January 14th, 2014
Thirty-four U.S. states ban gay marriage. Which means that if you get gay-married, those states will ignore it and pretend like it didn’t happen. They’re not going to give you any of the benefits of marriage and, as a rule, won’t hold you to any of the obligations of marriage. And, crucially, not one of those states that banned gay marriage will throw you or anyone else in jail because you got yourself gay-married. Not one.
Nigerian did not ban gay marriage. It criminalized it, and made it a felony complete with prison terms of up to fourteen years for anyone getting gay-married, gay-civil-unioned, or entering into gay “adult independent relationships, caring partnerships, civil partnerships, civil solidarity pacts, domestic partnerships, reciprocal beneficiary relationships, registered partnerships, significant relationships, stable unions, etc.” — I’m quoting from the law here. And anyone else who “administers, witnesses, abets or aids the solemnization of a same sex marriage” or civil unions or any of the other above arrangements will be named a felon and imprisoned for up to ten years. No marriage “ban” on the face of the earth does all this. This is criminalization.
The new law also criminalizes “registration, operation and sustenance of gay clubs, societies, organizations, processions or meetings,” with a ten years prison penalty. And police have already proved eager to prosecute the new law. The Associated Press reports:
First the police targeted the gay men, then tortured them into naming dozens of others who now are being hunted down, human rights activists said Tuesday, warning that such persecution will rise under a new Nigerian law.
The men’s alleged crime? Belonging to a gay organization. The punishment? Up to 10 years in jail under the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act, which has elicited international condemnation for criminalizing gay marriage, gay organizations and anyone working with or promoting them.
Police arrested four men over the Christmas holidays, beat them and tortured them into giving up names of other gay men. Since then, police have arrested thirty-eight and are looking for 168 more. Undoubtedly they will be pressed to give up more names, and you can see how this can snowball into a pretty major pogrom in no time. In the best case scenario, other more “benign” members of the police force in the notoriously corrupt nation see the new law as yet another opportunity for a shakedown:
Olumide Makanjuola said lawyers for his Initiative For Equality in Nigeria are backing lawsuits of several homosexuals arrested by police without cause. He said police regularly and illegally inspect the cell phones of gay suspects, then send text messages to lure others.
Then the men or women are told they will be charged and their sexual preferences exposed unless they pay bribes. “Some pay 5,000, some 10,000 naira ($30 to $60). Even though they have done nothing wrong, people are scared, people are afraid that even worse things will happen,” Makanjuola said in a recent AP interview.
NGOs in the reproductive health and HIV/AIDS fields fear a massive setback in their efforts to reach some of Nigeria’s more vulnerable populations.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.