Bob Emrich and Uganda

Uganda has been well established as a good place for bigots to visit. In October of 2009 it introduced an Anti-Homosexuality Bill which would have made being gay punishable by life in prison or even death. This was on top of the already strong anti-gay laws in Uganda, one of which already made homosexuality punishable by 14 years in prison.

Several Evangelical Christians visited Uganda at this time, some of them specifically being involved in encouraging the bill. Bob Emrich, a pastor and one of the sexually immature leaders of the anti-equality movement in Maine last year, was in Uganda for two weeks just after the bill was introduced. He sent an email to his faith-heads in which he expressed support for a Ugandan article which said this:

This whole concept of human rights grates my nerves. It has made people un-african, mean and self-centered.

One can now shamelessly stand up and tell you: “I do as I please. You have no business in my affairs.” A sodomist can now swear to you that what they do in the privacy of their bedroom does not concern the public.

No wonder when a brilliant MP comes up with a Bill against homosexuality, the human rights activists baptize him an enemy of the people.

It is high time politicians, religious leaders, cultural leaders and all concerned Africans woke up and defended the African heritage against the moral confusion of Western civilization. This civilization is eroding African moral pride.

The so-called human rights activists have hijacked the driver’s seat and are sending nations into the sea of permissiveness in which the Western world has already drowned.

Emrich later said he was against life imprisonment and the death penalty for gays, but he had also already noted what “a refreshing change of pace” it was to be in Uganda. Uganda – a country known for its imprisonment of gays, something which was being discussed in an article Emrich was quoting and lauding.

Fast forward and now someone has called Emrich out on his bigotry.

It’s time to remind people about Emrich. In the fall of 2009, Emrich spent several weeks in Uganda working alongside anti-gay activists.

Presumably at that time, Emrich thought it was a good idea to remind people in Uganda about the evils of gay people.

Since gay marriage in Uganda was nowhere in sight, the activists’ motivation was to marginalize gays in general.

In October 2009, amidst the anti-gay activity in Uganda, a bill was introduced in the Ugandan Legislature that criminalized gay activity in Uganda, including the death penalty for a number of gay “crimes.”

It might seem hard to believe that Emrich would approve of the death penalty for gays, but shortly after his return to Maine, he sent an e-mail to his supporters about his trip.

Emrich’s e-mail included text from an article published in Uganda that condemns gays and their supporters and lauds the “brilliant” person who introduced the anti-gay bill.

Concerning the article, Emrich says “I think it speaks for itself.”

He was conspicuously silent about the death component of the Ugandan bill.

There’s some wiggly truth in this. First, Emrich claims to have been there to help build schools, train pastors, feed children, and conduct medical clinics, not working alongside anti-gay activists. But who isn’t an anti-gay activist in Uganda? I believe Emrich when he says he was not expressly working alongside any particular, organized political groups, but “expressly” is key. The building of schools and training of pastors fits is the method Emrich was choosing to indoctrinate children into a sea of ignorance, hate, and sexual immaturity. As he said, one of his favorite sentiments in Uganda was that “in order to have a healthy village, there must be a strong and healthy church”. This reflects the ideas of hate in the article Emrich loved so much which urged for a rejection of human rights in favor of maintaining small, heritage-based (read: anti-gay) villages in Africa. Emrich’s actions and subsequent email reflect what his whole mission was all about: he was trying to strengthen religion in a country which enthusiastically condemns gays, going so far as to praise an article which called that death penalty bill for gays “brilliant”.

But let’s hear from Emrich himself.

As for Uganda, the people still need help. Thousands live in remote villages, without access to clean water, sufficient food and medical care. Without transportation, electricity or newspapers, they have no time for political activism. They appreciate the help some Mainers have provided, and they are finding great hope and strength in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I skipped the opening and body of his response since I’ve already summarized some of his contention, but this conclusion is indicative of the sort of sexually immature, bigoted person Bob Emrich is. He’s pretending like his concern is purely for the people of Uganda, but he belies his claim when he goes on to imply the need for political activism in Uganda. He knows exactly what an increase in a focus on social issues means for gays in Uganda. He may disown parts of the article he lauded before he got caught, but he has never said he disagrees with the criminalization of homosexuality. In fact, in another email (some people are just too old to handle this stuff, I think), he clarified his position by saying this:

Personally, I agree that these (acts of sexual consent between two people of the same sex) are serious and grievous offenses but I do not believe they should be punishable by death or life imprisonment. The homosexual activists and bloggers are claiming that Ugandan officials, with the endorsement of American Christian leaders, are calling for the execution of all homosexuals. They are not to be believed. But deception and confusion serves their purpose.

Actually, it’s true that Ugandan officials and some Christian leaders in America have called for the death penalty, but that’s besides the point. What I’m wondering is why Emrich is so unwilling to homosexuality should not be a crime. But then, just like with the article he loves so much, maybe human rights really grate his nerves.

Gay fellow to start new church

Ted Haggard is starting a new church.

Haggard said he doesn’t know how many people will attend his new church, but he said the ordeal he and his wife, Gayle, went through has prepared them to help others.

“I have an incredible heart for broken people,” he said. “I think we’re qualified to hold people’s hands” in times of trouble.

In other words, he’s rather eager to get back to bashing gay people, all the while missing the irony in being one himself.

Or at least he hopes everyone else will miss the irony.

Thought of the day

If you are against same-sex marriage, you are a bigot. Fuck you.

Sorry, Mr. Jefferson

Sorry, Mr. Jefferson, it is now a terrible idea to go to school in Virginia.

Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli says Virginia’s colleges and universities cannot prohibit discrimination against gays because the General Assembly has not authorized them to do so.

In a letter Thursday to the presidents, rectors and boards of visitors of Virginia public colleges, Cuccinelli said: the law and public policy of Virginia “prohibit a college or university from including ‘sexual orientation’, ‘gender identity’, ‘gender expression’ or like classification, as a protected class within its non-discrimination policy, absent specific authorization from the General Assembly.“

Most places of higher education have the reasonable policy of not allowing discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. It just isn’t relevant to the quality of work one can produce. And fortunately for much of the country, places of higher education do not include many in the general population who tend to be bigoted towards gays (i.e., old people who never needed to go to school to get decent jobs, the religious who are hostile toward secular education [such as facts], dumb people, etc). And some states even have laws banning discrimination based upon sexual orientation. In fact, despite my home state recently voting in favor of bigotry – and for no reason other than “ewwww!!!!” – there is a law on the books (after many tries) which bans sexual orientation discrimination in Maine. But this is New England, the place where fewer people tend to think their sexual orientation is superior to that of others.

Jon Blair, chief executive officer of Equality Virginia, criticized Cuccinelli’s opinion.

“Attorney General Cuccinelli clearly doesn’t understand that his radical actions are putting Virginia at risk of losing both top students and faculty, and discouraging prospective ones from coming here,“ he said.

That’s unfortunate for education in Virginia, but I hope it happens. Cuccinelli is another conservative out to ruin the liberty and rights of individuals for no good reason. Anyone considering school in Virginia should only do so once this issue is resolved in favor of equality.

Oh, and this.

In his first weeks as the state’s top lawyer, Cuccinelli has not tried to hide his conservative political philosophy.

He filed petitions seeking to block a decision by the Environmental Protection Agency that global warming poses a threat to people.

There’s some underlying horror that seems to cause certain people to go off the deep end, embrace crazy ideas, and reject all that is real.

Steven Anderson, the mainstream, and closets

Steven Anderson is a complete and utter nut job. He also holds beliefs which are largely in line with mainstream Christianity (especially the Christianity prevalent in Maine): he hates da gays, Obama, and common sense. He’s most recently known for praying that Obama would die of brain cancer. This isn’t much different from Limbaugh hoping for Obama’s failure. They both want disaster for the country if it proves their ideology. The only distinction to be made is that Anderson wants Obama to die naturally sooner than Limbaugh. They still both think the president will be judged by some tiny-minded, local god and sent to hell for not loving giant corporations and the wealthy.

In the above link is a list of 10 Anderson quotes. This one especially stood out to me.

“Because of years and years of looking at and touching scores of women inappropriately, the male gynecologist no doubt has a seared conscience and a perverted mind… Any doctor that looks upon and touches a woman’s private parts in his office “hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” Sir, if you let your wife go to a male gynecologist, you need to get right with God.”

This pretty solidly represents the sexually immature views wrought by Christianity. From Ashcroft wanting to cover the breast of Lady Justice to morons pushing for abstinence-only sex education, Christians have a twisted view of sexuality. Their religion really harms their perspective. It’s unfortunate so many of them can never be healthy adults in regards to sex.

But the silliness of Christians doesn’t end with sexuality.

“If music without drums, syncopation, or a rock beat is acceptable music, then “Yesterday” by the Beatles would be suitable for a Christian. This song has no drums, syncopation, or rock n roll beat – so what’s wrong with it? It doesn’t talk about drugs, illicit behavior, or violence – so what’s wrong with it? What’s wrong with it is the source. It was written by God-hating communist devils. Rock n roll music was pioneered by ungodly sinners like Little Richard, a sodomite filthy animal, and Ray Charles, a heroin addict. The source of rock n roll music is ungodly.”

This is basically a version of the abusive ad hominen attack. It is not valid. Ignoring the inaccurate attacks on The Beatles, music is wide open for interpretation by the listener. What’s more, individual songs reflect different ideas. It is plain stupid to dismiss an entire group’s work on the basis of what some of their art says – or what they say outside their art.

And of course, Christians’ opinions on other media is horribly skewed.

“God, please just help it to be real to us. Help us to realize that David Letterman and Jay Leno just aren’t that funny. The sitcoms and the TV shows and the movies just aren’t that cool. The rock music just isn’t that great anymore when we realize that there is a far greater purpose for our lives; to win souls to Jesus Christ.”

Okay, I have to give Anderson a little leeway. Letterman and Leno aren’t that funny. But I have no idea why he’s so deluded as to think that there’s hardly anything redeemable about television or even movies. Oh, hang on. It’s the Jesus thing again. That ugly little cretin that lacks in any real beauty at all.

Anderson does finally say something that sounds sensible. Unfortunately, he would never know where the sense was.

“And this is what thought entered mind. I thought to myself… I looked over at the closet and I thought to myself, “What if I were locked in that closet for 100 years, nothing to do, nothing to see, the closet is dark.” … And then I thought, “What if you never get out of that closet.” That would be awful, wouldn’t it, just locked in a closet forever and you knew you were never going to get out.”

Yes, wouldn’t be awful if a person was locked in a closet, all alone, even alienated. And wouldn’t it be worse if a bunch of immoral bigots forced a group of people in their own, little closets.