December 15, 2009
White House Speaks Out Against Antigay Uganda Bill
President Barack Obama’s administration directly condemned a Ugandan bill that would punish acts of homosexuality by life imprisonment and even death for HIV-positive people performing those acts, The Advocate reports.
The White House’s December 11 statement read, “The president strongly opposes efforts, such as the draft law pending in Uganda, that would criminalize homosexuality and move against the tide of history.” Both liberals and conservatives—including political evangelical pastor Rick Warren—join Obama in his stand against the legislation.
U.S. Senator Tom Coburn (R–OK) said, “Over the past two decades, political, religious and community leaders in Uganda have united to promote a rare, winning strategy against HIV that addresses the unique and common risks of every segment of society. Sadly, some who oppose Uganda’s common-sense ABC [abstain, be faithful, use condoms] strategy are using an absurd proposal to execute gays to undermine this coalition and winning strategy.”
Nearly two weeks before the White House statement, on November 30, Secretary of State Hilary Clinton said the United States should take a stand against marginalizing, penalizing and criminalizing members of the worldwide LGBT community. Then during a December 14 speech at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, she specifically spoke out against the Ugandan bill.
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