At least that is how it seems to me.
Maybe I am sensitive about this, but this piece by Paul Schindler does not report well the stance and action I have taken regarding the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. Here is the part that concerns me:
Nath argued that just as the existing sexual conduct prohibitions in place in Uganda are a relic of British colonial rule, this more lethal approach is in part an import from the West. She noted that Exodus International, a Christianist group that promotes “freedom from homosexuality through the power of Jesus Christ,” even as it calls for “spiritual warfare” against gay-identified people, recently met in Uganda.
On November 16, however, Exodus International released a press statement noting that it had written to President and Mrs. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda voicing its opposition to the Anti-Homosexuality Law, stating, in part, “We believe that sexual crimes against children, homosexual or heterosexual, are the most serious of offenses and should be punished accordingly. Homosexual behavior in consensual relationships, however, is another matter. While we do not believe that homosexual behavior is what God intended for individuals, we believe that deprivation of life and liberty is not an appropriate or helpful response to this issue.”
Talk to Action, a website that monitors the Religious Right, published a post alleging that two allies of the controversial Christian pastor Rick Warren, who gave the invocation at President Barack Obama’s inauguration –– Archbishop Henry Orombi, the Anglican bishop of Kampala, and Pastor Martin Ssempa –– are major supporters of the bill.
Ssempa has endorsed the bill, recently writing to Warren Throckmorton, Ph.D., (himself a controversial figure due to his therapeutic approach toward individuals wishing to “alter homosexual feelings or behaviors”), “I am in total support of the bill and would be most grateful if it did pass.” Ssempa reiterated that view in an interview on Premier Radio, a UK Christian station.
Warren, however, released a statement in October opposing the bill, writing, “Martin Ssempa does not represent me, my wife Kay, Saddleback Church,” and noting that he had cut his ties to Ssempa.
Exodus, Rick Warren and I are mentioned from the evangelical world. The opposition of Exodus to the bill is mentioned, Rick Warren’s schism with Martin Ssempa is mentioned but I am made to seem as though I might support the bill.
I wrote Mr. Schindler this note this morning:
I take great exception to your portrayal of me in your recent article:
You noted correctly that Martin Ssempa wrote to me regarding his support for the Anti-Homosexuality Bill but your words about me being controversial because of my views would easily lead people to think that I also support the bill.
I ask that you amend your story to alert your readers that I vigorously opposing the bill. I started a Facebook group called “Speak Out Against Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2009.” The group now has almost 5500 members from around the world. I had an op-ed published in the Ugandan press regarding my opposition. The statement from Rick Warren that you mention was given first to me due to my reporting on the issue.
You have confused your readers by your reporting and I call on you to correct the situation immediately.
Warren Throckmorton, PhD
Readers here and on the Facebook group will know better, but I doubt that readers of the GCN will. If you are so inclined, you can write Mr. Schindler at firstname.lastname@example.org.
UPDATE: Mr. Schindler wrote to say he did not intend to mislead and made a amendment:
Ssempa has endorsed the bill, recently writing to Warren Throckmorton, Ph.D., (who is himself a controversial figure due to his therapeutic approach toward individuals wishing to “alter homosexual feelings or behaviors,” but someone who has condemned the measure strongly), “I am in total support of the bill and would be most grateful if it did pass.” Ssempa reiterated that view in an interview on Premier Radio, a UK Christian station.
Thanks to Mr. Schindler for this….