//
you're reading...
Uncategorized

“I’m not gay” — Kenyan high court nominee

For some time now, I have been contemplating writing an article about the negative attitudes people hold towards homosexuals all around the world. The picture is improving, but it is still pretty bleak. When I was about to go through passport control in Kenya a few weeks ago, I could hear the television, but I wasn’t paying much attention, until I heard the line blurted out, “I AM NOT GAY.” And the next day, here were the headlines:

The Kenyan Headlines: NOT GAYTurns out, Kenya was going through a process of vetting supreme court nominations, and a question had been raised about the sexual orientation of one candidate. As far as I know, there is no law against being a gay high court judge in Kenya, but obviously that wasn’t going to fly. More generally, I rarely go a month without reading some African news report of new laws being proposed or implemented concerning bans on “homosexual activity,” or of some violent act being committed against someone who was gay or thought to be gay. Obviously here in the U.S., the issue is far from resolved, but the level of hostility is several degrees of magnitude more intense in most African countries. I would be curious to hear if anyone has any good theories about why hostility towards homosexuals is so much worse in poor countries, and especially in Africa?

I am about to start a family holiday, and I don’t expect to post again for a week or two…

About Evan Lieberman

I am a Professor of Political Science at MIT, and I conduct research, write, and teach about development, ethnic politics, and research methods.

Discussion

One thought on ““I’m not gay” — Kenyan high court nominee

  1. Africa is hell for gays. If you are contemplating suicide, there is a far more easier way to die. First take a holiday to Uganda, and declare that you are gay in public, you will not live to see the sunset or sun rise.
    Africans are still rooted in the traditional believes. They believe that being gay is a choice. I am African by the way and for that Matter a Kenyan. I am happy to say that the guy who was the subject of debate for the high court appointment went ahead and became the chief justice of Kenya. That is good news for us in Kenya.
    Now back to ‘gayism’ in Africa, recently a Ugandan who declared publicly that he was gay was murdered only two days after coming out. This does not mean however that in Africa there are less gays than the rest of the World. No. In fact i think the number of gays and lesbians in Africa will soon strike a balance with the straight.
    I just completed college, and when i was in the damn place, out of a class of forty, i knew six guys who were gay. ofcourse they did not come out but six guys!!!! Do the percentage.
    You go to a club anywhere in kenya and if you are keen enough you will see men flirting. it happens. it is only that the society is blind to what is happening. but my guess is that in the next ten years or so, there will be laws for protection of gays in africa, especially kenya or south africa.
    I sometimes think of the hardships that these guys go through. A friend of mine was contemplating suicide coz he had no one to talk to about his sexuality. His parents are hardcore christians who argue that gays are the angels of the devil! Now if a society will always be there to oppress some group of people because of their sexual orientation, then i think that such a society is doomed to fail.
    Africa and some other conservatives should know that being gay is not a choice. In fact some people hate themselves because they are gay.

    Posted by Adams | August 1, 2011, 3:12 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow me on Twitter

%d bloggers like this: