Courage. Being brave.
Been on my mind. Thinking of David Kato, going to give a speech about the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. A sheep amongst the acknowledged lions of the place. I mean, that was courage. Real courage.
Kato, walking into the Lion's Den, literally to beard the lion.
Of course I knew of the consultative meeting. A group of kuchu leaders determined to go. My partner was among them. And, David Kato was elected to do the necessary. Delivering the speech. The only counter to the rest of the homophobic..... It was supposed to be a dialogue, actually. It was actually something for Ugandans to showcase their homophobia. And, that is what we expected. Of course, including Pastor Dr Martin 'eat da poo poo' showing off his slides of (in his opinion) delectable gay porn..... [I swear the man must be a closet homosexual!!!!!!]
So, what did it cost David Kato to go there, to give his speech, however nervous, fearful, he was? I do not know. What I know is that, I dont think horses would have pulled me to that podium. But, David did it.
Bahati's late arrival delayed the event for more than an hour, and the UHRC failed to seat any representative of those opposed to the legislation at the head table, despite seating Bahati and - for unexplained reasons - Uganda's most outspoken anti-gay activist Martin Ssempa. A comment by an audience member later prompted the UHRC to correct this imbalance by inviting a clearly hesitant and nervous SMUG leader, David Kato, to sit beside Ssempa on the dais. Ssempa proceeded to shake Kato's hand while striking absurd poses for the assembled press corps.LOL. Bahati is always tardy. Big man, he expects others to wait for him. The Uganda Human Rights Commission? Well, once upon a time, they would not dare touch us. They were clearly not ready to defend us, despite the monstrocity that that bill is. But, that is our Uganda.
So, it is just what was expected. Including the humiliation of David by Pastor Ssempa. These things are the usual. What we expect, on a day to day basis. So, what happened.
The usual Bahati, with his tirade. Ssempa spitting. Must have been spitting. I know, this diplomatic double speech is sometimes too concealing. But, that was the usual Ssempa, man of god. Spitting when us disgusting sinners were mentioned, at any fora.
Ssempa registered his support by issuing audible sounds of disgust.And, against this background, as the only person acknowledged as a homosexual, David Kato stands up to deliver his speech.
Kato delivered a well-written speech defending the rights of gay and lesbians in Uganda. However, his words were nearly indecipherable due to his evident nervousness. Throughout Kato's speech, XXXXXXXXXXXX UHRCXXXXXXXXXXXX openly joked and snickered with Bahati and Ssempa XXXXXXXXXXXX. XXXXXXXXXXXX representatives left shortly after Kato's speech, fearing that Bahati had instructed the Inspector General of Police to arrest Kato. After a break, Ssempa showed graphic x-rated photos of what he described as gay sex, and several audience members rose to ask why authorities did not arrest Ugandan homosexuals when they had the chance.Forget the 'well written'. That was done in the confort and safety of his room. He was nervous. During his speech, which was almost inaudible, the lions laughed and feasted on the sight of this rabbit. The supposed ally, from Uganda Human Rights Commission, openly joked and snickered with Ssempa and Bahati.
So, what happens?
He finishes the speech. Which, of course is heard by no one. And, prudently, decides to retire.
Very good for him. I would not want to see bad gay porn, with Ssempa's nice commentary in the background.
What was our theme again? Courage. Bravery.
David Kato had it in spades. I cannot say that I do, hell, I will not say that I do. Because I dont! My courage is usually fuelled by anger, and recklessness. Then, I can do anything. But, in deliberate cold blood..... LOL!
David did it. He was a loose cannon, in more than one way. But, the one thing that he did not lack was courage. Courage to do something, even when he was evidently very afraid. As he was at that time. I know David and the others did not stay for the rest of the proceedings. His were lessons in courage for many of us.
Yeah, we do miss you, David.