Western ideas play into Ugandan anti-gay bill
A bill that would further criminalize homosexual acts in Uganda has again surfaced in its parliament and is expected to be made into law in December, a decision the parliaments speaker called a Christmas gift.
The law would make homosexuality, as well as those promoting or sponsoring gay rights, subject to increased jail time and in some cases, a life sentence.
Though the bill has become more moderate than when it was originally proposed, with the removal of death penalty offenses, according to the BBC, it remains a step backward for Uganda, and Western nations including the U.S. have rightfully condemned it. Some aid groups and countries, including the UK, threatened to cut aid if the bill is passed.
Yet this bill reflects the full cycle of Western hegemony fueling African politics and influencing the continents development.
In 2009, anti-gay rhetoric was bolstered by a series of talks by American evangelical missionaries, which thousands of Ugandans listened to, according to the New York Times. The missionaries were presented as experts on homosexuality, the Times reported. Soon after, the anti-homosexuality bill was introduced into Ugandan parliament by a politician who boasted about his U.S. government ties to evangelical Christians.
On a larger scale, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights are not an isolated issue.
Punishing homosexuality will make combating Ugandas HIV/AIDS epidemic even more difficult, as legal sanctions would serve as another barrier to already-stigmatized victims of the disease to seek treatment and counseling.
Uganda had a 6.5 percent HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in 2009 the 10th-highest in the world, according to UNAIDS.
Ugandans already face human rights abuses and institutional homophobia, as well as widespread government corruption.
These deeper problems cannot be ignored. Yet solutions must be found multilaterally, as Western nations must move away from exerting power by threatening and imposing their values on others. Discussions, workshops, and human interaction can help fuel discussion about GLBT issues in Uganda and the U.S. alike, as both nations strive toward common goals of human rights.
As the Ugandan presidents adviser said in regards to the UKs threats to cut aid, Ugandans should not be treated as children.
The U.S. and others are right to condemn Ugandas bill as a violation of human rights. Yet the Western role in these policies, both direct and indirect, cannot be ignored.
Hannah Feig is a senior majoring in chemistry and anthropology
Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly
From Around the Web
More usforacle News Articles
Recent usforacle News Articles
Discuss This Article
MOST POPULAR USFORACLE NEWS
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER
LATEST USFORACLE NEWS
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Empowering People to Regain Their Mobility
- On-Site Workplace Health Clinics Emphasize Chiropractic Care
- 5 Important Tips for Choosing a Medicare Health Plan
- Welcome Your Holiday Guests With Inviting Lighting
- A New Prescription for Finding the Right Doctor
- Be on the Lookout for These Invasive Species
- It's Official: Women Are the Decision-Makers Even When It...
- Where the Jobs Are: Why Relocating May Be the Best Option
- Value of Education Brings Success Among Unique Student...
- Is Faith Really a Good Thing?
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- Renowned Engineer Ric Bradshaw Conducts Fujifilm-Sponsored Campus Tour on Tape Technology
- 5 DAYS ONLY! Semi Annual Consignment Sale!
- Leading Digital Strategists Transform Digital Marketing In Business and Academia
- USA NETWORK AND VERIZON CHARACTERS UNITE COLLEGE TOUR TO VISIT SEVEN CAMPUSES ACROSS THE COUNTRY, ENGAGING STUDENTS TO COMBAT DISCRIMINATION AND DATING ABUSE
- OH HONEY ARE “SINCERELY YOURS” WITH NEW EP // HONDA CIVIC TOUR