By Melanie Nathan, Feb. 19, 2013.
We wondered if Lord of Dance, British Gay Icon, Stephen Fry would speak out against the Anti-Homosexuality Bill while in Uganda to shoot for Comic Relief this week, the very same week as Parliament may hear the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which is number 1 on today’s Order Papers.
Indeed he has as he debated fervently anti-gay pastor Male on the show of renowned host FATBOY a.k.a. F-Beezy, a Kampala based Radio DJ/Presenter.
Pastor Solomon Male is a highly controversial figure who has led the anti-gay crusade in Uganda amongst Church leaders. He was exposed and found guilty of a felony when he lied about a fellow Pastor, Pastor Robert Kayanja of the Miracle Centre, accusing him of sodomy.
Stephen Fry tweeted:
Had a great morning with the brilliant & wise
@jamesonen “Fat Boy” – top radio host in Kampala & his highly unusual & interesting guest.
While I have not heard the debate myself, yet, I asked an activist in Uganda who had listened to the debate if Fry made mincemeat of Male and the answer: ” VERY MUCH!”
Fry’ is outspoken against persecution of Gays in Russia , showing his support of the group Pussy Riot when they were arrested, tried and jailed for a pro-gay protest in Russia is of particular interest when measured against the significance of what this week could bring to Uganda. He wrote on his BLOG:-
“I can’t imagine how you are feeling at the moment as you begin the astoundingly unfair and disproportionate prison sentence that has been handed out to you……….
I find it so hard to bear that the country of Tchaikovsky is allowing a toxic mixture of shaven-headed nationalists and fundamentalist churchmen to dictate laws on homosexuality for example. Part of your “crime” was to come out on the side of gay rights. It astonishes me how the history of Russia seems to repeat itself. Pushkin was sent into exile by an offended Tsar. Dostoevsky was taken to a firing squad and only reprieved at the last minute before being exiled too. And then in the Communist era, as we all know, artists, writers, intellectuals and liberals of all kinds were under constant threat of exile, forced labour or even execution. Now we seem to be moving towards a similar position. I am not saying, and nor would you claim, that you are the equal of Pushkin or Dostoevsky, but that isn’t the point. The fight is for free speech, and this isn’t limited only to gigantic towering titans of literature.”
Uganda may well pass a law this week which will provide harsh punishment for homosexuality, to include death as well as jail time for those who “promote homosexuality” and for those who fail to report a known homosexual to authorities.
COMIC RELIEF IN UGANDA
Many millions have been raised by Comic Relief for Africa and Uganda. Its baffling that Ugandans are comfortable with Gay Brits performing and raising millions of dollars in AID money such as from Comic Relief, and yet if the Anti-Homosexuality Bill passes, the same performers who help raise this money to help Ugandans are nothing but criminals deserving life in prison. Example in point – Stephen Fry.
The Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda was first introduced back in 2009, after U.S. Evangelicals , Lou Engle and Scott Lively preached at workshops and pitched their form of Christianity to Ugandans and members of Uganda’s Parliament, blaming the Holocaust on gays and suggesting that homosexuals intended to spread homosexuality in Uganda. The Bill has been touted buy its supporters as necessary because they believe that homosexuals recruit children into homosexuality, and they have gained support for the Bill with rhetoric calling homosexuality a vice.
Even though the act of homosexuality is already considered a crime in Uganda under the laws of “acts against nature” if the law passes this week, Fry will find himself a criminal defined by his sexuality, facing greater penalties, in the country that is hosting him.