Somewhere on A|N I found this video last night. To say I found Dan Harris's report disturbing would put it mildly, and as I am bisexual, I have all the more reason for alarm at the behavior of the catholic bishop and others regarding Uganda's proposed law proscribing homosexuals virtually in toto.
However, something else occurred to me this morning upon further thought on that video. Of late, the catholic church has been losing ground, in the US, in western Europe, even in a once-inviolable stronghold such as Ireland. The sexual abuse scandals, well known in the US and now in Ireland and Germany, are bringing yet more shame to their organization. Further, revenues are down in many US parishes,
forcing the closure of numerous churches. It's increasingly clear that Vatican City needs a new honey pot, a new well of followers to bolster their power base, to perhaps begin a return to their former glory and level of influence.
For this, Africa in general and Uganda in particular may be their perfect breeding ground. The country is POOR, education a luxury, and in a place where such a knowledge vacuum exists, could there be a better location to stage a catholic comeback? To watch the video, it would appear that the catholic bishop featured in the piece has fertile raw material to work with, and he clearly has exploited it to the fullest extent. And he has been aided by American evangelists such as Rick Warren, who bring their own brand of homophobia to the table. There has been some discussion about whether the death penalty for homosexuality is on the table, and Warren has been confronted regarding that element of the law, but his overall approval of it remains largely evident. The attitude of the bishop is not at all in question.
Right now, all we're talking about is Uganda. But look at a map, and you'll find Rwanda to the south, reputedly the most catholic country in Africa, if we're to believe our brother in arms, Christopher Hitchens. Kenya is just east, the Democratic Republic of Congo to the west, and Sudan to the north. A year from now, perhaps two, would anyone be surprised if such anti-gay movements began showing themselves in one or more of these countries? The Sudan is largely moslem and would likely be more resistant; the others lean to christianity and might be an open ground for development.
Regardless, the crabgrass of christianity and catholicism in particular has found a new pied-a-terre to grow in. Anyone got some Ortho Weed-B-Gon?