Saturday, May 29, 2010

Uganda's Christian Theocracy/Democracy and Homosexuality

The other night I was at a local bar in Modesto, California and an extremely drunk man almost attacked me. Before this incident, the bartender and I were making jokes about homophobes. The drunk guy became emotional and told me, "I don't like this conversation." As I walked to use the restroom the guy stood up and shouted, "Don't try to touch me! Gays!..." The bouncer got between us and I left the bar. I'm not gay but I received a small experience that many gays go through on a daily basis. Unfortunately homophobia is a global problem.

Currently, in Uganda the treatment of gays is becoming unprecedented. There is an attempt in Uganda to strengthen anti-homosexuality. Anti-homosexual activists hope to make homosexuality result in punishment by death. They want to punish those who do not snitch on citizens that they know to be practicing homosexuality. This is what theocracy looks like. Although, the majority may support these laws. Hence, this is what democracy looks like. Significantly, there is no politically neutral belief system. And each belief system makes an individual inclined to particular politics. Yet, a belief system can also distract a person from actual workings of politics.

We should not view what is happening in Uganda with naivete. Homophobia, like antisemitism and anti-immigrant fervor, can be utilized as a distraction from the greater class antagonism in any given society. In other words,the ruling class can use democratic sentiments (such as cultural trends or prejudices) as a smokescreen to prevent societal frustrations from being centered on those that rule society and create its economic/politcal imbalances. A point that should always be kept in mind as social tensions of any kind build in any country.

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