A lot, as it turns out. My post from last week, which recounted the final enactment of Nigeria’s anti-gay law and the decision by Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni to veto the anti-gay bill passed in December 2013 by the Ugandan parliament, attracted more attention than nearly any post I’ve written since I started Suffragio in early 2012.
So I thought it was worth sharing some of the reactions — and they’ve been jarring.
In the past month alone, I’ve argued that the United States is engendering sympathy for al-Qaeda forces in Yemen, that the US Senate would commit policy malpractice by enacting a new Iran sanctions bill and that the late Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon’s most enduring legacy is empowering Hezbollah. Just yesterday, I entertained the notion that the United States and Canada should merge into a superstate. These aren’t easy issues, and others won’t always share my interpretations and conclusions.
But nothing has caused quite as much blowback as a relatively straightforward piece examining Museveni’s veto in the context of a rapidly worsening climate for LGBT rights throughout sub-Saharan Africa.
The (unintentionally hilarious) Anel Tunes, who’s from Kampala, shared my post on Facebook — with the following preamble:
All homosexuals need to be shot dead on site. We don’t need to spend tax payers money by taking such beasts to court. We just need to slay their throats without a question.
He’s not alone — the comments on both my blog and on Facebook run very heavily anti-gay. I’d expect that because Uganda’s culture is relatively conservative. There are plenty of good people in the United States who oppose same-sex marriage and believe, for religious or other reasons, that same-sex relationships are wrong, and the battle for wider acceptance of sexual minorities (including, for the record, transsexual and transgender individuals) can’t be legislated or enacted by judicial fiat. I can understand that.
What I can’t understand is the desire to kill fellow citizens. The virulence of hatred is staggering. I’m used to a hostile or critical comment (or dozen) from time to time, but these comments are extraordinarily hateful.
Rogers Mover M adds simply:
We HATE HOMOSEXUALITY
From Ssebbaale Henry Wise:
rubbish !!!! it doent matter whether he voted other wise, remember this is africa, we act as we please, we will contiue to kill the Gays until when they are totally finished
Homo??? you even have time to debate on that??? we have machetes
Jjemba Mathew disapproves of the Ugandan parliament’s decision to reduce the penalty from ‘death’ to merely life imprisonment:
Life imprisonment can not end gay habits.They need Gun fire in the stadium.
Black Panther argues that Ugandan gays should be fed to the crocodiles:
This is abusing our President.Its such a shameful act that it shldnt hv even been discussed in our Parliament.They shld hv just rounded up all homosexuals at night and thrown them into River Nile for our more honourable and profitable crocodiles to feast on as they are more useful at least they attract tourists and earn the country the much needed foreign currency.