David Bahati, the Ugandan lawmaker behind the Kill The Gays bill, is in Washington D.C. this week. He was supposed to attend the International Consortium of Governmental Financial Management Conference, a three-day event (about exactly what you think it is) that wrapped up today. Except nobody would let him in. Was he using the conference as a cover to get into the U.S.? Or just because he wanted to have a great chat with Rachel Maddow?
The conference doors were closed on Bahati — precisely because of his support for the deadly legislation he’s sponsoring. And Bahati might’ve known he wasn’t welcome: Conference organizers rescinded their invitation once they were made aware of Bahati’s background, but apparently were unable to reach him by phone. Interestingly, it’s this conference — which he registered to attend via email, as many others undoubtedly did — that was the only reason he was allowed in the country; a special visa was granted to allow him to attend. (Retorted Bahati: “This conference is not about gays. It has nothing to do with homosexuals but I don’t know why I was denied entry. My colleagues wanted to boycott the conference but we later agreed that they should go ahead and attend and we petition the State Department because we can’t stand this kind of discrimination.”)
But at least he can have a sleepover with his friends at The Family!
Except Bahati knew he wasn’t welcome, claims LezGetReal, which asserts he usurped the stipulations of his visitation. “Bahati is expected to use this denial of entry as an excuse to leave D.C. and to travel to New York where he will stay at UGANDA HOUSE, where he has been before.”
And to travel to Rachel Maddow’s show. Via satellite.
“We have a huge problem in our country,” says Bahati on Maddow’s program tonight, speaking about his wonderful theory that foreigners are coming into Uganda — as part of a $15 million campaign — and converting the locals into rabid homosexuals. “We believe our children should not be recruited.” When asked by Maddow to provide evidence of such, Bahati eventually says he’ll make the data available. On the Internet even! (We’ll be waiting, sir.) And Bahati says all that in the same conversation where he insists we need to “tolerate” each other. This man is lovely! “I do not hate gays. I love them. At the same time I must protect children who are being recruited into this practice. … I’m just a simple young man. … I have a passion for children.” FOUR MORE YEARS!
Do diplomatic visitors get to skip the TSA pat-downs when exiting the country? If so, I think we should make an exception.
PART TWO OF MADDOW’S INTERVIEW: