Our friends in yonder lands: please listen to both sides!

Published: January 15, 2012

It is now longer a secret that we (the gay community in Uganda) have friends all over the world. We have friends who are giving dollars and euros so that LGBTI activist work may flourish in Uganda. They need to be thanked. We also have friends, many of them straight, who step up to public lecterns and boldly pronounce to the world that gay rights in Africa are human rights. They must be applauded. We have very powerful friends who are threatening to cut off aid to the more pernicious abusers of gay human rights in Africa. They, too, deserve praise, not persnickety lectures, for making our rights their concern. We have friends who visit African countries and write articles detailing what they saw and heard. They, too, are an integral part of our support system and should be thanked.

But then there are friends who do some, any, or all of the above in some measure, and then make up their minds that they understand what we are going through, all in the confines of their offices and/or living rooms in Western Europe and the Americas. From there, they determine that are in position to tell us how we feel or should feel simply because their heart strings have been tugged. These are the friends who turn around and tell us how bad things are for us because they have read a harrowing tale, watched a carefully edited documentary or have been regaled with an e-mail story so moving by one of our own.  AfroGay is not yet sure what to say such friends. But he is going to try here with a simple plea:

Our friends in yonder lands whose only information about gay life in Uganda is what you read in carefully crafted e-mails, watch on television or hear from third parties with vested interests.

Full text of article available at link below –

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