference in Kampala, now calls on the U.S. State Department to step up pressure on President Yoweri Museveni to veto the bill.
The legislation would put LGBTQ Ugandans in jail simply for being who they are and aims to silence the human rights community by criminalizing advocacy on behalf of Uganda’s sexual minorities. Further, it calls for a witch-hunt by compelling Ugandans to inform on their LGBTQ sisters and brothers under penalty of law.
“This human rights crisis was made here in the United States,” says Tarso Luís Ramos, Executive Director at Political Research Associates. “Scott Lively, one of the right-wing U.S. evangelicals most responsible for the legislation, has had charges filed against him in American courts for persecution of Uganda’s sexual minority community. Even as we call on the U.S. State Department and the international community to do everything possible to secure a veto from President Museveni, we ask all Americans of conscience to demand accountability from those U.S. conservatives who planned and encouraged these human rights violations and now hide behind the African pastors and politicians who are their willing partners in persecuting people because of who they love.”
When the 2009 bill was originally proposed by MP David Bahati, PRA’s researchers brought to light the role of Scott Lively, Lou Engle, Rick Warren and other U.S. evangelicals in exporting the U.S.-style culture wars to Uganda.
“As one of the founders of the struggle in Uganda, today I am in despair and fear,” says Victor Mukasa, co-founder of Sexual Minorities Uganda and fellow at Political Research Associates who is living in America under asylum after being persecuted in Uganda. “With the passage of this bill, thousands of lives are now under extreme risk, with nowhere and no one to turn to. Let’s all rise up with local activists. LGBT rights globally are under attack.”
“The Uganda situation must be seen in context,” adds PRA senior religion an sexuality researcher Rev. Dr. Kapya Kaoma. “It is part of a larger trend. The persecution of sexual minorities in other African nations such as Zambia and Zimbabwe has been especially severe in recent months. Also, we have to consider that the actions of Russia’s Vladmir Putin to criminalize both homosexuality and reproductive freedom in Russia may provide cover as well as courage to human rights violators. Of course, in all of these regions, we find the active involvement of American conservatives who, having lost public opinion in the United States, have determined to take their culture war crusades abroad.”
Background on the Anti-Homosexuality bill, and how U.S. evangelicals came to be involved can be found at www.PoliticalResearch.org/Africa