Close

Support Global Voices

To stay independent, free, and sustainable, our community needs the help of friends and readers like you.

Donate now »

See all those languages up there? We translate Global Voices stories to make the world's citizen media available to everyone.

Learn more about Lingua Translation  »

Uganda: Bloggers Respond to Controversial Daily Monitor Articles

Uganda's lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community has gotten a lot of press recently in the form of a number of articles written by Katherine Roubos, a 22-year-old Stanford student from the United States. Most recently, Roubos covered the first ever LGBTI press conference, a story that prompted an anti-gay rally in Kampala.

Blogger Samantha wonders, “Is Holding Rallies the Wisest Option?”:

Today, we are holding a rally against homosexuality because it does not comply with Uganda’s morals. We say, “Homosexuality is abnormal according to God’s laws and nature of creation in the Bible. It is against our faith and our society moral values. That is why we are against it and its practitioners.” Why do we think homosexuality is different from corruption, stealing from the poor, despising the poor, lying, defilement and murder?

Scarlett Lion and Jackfruity (full disclosure: that's me) both posted pictures from the event, during which protesters called upon the owner of the Daily Monitor to fire Roubos:

Another Daily Monitor article provoked even more online controversy as several bloggers responded to Glenna Gordon's piece on the achievements of Uganda's women writers.

Iwaya was up in arms:

Did it occur to you that yes while many talented men who are writers are often consumed with chasing the buck, they do so because they are the heads of their families? They have responsibilities they will not abandon, cannot abandon and that while they may not get immediate recognition, are perhaps struggling against as great odds as the women?

While Ernest Bazanye called for simple equality in the Ugandan literary world:

What we need isn’t a men’s equivalent of Femrite [the Uganda Women Writers’ Association]. We need to just not listen to these Gordons and go back to what we were doing before: making art and getting it out there, regardless of the sex, religion, age, height or hairstyle of the artist.

In a different part of the country, Pernille compiles a glossary of Ugandan greetings:

How are you? This is such an all-round standard greeting (which the South Africans shortened to ‘howzit?’) that when I sometimes greet by saying ‘hello’, the person I greeted answers ‘fine’….

The funniest greetings are the ones you get when you arrive somewhere with a male friend or colleague; – ‘Oh, you are here with a new face!’

Finally, The Mundu writes about what it feels like to be the product of three cultures:

A year ago, in a period of frustration, I sat down with a pencil and wrote down that I was the product of three distinct “cultures”, and accordingly I had three distinct personalities which I adopted and dropped at will. Or rather, I am the product, and I have three.

Obviously those are (and just imagine the cute little diagram I drew):
A third “Western”: ie, a Canadian teenager.
A third “TCK”: third culture person/missionary kid.
And a third Ugandan/African.

So I call myself “the mundu”, but avoid questions about Africa. I sing the Canadian anthem with pride and draw a Ugandan flag on my name tag. I lash out, vindictively, over someone’s careless comment, and then am silently blasé. They are so ignorant – I think – and fall prey to arrogance. Nobody understands me – but that’s escapist. I understand nobody – but that’s … an inferiority complex. I eagerly share anecdotes, but later feel bitter when all they cared about was lions and bugs.

I hide my identity or flaunt it.

I am chameleon.

But – *shrugs* – chameleons don't have a problem with being chameleons.

7 comments

  • […] Ugandans hold a rally against homosexuals, women writers, etc. it’s global voices. some stanford student wrote about lesbian and gay communities in Uganda and people are upset. (tags: uganda africa homosexuality gender politics naive) […]

  • […] Rebekah Heacock, die selbst zu den Ereignissen postete, gibt auf Global Voices eine Übersicht der ersten, teils erschreckenden Reaktionen, wie zum Beispiel von Bloggerin Samantha, die Homosexualität für unnatürlich und unmoralisch hält und die gleichgeschlechtliche Liebe mit Korruption, Raub bei Armen, Lügen, Dreck und sogar Mord vergleicht. Der britische Guardian berichtete weiterhin, dass auch der Minister für Ethik und Rechtschaffenheit an der Demonstration gegen Schwule und Lesben teilgenommen habe und damit eine Verschärfung der Anti-Homosexualitätsgesetze unterstützte. Mehrere Demonstranten hatten die Ausweisung der jungen Journalistin gefordert; der Herausgeber des Daily Monitor, Aga Khan jedoch unterstütze sie und betonte die Unparteilichkeit ihres Berichts. Beim Verfassen dieses Artikels war der Text jedoch nicht mehr aufzufinden. […]

  • […] Two weeks ago I wrote about blogger reactions to Uganda’s first ever gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex press conference. The fervor has not yet abated, and even more bloggers have thrown their opinions into the fray. […]

  • […] Two weeks ago I wrote about blogger reactions to Uganda#8217;s first ever gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex press conference. The fervor has not yet abated, and even more bloggers have thrown their opinions into the fray. […]

  • […] Two weeks ago I wrote about blogger reactions to Uganda#8217;s first ever gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex press conference. The fervor has not yet abated, and even more bloggers have thrown their opinions into the fray. […]

  • […] Two weeks ago I wrote about blogger reactions to Uganda#8217;s first ever gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex press conference. The fervor has not yet abated, and even more bloggers have thrown their opinions into the fray. […]

  • Martin

    Hi Rebekah. Thank for pushing on this blog. I admire Katherine for what she has done for us.I am a gay man living in the U.K who left Uganda 8 year ago for the backward, ignorant, self rightous and so-called Christian Country. You cannot imagine the hypocrisy that hovers around the people in this country.When I left, I was highly placed in the Catholic church but I could not take the hypocrisy any more, packed in my job when a very good promotion was days a way because I could not continue to live a lie.Am happy that someone else has the guts to do this for us.THANKS VERY MUCH GUYS.

Join the conversation

Authors, please log in »

Guidelines

  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the best of Global Voices!

Submitted addresses will be confirmed by email, and used only to keep you up to date about Global Voices and our mission. See our Privacy Policy for details.

Newsletter powered by Mailchimp (Privacy Policy and Terms).

* = required field
Email Frequency



No thanks, show me the site