I published the following essay on June 2, 2009 at DefendtheFamily.com in response to false suggestions in the media that I had advocated for the death penalty to be included in Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill. I will offer additional posts on this topic in future, but it is fitting to begin with this one since it was my first public comment on the matter. It’s claims remain true to this day, notwitstanding the global propaganda campaign that implies without evidence that many homosexuals have been murdered/executed there.
The Death Penalty in Uganda
by Scott Lively, J.D., Th.D.
President, Defend the Family International
June 2, 2009
By official count 22 young men were executed under Uganda’s law on homosexuality. The law in question required that all men and boys in Uganda be willing to submit to the homosexual seduction of it’s ruler, King Mwanga. When Ugandans began to convert to Christianity in the 1800s, a group of Catholics, led by Charles Lwanga, refused to allow themselves to be sodomized by the King. Enraged, King Mwanga had them torurously bound, marched 37 miles and then roasted alive in a fire pit. The date of their execution was June 3rd, 1886, and is today a national holiday commemorating Uganda’s rejection of homosexuality and commitment to Christian values.
It should be no surprise, therefore, that modern Ugandans are very unhappy that homosexual political activists from Europe and the United States are working aggressively to re-homosexualize their nation. Ugandan citizens report a growing number of foreign homosexual men coming to their country to turn desperately poor young men from the slums into their personal houseboys, and that some girls in public schools have being paid to recruit others into lesbianism. Foreign interests have exerted intense pressure on Uganda’s government to compromise its laws regarding sexual morality, often using their control over foreign aid funding for leverage.
Over the past decade a growing pro-family movement has begun to insist that Parliament do something about this problem. This year, Parliament answered the call. Unfortunately, the bill they are now debating represents a serious overcorrection, including, for example, the death penalty for certain forms of “aggravated homosexuality” (such as knowingly spreading AIDS).
As a Christian attorney and international human rights advocate who has worked closely with Uganda’s pro-family movement, I have a special interest in this issue. In my view, homosexuality (indeed all sex outside of marriage) should be actively discouraged by society — but only as aggressively as necessary to prevent the mainstreaming of alternative sexual lifestyles, and with concern for the preservation of the liberties of those who desire to keep their personal lifestyles private. Marriage-based culture served humanity very favorably during the centuries when homosexuality was disapproved but tolerated as a sub-culture in America, England and elsewhere. It has obviously not fared well in the decades since the so-called sexual revolution kicked open Pandora’s Box and unleashed both rampant heterosexual promiscuity and “Gay Pride“ on the world.
In March of this year I had the privilege of addressing members of the Ugandan parliament in their national assembly hall when the anti-homosexuality law was just being considered. I urged them to pattern their bill on some American laws regarding alcoholism and drug abuse. I cited my own pre-Christian experience being arrested for drunk driving. I was given and chose the option of therapy which turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life. I also cited the policy in some U.S. jurisdictions regarding marijuana. Criminalization of the drug prevents its users from promoting it, and discourages non-users from starting, even while the law itself is very lightly enforced, if at all. Additionally, I urged them to actively promote the marriage model in their schools as a form of inoculation to the anti-family messages flooding their country through Western media.
All of my suggestions were ignored (despite which fact I am being blamed for the proposed law as written by certain major media outlets and the “gay” blogosphere.) Nevertheless, I commend the courage of the Ugandan people. During the past decade or so, Uganda has been one of the few countries of the world that has firmly resisted the enormous power and relentless pressure of the international “gay” lobby, while other developing nations such as South Africa and Brazil have been systematically homosexualized. This is one of the reasons that Uganda’s AIDS rate went from the highest to the lowest in Africa during this same time period.
Let me be absolutely clear. I do not support the proposed anti-homosexuality law as written. It does not emphasize rehabilitation over punishment and the punishment that it calls for is unacceptably harsh. However, if the offending sections were sufficiently modified, the proposed law would represent an encouraging step in the right direction. As one of the first laws of this century to recognize that the destructiveness of the “gay” agenda warrants opposition by government, it would deserve support from Christian believers and other advocates of marriage-based culture around the world.
In the mean time, despite all of the hysteria in the liberal media, it is important to remember that there is no death penalty for homosexuals in Uganda, only a bill under debate that will hopefully be modified before passage. The only Ugandans who have been executed for their beliefs and actions about homosexuality have been Christians.