The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Gays Are the Niggers of Nigeria

Via Ed over at Dispatches from the Culture Wars, comes news of Nigeria’s new anti-gay proposal, which Ed points out is supported by Nigeria’s Anglican church.

The bill started out as a ban on same-sex marriage and has been revised to make it a crime for more than two gay people to be in the same venue at the same time.

It prohibits LGBT social or civil rights groups from forming. It would be illegal to sell or rent property to same-sex couples, watch a gay film or video, visit an LGBT web site, or express same-sex love in a letter to one’s partner.

The legislation goes so far as to make it a criminal offense to impart information of HIV/AIDS to gays or for non-gays to meet with any group of gays for any purpose.

It’s not enough, apparently that same-sex activity is already illegal in Nigeria, and punishable by up to 14 years in prison, or that it’s now illegal for Nigerian gays to travel abroad, say to Canada, in order to marry. But something about the description of the bill struck me as strangely familiar; like something out of history.

It was the part about making it a crime for more than two gay people to be in the same venue at the same time. It bugged me for a minute, why this sounded familiar, and why it seemed particularly ironic coming from an African country, until I realized that it sounded like any number of slave codes from right here in the United States that, among other things, mad it a crime to for blacks gather in numbers, gathering at night, or gathering without a white person present, out of fear they might organize a revolt or start giving one another ideas about freedom and equality.

Maybe I’m reaching a bit here, but I couldn’t help seeing the parallels myself. And, continuing a theme from a previous post, it seemed something worth pointing out as something that African Americans who are attracted to the religious right in this country — whom Ed points out praise Nigeria as an example of how to handle gay issues — might want to keep in mind, since that praise also hinges upon a literal interpretation of the same bible that (at the very least) doesn’t prohibit slavery, and some of those same conservative religious folks see the American slave trade as not such a bad thing.

Something worth thinking about, anyway.

7 Comments

  1. absolutely amazing. i cant belive this shit. it makes me sad to live in a world like this. but what can i do besides trying to change the laws. of course that will never work.

  2. The Apartheid government of South Africa used to “ban” certain people critical of their policies – among other things, it meant that they could not be in the same room with more than one other person.

  3. You are not reaching in your comparison T.
    And the sexual code between blacks and whites in America has similar roots in the anti gay codes too.
    Black sexuality (especially that of black males) raised the same violent and visceral responses in white males that gay males do in straight folks.

    Don’t speak,
    don’t touch, look away…
    One couldn’t know how a person was going to react to the most casual of gestures.
    It could be a death sentence…

    In enacting these laws, Africa is throwing it’s weight at a group of people without the political or social clout to fight it.
    Gays and lesbians have to depend on the whims of straight people, who are taught to hate them.
    And here in America, we had to sit here and be forced to watch straight people decide on whether or not gay people can marry.
    Depending on the whims of people who traditionally have been hostile is a scary thing and not to be taken lightly.

    This isn’t just about freedom, this is about life and death.
    I am trying to imagine what this is like for gay Nigerians.
    So many of my social life is with gay folks. I’d be suspect wherever I went, although I am straight.

    I’d be the equivalent of what a ‘nigger lover’ was for white people, compassionate towards blacks in the Jim Crow South.
    No, T….the chains of injustice stretch from the motherland to here.
    With the same religious zeal as the justification for slavery and the subjugation of women.
    Old photos of state senators carrying the Bible into the halls of state houses when laws on slavery, women’s suffrage and Jim Crow were decided, is still carried into those same halls when deciding on the lives of gay people.

    I find this bears witness to the writer’s of history.
    All men, all presumably heterosexual…
    For that reason alone, I find all this religious instruction and dictation highly suspect, because the SAME groups of people end up being outlaws because of it.
    Women and gay people…
    Always punished, suppressed and regarded as dispensible and unworthy of freedom or self determination.
    Always women, and gay people the most abused and oppressed in the world.
    In Africa, there are far more pressing problems…most of which have been CAUSED by this same suppression.
    When all else fails, systems of government, educational access, health and safety, workable and creative ideas…blame the gays.
    Blame the Jews
    Blame women,
    Blame…blame…blame

    When will the blame go to repressive, illogical and arrogant inhuman policies?

  4. The really sad thing is that loads of African cultures traditionally had a fairly tolerant attitude towards homosexuality. That all changed with the massive influx of missionaries and hard-line religion.

  5. Pingback: The Relentless Stream of Consciousness - Archive - Nigerian gays

  6. A man should not be intimidated by a homosexual. By that I mean, those people who set out to preach “fire and brimstone,” the beating and harassing of homosexuals and lesbians, in most cases are people that fear for a dormant personality that might come forth from themselves. If you are sure about your manhood or womanhood, then you should have no fear of socializing or befriending a person with different sexual preferences than you. The very fear is a confession that if you were to socialize with a homosexual or lesbian you’re afraid you might become a homosexual or a lesbian. I don’t care whether you’re a Reverend this or Pastor that, or Imam this or Sheik that or even a Rabbi. All of these people go home to loved ones and have classified their sexual activity lawful, righteous, upright and pure. Anyone who does not follow their personal instructions sexually, is a pervert or a freak or whatever other name they can come up with. When in actuality, the strictness that the Muslim has in sex restricts them to one position and for one reason – reproduction. However, when it comes to the Jewish population you’ll find it very strange if you do any research that they have sexual intercourse through a sheet, never looking at their partner. Then Christians accept everything in sexual activity except homosexuality and lesbianism, which all of the above call sodomy. They have given the word their meaning when in actuality the word simply means, “burning” and has nothing to do with burning people for sexual practices. Nowhere in the bible does it tell them who named the city Sodom or who it was named after. If you were to read these books, SEX AND THE BIBLE by Gerald Laure and The X-RATED BIBLE by Ben Edward Akerly, you would be amazed at some of the things that the Prophets did in the bible. If it were today, they would be put in jail for indecent exposure or rape. Then if you read the Talmud of the Jews, you’d find that it condones sex with little boys. If you studied the history of Islam you’d find the Prophet Muhammad took a wife named ‘Aisha, the daughter of Abu Baker. When she was only 9 years old and he consummated that marriage, which means had sex with her when she was only 11 years old and he was age 50. So if you look at the people in the religious world today, we’re talking about the Jews of the Torah, the Christians of the New Testament, and the Muslims of the Koran. These people have skeletons in their closets. I mean skeletons the size of dinosaur bones. Yet they, the religious people set out to breed violence and segregation against a group of human beings with a different sexual preference.

  7. What can I say that has not been said? The Government has to face the problem of the country such as light, water employment good heath care which includes a better HIV?AIDS service hich they have caused to get out of hand by there involement in this discussion of same sex meetings an so on. we have been through the slavery times, the wars and other self inflect ed times here we are yet again. distorying our nation. the GLT are not diffrent to any one else, but you will rather accept the 419’s than those showing love to each other. why do we like facking everything ? presenting it to the world as if we are realy holy? does not the Koran and Bible preach LOVE? which bit of it can we not understand? stop wasting peoples life, let tem shine , let them be useful to ther country. WE GLT are good people. at least we saying the truth about our feeling , which is more than an advrage born again moslim or christen will do in the business world . please give us a break and face the real prblems facing NIGERIA.

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