Has been a long day.
Woke up in my love's hands. Nothing is as good as that....
Out of the house, walk to work, day bright. But, pregnant grey skies later in the day.
Was a heavy day at work. Sometimes it is busier than others. And, came home to pumping a bit more adrenaline.
The things that I do for activism.... we do, actually. Partner included.
What motivates us? Why are we courageous?
Because, we are human beings. Because, deep inside us, we cannot find it in ourselves to condemn ourselves just because we differ from our neighbours. I was asked, are you proud that you are gay?
I felt a pause in my mind, and asked myself, am I proud that I am a human being? I am gay, and African. I am gay, and Ugandan. It is just part of my identity. And, even if I am hanged, or sentenced to die, or held up to ridicule in the village square, I will not shade the pride in what I am. I am gay, I am African, I am Ugandan. That is what I am.
It is not pride. It is a simple statement of being. That is what I am. That is what we are.
And, as for those who feel that we transgress because we do say what we are, because we don't have the same scornful shame for who and what we are?
It is not my problem. My problem is realising what I am, and holding my pride aloft.
Yes, I know. There are many who will crucify me, shame me for what I am. That will not change me. I am proud of being who and what I am.
Of my detractors. Some do it for personal gain. Like Pastor 'eat da poo poo' Ssempa. But, he is proving toxic to friends of his.
I must not take credit for the guy's monumental ego. And, the toxicity that he spreads to friends and enemies alike is something that comes deep from the midden heap of his heart. Here are some friends of his feeling the heat. But these guys repudiated him and his push for the 'Kill the Gays Bill'. They are being crucified for past association.
I write a lot about religion on this blog. Why?
I mean, I am not religious. Matter of fact, I insist on my right not to identify with any religion. But, in Uganda, not being religious is something funny. Just read this article in Time. Debating God in a God-Fearing Country.
When it comes to poverty, disease, corruption, issues of sexuality and tribal tensions, most Ugandans believe they need God's help. Even during the weekday lunch hour, they can be found filing into the capital's churches, lifting their hands to the heavens and swaying in time to Christian rock bands and dapper pastors promising salvation. A study by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life found that 97% of Ugandans are believers, and the fact that professions of atheism are invariably met with incredulity has prompted most of Uganda's freethinkers to keep their skepticism in the closet.
And, I talk a lot about religion here, because it is the most cruel reason that people, fellow Ugandans use to persecute me. They want to kill me because it is in the Public Interest. And, the religious leaders agree.
I have not been to those heady discussions.... don't know why. Maybe I should? One of these days, when am bored enough!
But, seriously, I do have to engage, and know about religion in Uganda. Because, I have to be able to confront those who challenge me on that. Because, even as a non-believer, I have to stand up to my right to life.
Amazing. And, increadibly necessary.
My love has brought dinner to the table. I am still in the computer... no. Will have to stop here.
Hope your day is good.