Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Targeting of Lesbians in Uganda

Last night I went to the first session of Sit and Knit for the LGBT group on campus. I taught one person to knit; if he'll just keep up with it, he'll have a Barbie-sized potholder any minute now ;) Seriously, he did great. Everyone else was already going great guns, so I just sat and knit and listened to a knitting podcast and chit-chatted about the state of the world. Pretty much like every Sit and Knit I've ever been to.

Except that there was this bit of disturbing news; I've since researched it a tiny bit and the foreboding that I felt last night seems to be merited. On September 8, the Ugandan newspaper Red Pepper published a list of 13 names -women they claim are lesbians. Homosexuality is a criminal offense in Uganda, and Amnesty International believes that making such allegations against these women puts them in danger. Moreover, the article called for people to name other women suspected of being lesbians in order to "rid our motherland of the deadly vice."

Wow. A suspicion of being a lesbian is all that's necessary for the motherland to want to be rid of her? Just as an odd thought, what are the chances that, after last night -sitting and knitting as I did with those dangerous, dangerous knitters ;)- that my name wouldn't be on the list? It's funny, except oh-so-not.

If you want to take some action, here's the Amnesty International Action Center: Amnesty Action Center. Do what you think best.

1 comment:

Rhea said...

Thanks for writing about this. I hadn't heard, especially since the feminist/women's newspapers I once subscribed to are now defunct...