Ten months ago, three American evangelicals trooped off to Uganda and, using the power of their words, helped convince officials there to create the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009, that would make it illegal -- and punishable by death -- to be gay. If you hang in long enough while reading today's New York Times article on the matter, the reporter eventually gets around to naming them!
The three Americans who spoke at the conference -- Scott Lively, a missionary who has written several books against homosexuality, including "7 Steps to Recruit-Proof Your Child"; Caleb Lee Brundidge, a self-described former gay man who leads "healing seminars"; and Don Schmierer, a board member of Exodus International, whose mission is "mobilizing the body of Christ to minister grace and truth to a world impacted by homosexuality" -- are now trying to distance themselves from the bill.
At this point, that's sort of like the Velvet Underground attempting to distance themselves from "rock music."
But for his part, Don Schmierer says he feels "duped," and that he had "no idea some Ugandans were contemplating the death penalty for homosexuality" and that "some of the nicest people I have ever met are gay people."
Yes, surprise, surprise: you go off to Uganda to talk about how "the gay movement is an evil institution" and how they have an agenda of "defeat[ing] the marriage-based society" and somehow, people take this to mean that homosexuals should be killed or something. How terrible that things like this get misconstrued. Right, Scott Lively, who said this on his website?
On the positive side, my host and ministry partner in Kampala, Stephen Langa, was overjoyed with the results of our efforts and predicted confidently that the coming weeks would see significant improvement in the moral climate of the nation, and a massive increase in pro-family activism in every social sphere. He said that a respected observer of society in Kampala had told him that our campaign was like a nuclear bomb against the "gay" agenda in Uganda. I pray that this, and the predictions, are true.
Today's Times article mentions the "nuclear bomb" comparison, but leaves out the perhaps important part where Lively "prays" that his campaign is like a massive explosion that kills tens of thousands of people in a disintegrating rain of atomic fire.