Ugandan Anti-Pornography Law To Outlaw All "Erotic" Literature, Art, and Media
Bruce Wilson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Tue Sep 14, 2010 at 10:48:26 PM EST
As reports, the Ugandan government has introduced an expansion of proposed legislation would outlaw wide swaths of Western art, culture, literature and media within the country, currently under international criticism for a draconian law looming before Uganda's parliament that would outlaw homosexuality and even make it punishable by execution. As AllAfrica describes,

The Government has expanded the anti-pornography law beyond obscene publications to include obscene broadcasting, stage plays, music, art, fashion, motion pictures and audio recording.

The proposed law also introduces a punishment of up to 15 years in prison...

[Ethics minister Dr. Nsaba] Buturo said a committee would be created to collect and destroy existing pornographic objects, educate the public on the dangers of pornography and promote rehabilitation of individuals affected by pornography.


According to Buturo, the proposed law includes any action that depicts unclothed or under-clothed parts of a human body such as breasts, thighs, buttocks or genitalia. It also includes actions that depict or describe sexual intercourse or any behaviour that is usually associated with sexual intercourse or sexual stimulation.

In a recent press conference, Ugandan Minister of Ethics and Integrity reportedly claimed that homosexuality is caused by pornography stating, "Pornography leads to homosexuality. I'm happy that, finally, a bill to eliminate pornography in Uganda will be ready to punish the promoters of this vice."

While Ugandan evangelical leaders claim homosexuality in their country is a form of Western colonialism, observers such as Kapya Kaoma, an Anglican priest from Zambia, say that homophobia is a Western export to Africa and note that Africans promoting antigay hatred in Uganda and Sub-Saharan Africa have ties to American evangelists such as Rick Warren. As Talk To Action reported in December 2009,  

a charismatic network overseen by Warren's doctoral dissertation advisor, C. Peter Wagner,  has played a major role in politically organizing and inspiring the Ugandan legislators who have spearheaded the anti-gay bill.

Both in their extreme anti-homosexual animus and sexual repressiveness, the proposed Ugandan legislation, both against gays and against allegedly immoral forms of cultural expression and media, are more severe than analogous laws passed by Adolf Hitler's Third Reich prior to the onset of World War Two. And, some very influential American churches have allied themselves with African leaders who have proposed this sort of legislation.

But you might already suspect that if you had read my December 2006 Talk To Action story, Schismatic VA Episcopalians OK With Anti-Gay Laws Worse Than Pre-WW2 Nazi's ?

To round out the profile, Uganda's government has approved the mass distribution of a virulently anti-Jewish comic book, to Uganda's school children

Kapya Kaoma is absolutely right (of course)... although there is a wide variation in cultures in Africa, at the same time I've read ethnographies that were clear that homosexuality was accepted in some areas... maybe even rather common.  I don't know if this was just regional or rather widespread, however (gender and sexuality are not an area I've done a lot of reading in- just the usual intro stuff at the undergrad and grad levels).  But it WAS accepted in at least part of Africa.

What is funny is that when I was Pentecostal/Dominionist (Assemblies of God) 30 years ago, I remember clearly hearing about Africa and how badly they needed evangelizing- and 'WITCH DOCTORS' and homosexuality (and bestiality and other things) were preached about as signs that the continent was in dire need of conversion.  They were pushing for more money to be spent on missionaries ('missions'), and trying to get people to go into the mission field.  Now what I've read here (and in a couple of other areas) suggest that they were so effective that the normal Pentecostal/Dominionist/Fundamentalist type lying has also strongly taken root- because it seems that they are trying to say that traditional African cultures reject homosexuality and so on.  Well, anthropologists know better.

by ArchaeoBob on Thu Sep 16, 2010 at 09:34:35 AM EST

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