Monday, December 14, 2009

Uganda Is Only a Tiny Piece of the Global Anti-Gay Epidemic - BY ADAM AMEL ROGERS

Uganda’s proposed “kill the gays” bill has attracted a fair amount of media coverage. Apparently, the prospect of receiving the death penalty simply for being gay struck a chord for a lot of people. But while we have world's attention, it is important to acknowledge that the unsafe climate for LGBT people reaches much further than the border of Uganda. photo

The devastating truth is that, compared with other nations in the region, Uganda is closer to the rule than the exception. Homosexuality is illegal in 80 nations across the globe. No, that is not a typo. In 80 countries, the government mandates imprisonment for those who are perceived to be gay. Uganda is already one of these nations –- the current penalty is life in prison. The proposed bill would make Uganda the ninth country to hand down a death sentence to gay citizens, joining Sudan, Mauritania, Nigeria, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, and Iran.

Think this is a case of countries having archaic laws on the books that aren’t really enforced? Unfortunately, this is not the case. Right now in Iran, 12 young men (including 8 teenagers) are awaiting execution after being convicted of sodomy.

As awful as this is, the shocking truth is that, for most LGBT people in these countries, the non-governmental condemnation can be much more horrific and far deadlier.

In Iraq, "death squads" search the streets for anyone exhibiting "unmanly behavior." Anyone perceived to be gay is promptly kidnapped, beaten and tortured. For those being tormented, the worst part comes when their families are called. The shame of having a gay son is considered unbearable. Read complete article & key to World map- BY ADAM AMEL ROGERS

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