Uganda Passes Anti-Gay Bill, Removes Death Penalty Provision
Despite previous failed attempts to pass the so-called "Kill the Gays" bill, the Ugandan parliament has today successfully passed an amended version of the legislation that criminalizes "aggravated homosexuality" though removes the death penalty as a punishment, opting instead to imprison offenders for life should they suffer the maximum penalty. The AP has the report:
Homosexuality was already illegal in Uganda under a colonial-era law that criminalised sexual acts "against the order of nature", but the Ugandan politician who wrote the new law argued that tough new legislation was needed because gay people from the west threatened to destroy Ugandan families and were allegedly "recruiting" Ugandan children into gay lifestyles.
The Ugandan gay community has disputed this account, saying that Ugandan political and religious leaders had come under the influence of American evangelicals who wanted to spread their anti-gay campaign in Africa. They have singled out Scott Lively, a Massachusetts evangelical,who they sued in March 2012 under the Alien Tort Statute that allows non-citizens to file suit in the US if there is an alleged violation of international law...
Despite criticism of the bill abroad, it was highly popular among a lot of Ugandans who said the country had the right to pass laws that protect its children.