One thing is clear from watching this video: Gay = effeminate in some minds, but not just in Africa.
A linebacker or the pro basketball player who's all over the news doesn't fit into their narrow view of what gay is. The studly rapper turned actor who is a perpetual bachelor with all the women throwing themselves at him couldn't possibly be gay. He just hasn't found the right woman, right?
John Amaechi - ex-NBA baller and author of Man In The Middle - said it best in this Think Progress video interview: when it comes to perceptions about gayness:
In Africa, they think gays are the sickly sissies among them to be rooted out and even murdered. At least in public, privately they must know better because if history tells us anything about the squeakiest wheels on social issues, they always ALWAYS get the most LUBE. Inspired by America's own evangelical terrorists, this murderous obsession afflicts those who've had a raw nerve touched by the subject. This idiot and Pastor Martin "poo-poo" Ssempa in Uganda (and many in America's 'pro-family' groups) have their own dirty little secrets, no doubt. They are either after notoriety and money off the backs of gays by fueling ignorance and their genocide, or they are self-loathing gays themselves desperately trying to shield themselves by shining the light elsewhere (on the effeminate), making it a toss-up which behavior is most repugnant.
Gender Theory certainly should play a larger part in today's gay rights discussions. In Queer Theory, Gender Theory: An Instant Primer, nationally known gender activist Riki Wilchins combines "straightforward prose with concrete examples from LGBT and feminist politics, as well as her own life, to guide the reader through the ideas that have forever altered our understanding of bodies, sex and desire." Activists and wannabe activists should educate (and therefore arm) themselves on the subject.
But more basically, the meat and potatoes of this is every one of us living authentic out and proud lives - the actors, athletes, soldiers, garbage men, etc - is the only way we will change perceptions of what GAY IS here in America and ultimately abroad.
We have American good will ambassadors like George Clooney going to places like the Sudan using his fame in an effort to avert genocide. When are LGBT ambassadors going to reach out to Uganda, Kenya (and lawd knows, Jamaica) in a effort to keep the global spotlight on the matter and possibly thwart the obvious looming, American evangelical inspired LGBT genocides there?
Like it or not, those African fires were started here in America. We cannot in good conscience sit idly and watch them burn. ~
He says that he was "misquoted" and he understands that "gays have rights." Uh-huh. **ON Ignorance ALERT** He also thinks that since the country is evenly split between men and women, there is no need for homosexuality. ** OFF ALERT**
No need for it? What there is clearly a need for in Kenya (and America) is a complete re-education on what GAY IS or what QUEER IS and what happens to societies who do not embrace their inherent differences. Until that happens, progress will continue to be painful and embarrassingly slow. And of course, men, women and children will continue to die. ~