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    Walt Shakes

    Walter Ude (@Walt_Shakes) is an award-winning Nigerian writer, poet and veteran blogger. He is a lover of the written word. the faint whiff of nature, the flashing vista of movies, the warmth of companionship and the happy sound of laughter. He blogs at mymindsnaps.wordpress.com.

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EVIL HAS NOT MY FACE

Recently, I happened upon an interview on Sunnewsonline, one that has been making its rounds on several blogs. It was a supposed exposé about the lifestyle of a gay man. The interviewee confessed to a lot of things in a dialogue I could clearly see as ludicrous, a calculated tactic to rile an already turbulent nation against the homosexual minority.

Anyway, before I get carried away with my rant, in reaction to all that and more, I was inundated with a slew of write-ups, people who want their stories heard and read. I went through the lot and I picked out two of them to blog. This is one of them. It’s a long read, and it is written by (for the sake of his anonymity) J.K. Absolutely no relation to J.K. Rowling. 🙂

Read and share your thoughts with us.

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EVIL HAS NOT MY FACE

In the last few weeks or so, one subject has been on the lips of a large swathe of the Nigerian population. Everyone has an opinion on this subject, everyone is eager to thrust forth his opinion strongly especially if they happen to hold identical views with the majority of the populace. About two week ago, President Goodluck Jonathan signed the same – sex marriage prohibition bill into law, the bill had previously made its way through Nigeria’s upper and lower legislative houses, all the while egged on by the Nigerian populace at the behest of various religious bodies. I shall not bother to go into the minute details of this law as it is safe to assume that you the reader must by now have critically examined this obnoxious piece of legislation.

I shall now proceed to illustrate that this law is borne out of nothing but blind bigotry as well as an intention to hoodwink a gullible populace held captive not physically, but intellectually and mentally by a consortium of fake religious leaders and a political leadership which is morally bankrupt. Both parties in this consortium draw tremendous mutual support from each other as well as reinforce each other’s stranglehold on Nigeria’s collective jugular. You see, this consortium has had the unbelievably good fortune of being planted in a richly blessed land which is populated by a very gullible and easily manipulated populace, a populace that is very eager to lap up whatever information is fed to it however bigoted and however hate – filled it happens to be. In a bid to divert attention away from pressing issues which threaten our very lives and the wellbeing of the nation, issues such as an insurgency in the North which has rapidly spread out of control as well as unpredictable security situations across the rest of the country, widespread poverty, a alarmingly high rate of youth unemployment, infrastructure in a disgraceful state of disrepair, corruption in high and low places etc, some very smart Alec devoted valuable legislative time and resources to come up with the ‘bright’ idea of a ‘jail (perhaps kill) the gays bill’. This bill sped through both legislative houses with admirable efficiency of the sort to be found in more advanced climes. Simultaneously, the other part of the consortium composed of the religious bodies played its own crucial part in a well choreographed scheme by screaming from their ‘holier than thou’ perch that gays are demonic devilish, evil, possessed, cruel, devious, deserving of death (perhaps at the hands of all holy straight persons), undeserving of love, unchristian, un-African, inhuman, etc. like a well rehearsed script, the brainwashed, gullible populace has taken up the chant echoing the same words of bigotry and blind unreasoning hate with which they have been repeatedly fed. In the process, certain facts are conveniently glossed over: Christianity and Islam on which the bigots base their claims that homosexuality is contrary to religion, are both actually alien to African culture having been imported as tools of domination and subjugation, nevertheless, both religions preach love in its truest sense as exemplified by Christ’s admonition to the adulterous woman to “go and sin no more”, the book of Leviticus; another pillar upon which misguided bigots rely upon in advocating hatred against other individuals solely on the basis of their sexual orientation and regardless of any other criteria also contains several other prohibited activities. These other prohibitions are routinely flouted yet the “devoutly religious” people of Nigeria raise not a single eyebrow.

In recent times, it is almost impossible to miss the massive and mind-boggling outpouring of hatred and venom directed at gays (including lesbians to a markedly lesser extent) in Nigeria. As a gay man, following all the comments and posts on blogs and other social media as well as radio and TV broadcasts, I have repeatedly asked: “What on God’s Earth could we possibly have done to deserve so much hatred and be the subject of so many malicious lies?” I cower deep in my closet where I can nevertheless hear the hate-filled comments such as:

“No one is born gay, it is a bad and evil habit learned at a young age and which, if not beaten or whipped out of a child, leads him into full blown homosexuality by the time he’s in his teens and twenties.”

“…Gays deliberately target children and lure them into homosexuality, making homosexuality and pedophilia very similar and often indistinguishable.”

“…Gays belong to some demonic shadowy cult hence their preference for same sex intercourse.”

I cringe each time I hear these lies, I burn with deep shame that I am forced to share the same nationality with purveyors of such monstrous lies as I struggle to wrap my mind around how human beings can perpetuate such malicious falsehood against otherwise bonafide members of society solely on account of sexuality; a thing beyond human control.

As a child, I was strongly aware, even before I could grasp the full meaning of sexuality or romantic feelings, that I was attracted to men. Contrary to what the liars say, I was never molested or induced in any way by any man. I simply followed my inner feelings like every other human being. As I grew into my pre-teen and early teens, my sex drive, like that of every other child of a similar age, sharpened. The only difference was that, with me as with other gay men, I was drawn to men. To put it more simply: the same way you (the straight man) grew into the realization that you are straight and therefore attracted physically to the opposite sex is exactly the same way a gay person grows into the realization that he is attracted to the same sex. Just like you did not consciously choose to be straight, I also did not elect to be gay; and please don’t even start with the tired and idiotic argument that perhaps I was the victim of some form of demonic or spiritual attack which has somehow distorted my sexuality.

Like many other gay guys, by the time I was in my early to mid teens, I was fully aware that I harboured a strong sexual attraction to men. I had also realized that in my society it was taboo, a dirty, disgusting thing that no one liked to talk about, that everyone liked to pretend did not exist. I had also discovered one or two other boys around my age who “liked what I liked.” We were deeply conditioned to believe that what we were doing was abnormal and unspeakable, we fought our innermost feelings, prayed and fasted, contemplated suicide, performed all manner of rituals (a friend of mine recently told me that when he was 16, upon realizing he was gay, he went out butt-naked in the middle of the night, in the pouring rain to pray for a cure to his “sickness which caused him to lust after men.” Needless to say, his prayers were answered with a raging bout of fever and chills while his sexuality remained firmly in place).

While I hoped that I might be cured of my ‘horrible affliction’, as time went on, time and time again, I succumbed to the power of my sexuality, all the while begging God to either ‘cure’ me or end my life and free me from this endless cycle of sin. Those were dark and terrible days which I fought long and hard to emerge from. You see, I had been taught by my church and my society that my sexuality was an evil and deeply terrible thing, that it was of the devil. Yet deep within me, I also struggled with the irony that this was none of my fault and that this was simply what my innermost yearnings leaned towards.

All through my teens, at the time when other young males are mainly pre-occupied with matters of the fairer sex, I found that in order to “blend in and belong”, I had to get a “babe” like everyone else. I therefore hooked up with one of the several available girls and went through the motions. I learned sex with the opposite sex, all the while knowing deep within me that I really preferred men. I was torn apart from the inside by deep feelings of guilt. A few other guys who shared my sexual preference had made the costly mistake of letting their true feelings show either by confiding in other guys or making advances at them, and were subsequently the subject of scorn and hatred; they were stripped bare of every last shred of dignity.

I was terrified of being found out by either friends or family members. I cowered deeper in my closet while clinging tightly to the false façade of heterosexuality that I had built up all through my teenage years. I still had romantic liaisons with males, but it was done with utmost discretion and deep secrecy. I chose my gay friends carefully, and observing us casually from the outside, you would never in your wildest dreams have guessed that we carried the burden of this secret buried deep within us. On the outside, we were boys in our late teens and early 20s doing just what was expected of us at that age, enjoying our youth, chasing the girls and generally having a good time.

All too soon, we found ourselves in the university. For many of us, it was our first time away from home, away from the constantly monitoring eyes of our parents. We quickly immersed ourselves in several on-campus activities and got busy with the daily routines of undergraduate student life. Many of us in a bid to further blend into this exciting new world, continued to pretend that we were straight, we found more girlfriends and kept up the charade. For me, I had at this point gotten tired of all the pretense and mind-numbing deceit. I took solace in my books and joined a very devout fellowship which kept me fully occupied and which I used as an excuse for not having a flock of girls around me despite my obvious good looks. This proved highly effective as everyone assumed I was devoted to my studies and religious obligations, and therefore had no time for girls. I was soon known as the bookish, churchish (or churcheous) boy who had no time for girls or wild campus parties.

Midway into my university education, at a time when the internet was becoming more and more pervasive, a friend introduced me to a couple of gay dating sites and quickly, my network of friends grew beyond my immediate vicinity and even outside the shores of Nigeria. I rapidly realized that there were actually many people who were like me, people who shared the same sexual orientation including many who had wives and children but secretly craved a man’s touch. As we swapped stories, I realized that most of them, like me, had no choice as to the direction of their sexual orientation. These friends as well as others I met through them soon formed the core of my network of friends. They were a varied bunch, some like me were in their early to mid 20s, still in university or freshly graduated while some others were already employed in various fields or running businesses. I cherished these friends. I still do. We shared a common trait as well as a sense of belonging and of community. They understood me as I did them.

All too soon, I graduated from the University and went on to carry out my one year National Youth Service (NYSC) and shortly afterwards I was fortunate to secure employment in one of the new generation banks. I was soon wrapped up in the busy schedule of a Lagos bank employee. I had a decent job, I was young and good-looking, I of course got a lot of female attention as well as recommendations from aunts and older relatives eager to see me married off, “settled down and happy” (so they thought). But I always avoided female company, using my busy work schedule as an excuse; by now, I had a steady male lover whom I met during my National Youth Service days, he was then 29, the only son of influential parents, well educated and working in one of his family’s businesses. He was therefore considered “ripe” for marriage and several pretty girls from equally affluent families were constantly being thrown at him while the pressure to marry, settle down and carry on the family name had reached a feverish intensity. I watched as he struggled to balance the pressure of family commitments and expectations with the discretion required to maintain a gay relationship. I watched silently from the shadows horrified and heartbroken as he finally succumbed to the repeated pressure of his family and got engaged to girl from his town, the daughter of one of his father’s wealthy business associates. I was devastated but I realized that to continue this relationship would only serve to deteriorate my broken psyche. Following my realization, I sent him a short text ending it all; this was one of the most painful decisions I have taken in my entire life, I can still hear his voice as he cried and begged me over the phone, I still remember the look of deep sorrow on his face on the day he suddenly showed up at my office to try and talk things over, but I was resolute. I had resolved never to get emotionally attached to any man ever again as I was sure I would never be able to survive such heartbreak for a second time. I quickly moved on and went through a string of meaningless and not-so-meaningless relationships, quickly putting that painful episode behind me.

Meanwhile, smartphones had arrived on the scene, bringing with them an unprecedented capacity to network and meet like-minded people from all walks of life. I was amazed to find that contrary to the widespread stereotype in Nigeria that gays are usually idle, effeminate young guys possessed by some evil spirit of sexual perversion, gays were in every sphere of life, in every socio-economic class. I met gay doctors, bankers, teachers, lawyers, drivers, security men, waiters, janitors etc. Most were regular everyday guys. The sort you would walk past on the street without missing a beat.

It reinforced my belief that we are just like everyone else apart from our sexual preference for which we have been and continue to be wrongly and harshly judged. I have watched as some of my friends made the terrible mistake of opening up to friends or family prompting the love and affection that had previously existed to be fractured forever. One of my friends was thrown out of his family home in the middle of the night after his father (a Catholic knight) found him in the embrace of another boy. I knew his father very well and often spotted him seated in the front row in church, dressed in his Sunday best, nodding in vigorous acquiescence each time the subject of the church sermon was on the evil of homosexuality and the sinister intentions of gays to corrupt and overrun the world. I felt disgusted and sickened by these lies which members of the congregation absorbed and fiercely held onto as true.

I have come to realize that this is a major reason why Nigerians seem to have a blind unreasonable hatred for gays and recoil in horror at the mere mention of the word, refusing to see that there are gay people all around them, that some of their beloved husbands, sons, brothers, cousins, colleagues are secretly gay, but deep in the closet living with a mortal fear of rejection and backlash.

I recently returned from an intensive 9–month Post Graduate Degree in Europe. During my time there, I could not help but marvel at the level of tolerance and openness towards gay people. Contrary to what I had been told all my life, acceptance of the fact that gay people have a right to be who they are does not in any way threaten the existence of homosexuals, rather these are open and progressive societies where everyone is empowered to achieve his full potential, where you are not judged by your sexuality but by the content of your character as a human being regardless of your sexual orientation, with all rights to dignity and security fully protected and upheld by the State. I of course made friends with several gay people in several European cities. Upon learning that I am Nigerian, a recurring theme amongst them had always been:

“Why is it such a major issue in your country that people are gay? And why is it that of all the multitude of issues plaguing most parts of your continent, your governments devote so much time and energy in pursuing homophobic and discriminatory agendas? Why are people so willing and eager to hate other humans simply on account of what they do in the privacy of their bedrooms with other consenting adults?”

I try in vain to explain to them. But you see, coming from the sort of open and progressive backgrounds they do, it is extremely hard for them to understand. They do not live in a society where the leadership seeks to make scapegoats of gays as a means of scoring cheap political points while diverting the attentions of the populace from more pressing issues. They do not live in societies where the clergy is allowed unfettered liberty to propagate hatred and bigotry and to manipulate a clueless congregation as they see fit while blindly disregarding the duty which their lofty position imposes on them to promote tolerance and love amongst all men. They do not abide alongside a people so severely brutalized by economic hardship that it happily abandons all reason and human compassion and instead is easily guided into the embrace of blind unreasoning hatred.

I have thankfully and finally freed myself from the mental bonds imposed on me by a lifetime of conditioning, and I have finally realized that gay or straight, we are all God’s creatures, designed gay or straight or bisexual in His infinite wisdom. A gay person is no more a threat to a heterosexual person than left-handed persons are to right-handed ones, or tall persons to short persons, or light-skinned are to dark-skinned persons. Homophobia is as unreasonable as hatred of a person based on his racial origins, height, eye or skin colour, hair texture …. I could go on and on and on with a long winding list of as many variations of human features as there are.

In conclusion, I ask you the reader, if you think that it is right to hate another blindly and fiercely, to hate another person on account of a factor beyond his/her control such as height, body size, hair length, racial origins etc. if you think that it is right to hate or be hated on account of these, then by all means, HATE any gay person you know or ever come across. HATE them with a hatred so ferocious and intense that perhaps the force of your hate might somehow reach into their dark, evil, twisted psyche and burn away the objects of your intense hate.

If however you still possess a shred of decency, a sense of right and wrong, then call out this ominous and obnoxious anti-gay law for what it is. Denounce it in all its true evil colorations, enlighten the blind around you who cannot see but can perhaps hear your voice of reason. Denounce this brazen attempt to collectively hoodwink 160 million people by pulling some fast moves behind their backs while occupying them with false doctrines, while their collective birthright is being plundered by an avaricious and coldhearted leadership.

I leave you with the words of Martin Niemoller:

“They came first for the communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a communist. Then they came for the Jews and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, again I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I remained silent because I was protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one to speak up.”

This obnoxious homophobic disgrace to legislation portends an ill wind that blows no one any good.

Written by J.K.singles 1

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8 Comments

  1. You prayed and fasted??
    Hian!!

    Reply
  2. Archmage

     /  January 29, 2014

    I was never molested as a child by any man. Infact sef, na woman sef molest me when I was like 7… I identify with the religious guilt. Culturally, I couldn’t care less mostly worrying for the ‘salvation of my soul’. Thanks JK. I identify.
    @tryst_hamlover

    Reply
  3. doris

     /  January 29, 2014

    I do not have any feelings for gays:dont like them,dont dislike them neither do i support the law made,its a cheap political shot to me but if you really did go to church and read your bible,my brother it is a Sin in capital letters.

    And errrm walter,my brother who is against the anti gay law and was being vocal about it was almost asked out by a gay chap.Be careful o.lolz

    Reply
  4. Chinweike

     /  January 29, 2014

    Now, this issue of homosexuality is one I’ve avoided with great effort, the numerous blog posts, tweets, protests, both pro and anti. However, I’ve had just about enough of it, so I’m breaking my silence on the issue, akin to “coming out of the closet” (pun intended lol)..

    If we’re being completely honest with each other, we’ll all agree that homosexuality, is, and probably always would be, an aberration. This is not a derogatory remark, or intends to suggest that gay people are not “normal”. It’s the act in itself, that’s not entirely normal. Just a simple fact.

    The thing that pisses me off about gay people is not really their being gay in itself, it’s the manner in which they tend to shove their being gay all up in your face, making it seem as though you’re less of a human being for not accepting them, as though you’re the aberration. Words like “gullible” “bigotry” “liars” “morally bankrupt” “lacking intellect” “religious extremists” (paraphrased some) along with other derogatory remarks, were used alone in this write up, towards people who’ve refused to accept homosexuality. My question is, how are you different from them? You resort to derogatory terms in order to push for acceptance? Way to go! Another angle they tend to apply in their quest for acceptance is the pity angle, if it’s not one sob story about feeling hated, not feeling loved, outcast, etc it goes on. To that I say boo hoo! That’s not limited to gay people only, straight people undergo that as well, in worse ways than you can imagine.

    Religious and moral principles aside, do you even factor-in the possibility that people might not just accept who you are? I mean, it’s practically impossible to accept every human being you come across, not to mention the ones that differ from the usual.
    (yes, I still stand by my opinion that it’s an aberration). You’re ridiculing people for not accepting your preferred form of living, whereas you’re refusing to accept theirs.

    What makes you think their views and opinions are inferior to yours? How sure are you really, that it is not in fact a “demon that possessed you and changed your sexuality?” Why would you ask someone to set aside their belief, to accept yours? Do you think it’s that easy to discard ones beliefs? To accept yours that’s “seemingly” abnormal? (To them).

    What else are you going to ridicule next? People who don’t like oranges? People who’ve chosen not to consume certain animals? Like Swine and Cattle? Vegetarians? Does it occur to you, that just as you were “born gay” some people were born not to accept the notion of homosexuality?

    Oh and in that note, being gay as far as I’m concerned, is not innate, there is no conclusive evidence to support that. Even our anatomy, with copulation being the basis here, indicates that it’s not exactly “normal”. So please do not give me the line about being born gay and all that, it’s been over used anyways, gay is entirely psychological, a preference, and yeah a choice. Now the question is, if it is a conscious choice, or not. Most times, it seems not to be.

    Now I’ve grown in recent years to become more open to homosexuality, the truth is that I just don’t like it, I’m not entirely comfortable with the idea of another guy ripping me a new one. And my personal experiences with them don’t help at all, they’re always aggressive in their approach, paying no heed whatsoever to your own sexuality, almost assaulting you, trying to impose on you. This does not help their case at all.

    This might sound stereotypical but that’s just my experience, and I must add, the depiction of the male homosexual from the interview mentioned in this post, pretty much sums up the idea of a majority of the male homosexuals in Nigeria. The gay females I’m more accommodating towards, call me a bigot I don’t care, just as you were “born gay” I was “born” this way too lol.

    Anyways my advice to gay people is this; stop forcing the hand of the mass, it’ll at best back fire, rumor even has it that this whole gay law arose from such incidents. Some people accept you already, more will, stick to those ones, everyone cannot possibly accept you. I get the fact that you’re gay and that’s cool (no it’s not lol). Just please please cease with the manipulation and melodramatic bullshit! Stop black-mailing and coercing people into accepting you guys! Not everyone is going to accept you! Deal with it already!

    With that I say good luck in your quest for acceptance, just tone it down a notch!

    Thank you!

    Reply
    • ‘Anyways my advice to gay people is this; stop forcing the hand of the mass…’
      You do realize that there was no fight for acceptance from the gays, none which led to the enactment of this law. How can they force their acceptance on a society that scorns them?

      Reply
  5. Chinum

     /  January 29, 2014

    On the homosexuality debate

    January 29, 2014 by Oluchi Ukwuoma

    There are times when silence is golden and times when it is reprehensible and indeed, constitutes a crime against humanity and posterity. Such a time as the latter, is upon us.

    I read, with concern, the piece by Ms. Abimbola Adelakun titled, “Why did Jonathan sign the gay law”, in the Thursday, January 16, 2014, edition of The PUNCH, where she vilified the President for signing the anti-gay bill into law. She alleged, among other things, that the signing of the bill was a political move by the President, to win him votes in the forthcoming 2015 elections. According to her, most of those who debated the bill “had neither profound arguments nor made historical analysis to tender, beyond throwing out their religious definition of morality everywhere.” She claimed that what people refer to as African culture today, are largely practices that are consequences of colonialism” and concluded by stating her support for “sexual minorities in Nigeria” who she listed as lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender.

    I will address the allegation that what is referred to as African culture today, “are largely practices that are consequences of colonialism,” by simply stating that homosexuality was a taboo among the entities that made up Nigeria, even before colonialism, Christianity and Islam.

    The allegation that the anti -gay law was hinged only on religion and morals falls flat in the face of other eminent arguments against homosexuality.

    It is instructive to note that prior to 1973, homosexuality was regarded as a mental disorder in the United States of America. However, following intense pressure by the politically active gay community, the American Psychiatric Association expunged homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Even the new diagnosis, Ego Dystonic Homosexuality, which was introduced to the DSM’s third edition, was also removed from the DSM in 1986,as the homosexuals saw it as the ASA’s attempt to meet the straight community half way.

    As for the support for bisexuals, the last time I checked, bisexuality was described as a romantic sexual attraction towards males and females. This suggests that a man, for example could have male and female sex partners at the same time. This sexual promiscuity has attendant implications for the spread of HIV/AIDS. Yet, those who are championing this cause are threatening to withdraw the HIV /AIDS funding in Nigeria because of the recent anti- gay law. Moreover, it amounts to doubletalk on their part to support bisexuality and claim to preach fidelity to one’s sexual partner as a means of preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS.

    While I was still musing over Adelakun’s piece, Sabella Abidde, in his article, titled: Of adulterers, thieves, paedophiles and homosexuals” in The PUNCH of Wednesday, January 22, 2014, also berated the President for signing the bill. He said that the President, had by so doing, shown himself to be politically undiscerning and had incited Nigerians to “hate those who look and act differently and to cruelly treat any one whose sexual orientation is different from the supposed norm”. He wondered how the “private and consensual act” between two people could adversely affect the growth and development of the country, stating that, “The Torah and the Bible, do not explicitly condemn homosexuality or same sex marriage”.

    The case has been made that homosexuals cannot help their sexual orientation because they are born that way. There is, however, no hard biological evidence to show that homosexuality is genetic. Even if it were, that would not make the actual practice of it, any less a choice. The fact that a person is genetically disposed to anger will not exonerate him from the consequences of his actions, should he fail to control that emotion. The world would be a jungle if men were allowed to give a free reign to their emotions without regard for the common good.

    A 1987 publication in the New England Journal of Medicine, titled, “Sexual Practices, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and the Incidences of Anal Cancer”, stated that, “homosexual behaviour in men increases the risk of anal cancer”. The study revealed that 22 of the 57 men with anal cancer reported that they were homosexuals or bisexuals” in contrast to only one in 64 controls”. The book, “ The Ins and Outs of Gay Sex: A medical Hand-book for men”, states that more than 50 per cent of homosexual males have the Human Papilloma Virus, while a study published in the American Journal of Public Health in 1999 concluded that homosexuals are five times more likely to have Hepatitis B than heterosexuals. The US Centre for Diseases Control February 2001 report revealed that the rate of syphilis among homosexuals in Southern California rose from 20 per cent to 50 per cent in one year. Another report of the CDC also stated that there were 40,000 new HIV infections each year and that the rate of HIV infection in homosexuals was increasing because younger homosexuals were engaging in risky sex.

    I attended a Parents’ forum late last year where a child therapist enlightened parents on some dangers children were being exposed to, in the country. The facts were alarming. He showed us pictures of Nigerian boys of about eight years old engaging in homosexual acts. He said that homosexuality was “booting” in Nigeria and that ,unfortunately, most of the affected boys he had come across in the course of his work, tested positive for HIV.

    Children should be allowed to be children and not have their lives complicated by homosexuality and lesbianism. Children by their nature are very trusting. They develop close platonic relationships with their same sex age or class mates. By the time four-year-olds are exposed to homosexual or lesbian education, they begin to confuse their platonic relationships for sensual ones and could end up believing that they are gays or lesbians. When a beat is repeated often enough, even the sour throat, unconsciously, begins to hum.

    No responsible parent or government would expose their children or citizens to harm and, in response to Abidde’s question, yes, “ the private and consensual behaviour” of homosexuals are capable of impeding the growth and development of our dear country. Economically, Nigeria can ill-afford the additional strain which increased HIV infections, STDs and other health-related issues will put on our resources on account of acceptance of homosexual acts. Concerns have also been raised about the connection between homosexuality and paedophilia, as homosexuals tend to be attracted to fine young boys.

    Should the mere fact that an act is consensual between two adults make it right? One might as well legitimise incest and necrophilia on that account. Indeed, one waits to see the next barrier that will be crossed after the legalisation of homosexuality. Marijuana has already been legitimised in Colorado, USA. Will it be paedophilia or bestiality, next? It is said that APA is already working to declassify paedophilia as a mental illness as long as the urge is not acted upon and no harm is done.

    We are not bound to, nor should we be compelled to accept everything from the West. As rationale beings, we are at liberty to take what is good and beneficial from other cultures and leave what is not.

    It is important to note that the anti-gay law is not a clarion call to hate or attack gays as has been suggested. It is directed against homosexual acts and the promotion or encouragement of homosexuality.

    A person can only lay claim to rights where those actions to which his claim relate do not adversely affect others and, that is not the case here. Homosexual acts are detrimental to the health of the polity, the economy, the social fabric and the emotional and psychological well-being of our children.

    A 1987 article in the homosexual magazine, Guide, titled, “The Overhauling of Straight America”, by Marshall Kirk and Erastus Pill makes very insightful reading. It sets out the blueprint for making homosexuality accepted in America and vilifying those who dare to oppose it. The authors wrote, “you can forget about trying to persuade the masses that homosexuality is a good thing. But if only you can get them to think that it is just another thing, with a shrug of their shoulders, then your battle for legal and social rights is virtually won.” They hinged the homosexuality campaign on the following six lines of action:

    1. Talk about gays and gayness as loudly and as often as possible

    2. Portray gays as victims not as aggressive challengers,

    3. Give gay protectors a just cause by, among other things, making anti- discrimination a theme,

    4. Make gays look good ( by, for example, flaunting successful gays in society and history )

    5. Make the victimisers look bad

    6. Solicit funds.

    The next time you hear a pro- gay argument, tick off the above list.

    Let me, at this juncture, address the contention that the Bible does not expressly condemn homosexuality or same sex marriage. The Bible expressly condemns same-sex relationships . Romans 1:22-28; Leviticus 18:22 and Leviticus 20:13 attest to this. The fact that God also intended marriage to be between a man and a woman, is clear from the following references — Gen 2:24; 1Corinthians 7:2-4: Ephesians 5:23-33.

    Physiologically, the “two wrongs” do not make a right — they just don’t fit; biologically, the male is not designed to bear children. Let us tell ourselves the truth and stop trying to distort it, like the JSS11 boy who, I was recently informed, says “Adam and Steve” whenever Adam and Eve are mentioned.

    Reply

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