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This Anglican Bishop Wants You To Rot In Jail

Jim Burroway

December 10th, 2011

Archbishop Peter Akinola, retired Anglican Primate of the Church of Nigeria, has enthusiastically endorsed Nigeria’s anti-gay bill which would impose criminal penalties on same-sex unions and LGBT gatherings. Akinola told Nigeria’s Guardian that the Nigerian government should reject warnings from Britain and the United States that efforts to deny basic human rights to LGBT people would have international implications:

Since its passage by the Senate, Nigeria has received strong criticisms and warnings from the British, Canadian and the United States of America governments, which have individually threatened to withdraw aids and other forms of assistance to Nigeria, if the law is allowed to exist.

But Akinola, in an exclusive interview with The Guardian, urged President Jonathan not to succumb to such pressure, but rather tow the path of God by assenting to the bill.

Akinola, who described the bill as “a new orientation towards transformation and reformation of Nigeria from its moral decadence into a new platform of sound morality,” said President Jonathan would be going against God’s will for Nigeria if he refused to sign the controversial bill into law.

He stated that Nigeria needs such law to preserve the nation’s sacred moral heritage for national development.

Akinola has been the most visible leader of a worldwide revolt of conservative Anglicans against the elevation of the openly gay Rev. Gene Robinson as bishop of New Hampshire. Akinola has actively courted dissident American Episcopal Churches to leave the Episcopal Church in America and organize themselves under his leadership In 2007, Akinola traveled to Virginia to install Martyn Minns as bishop of the Convocation of Anglicans in North America (CANA), an organization that Akinola established with conservative American Episcopalians. In doing so, he defied Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, head of the worldwide Anglican Communion, and Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, leader of the U.S. Episcopal Church.

The bill which Akinola endorses so enthusiastically would penalize anyone entering into a same-sex marriage or any other arrangement “for other purposes of same sexual relationship” with imprisonment for fourteen years. It also provides for ten years imprisonment for anyone showing displays of affection “directly or indirectly,” an incredibly vague and ambiguous phrase which could be interpreted in any number of unpredictable ways. In addition, anyone who “supports the registration, operation and sustenance of gay clubs, societies, organisations, processions or meetings in Nigeria” will be subjected to a ten year term. By outlawing even ad hoc meetings in which topics concerning gay people are discussed, Nigeria proposes to obliterate the rights of free assembly and speech for all Nigerians and visitors, including health care workers and organizations. It would even effectively ban coordination of monitoring human rights violations from within Nigeria. The bill passed the Nigerian Senate in late November and has reportedly been introduced in the House of Representatives, where one lawmaker threatened to increase the penalties further.

Unsurprisingly, so-called “ex-gay” theories have also entered the debate in Nigeria. The Guardian quotes from Felix Jovi Ehwarieme, who is described as an adjunct professor of scientific theology and Biblical history at the United Bible University in Lagos. Ehwarieme has a rather odd theory about homosexuality, tracing it to “excessive masturbation”:

“An average male child has masturbated at one stage of his life or the other. If this behaviour were not controlled, it would lead to lack of interest in the opposite sex. This often happens in the subconscious mind, so that by the time one grows into it, one would not know why one hates the opposite sex. This is because when one masturbates, one may have practiced it with other male children,” he argued.

“So, by the time they are qualified to have sexual relations, they just discover that they have something that satisfies them more than natural sex.”

According to Ehwarieme, there is a role played by hormones in masturbation. “One cannot just masturbate without thinking of the opposite sex. When you masturbate, you have a picture in mind of someone you like, a woman, definitely,” he said.

“By the time you masturbate and ejaculate, you end it that way. After a period, if the woman you have in mind is given to you and you find that you do not enjoy her, you would still want to go back to masturbation, because something else has replaced original process.”

“The problem with homosexuals is that they do not know how they become what they are,” he surmised.

Statements from an Islamic professor, Dr. Ishaq Akintola, demonstrates that nothing can united Christians and Muslims in that deeply divided country more than their shared hatred for gay people. Akintola told the Guardian:

“We urge President Goodluck Jonathan to quickly sign the Bill into law once it is passed by the House of Representatives before these Western countries drag Nigeria down with them. He must not succumb to the intimidation of neo-imperialists.”

“We assure the President that Nigerians are united on this matter. We are solidly behind him and the National Assembly,” Akinola added. “There have always been hidden agenda in foreign aid. Once colonialist, always a colonialist!”

The Guardian also quotes from a Catholic chaplain and a Lagos criminology professor supporting the bill. Only at the very end of the article is there a paragraph devoted to criticism of the bill.

Comments

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Jimmy G
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

Sorry, Archbishop Akinola, but you are a jerk, a promoter of anti-Gay violence and a hypocritical Nigerian. You should be driven out of the Angllican Communion.

Leonardo Ricardo
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

Pete Akinola is the same resentfilled idiot who instigated the ¨Massacre of Yelwa¨…this soiled old man wouldn´t know the difference between honor and dishonor if it was presented to him in the REAL FACT of rampant child witchburning, sexual slavery and vertical corruption in Nigeria…Akinola, and his fear/hatedriven lot ought try and face the fact of their own lack of righteousness (especially when demonizing and marginalizing fellow Christians and Muslims instead of dealing with their very own Nigerian National ROT and DECAY)!

MsRowena
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

She looks nasty! I’m getting a whiff of the ol’ mothballs and woolen sweaters here.

A Naija Man
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

> “Nigeria needs such law to preserve
> the nation’s sacred moral heritage
> for national development ”

Oh really? How about laws and serious action to stem corruption at ALL levels?

How about serious efforts to build good roads, and to provide electricity, running water, and communication facilities to ALL people in Nigeria?

How about serious efforts to revamp the failing school systems in the country, and to improve the general safety of ALL people in Nigeria?

It is anti-gay laws that really matter.

I am always amazed when a Christian or Muslim cleric says that homosexuality is un-African – as if Christianity and Islam are not religions that were imported to Africa.

Dan in Colorado
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

While Nigeria may seem a world away from life here in the United States, don’t kid yourself that the same hate filled Episcopalians aren’t in close proximity. One only need to visit the website “Stand Firm In Faith” to view the sanctimonious hate filled diatribes routinely dished out by these people who consider themselves Christians. Any comments that are posted on the site that offer a different viewpoint are routinely erased and billed as being intolerant. The hateful views are not restricted to some bishop in rural Nigeria. These pseudointellectual bloggers on this site love to post diatribes that view bullying as a normal part of growing up and homosexuality as an illness akin to alcoholism.

Regan DuCasse
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

I don’t know how anyone can pontificate or make any kinds of such untrue, unproven and dangerously ignorant statements about sexuality, at ALL. It’s akin to saying stereotypical and discriminatory assertions about women, what they SHOULD do or do according to religious doctrine, rather than real life and compassionate truth.
It should ALWAYS boil down to if the results of religious behavior DOES HARM. And if a person of religious influence IGNORES the harm done, and continues to maintain that religious AUTHORITY cannot be challenged or refuted or has the only information that’s truthful and deserves respect, then that’s so dangerous and ever has been.

Richard Rush
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

If I were a religious or governmental leader in a failed African nation, I suppose that I, too, would be looking for convenient scapegoats to blame for, and divert attention away from, our multitude of failures.

One thing never seems to fail: the correlation in severity of a nation’s failure with the severity of their persecution of gay people. Even among the states of the U.S., look at the difference between, say, Massachusetts and Mississippi.

gar
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

Desmond Tutu he ain’t.

F Young
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out —
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.

Martin Niemöller (1892-1984)

http://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10007392

Bishop Anikola, if the Holocaust comes to pass again, may God have mercy on your soul.

TomTallis
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

Has CANA had any comment on witch-doctor Akinola’s latest atrocity?

Brian
December 10th, 2011 | LINK

‘Only at the very end of the article is there a paragraph devoted to criticism of the bill.” quick, while it is still legal…

Joe
December 11th, 2011 | LINK

I blush with shame for the Anglican Communion that has nurtured this moral monster.

Lindoro Almaviva
December 11th, 2011 | LINK

The only thing I have to say is “Careful what you wish for, you might get it.” he better not have enemies, otherwise he will be facing the same court he now supports and he might not like it.

That is what I find most interesting, these people clamor for laws like there until their enemies use them agaist them and then somehow there is anaha! moment and they realize how cruel these laws are.

Dan
December 11th, 2011 | LINK

TomTallis
December 10th, 2011 | LINK
“Has CANA had any comment on witch-doctor Akinola’s latest atrocity?”
Interestingly, the website Stand Firm in Faith, which is one of CANAs main websites and blog posts, tends to forget to publish inflammatory statements by this bishop. If they are mentioned, the comments are usually buried somewhere down on the page. It almost seems that extreme lunatics are conveniently ignored by the more main stream lunatics. It’s quite a stretch for even the gay hating American Episcopalians to explain how Akinola’s views mesh with their own. Such thinking is uncomfortable and avoided as it probably makes them realize how far off track they are with the true message of Christianity.

Jonpol
December 11th, 2011 | LINK

So from the point of view of the Episcopalian Church, Archbishop Peter Akinola is a heretic.

Still, he has a right to express his religious beliefs, but not to incite hatred which would harm others.

CODYJ
December 13th, 2011 | LINK

MOST DONT KNOW THIS, BUT AKINOLA was part of the cast of ‘White Zombie” 1932, starring Bela Lugosi, where he played a “resurrected’ MINDLESS ZOMBIE, put to work in Lugosi’s sugar cane mill..

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