Dec 31, 2010

HERO OF THE YEAR: ¨Despite the latest calls in Uganda for gays to be hanged, we have come through the fire and are tougher because of it¨ Gay Uganda--Brave Blogger Extraordinaire

¨...we gay Ugandans hide so well, and are gracefully camouflaged, that fellow Ugandans frequently ask themselves who the "evil gays" are. Of course, we are their kin.¨

¨I woke early to an empty bed. Partner not around. Gone for a seminar in Mukono, just outside Kampala. It's not far, but I can't be with him. That means a cold bed for me. Cold food, too, because I am hopeless in the kitchen. He bears those burdens, literally looking after me. I know, I take it too far, but I do love being looked after. He makes me feel special; and I am missing him.

We live in the suburbs of the Ugandan capital, and have been together for 10 years. And we are gay. He is a man. I am a man. We are both Ugandans, living, working in Uganda. So, how is it to be gay, and Ugandan, today? We live in interesting times and we have lived a kind of terrifying history.

When we met and moved in together, I was living with my brother. I sat him down and told him: "You know I am gay. I am going to have my lover move in with me." He nodded. I told him that he had the option of living with his dad, if he objected, but I was determined to stay with my lover.

I was simply tired of the hiding, the subterfuge, the lies. My brother did know that I was gay, since we lived in the same house. But not the rest of my family, and not the neighbours. That could not happen.

So, 10 years ago I got a "room-mate" who coincidentally shared the bed with me. We were deeply closeted at the beginning. We thought (hoped, prayed) that nobody knew. After all, though we are grown men living together, sharing a house in Kampala is no big deal. I mean, in Kampala, in Uganda, with the depressed economic conditions, what was more notable was that there were only three of us in the house rather than 10.

I was involved in gay rights issues – some very early, nascent activities. Self-confidence, independence of income and some education helped me, as did a sense of growing anger at my world of duplicity, shame and enforced lies. My partner was more cautious. Not all the things that I did were below the radar, or underground.

It was at his insistence that I made my Gay Uganda blog as anonymous as possible. His was always the voice of caution: wait, don't do that, don't expose yourself, remember that it is no longer you alone.

And, he was correct. I did heed his voice. Because, for a gay Ugandan, life is not safe. Being known to be gay is tough. It is a life of reckless fear, not courage. We do what we do, not because we can, but because there is no other option. From the very first inkling of our sexuality, we learn to hide. And we do hide.

In fact, we gay Ugandans hide so well, and are gracefully camouflaged, that fellow Ugandans frequently ask themselves who the "evil gays" are. Of course, we are their kin. But they don't believe their brothers, sisters, cousins, relatives can be the "evil gays".

In the beginning, I think it was the religious questions that led to my activism. I was baptised into an Anglican family. While in high school, round about the time that I realised my sexuality, I became an evangelical Christian.

But being gay in Uganda and Christian is a real challenge. Ugandans are highly religious and, coming out to myself later, I knew I couldn't reconcile my faith and sexuality. I decided to repudiate faith. But then I went further and became angry at the faith as shown in Uganda. And why not?

The words and actions of our religious leaders are full of hate. Mufti Mubajje, titular head of Muslims in Uganda, believes that all gay Ugandans should be marooned on an island in Lake Victoria. We would then die out and solve the country's gay problem.

When we came out at a press conference in 2007, all the sermons in churches and mosques over the following days were about the evil of homosexuality. An anti-gay demonstration was organised, ultimately limited to a rally at Kyadondo rugby ground. And, there, ministers – both political and religious – railed at the evil homosexuals who had dared to show their faces (even though we were wearing masks).

The HEROIC KUCHUS are strong and staying afloat in Uganda
It was a tough time. I remember, we were home that evening, with some gay friends – kuchus, as we call ourselves. They were a bit worried, because I had been at the press conference and the radio was talking about the imminent arrests of gay men.

That was when my dad revealed his knowledge. He came to our door, anxious. He had heard a rumour that we were all going to be arrested. "Who is going to be arrested?" I asked him, shocked, more by the fact that he knew, than that he was warning me. "You," he indicated towards me and my partner.

Fortunately, the rumours of arrest were unfounded. But, we had been exposed and the exposure was going to grow. Now that gay Ugandans had "come out", we were the target of any newspaper seeking to make a quick buck. I was known. My partner was known.

The anti-homosexuality bill of 2009 further flushed us out of our closets. We found ourselves targeted by a truly horrible piece of legislation, seeking to kill and imprison us for life, all in the name of "family and cultural values". We had to fight, and we had to come out of the shadows to fight.

Death and life imprisonment. No access to information or help. The danger of being reported to "relevant authorities" by pastors, doctors, parents. Mandatory HIV tests. All these are provisions of the Bahati bill. We had to show our faces. We had to, and we did.

But, though the international outcry enabled the government to go slow on the bill, our exposure was not reversible. Now a tabloid has published the photographs of alleged gay Ugandans, under the headline "Hang Them".

No, it is not easy to be gay and Ugandan. Whether it is denial of HIV prevention services for gay men, or the need to bribe police when you are reported, it is not easy.

Such is the strength of the human spirit: we are gay, Ugandan, and we live and work in the country. Life is tough. But, I dare say, having come through the fire, we are as tough, if not tougher.¨ Gay Uganda HERE


Anglican African schismatic bishops, bigots and deadly bafoons 

Anglican MP David Bahati’s ongoing plan/desire for ¨GAY GENOCIDE¨ in Uganda
Anglican Church of Uganda Member and Member of Parliament/MP David Bahati, is a budding butcher, Bishop Henry Orombi protege, and proud author of the ¨Kill Every Last Gay Person¨ Bill pending/tabled before the Parliament of Uganda. HERE

Living Hell in Uganda thanks to James Nsaba Buturo and accomplices
Global South-Gafcon/Anglican demonizing/excluding-opportunist  HERE
Archbishop Henry Orombi/Uganda

Archbishop Henry Orombi--When will you ¨listen¨ to ¨People with Atypical Sex Development¨ in Uganda?

Bishop Henry Orombi, Anglican Archbishop of Uganda, will you continue to marginalize and demonize sexually different others with your brutal and damning  ministry in order to justify and validate the anti-LGBTI  fear/hate-mongering pogrom in Uganda, Africa and the Western Hemisphere? HERE

· Thanks to Gay Uganda, sidebar
· Thanks to The Guardian, United Kingdom
· Thanks to Nsubuga
· Thanks to Public Radio, U.S.A.

Dec 30, 2010

THE SPIRITUAL/MAGICAL MAYA: Nearby Iximché ruins were quickly reestablished/cleansed as a sacred place after George W. Bush´s ¨tarnishing visit¨ in 2007

Modest Iximché inspires the enchanted, historic and sacred with all new depth of meaning
During Christmas and up until yesterday, Juan Carlos and I had the pleasure of  hosting guests who visited us from San Juan, Puerto Rico and San Francisco, California.

Popol Vuh with Catholic ¨elements¨ too
One of our most favorite local places to revisit, explore and admire is the Maya Ruins of Iximché which are not too far from our home in the rural Guatemalan countryside.  Everytime I visit Iximché I notice that as we enter these sacred Maya grounds a secure feeling of tranquility and peace sweeps over me--a feeling of well-being and holiness that is unique to this place as I´ve never noticed those same feelings anywhere in the World including great Churches, Temples and other Holy places.

The day before yesterday, Juan Carlos, my friends and I were privileged to enjoy Iximché and experience the great sense of ongoing human and divine spirit presence, both ancient and contemporary, as the site reveals itself to most all who enter. 

Iximché embraces our visitors.

Iximché is ¨soothing¨ to the Spirit
¨Iximche (or Iximché using Spanish orthography) is a Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican archaeological site in the western highlands of Guatemala. Iximche was the capital of the Late Postclassic Kaqchikel Maya kingdom from 1470 until its abandonment in 1524. The architecture of the site included a number of pyramid-temples, palaces and two Mesoamerican ballcourts. Excavators uncovered the poorly preserved remains of painted murals on some of the buildings and ample evidence of human sacrifice...

For many years the Kaqchikel served as loyal allies of the K'iche' Maya. The growing power of the Kaqchikel within the alliance eventually caused such friction that the Kaqchikel were forced to flee the K'iche' capital and found the city of Iximche. The Kaqchikel established their new capital upon an easily defensible ridge almost surrounded by deep ravines. Iximche developed quickly as a city and within 50 years of its foundation it had reached its maximum extent. The rulers of Iximche were four principal lords drawn from the four main clans of the Kaqchikel, although it was the lords of the Sotz'il and Xahil clans who held the real power.

The Ritual Fires of Divine Tribute and Cleansing smoulder on as volcanos smoke on the horizon

After the initial establishment of Iximche, the K'iche' left the Kaqchikel in peace for a number of years. The peace did not last and the Kaqchikel soundly defeated their former overlords around 1491. This was followed by infighting among the Kaqchikel clans with the rebel clans finally being overcome in 1493. Wars against the K'iche' continued throughout the early 15th century. When the Spanish conquistadors arrived in Mexico, the Aztec emperor sent messengers to warn the Kaqchikel. After the surrender of the Aztecs to Hernán Cortés, Iximche sent its own messengers to offer a Kaqchikel alliance with the Spanish. Smallpox decimated the population of Iximche before the physical arrival of the Europeans.

Pedro de Alvarado arrived at Iximché  in 1524
At the time of the Spanish Conquest Iximche was the second most important city in the Guatemalan Highlands, after the K'iche' capital at Q'umarkaj. Conquistador Pedro de Alvarado was initially well received in the city in 1524 and the Kaqchikel kings provided the Spanish with native allies to assist in the conquest of the other highland Maya kingdoms. Iximche was declared the first capital of the Kingdom of Guatemala in the same year. Due to excessive Spanish demands for tribute the Kaqchikel soon broke the alliance and deserted their capital, which was burned 2 years later by Spanish deserters. The Europeans founded a new town nearby but abandoned it in 1527 due to the continued hostility of the Kaqchikel, who finally surrendered in 1530.

During the Guatemalan Civil War in the 1980´s a meeting took place at the ruins between guerillas and Maya leaders that resulted in the guerillas stating that they would defend indigenous rights
The ruins of Iximche were first described by a Guatemalan historian in the late 17th century. They were visited various times by scholars during the 19th century, who published plans and descriptions. Serious investigations of the site started in the 1940s and continued sporadically until the early 1970s. In 1980, during the Guatemalan Civil War, a meeting took place at the ruins between guerillas and Maya leaders that resulted in the guerillas stating that they would defend indigenous rights. A ritual was carried out at the site in 1989 in order to reestablish the ruins as a sacred place for Maya ceremonies. United States President George W. Bush visited the site in 2007, and in the same year Iximche was the venue for the III Continental Summit of Indigenous Peoples and Nationalities of Abya Yala.

Iximche was called ¨Guatemala¨ by the Spanish, from the Nahuatl Quauhtemallan meaning "forested land"

EtymologyThe site's name dervives from the Mayan name of the breadnut tree (Brosimum alicastrum), from the words ixim and che, meaning literally "maize tree". Iximche was called Guatemala by the Spanish, from the Nahuatl Quauhtemallan meaning "forested land". Since the Spanish conquistadors founded their first capital at Iximche, they took the name of the city used by their Nahuatl-speaking Mexican allies and applied it to the new Spanish city and, by extension, to the kingdom. From this comes the modern name of the country. The site has also been referred to as Patinamit by 19th century investigators, a Kaqchikel word meaning "the city". read it all, HERE

The Textures of Living upon once Living Textures everywhere (both seen and unseen/now and before now)

· Thanks to Wikipedia
· Thanks to Juan Carlos, Photos

Dec 28, 2010

ATTN ANGLICAN COMMUNION: Bishop Ssenyonjo/Uganda amongst top group of RELIGIONS 10 MOST INFLUENCIAL PEOPLE IN 2010

Anglican Hero, Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo, Uganda
¨As Uganda considered a bill that would make homosexuality a capital offense, Ugandan Bishop Senyonio stood up for LGBT rights. As a result he has been the target of death threats and condemnations. The Bishop demonstrates what it means to have the courage of conviction, and faith enough to side with those whom Jesus called “the least of these.¨

Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo, Uganda, ¨influences our beliefs and our collective lives¨
Religion is by definition a communal endeavor. Yet there are always individuals who by conviction, action or fate are placed in a position to influence our beliefs and our collective lives. At HuffPost Religion we have been following the people in this list for the last year and recognize their extraordinary influence in America and around the world...

To those with great influence, comes great responsibility. We hope that all who hold influence within religion will exercise it with inspiration, moderation and concern for the common good.¨ HERE  

· Thanks to Huffington Post, sidebar
· Thanks to Bishop Christopher Ssenyonjo, Uganda
· Thanks to Three Rivers Episcopal, sidebar
· Thanks to 10 Most Influencial Religious Leaders 2010

Dec 27, 2010

FATHER GEOFF FARROW:...we have reached a significant ´tipping point´ in American society...¨

¨After President Obama signed the Repeal of DADT this last week, there have been a slew of comments from both ends of the political spectrum. Regardless of how a person “feels” about this, the conclusion that we have reached a significant “tipping point” in American society is evident. When President Harry S. Truman signed an executive order in 1948 desegregating the U.S. Armed Forces and Civil Service, it sounded the death toll for segregation in American society. The Courts took notice and in 1954, the landmark decision of Brown v. Board of Education took the President’s lead one step further. The signing of the Civil Rights Act in July of 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson drove a stake through legalized bigotry. Social racial bigotry has been slowly eroding ever since.

The U.S. Armed forces form American youth. Every year countless High School graduates leave their hometown and go to boot camp. Those young men and women acculturate to military standards. Years later I still find it disquieting to see a man wearing a hat indoors. I find myself writing the date/month/year and not the month/date/year. I still think of 4 PM as 1600 hour, the end of the workday at Edwards AFB. These are small things; however, acceptable and unacceptable attitudes about women and minorities are unmistakably articulated and enforced in boot camp. After years of living in this military culture, veterans return to civilian society along with these engrained attitudes.This is the real reason that social conservatives so rabidly oppose the repeal of DADT. HERE

On Friday, the Los Angeles Times reported the following:

In a news conference Wednesday and in recent interviews, Obama signaled that his position favoring civil unions is not fixed and that he may one day conclude that, a committed gay couple should have the same right to marry as anyone else.

Obama's views seem to be tracking those of the broader American public. Polls show support for gay marriage is growing. A Gallup study showed that while in 1996 only 27% of the population believed gay marriage should be legalized, the figure had jumped to 44% in May of this year.

Many social conservatives, such as Eagle Forum president Phyllis Schlafly, refuse to believe that a majority of Americans would support gay marriage.

Gays, she said, are already free to live together. "Nobody's stopping them from shacking up," she said. "The problem is they are trying to make us respect them, and that's an interference with what we believe."

· Thanks to Father Geoff Farrow, sidebar
· Thanks to President Barack Obama
· Thanks to DADT Repeal
· Thanks to The Los Angeles TimesCivil Rights Act in July of 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson
· Thanks to The 1964 Civil Rights Act
· Thanks to President Lydon B. Johnson
· Thanks to Brown vs. The Board of Education

Dec 24, 2010

Thanks be to God · Feliz Navidad · Merry Christmas · Año 2010 · Guatemala · America Central

Merry Christmas/Feliz Navidad
Año 2010
Sacatapequez, Guatemala, Central America

    Leonardo Ricardo y Juan Carlos

MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM THE ASTOUNDING WORLD AROUND US: Presenting ¨The Christmas Cantata¨ Watoto Church, Kampala, Uganda

The Christmas Cantata¨ Watoto Church, Kampala, Uganda
¨In Uganda we don’t have Broadway or Opera, so what do all the artsy Ugandans do, you ask? We go see the annual cantata at Watoto church. Every year they put together this spectacular Christmas production which is shockingly free, and people, many who have not even seen the inside of a church the whole year, converge there and watch in awe and excitement. This year it was African themed and boy did they deliver. The show has been on all week at 6pm and 8pm and it stops tomorrow. And yes…I was there yesterday with my little entourage, each year they surprise me more. Beautiful lighting, magnificent voices, awesome choreography and good acting, it’s most definitely worth a watch. I know of people that go see it over and over, but that's just plain mad. See the opening act .¨ HERE

· Thanks to Gay Ugandan Teen, sidebar HERE
· Thanks to Watoto Church, Kampala
· Thanks to The Christmas Cantata 2010

Dec 23, 2010

Ugandan Anglican MP David Bahati's Pastor Friends Arrested: Rev Martin Ssempa on the Run for ¨false sodomy accusations¨ against the brother of the Archbishop John, Lord of York

LGBTI demonizer, Pastor Solomon Male arrested
¨A number of Christian pastors working with MP David Bahati to pass the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009 were interrogated today for trumping up false sodomy charges against Pastor Robert Kayanja in what looks to be a war between rival Pentecostal churches. Pastor Solomon Male was arrested and Pastor Martin Ssempa may be on the run from the police.

Anglican and Member of Parliament ¨Kill the Gays¨ David Bahati
Plain clothes detectives stormed Male’s office on the second floor of Span House in Kampala at around 1:30pm and asked him to go with them to Central Police Station (CPS).
Male’s pleas that he was busy attending to his clients, who needed counselling services, fell on deaf ears.

He was later driven to CPS in a Saloon car with private registration numbers.
At CPS, the detectives informed Male that he was heading to Buganda Road Court to be charged. That is when he demanded to notify his lawyers.

His arrest followed advice from the Directorate of Public Prosecution that Male, together with seven others, be charged for reportedly making false allegations against Pastor Robert Kayanja.

Pastor Martin Ssempa, on the run
In a letter to the director of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID), principal state attorney Margaret Nakigudde said pastors Male, Martin Ssempa, Bob Kayira, Michael Kyazze, their lawyers, Henry Ddungu and David Kaggwa, together with David Mukalazi and Deborah Kyomuhendo face charges of conspiring to injure Pastor Kayanja’s reputation.

The two lawyers were included for allegedly commissioning false affidavits.
Nakigudde said four sodomy files opened against Kayanja at CPS were closed for lack of evidence to warrant prosecution, and that Robson Matovu, together with all the alleged sodomy victims were medically examined but no evidence of anal penetration was found...

Unconfirmed reports indicated that Police had earlier in the day been hunting for Pastor Ssempa, but he reportedly eluded them.

Pastor Robert Kayanja son of the late Rev. Walakira and brother to the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu
The alleged victims of sodomy confessed that they had been told to lie about Pastor Robert Kayanja by the pastors under interrogation.

“Pastor Kayanja has no case because all six complainants who reported to the Police have retracted their complaints, saying they were set up by some pastors. We shall proceed with the case when any other person comes up with a complaint.”

The Police listed Samson Mukisa, David Mukalazi, Brian Ntwata, Robson Matovu, Ronnie Mutebi and Brian Ankansima as people who have since retracted their statements.
Ochom warned of stern measures against people who tell lies to the Police.
“These people have been summoned to explain...” read it all HERE

There Otta Be A Law

Schismatic Anglican Archbishop Henry Orombi, spiritual counselor to Anglican MP ¨Kill the Gays¨ David Bahati. Bishop Orombi ¨knows what God knows¨  click here and see HERE
¨Poisonous efforts¨ at The Anglican Communion are easy to spot in Uganda!  Just ask Bishop Samuel Ssekkadde, Diocese of Namirembe and Archbishop Orombi!

Fr. Erich ¨Anglican/Ugandan Ecclesiastical Protection Solicitor¨ Kasirye and wife Patricia  (aka Colonel Josephine) 

Do you remember Archbishop Henry Orombi´s trusted servants Rev. Erich Kasirye and his wife Patricia (aka known as Colonel Josephine Luboyera)?  Eric and Patricia/Josephine serve/served as Anglican Church of Uganda fundraisers for ¨Ecclesiastical Protection from Poisoness Americans¨  as well as being ¨LGBTI Scammers¨  and watchdogs for other potentially profitable evil! 

Bishop condemns ¨riddled with corruption¨ Anglican Church of Uganda

Masereka (second right), Bishop Jackson Tembo and their wives during the celebrations
¨The retired Bishop of South Rwenzori Diocese, the Rt. Rev. Zebedee Masereka, has lashed out at the Anglican community in Uganda, saying it is riddled with corruption.Bishop condemns corruption in churches...¨ read it all, HERE

Martin Ssempa, Anti-Gay Preacher and supporter of  David Bahati´s ¨Kill the Gays¨ law before the Ugandan Parliament

UPDATE:  Pastor Martin Ssempa Charged With Blackmail

¨Uganda's notorious Pastor Martin Ssempa, who infamously tells national audiences that the preferred sexual practice of gay men is eating human feces, has been charged with attempting to blackmail another pastor. Ssempa is accused of offering to pay another man to say that he had "been sodomized" by Pastor Robert Kayanja. A total of eight anti-gay Christian activists have been charged in the case. ¨ HERE

· Thanks to Gay Uganda, sidebar; HERE
· Thanks to African Activist, sidebar
· Thanks to New Vision, Uganda
· Thanks to The Daily Monitor, Uganda
· Thanks to The Metropolitan Police of Kampala

· Thanks to Joe.My.God, sidebar