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Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Thursday, December 03, 2009

Uganda

I've been seeing posts around blogworld for a while about the anti-gay legislation coming up in Uganda. I've seen many posts from the Anglicans and Episcopalians on the subject, but haven't seen much from Catholics, save a story at National Catholic Reporter (Anti-gay bill in Uganda challenges Catholics to take a stand) and David Gibson's post, If Uganda Executes Gays, Will American Christians be Complicit?. Here's just the beginning of David's post ......

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A bill currently before the Ugandan Parliament sounds like an absurdist scenario from some liberal nightmare about a theocratic state: Under the proposed law -- which appears to have strong public support -- criminal penalties on homosexual acts in the East African nation would be made much harsher, and include the death penalty.

Killing homosexuals for having sex? Just as shocking, however, are the links between the proposal and American Christians who have at times been rousing cheerleaders for Uganda's draconian statutes.

A key episode in the trail of evidence was an event in March 2009 in the capital, Kampala, that drew three well-known conservative Christian activists from the United States who are prominent in the so-called ex-gay movement that seeks to "convert" homosexuals to make them straight.

The three men, Scott Lively of Abiding Truth Ministries, Don Schmierer of Exodus International and the International Healing Foundation, and Lee Brundidge, who often works with a group called Extreme Prophetic, were invited to the conference of the Family Life Network of Uganda to help organize what Lively called "an effective social and political force" to combat "anti-family Western agitators." Those agitators, he said, are led by gay activists in Europe and the United States who "plan to spread sexual anarchy throughout the world under the guise of 'human rights' and 'family planning.' "

If that message sounds over-the-top to American ears, it plays well in places like Uganda, where grass-roots sentiment against gays and anti-gay (and anti-Western) rhetoric from hardline Muslims can set the tone of the discourse ......

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