Vice (ep. 3 season 10)
In 2013 the “Kill the Gays” bill was passed in Uganda. The new penalty was raised to death or life in prison. Though the bill was overturned, the homophobia still lingers in the air strongly. “There is no difference between a terrorist and a homosexual.” A lot of the Ugandan belief against homosexuality has originated from US preachers. They can easily persuade those who are less fortunate because I believe that they have nothing else to turn to so they are easily manipulated in their beliefs, especially since it is religious. Ant-gay teachings are taught to children at young ages. Countless facts are being shoved into these kids’ faces and they are being taught false beliefs.
If grown men were to find two lesbians then they would rape them. In effort to show them that their actions are wrong. If men were to find two men together then they would kill them. The Ugandan culture has a strong hatred against homophobia and it shows in all aspects of the culture.
When the interviewer asks David Bahati if raping and killing homosexuals is ok, he does not answer the question directly he simply states that homosexuality is wrong and that they should just abandon those activities. In the brief interview Bahati digresses from the questions and avoids direct answers.
Ugandans believe that homosexuality is almost the equivalent of terrorism, pedophilia and potentially a genocide.
Seeing this episode it doesn’t personally invoke anger, but it opens up my perspectives on how people differ in cultures around the world. It is so unbelievable that someone you know or a loved one could be killed or put in prison for life, simply because of their sexual orientation. There is so much intricate LGBT history and we think that we have progressed so far, but there are still international battles to be fought. Living in the United States is a blessing, but it still sickens me that someone just like me could be killed without mercy or a second thought.
Though the government is extremely biased in the idea of equality, it influences the people of Uganda so there is really no escape for anyone that is gay or lesbian. The one escape they have is to stay in the closet and try to forget who they truly are. Even then, this is no “escape” because their life will never be what it could be. It’s essentially the death penalty because anyone who identifies as gay or lesbian can never be themselves. There is no expression of identity, other than a false masquerade. What really makes this idea so frightening is that they focus specifically on gays and lesbians. There is still a full spectrum of sexuality!
So much emotion is brought up with this specific episode of Vice because it makes me think and reflect on all the LGBT history that I’ve learned about. They always say that the road might have bumps along the way, but I believe that we still have oceans and mountains to conquer before the world is a more equal place for ALL.