UK gay couple have a Ugandan classroom named after them
UGANDAN tabloids are notorious for their lurid anti-gay headlines, such as the one above, but, so far, I have not seen one declaring ‘Godless Homos Have Classroom Named After Them’.
This, most likely, is because Ugandan gutter press hacks haven’t yet cottoned onto the fact that in Uganda’s northern Gulu region, an organisation called Humanist Empowerment of Livelihoods Uganda (HELU) is quietly beavering away to create a religion-free community in which children are given a secular education while their mothers learn valuable, life-changing trade skills.
According to an item in the latest issue of The Pink Humanist magazine, among HELU’s supporters is the UK’s only gay humanist charity, the Pink Triangle Trust, publishers of The Pink Humanist, and, by way of thanking the trust, HELU recently named one of its classrooms after veteran gay activists George Broadhead and his spouse, Roy Saich, a couple based in Kenilworth, Warwickshire, who have been together for 51 years. Broadhead is the PTT’s secretary.
According to its website, HELU is a Humanist community-based organisation established to promote Humanism as life stance, and where people are encouraged to shape their lives without depending on religion.
Agnes Ojera, HELU’s Programme Manager, is quoted as saying:
It requires a lot of resilience and courage to be a Humanist in Uganda.
Non-believers, she added, are up against:
Extreme religious and traditional practices accompanied by unfavourable Government policies.
In the past, the Pink Triangle Trust has helped fund the UK LGBT History Month, launched in 2005 in the wake of the abolition of Section 28 in 2003, and intended to raise awareness of, and combat prejudice against sexual minorities. The event takes place during February each year.
All was going well for the event organisers until some bright sparks hit on the idea of giving this year’s History Month a religious theme. What on earth were they thinking?
On Stonewall’s website I was horrified to read this message:
At Stonewall we’re proud to work with lots of inspirational LGBT people of faith in our work to challenge homophobia, biphobia and transphobia. We’ll profile role models and their stories throughout the month.
Equally horrified was the Pink Triangle Trust, and it withdrew funding from the 2016 event. When I ran a piece on the Freethinker website about History Month’s religious theme and the angry reaction to it by Terry Sanderson, President of the National Secular Society, Pink Triangle Trust trustee Diesel Balaam commented:
The Pink Triangle Trust normally helps to fund LGBT History Month, but pulled the plug this year in protest at the depressingly pro-religionist direction the organisation has taken. Instead, we donated the funds to an a Ugandan Humanist charity, which, among other humanitarian work, supports LGBT people who are being persecuted by religionists in that country.
Unfortunately, the leftists who control LGBT History Month are the usual contemptible Corbynistas who want to suck up to religionists of every stripe. I’m sure Terry Sanderson would endorse the PTT’s decision not to fund LGBT History Month this year and would also urge all freethinkers to support and donate to the PTT charity via its website and online magazine, The Pink Humanist.
Much of the Uganda’s homophobia is stoked by an organisation called The World Council of Families, which recently announced that its Next Big Thing is a three-day congress scheduled to take place in Tblisi, Georgia, in May and that:
Georgia’s revered religious leader – His Holiness and Beatitude Ilia II, Patriarch of the Georgia Orthodox Church, has blessed and will participate in the Congress.
Back in 2014, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation released its first report on the organisation, shedding light on the extremist group and how it helps spread bigotry across the globe as part of a dangerous far-right, anti-gay platform.
Said Ty Cobb, HRC Foundation’s Director of Global Engagement.
The World Congress of Families coordinates a dangerous group of activists spreading anti-LGBT rhetoric and promoting laws and policies that criminalize LGBT people and the speech of those who support them
They praise Vladimir Putin as the standard-bearer for traditional ‘family values’ … Their advocacy abroad harms LGBT people from Russia to Nigeria and beyond. Hate is not an American value, and we must expose and work to stop the World Congress of Families and their extremist allies.