Sunday, March 28, 2010

Away with the Fairies

The last two weeks, Zimbabweans have been getting all worked out by rumours that the MDC was pushing for "gay rights" to be included in to this new Constitution that is supposed to be written before any new elections. Then Mr Tsvangirai came out and said he supported Mugabe's stance on homosexuality. I'll need to go through the articles again to see if the word "principled" was used.

So, of course, we have seen a plethora of writings-commentaries, letters to the editor etc reminding us that the Bible says homosexuality is a sin. (So are oppressing the nation, raping women, prostitution etc, but no one seems to mind these) If any of these writers bothered to actually read the Bible, they would note that Zimbabwean society has sunk so low that it lacks the moral ground on which to stand on and denounce homosexuality. The statistics on child neglect, prostitution, divorce rates, illegitimate children, corruption, substance abuse all paint a picture of a whole nation needing God's personal intervention.

In all this furore, it was forgotten that the "Gay rights" clauses were soundly rejected before the NCA authored constitution was adopted. This I was told by a cousin who was present. There was a huge uproar when someone asked what "sexual orientation" meant. The people were not going to stand for it then, they are not going to stand for it now. We are just not the sort of nation that is going to commit to paper the idea that a man and another man in a relationship is normal or the same as a man and a woman.

While everyone is flapping their lips about this matter, homosexuality continues. It has been part of Zimbabwe from day one, when President Banana liked to help himself to kudya kwevakuru. It is to be noted that there was never any public outrage, although everybody knew that it wasn't just for football that Prof. Banana liked to spend a lot of time with the soccer teams and boys's schools. It is also to be noted Mr Mugabe, who was then Prime Minister, never objected to his President's activities. He certainly knew about them, which was why he transferred all the aides and bodyguards who complained.

It's almost as if popular outrage against homosexuals is cued by Mugabe.

Whether a law is passed or not, there will still be men in Zimbabwe who prefer a stiff cock up their dirt tracks over the national pastimes of small house management, muramu rape, step-daughter incest and all the other practices that make us a well-rounded, warts-and-all nation. Keeping "Gay Rights" out of the constitution is not going to stop the homos. No, Siree.

So, why are we making a big fuss about that? Surely, there must be bigger issues right now?

Try this one for size:


This is Owen Maseko, a Zimbabwean artist who was arrested on Friday together with the director of the Bulawayo National Arts Gallery, Voti Thebe, following the launch of an exhibition the day before. At the time of the arrest, they were not charged, prompting a human rights activist to remark that this was an unprecedented situation where people are arrested first and then charged later.

It has subsequently emerged that when they appear in Court tomorrow, they will be charged with "inciting hatred". This is because the subject of the exhibition is the Gukurahundi.

This arrest follows the confiscation of photographs at an exhibition in Harare and the arrest of the gallery's director. In the case of the Bulawayo National Arts Gallery, it was impossible for the police to seize the pictures as Maseko painted them on to the walls of the gallery. So, the police ordered everyone out.

These are clear cases of repression, and show to anyone that things have not improved. The people are still oppressed, there is no freedom of expression and our artists live in danger from the state.

But what do Zimbabweans get all worked up about? What outrages us enough to say something? Homosexuals, who are still having sex anyway, law or no law! And this is why we are still in this situation, even with the people's choice now a part of Government. Zimbabwe, you can stop it being put on paper as legitimate, but you can't stop a man from poking another man if they both agree to do it. Hell, unless you are actually there and are physically stronger or armed, you can't stop a man from poking another man even if the other man doesn't want to be poked. Same as you can't stop a lot of other sexual practices that do happen in Zimbabwe.

What you can stop is the continuing tyranny of Mugabe and this cosy arrangement they call the GPA. What you can stop is the police telling us what we can express ourselves about and what we can't. There were homos in 1980, and there will be homos in 2080, but should there be Mugabe still giving this nation a hard time?

Will you have the guts to rise up, or is it we only become bold advocates when it comes to a small group of people who could leave plenty of luggage room if we got them on a plane to where what they do is considered normal?

Priorities, Zimbabwe.


Masimba Musodza said...

Someone posted this blog to their facebook page. Not surprisingly, Zimbabweans reacted by accusing her of supporting "Gay Rights". The most interesting reply was from Wonder Guchu (a Zimbabwean investigative journalist who believes that because his uncle got beat up by Zanu activists in 2008, we should all live in fear of the regime). He also seems to think that I am in support of the gay agenda. This is typical of many in the Zimbabwean media, that if you are not for A, then you must be B.

" @julius you are not being honest. all the evils you have listed in this article are punishable according by zim laws. until now homosexuality has not had been an issue because nobody was pushing it into the constitution. i know there are homosexuals in zim just like here in namibia and anywhere else. i know there are robbers etc etc anywhere just ... See Morelike in zim. but for you to suggest that people should not point fingers let alone push for measures against homsexuality because nobody is perfect is stooping low. very low because very society has its own problems. it's like me saying to you that this haille sellasie you worship died an unpopular man. there were serious allegations of how he grew to be an oppressor just like mugabe is today. i wonder whether you are aware that when bob marley died , he had lost confidence in Haille sellasie? bob visited ethiopia and was told about how the emperor ill treated people and he went away a very sad man. so for you to say nobody should talk about homosexuality because we are all sinners is naive. it gives no solution at all. i have never heard about a rastaman who support homosexuality. and it's sad that you seek to push the homosexuality issue basing on whatever hatred of the people who denounce. i wish you could be sober of hatred so that for once you see issues as separate challenges that need a national approach. i know some thieving fathers do not want their kids to be theives. would you then say because they steal they should denounce their kids' theving behaviour? it flawed reasoning. very flawed. i wonder too whether you have not heard about murderes who were hanged in zim? or about robbers who were arrested in zim? or even about rapists who ended up behind bars in zim? so for you to say people should not point fingers because there are murderers, robbers etc etc is stooping low in reasoning. you write as if the rule of law in regard to evils you listed has broken down. there are still people living in zimbabwe julius. honest people who go about their lives in as normal a way as possible. they still have hearts and believe in african culture."

Anonymous said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................

Anonymous said...

kudos; but question: do most zimbabweans (or those in authority) feel that homosexuality is a construct of white tyranny, and therefore denounce it?

Masimba Musodza said...

@vabeachraw, for most Zimbabweans, homosexuality is something that doesn't even exist. Until recently, we did not even have a name for it, although it was understood that some men are "not normal". For this reasons, "homophobia" as the term is understood in the West would not accurately apply to Zimbabwe or much of Africa.
It is a long debate, and my point in writing this is to remind Zimbabweans that there are more pressing issues and we should not be getting worked up over this one when there are people languishing in prison or threatened with violence by the regime