Bobi Wine (real name Robert Kyagulanyi), he of the big lips and erstwhile big mouth which got him barred from performing at two London venues, has changed his mind and is now preaching the gospel of tolerance.
In a Facebook post, Kyagulanyi acknowledged that we must be tolerant of everyone’s differences, including our differing sexualities. Hmm … One has to be charitable and look at where a man is going, rather than where he has been, so yours truly will accept that Kyagulanyi is trying to make amends for his ill-informed excoriation of a section of his fellow citizens and fans. Mr. Kyagulanyi’s words:
“In my life,I have disagreed with many people over many issues. Our opinions have differed on religion,sexual preferences,politics and a wide range of ideologies. There are reasons why we differ in thinking ranging from the way we are brought up,our geographical locations,Social classification and the general mindset of societies where we live. That however doesn’t mean that an individual is superior or inferior to the other just because they differ in opinions about the above. My key message this year is;”Ayawuka kundowoza yo tekimufula mulabe wo” (difference in opinion doesn’t make us enemies). Let us approach every issue with respect for one another,let us replace violence with tolerance, Yes! TOLERANCE; Let us tolerate each other no matter how far distant our opinions might differ. I believe that if we all subscribed to only one opinion,we would be damn fools,”
Way to go, Bobi Wine. Yours truly thinks it is okay for you and others to have ambivalent, even negative, views about homosexuality. What is not okay is for anyone to support the criminalization and/or marginalization of anyone based on who they are or to act upon their feelings in a way that is ruinous. So, your call for tolerance is very much welcome.
It was also the week in which Uganda held its first fully-fledged presidential debate. Despite the president of the country chickening out of the debate, it went ahead thank you very much. The highlight of the debate for yours truly was the question posed to the respective candidates about their views on homosexuality.
Amama Mbabazi who is on already the record publicly rejecting the anti-homosexuality bill and supporting non-interference into adult sexual freedoms sidestepped answering directly, perhaps rather understandably for the type of forum it was. Some of the the other candidates had harsh words about homosexuality but their input isn’t one that should worry us too much since they have no chance whatever of getting into office.
What should have been a highly incendiary topic three years ago thus went down like a lead balloon that barely deserves spending time on here. Yours truly is already looking forward to election day, February 18 2016 at which, it is now apparent, politician’s views on homosexuality will not play a significant part in the vote. And that can only be a good thing.
It, however, needs to be noted that Uganda’s president of 30 years has changed his position on homosexuality more times than a corkscrew opening a wine bottle; being against it, then for it, then against it, condemning legislation for it, requesting for scientific input which he then spun to his own ends, before he rejected and signed the anti-homosexuality bill into law. In fact he’s the only candidate in the race with more than 3 positions on this subject. That in of itself is a good thing because, with the president’s position changing depending on his intended audience, there is no more political capital to be gained for any other candidate to nail their colors to the mast of supporting same-sex relationships.