Ugandan gay rights activist wins RFK award

RFK photo via Shutterstock

He’s the first gay or trans person to receive the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award.  From AP:

The 29-year-old Mugisha leads an underground group whose members routinely shift locations in Uganda for their safety. Uganda, a conservative East African nation, is one of more than 70 nations that have imposed laws against being gay.

Mugisha blames U.S. evangelical activists in particular for stoking fears and promoting homophobia with a 2009 visit and conference on “rehabilitation” for gays in Uganda. Since then, violence against gays has increased, he said.

After the visit, debate began over a Ugandan bill that would punish gay people with prison or death and would threaten jail time for those who don’t report suspected gays to authorities. The bill was recently revived in Uganda’s parliament.

“I think they are responsible for the bill,” Mugisha said of the evangelical activists. “They held a seminar and openly told Ugandans that they needed to tighten their laws on homosexuality and told Ugandans that homosexuals can be healed.”

AP did a great job on this story – it’s long – do check it out.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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