David Bahati, a member of the Ugandan Parliament and one of the principle leaders of the Family or Fellowship of C Street fame (see Jeff Sharlet's latest book on C Street), stated yesterday that a bill, which would impose life sentences or the death penalty for gay people, will become law in the near future. Bahati told CNN that "this is a piece of legislation that is needed in this country to protect the traditional family here in Africa, and also protect the future of our children."
Since the bill was proposed last year, many governments have donated aid, and human rights groups have pressured the Ugandan government to shelf the bill.
Bahati issued the announcement not long after a Ugandan newspaper, the Rolling Stone published a list of gays and lesbians, along with their names and addresses and a yellow banner on the side reading, "hang them." Earlier this month the newspaper, which is not connected to the same-name American magazine, stated that homosexuals are raiding schools and recruiting children. Since the article's publication, at least four gay people on the list have been attacked and others are hiding.
Giles Muhame, editor of Rolling Stone, told CNN that homosexuality is a virus spreading through the world, "we thought, by publishing that story, the police would investigate them, prosecute them, and hang them."
Homosexuality is illegal in most African countries with the exception of South Africa, which recognizes gay marriage, but even there, anti-gay practices such as "corrective rapes" on lesbians, are commonplace.
Media Resources: CNN 10/28/10; Feminist Newswire 10/22/10; Jeff Sharlet, C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy, Little Brown and Company, 2010