U.S. and Uganda evangelicals continue to drive legislation to imprison and execute LGBT and HIV-positive Ugandans. The “Anti-Homosexuality Bill” would also require long jail terms for pastors, doctors, friends, and family members who fail to report loved ones to the authorities. And the bill would criminalize public discussion of homosexuality and obstruct HIV/AIDS prevention efforts.
U.S. ex-gay activist Scott Lively openly supports the legislation, and Rick Warren and Exodus International board member Don Schmierer — both of whom are affiliated with the legislation’s sponsors — refuse to publicly condemn it. Exodus officials Alan Chambers and Randy Thomas waited eight months to oppose the legislation, ignoring numerous warnings and appeals; now, they object to the bill because, they say, the legislation would obstruct evangelical efforts to convert LGBT Ugandans.
In courageous opposition to these Christian Right attacks upon human rights and religious freedom, Symon Hill — associate director of the Britain-based religion and society think-tank Ekklesia — has launched the following global petition:
We call on Christians around the world, and particularly Christian leaders, to oppose the extreme and violent “Anti-Homosexuality Bill” proposed in Uganda. We call on the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, to end his silence on the matter, to condemn the bill in public and to urge Ugandan Christians to oppose it.
In addition to life imprisonment for consensual sexual activity between people of the same sex, the bill would introduce the death penalty for anyone whose same-sex partner is disabled. It would introduce imprisonment for anyone in authority — such as a priest or minister – who knew of homosexual activity but failed to report it.
Most Christians, who hold a range of views on sexual ethics, will be horrified by these measures. By speaking out, Christian leaders can expose the hollowness of the religious rhetoric used by the bill’ supporters. Given the place of Anglicanism in Uganda, it is important that Rowan Williams adds his voice to the opposition to the bill.
PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION to the world’s Christian leaders generally and to the Anglican Communion in particular. Please include your name and nationality, and please do not sign anonymously if you possibly can.
Religious organizations that emphatically oppose Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill include:
Please also write to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and ask her office to act upon Congress members’ appeals to her. Ask the Secretary to formally protest the Uganda legislation and to rescind aid to Uganda (especially PEPFAR aid to evangelicals) until human rights are guaranteed for all Ugandans.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520