FOREIGN ENEMIES

Frank Mugisha: Westerners Imported Homphobia, Not Homosexuality, Into Africa

Many Africans believe that homosexuality is an import from the West, and ironically they invoke religious beliefs and colonial-era laws that are foreign to our continent to persecute us. The way I see it, homophobia—not homosexuality—is the toxic import. Thanks to the absurd ideas peddled by American fundamentalists, we are constantly forced to respond to the myth — debunked long ago by scientists — that homosexuality leads to pedophilia.

– Frank Mugisha, executive director of Sexual Minorities Uganda and the 2011 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award laureate, discussing Ugandan and African anti-LGBT violence in The New York Times. He adds that suspected LGBTS in Africa can get fired, expelled, denied health care or beaten, raped and imprisoned by police.