An Open Letter to Rev Fr S.P Lokodo: Never Undermine the Power of Selfless People
By Our Correspondent
Dear Rev.Fr. S.P.Lokodo,
Withall due respect, I honor you for my faith requires that of me! You know I am proudly catholic but I am equally a proud lesbian born to this sexual identity. I didn’t learn this from anyone but nature taught me. I didn’t learn this from any white man rather the white man taught you to hate me. I don’t hate God nor despise Him or disgrace Him but you are teaching me to hate by hating me
However, man of God, get this piece of awareness! Never undermine the efforts of selfless people! As a Ugandan, a senior citizen by matter of your age; a couple of times you have heard of the frequent strikes of the students of the mighty university of our nation. As an adult man you may like to call them lumpens! These students bear every vapor of tear gas, bullets and whips; they most definitely know the pain they are bound to go through but they focus on what they are striking for.
The reasons for the strike affect them internally and individually. When fighting for a cause which is noble and personal, a cause that slices you deep into the muscle, you shield a bullet with a forehead! I know you know this best! The Uganda Martyrs who are among the pillars of our faith are a cluster of selfless believers whose courage we celebrate; our faith clings on their bravery against the gay king of Buganda.
The Christianity the Ugandans profess is hinged on the selflessness of the martyrs! We cannot measure the level of their selflessness but when individuals decide to aggregate their efforts to take a path to seeking justice or fair hearing, they do it after making their will because it is a matter of life or death! Rev. the writers of the Bombastic magazine are selfless LGBTI persons whose attitude is cloned from the “we are tired cells”! Pressing such a group of individuals too hard is like sitting on a time bomb.
The LGBTI persons are not mad hooligans like you call them; they are part of your flock you serve as a Holy Father. We are sinners like the rest of your sheep and repentant like any other Christians but we are traumatized by the hate you are spreading to us like we have re-crucified Jesus by being who we are! Father your rude action of re calling of the magazine; informative, educative and entertaining piece from the marginalized group of the LGBTI persons is heartbreaking, irritating, disillusioning, undermining and ridiculous!
The pieces of articles in the magazine are told stories which kept untold until the Bombastic platform appeared; the pains and wounds which went untreated because of the discrimination we face while seeking health services. The tears that run unwiped because our very own families denounced us! The wars that had persisted unfought because we were disarmed by the hate spread to us. Members of our communities refer to us as disgraces, our own brothers and sisters and parents denounced us and now the government with its arms of power is treating us to non-citizens like it isn’t their obligation to protect us!
We have not become less of Ugandan citizens because we are homosexuals. We haven’t sabotaged any government programme by writing a publication about our existence. The media has tarnished our speech by writing false stories about us; the stories we haven’t told ourselves, the media outed our friends publically without their consent, not minding the cost of the consequences! A handful of our friends were murdered, couple of the others committed suicide, some survived the police attacks but couldn’t bear the homophobic environment, they sought asylum! The only causalities that have kept here are battling with unemployment, constant eviction by landlords and all sorts of hate drama.
We used the publication to tell the media our own stories, the stories of our lives! We have lived in the closet for long; we have run short of tears to cry! You have done enough to harm us, if we were rebels, I am sure, by now we would have resigned and handed over our weapons. We have lived to the expectations of your society which is blinded by our history, culture and tradition! It is not news that homosexuality is as old as mankind neither is it a legend that homophobia came with colonialism. The effort and resources used in the recalling of our publication can be reallocated to sensitizing the people of our nation about our existence.
If you remember the history of our faith swell enough; I am worried you may have forgotten since most of the Ugandans have forgotten the mudoko dako “males” of Lango in northern Uganda, boy wives and female husbands, acknowledgement of homosexuality among the Iteso (Laurance, 1957), the Bahima (Mushanga, 1973), the Banyoro (Needham, 1973) and the Baganda (Southwold, 1973) and like we all must remember in the Buganda monarchy; it was an open secret, that Kabaka (king) Mwanga was gay (Faupel, 1962).
Fr. the Disciples of Christ were not paid despite their hard work. It was rather imperative to attach a cost commensurate to the work of the disciples of Jesus; they were selfless, committed to spreading the word of God! Likewise, every piece of work done for the successful writing, printing and publication of the Bombastic magazine was done at a volunteering basis! Whereas your office claims that we are paid and recruited into homosexuality, the truth of the matter is; our commitment, selflessness and burning desire to be understood drives us to doing what you feel should be paid for.
No amount of money can pay for the work done by selfless persons whose single intention is streamlined to justice; no amount of threat can break the arms of committed people who have suffered the same pain for a time too long to recount! We have seen nude pictures of people in the media, sex tapes leaking, we have witnessed embarrassing situations; ones where we wished our children were asleep but still watched with us.
Lokodo, there is nothing that hurt the nation like the Ingrid Turinawe saga of her breast being literally fondled by a police man, ridiculous it was! Rapists have increased, child sacrifice, fathers impregnating their daughters, pastors feeding off their flocks; we are even torn apart when it comes to knowing who is a right or wrong pastor! The increasing murder cases plus the number of cases of people committing suicide! The list is not about to end; the suicidal and unsafe abortions happening among teenagers, the game of sports betting, the habit of drug misuse, the rampant family and marriage breakdowns and divorces! The integrity of our nation is truly wanting; the ethics of our citizens are rotten yet still homosexuality , a harmless sexual orientation bothers you the most!
We have lost the moral authority to even instill discipline in our own children, for we have not had the discipline ourselves. Not very far from now, have we seen the media provoke the Catholic Church about the priests who have broken their vows of celibacy and had children; the same priests excommunicate priests who give sacraments to the homosexuals. Aren’t we wrong to despise our friends on the basis of sexuality? Homosexuality is as old as humanity! The Bible only talks about homosexual sex because during the time when the New Testament was written, Roman conquerors of the region frequently and openly engaged in homosexual acts between themselves and boys. Commonly between Roman men and the male slaves; they were nonconsensual yet socially acceptable. Had these homosexual acts been consensual like they are today, then the Bible would have had a fair writing about them.
To be more precise, gay marriages would have been blessed! In addition, even if the homosexual rape of the angels of God was a heterosexual rape, the sinful city of Gomorrah would have still been burnt! Homosexuality is not only in humans, over 100 species of animals exhibit homosexuality including the giraffes and chimpanzees (our closest relatives)! Before HIV became understood, AIDS patients were seen as the greatest sinners, for they indulged in sex intercourse to acquire HIV.
My ignorant grandmother still calls it a certificate of merit for the work well done; work of reckless spreading of your legs! Ideally if we were to plot HIV on an inhuman perspective it would most definitely mean reckless sexual activity. But humanly how would you let almost half of the population of Uganda die simply because we want to choose to blame than to bear! It is after HIV became part of us, when our parents, family members, relatives and friends contracted HIV or died of AIDS that we started realizing it was real!
Now positive leaving is not just a choice but a right! The LGBTI persons are looking forward to an era when no one bothers to scream abusive words when gay men hold hands on streets, when the third gender is considered, when organizations are free to employ LGBTI persons, when LGBTI persons are integrated into the policies of the nation. It started with the magazine of awareness, by recalling of this work Rev.Fr. you are blocking our journey to our dream! It is not long ago when HIV positive children were bullied in schools, when they committed suicide because of stigma just like the transgender teens who are committing suicide like now and then, bullied in schools and marginalized.
Apparently even the church considers to advice the couples to know their HIV status before taking their marriage vows! We are looking forward to an era when the church accepts gay marriages and Transgender children not forgetting the children raised by same sex parents! That era starts with you and I