Rolling Stone Examines Evangelical Reactions to Donald Trump

Writing for Rolling Stone, Sarah Posner examines a variety of evangelical reactions to Donald Trump’s status as presumptive GOP presidential nominee. Yours truly is quoted along with several other conservatives grappling with what it means to live in a Trumpian universe.
Some highlights:

  • Trump might get 50% of the evangelical vote says Tobin Grant. That prediction compares unfavorably to Mitt Romney’s 79% of the evangelical vote in 2012.
  • Denny Burk, professor at Boyce College told Posner: “I think that Trump is uniquely disqualified.”
  • Although time is running out, about 40 conservatives are planning some kind of move to counter Trump according to Erick Erickson. Lord, haste the day.
  • Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse has resisted calls to become a third-party candidate.
  • Fellow Patheos blogger John Mark Reynolds blames rampant conspiracy thinking for some of Trump’s support.

I pointed out that religious leaders who oppose Trump aren’t getting very far in offsetting the Trump tide. Evangelicals who support Trump are tossing the Republican political establishment aside and ignoring many of their religious leaders as well (e.g., Russell Moore). The way the quotes are presented, it may sound like I am blaming them, but that isn’t the case. Like many others, I am amazed how this election season has turned everything upside down.
It is disturbing to see evangelicals Ben Carson, Bobby Jindal, Rick Perry, and others contradict themselves so dramatically in the name of party unity. Perhaps this unity worship is why Erick Erickson predicts many evangelicals will vote for Trump, although not enough to win. Although I agree, I don’t feel confident. In this political environment, it feels like the sand shifts frequently which as we know isn’t a good place to build a house.
 

Anti-Homosexuality Bill to be debated in March?

So says the website of the Rolling Stone (UG).

Anti-Gay Bill To Be Tabled In March

BY CLIFF ABENAITWE

The Anti-Homosexuality Bill will be tabled in March if all goes

according to plan.

Authored by Ndorwa West MP David Bahati, the proposed legislation will be discussed as soon as the new Parliament is sworn in.

SMUG statement on the murder of David Kato

Press Release by Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG)
For Immediate Release: Wednesday, 26 January 2011
Brutal Murder of Gay Ugandan Human Rights Defender, David Kato
 
Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) and the entire Ugandan Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Community stands together to condemn the killing of David Kato and call for the Ugandan Government, Civil Society, and Local Communities to protect sexual minorities across Uganda. 
 
David was brutally beaten to death in his home today, 26 January 2011, around 2pm.  Across the entire country, straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex Ugandans mourn the loss of David, a dear friend, colleague, teacher, family member, and human rights defender.   
David has been receiving death threats since his face was put on the front page of Rolling Stone Magazine, which called for his death and the death of all homosexuals.  David’s death comes directly after the Supreme Court of Uganda ruled that people must stop inciting violence against homosexuals and must respect the right to privacy and human dignity.  

Sexual Minorities Uganda and the Ugandan Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Community call on the Police and the Government of Uganda to seriously investigate the circumstances surrounding David’s death. We also call on religious leaders, political leaders and media houses to stop demonizing sexual minorities in Uganda since doing so creates a climate of violence against gay persons.  Val Kalende, the Chair of the Board at Freedom and Roam Uganda stated that “David’s death is a result of the hatred planted in Uganda by U.S Evangelicals in 2009. The Ugandan Government and the so-called U.S Evangelicals must take responsibility for David’s blood!”

 
As United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently declared, “I understand that sexual orientation and gender identity raise sensitive cultural issues.  But cultural practices cannot justify any violation of human rights. . .  . When our fellow humans are persecuted because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, we must speak out. . . . States bear the primary responsibility to protect human rights advocates.  I call on all States to ensure the freedom of expression and the freedom of assembly that make their work possible.  When the lives of human rights advocates are endangered, we are all less secure.  When the voices of human rights advocates are silenced, justice itself is drowned out.” 

David’s life was cut short in a brutal manner.  David will be deeply missed by his family and friends, his students, and Human Rights organizations throughout Uganda and around the world.  Speaking about what the death of David means in the struggle for equality, Frank Mugisha, the Executive Director of Sexual Minorities Uganda said, “No form of intimidation will stop our cause. The death of David will only be honored when the struggle for justice and equality is won.  David is gone and many of us will follow, but the struggle will be won. David wanted to see a Uganda where all people will be treated equally despite their sexual orientation.”

 
Burial arrangements are underway for Friday 28, 2011 at 2PM at his ancestral home in Namataba, Mukono District. 
 
Press contacts:

Frank Mugisha: +1 646 436 1858

 

David Kato (center) at Rolling Stone trial (Photo credit Benedicte Desrus)

SMUG: Ugandan GLBT activist David Kato has been murdered

Frank Mugisha, head of Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG), just reported that his colleague in SMUG, David Kato, has been murdered in Kampala. Kato was also one of the plaintiffs in the Rolling Stone defamation case in Uganda. The Rolling Stone promised to out 100 homosexuals, and had started doing so, when a Ugandan judge halted the tabloid, saying that such efforts violated the rights of the plaintiffs. You can find a link to the decision here.

Kato had expressed fear for his safety after the verdict, telling AlertNet:

David Kato, one of the plaintiffs, said that he had been living in terror ever since he was named by the newspaper.

“Since we got exposed by Rolling Stone, we have been living like fugitives in our own country,” he said. “We have to keep shifting houses for fear of being attacked. Some of the gays have decided to leave the city and head to rural areas in order to protect themselves.”

Details of this tragic death are unclear. I will provide more information as I get it.

UPDATE (8:01pm) – Human Rights Watch has more detail

“David Kato’s death is a tragic loss to the human rights community,” said Maria Burnett, senior Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch. “David had faced the increased threats to Ugandan LGBT people bravely and will be sorely missed.”

Witnesses told police that a man entered Kato’s home in Mukono at around 1 p.m. on January 26, 2011, hit him twice in the head and departed in a vehicle. Kato died on his way to Kawolo hospital. Police told Kato’s lawyer that they had the registration number of the vehicle and were looking for it.

UPDATE (1:10pm, 1/27/11). The Daily Monitor has a story here.

Police’s Scene of Crime officers have ringed off the house in which a gay activist, David Kato was murdered yesterday.

Police said his attackers hit him with a hammer on the head at around noon on Wednesday before locking him in the house.

Deputy Police Spokesman Vincent Ssekate said they are taking the case seriously but asked the public to who have any information that may lead to the arrest of the suspects to contact them.

He later died as he was being transported to Mulago Hospital.

“They forced their way in and found Kato lying unconscious,” he said.

Their suspicion rose later, they told the police, and went to check on him in his house but found the door locked.

Residents told police that they saw a man who entered Kato’s house but he moved out dressed in victim’s shoes and a jacket that cover part of his face.

Asked whether they were taking it as an attack on minorities in the country, he said it is too early to reach that conclusion.

Kato was listed among the 100 people suspected to be homosexuals in the country by the local tabloid Rolling Stone.

“Since the act happened during day, there may be people who say the suspects entering the house. They should come and give us information,” he said.

Deputy Police Spokesman Vincent Ssekate said they are taking the case seriously but asked the public to who have any information that may lead to the arrest of the suspects to contact them.

The New York Times gives more details:

Friends said Mr. Kato had recently put an alarm system in his house and was killed by an acquaintance, someone who had been inside several times before and was seen by neighbors on Wednesday. Mr. Kato’s neighborhood on the outskirts of Kampala is known as a rough one, where several people have recently been beaten to death with iron bars.

Judith Nabakooba, a police spokeswoman, said Mr. Kato’s death did not appear to be a hate crime, though the investigation has just started. “It looks like theft, as some things were stolen,” Mrs. Nabakooba said.

But Nikki Mawanda, a friend, who was born female and lives as a man, said: “This is a clear signal. You don’t know who’s going to do it to you.”

Ugandan court rules against Rolling Stone tabloid; bars outing campaign

UPDATE: A coalition of Ugandan human rights groups just now issued a press release describing the ruling. After the text of the initial post, I have the details and a link to the press release.

I don’t have the details yet but according to Frank Mugisha and commenter  Richard Willmer, a Ugandan court issued a ruling today in favor of the plantiffs in the Rolling Stone case.

In early October, 2010, a Ugandan tabloid calling itself the Rolling Stone began a campaign of outing GLBT people in Uganda complete with pictures and personal information. Some people were attacked as a result and sexual minority advocates went to court to stop the campaign. A Ugandan court issued an initial order to stop the outing pending a hearing. Today’s ruling is the result of that hearing. No word yet whether the Rolling Stone will appeal. According to Rolling Stone editor, Giles Muhame, the tabloid will appeal the ruling.

Watch for details…

UPDATE: Here is the press release issued by the coalition of human rights groups with details of the ruling today from a Ugandan court barring the Rolling Stone from outing LBGT people.

The Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law in Uganda warmly welcomes and applauds today’s decision by High Court judge, Justice V.F. Kibuuka Musoke in the case of Kasha Jacqueline, Pepe Onziema & David Kato v. Giles Muhame and The Rolling Stone Publications Ltd.

Through its members Kasha Jacqueline, David Kato and Patience Onziema, the Coalition filed a complaint in the High Court against the Rolling Stone. The Court issued an interim order restraining the editors of the newspaper from any further publication of information about anyone alleged to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender until the case could be finally determined.

After an initial postponement, the merits of the case were heard on November, 2010. The final ruling was read today, 3rd January 2011. In considering whether the Rolling Stone’s publication of alleged homosexuals’ names, addresses and preferred social hang-outs constituted a violation of the applicant’s constitutional rights, the Court, ruled that:

1) The motion is not about homosexuality per se, but ‘…it is about fundamental rights and freedoms,’ in particular about whether ‘the publication infringed the rights of the applicants or threatened to do so’.

2) The jurisdiction of Article 50 (1) of the Constitution is dual in nature, in that it extends not just to any person ‘whose fundamental rights or other rights or freedoms have been infringed in the first place,’ but also to ‘persons whose fundamental rights or other rights or freedoms are threatened to be infringed.’

3) Inciting people to hang homosexuals is an attack on the right to dignity of those thus threatened: ‘the call to hang gays in dozens tends to tremendously threaten their right to human dignity.’

4) Homosexuals are as entitled to the right to privacy as any other citizens. Against the ‘objective test’, ‘the exposure of the identities of the persons and homes of the applicants for the purposes of fighting gayism and the activities of gays…threaten the rights of the applicants to privacy of the person and their homes.’

5) Section 145 of the Penal Code Act cannot be used to punish persons who themselves acknowledge being, or who are perceived by others to be homosexual. Court ruled that ‘One has to commit an act prohibited under section 145 in order to be regarded as a criminal.’ Clearly this applies only to a person who has been found guilty by a court of law.

In terms of the relief sought by the applicants, court issued a permanent injunction preventing The Rolling Stone and their managing editor, Mr. Giles Muhame, from ‘any further publications of the identities of the persons and homes of the applicants and homosexuals generally.’ The injunction thus provides broad protection to other Ugandans who are, or who are perceived to be homosexual, and the ruling provides an important precedent should any other media attempt to publish similar information. The court further awarded UGX. 1,500,000/= to each of the applicants, as well as ordering  that the applicant shall recover their costs from the respondents.

Read the rest of the press release here.

Uganda round up: Ssempa summoned to court, Rolling Stone hearing slated for Dec. 31

According the Daily Monitor, Martin Ssempa and a group of cohorts have been summoned to court over charges they conspired to injure the reputation of Robert Kayanja. According to authorities, the bunch paid people off to say Kayanja engaged in homosexual behavior.  According to the Monitor:

The Buganda Road Court yesterday summoned pastors Solomon Male, Michael KyazzeMartin Ssempa and Robert Kayiira to appear in court on January 4 to answer charges of conspiracy to injure Pastor Robert Kayanja’s reputation. Also summoned is David Mukalazi, a musician, and Anita Kyomuhendo, a State House employee.

The summonses followed a decision by the Directorate of Public Prosecutions to sanction charges of conspiracy to injure Pastor Kayanja’s reputation. Pastor Male of Arise for Christ Ministry was last week briefly detained over the allegation. They are accused of mobilising youths to accuse Pastor Kayanja of sodomising them.

Pastor Ssempa is accused of hiring Robson Matovu to blackmail Pastor Kayanja. It is alleged that Matovu, together with the alleged victims of sodomy, were medically examined but no evidence of anal penetration was found.

Pastor Male is accused of giving Matovu a signed affidavit implicating Pastor Kayanja, while Mukisa was reportedly promised necessities to testify against Pastor Kayanja. Pastors Kazze and Kayiira of Omega Healing Centre also face similar charges before the Grade 11 Magistrate’s Court.

I have asked for comment from Rev. Ssempa but he has not replied. We have some readers who attend Rev. Ssempa’s church. Perhaps they could let us know how this is being received there.

Regarding the Rolling Stone trial, the court again moved the hearing to Dec. 31.

Uganda’s Rolling Stone editor pledges to publish more photos

According to Rolling Stone editor, Giles Muhame, the lawyer for the paper has cleared them to publish more pictures of gays.

An extraordinary meeting of Rolling Stone editors held last night resolved to publish dozens of photos of top lesbian couples in the country. “Since the judge did not post pone the interim order secured earlier by a host of homos, you can now expose them,” our lawyer said, as our editors smiled. Guys, prepare for another round of sensational optical nutrition…

Apparently, the Rolling Stone camp is taking this two week period between the hearing and the ruling as an opportunity to continue their campaign. Attorneys for the GLBT groups might need to get a restraining order soon to prevent more outings.

Uganda’s tabloid editor: American Rolling Stone files suit over use of name

According to UG RS editor, Giles Muhame, he was served with papers today during his hearing on the legality of outing gays.

Ten minutes after appearing in High court 2day 2 defend Rolling Stone’s right to publish photos of homosexuals, another batch of lawyers served me a new suit in which America’s Rolling Stone magazine is now accusing us of using “their name which has caused confusion!” Since we got registration certificate from registrar of companies, this US magazine will have to fight government. Pity them The dirty works of homos!

Elsewhere the CBC has a report of an interview with both Muhame and Bahati where Muhame channels Oklahoma law maker Sally Kern by saying

…homosexuality is now more dangerous than terrorism.

 

 

Ugandan coalition supports Rolling Stone Hang Them campaign

This just in from Gay Uganda.

At the Rolling Stone’s day in court yesterday, Pastor Moses Male (you can watch him in action here) declared solidarity with the Rolling Stone’s outing campaign. I have three independent reports that gays were chased away from the court house and one was attacked.

The flyer that Male was distributing is on the right. Click the image to read it.

Male baits GLBT people to make a public stand, but he supports a tabloid which has incited violence against them. Male was one of the ministers, along with Martin Ssempa, who was investigated for making a false report of homosexuality about Rev. Robert Kayanja.

The court extended the ban on outing GLBT people until Friday when the Rolling Stone will present a case.

Rolling Stone’s Facebook page removed; Martin Ssempa returns?

This from editor Giles Muhame’s Facebook page:

“The Rolling Stone newspaper’s facebook page has been scrapped by the social networking website management in US for spreading a hate camapign against homosexuals in Uganda,” according to Cliff Abeneitwe, the newspaper’s marketing manager. We will miss you guys….

For his part, Abenaitwe promises more “men of shame” in next week’s issue of the Rolling Stone, perhaps defying a Ugandan judge who ordered a cessation of the outings.

Meanwhile, the pastor of the Rolling Stone editors, Martin Ssempa, may be back on Facebook. Earlier Martin Ssempa’s Facebook page was removed but he – or at least someone posing as him – appears to be posing under the name Onelovepastor Uganda.