SMUG's Frank Mugisha reports on the final day of the anti-gay seminar in Uganda
The main presenter for day 3 of the anti-gay workshop was Scott Lively, a 51-year old pastor with training in theology and law.
Lively said that it is not clear whether homosexuality is genetically caused or not. But he argued that someone who identifies himself/herself as being attracted towards a person of the same gender clearly has a disorder. Unlike skin color or left-handedness, homosexuality is a state of mind, an emotional reaction based on physiological clues when one is oriented towards a person of the same sex.
Lively maintained that homosexuals are those who self-define themselves that way. The gay movement has capitalized on teenagers with same-sex attraction, sending messages urging them to act on their impulses. Teenagers indulge in sex and then they get hooked.
Equating homosexuality with pedophilia, Lively argued that there is a whole network trying to keep young people in the movement, including “predatory homosexuals who are always out to satisfy their sexual desires.” But having an impulse to do something does not mean that you should act. There should be controls on sexual drive.
Lively said that the gay movement was trying to equate tolerance (or "putting up with what you do not want") with acceptance. He claimed that until “the gays took over the clinics” there were very effective treatments for homosexuality.
At the end of the day, all the international presenters at the seminar commended Ugandans for taking a strong stand against homosexuality through their constitution, which criminalizes homosexuality, as well as through efforts like conferences that encourage parents and concerned citizens to come up with strategies against homosexuality.
The Family Life Network and religious leaders were called upon to form a task force to deal with homosexuality in Uganda. Other suggestions for moving their agenda forward included working with parliament to draft laws on sexuality and homosexuality; creating dedicated programming at schools and universities to disseminate the “anti-homosexual agenda;” joining hands with Christian or religious centers to “heal” homosexuals; and sensitizing media, entertainment and internet café owners.
Parents and concerned citizens were called upon to attend more of Family Life Network Program in future to help them keep tabs on what is going on. They were invited to attend a meeting slated for March 15, 2009 from 2.30 p.m. to 5.30 p.m. at Hotel Triangle in Kampala. The conference participants were then dismissed with a word of prayer.
SMUG will soon release a full report about the conference.
Published on March 9, 2009 | OutRight Action International an LGBT human rights organization