The ghosts of colonial antigay bigotry and Idi Amin still haunt Uganda. RED PEPPER is trying stir up a lynch mob and start a pogrom. The situation is volatile and dangerous and we have to defend these people. We’re them. They’re us. In Uganda, Jamaica and other places the colonial legacies of economic , educational, cultural and political backwardness plus the lack of an infrastructure to build from create societies where widespread poverty and hopelessness create immense levels of pent up rage.When political leaders in those countries predictably try to find scapegoats it could be anyone: national or cult minorities, or, as in Uganda, queers like us. We’re an easy target because, as PINK NEWS explains, “Gay sex is punishable in Uganda by life imprisonment, under laws originally introduced by the British colonial administration in the nineteenth century.” According to Gays Without Borders our brothers and sisters there are asking us to send letters to the editors of RED PEPPER asking them to end their campaign at firstname.lastname@example.org. And send the message to The Embassy of Uganda58-59 Trafalgar SquareLondon, WC2N 5DXor telephone them atTel. 029 7839 5783 Or e-mail them at uganda.embassyhomepage.comSome member of Gays Without Borders, understanding the gravity of the threat and trying not to give the gay haters an edge with language they could construe as patronizing or attacking the long suffering Ugandan people, sent the following. “As a (gay/lesbian) human rights advocate I’m deeply worried for the safety and well-being of my sexual minority brothers and sisters in Uganda. The hate-filled campaigns of the Red Pepper in Kampala not only incite violence but describe how to track victims. At the urging of our Ugandan brothers and sisters I (or we if several sign the same letter) are writing to condemn this campaign that jeopardizes gay Ugandans.I write to convey a request to you and your government: Please immediately condemn the incendiary anti gay September 9th story in the Red Pepper, ask the editors to implement acceptable standards of journalism, and publicly state that the human rights of all Ugandans, including its sexual minority citizens, will be protected.
Bill, when England was a large colonial power, most countries it colonised eventually gained independence. Its not England’s problem or fault that places such as Jamaica and other caribbean countries as well as African and far east countries haven’t progressed since independence. How come England did and they didn’t? At one time the U.S. forbade black people from being full citizens and then you had the miscegenation laws (black people forbidden to marry whites) that only until the 60s were still the law of the land. We never had any such laws. It has, like England, moved on though noway near as fast as England has. We NEVER had segregation and we the arbitors of slavery were ironically the first country to ban it, thanks to William Wilberforce. We can’t keep blaming our colonial past and using that as an excuse. England has moved on, revamped its legal system unlike any other, and so too can every other former colony including the U.S. for that matter. Its up to the more enlightened societies to help bring about change if they themselves can’t.Robert, ex-pat Brit.
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