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Saturday
Jan042014

Zambia's First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata Stuns By Speaking On Behalf Of Gays | God Loves Uganda Documentary

French Roast News

Zambia President Michael Sata with First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata in JapanAnne is reading …

It’s been several years since AOC touched down in Zambia, but we simply had to address an event so unexpected that LGBT activists in Africa are calling it “a miracle”. All Africa wrote Zambia: Miracles Do Happen In Zambia.

The ‘miracle’ in question was a call from Zambia’s First Lady, Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata around the topic of HIV and gay sex.

Speaking at a UNAIDS hosted reception, she said that the “silence around issues of Men who have Sex with Men should be stopped and no one should be discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation. Rather, we should address reproductive health issues around this issue.”

Not stopping there, Dr Kaseba-Sata, assured people working in the sexual and reproductive health sector that both she and her husband President Michael Sata support their efforts.

Her statements come as Zambia’s tabloids are ‘outing’ gay and bisexual men.

LGBTI activist Paul Kasonkomona is currently on trial for speaking on TV about the rights of gay people in the battle against HIV while two men Philip Mubiana and James Mwape are facing charges of sodomy. - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/miracles-happen-zambias-first-lady-calls-end-gay-hate071113#sthash.eyK6k3Br.dpuf
LGBTI activist Paul Kasonkomona is currently on trial for speaking on TV about the rights of gay people in the battle against HIV while two men Philip Mubiana and James Mwape are facing charges of sodomy. - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/miracles-happen-zambias-first-lady-calls-end-gay-hate071113#sthash.eyK6k3Br.dpuf
LGBTI activist Paul Kasonkomona is currently on trial for speaking on TV about the rights of gay people in the battle against HIV while two men Philip Mubiana and James Mwape are facing charges of sodomy. - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/miracles-happen-zambias-first-lady-calls-end-gay-hate071113#sthash.eyK6k3Br.dpuf
LGBTI activist Paul Kasonkomona is currently on trial for speaking on TV about the rights of gay people in the battle against HIV while two men Philip Mubiana and James Mwape are facing charges of sodomy. - See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/miracles-happen-zambias-first-lady-calls-end-gay-hate071113#sthash.eyK6k3Br.dpuf

President Michael Sata defeated in 2011 then president Banda, whose government threatened to jail newspaper editor Chansa Kabwela for five years because she sent (not published) photos of a woman dying in childbirth during a hospital strike to Zambia’s health minister. President Banda called Kabwela’s actions pornographic.

Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata

South Africa First Lady Bongi Ngema-Zuma (right) with Zambia First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba-SataZambia’s First Lady Dr Christine Kaseba-Sata is one of Zambia’s most recognized specialists in obstetrics and gynaecology. She has practiced as a physician at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka for more than 25 years, and has served as a lecturer at the University of Zambia School of Medicine for over 15 years.

Dr Kaseba-Sata currently serves as a World Health Organization Goodwill Ambassador against Gender-based Violence and also serves as chairperson of the Forum of African First Ladies against cervical and breast cancer.

In 2010 PEW Research Center released one of the largest surveys on attitudes to religion and morality in Africa, comprised of 25,000 people in 19 countries. Pew wrote that Africa is probably the world’s most religious continent with about 80% of people believing in Good in most countries.

Disapproval of homosexuality in three countries — Zambia, Kenya and Cameron — was 98%.

A separate research report The Culture Wars Come to Zambia Intercepting the International Human Rights Agenda, concludes that America’s Christian fundamentalists who are “militant biblical literalists” have dominated the values of Christianity across the developing world and in Zambia specifically.

LGBTI activist Paul Kasonkomona is currently on trial for speaking on TV about the rights of gay people in the battle against HIV, while two to four men including Philip Mubiana and James Mwape are facing charges of sodomy and prison sentences of up to 14 years.

If a Zambian resident is accused of being gay, police can conduct a raid without having a warrant. As is the case in Uganda, family members and friends are encouraged to report each other.

Uganda’s Anti-Gay Bill

No where are the repressive fingerprints of America’s Christian fundamentalists more visible than in Uganda, which has finally adopted the stalled anti-homosexuality bill originally promoted by Scott Lively and his colleagues.

The bill, which originally prescribed the death penalty for cases of “aggravated homosexuality” by persons infected with HIV, has allegedly reduced the penalty to life imprisonment.

Clauses that criminalize the “promotion” of homosexuality have both activists and doctors treating gay patients with HIV concerned that they could go to prison.

Before passage of new legislation, homosexuality was punishable by a prison terms of 14 years in Uganda. Lawmakers in Uganda say that western lifestyle risks threaten the country’s family units.

“What we are convinced and sure of is that nobody can in one’s right conscience and consciousness choose to be homosexual,” said Simon Lokodo, Uganda’s minister for ethics and integrity. “This must be under pressure or conditions because we know that the natural tendency is always for a male to go for a female and vice versa.”

The New York Times reports that ‘God Loves Uganda’, a documentary about the role of American evangelicals in fomenting homophobia in Uganda is a short-listed Oscar candidate. Director Roger Ross Williams says that coverage of his film — and most definitely an Oscar nomination — could persuade Uganda president Yoweri Museveni to not sign the bill in the allocated 30 days. If unsigned, the bill returns to the Uganda Parliament for further debate.

Previously:

Fears Grow That US Evangelists Ignite Anti-Gay Hatred in Africa

The World Wakes Up To Evangelical Support for Uganda’s Craconian Law Against Homosexuals

Monday
Dec302013

Religion's Evolution Divide Deepens Between Republicans & Democrats | Phil Robertson Promotes Marrying Girls Young

Daily French Roast

Anne is reading …

PEW Research revisits the topic of Americans’ beliefs in evolution, finding a significant drop in the number of Republicans who believe in the scientific theory of evolution. About two-third of Democrats (67%) and Independents (65%) embrace the belief that humans have evolved over time, compare to only 43% of Republicans. In fact, Republican belief in evolution has plummeted from 54% since 2009.

There is also a significant gender gap with 65% of men but only 55% of women believing in evolution. Likewise, there exists an age gap with 68% of 18-29 year olds believing in evolution, compared to 49% age 65 and older. Lastly, education is a factor with 72% of college grads embracing evolution, compared to 51% of high school grads or less.

View larger

All About Adam

The Economist weighed in on America’s evolutionary debate in late November 2013, writing that “the literalist faith is in crisis.” Citing statistics that fully half of evangelical youngsters lose their faith after hitting age 18 and especially if they enter a public university.

The Barna Group, an evangelical research firm has studied the young in large numbers, confirming yet again that millenials are “unimpressed by organised anything, let along organised religion.” The young oppose the total demonization of secular culture by their elders. Many are not anti-gay and a quarter of young told Barna Group that their churches were anti-science.

Writing for The Economist, Lexington points out the evangelical Christianity is not only fending off criticisms from its young but is also shaken by new discoveries that are part of genetic science. As science increasingly embraces the concept of several thousand “first humans” while negating the possibility that our genetic diversity can be traced back to the existence of an original man and woman — Adam and Eve, in the case of evangelicals — conservative theologians are questioning a historical Adam.

Without a historical Adam, says Michael Cromartie, an evangelical expert at the Ethics and Public Policy Centre, it follows then that “there would be no reason for Jesus to come to Earth to redeem man’s Fall.”

A flurry of academic papers on Adam and a proliferation of books are either out or in development.

Robertson: Marry ‘Em Young

After his reinstatement at A&E, new video of top-rated Duck Dynasty star and alleged religious guru Phil Robertson puts him back in the spotlight. This time Robertson preaches to a Georgia congregation about finding a good wife.

Preferably, marry them young — at 15 or 16 Robertson advises a Christian congregation in Georgia. Sharing advice he once gave a young man, the national star of the most successful cable TV show advises: “Make sure that she can cook a meal. You need to eat some meals that she cooks, check that out.”

“Make sure she carries her Bible.” Robertson continues. “That’ll save you a lot of trouble down the road. And if she picks your ducks, now, that’s a woman.”

“They got to where they’re getting hard to find, mainly because these boys are waiting till they get to be about 20 years old before they marry them,” Robertson says. “Look, you wait till they get to be 20 years old the only picking that’s going to take place is your pocket. You got to marry these girls when they are about 15 or 16. ” Recognizing that many states outlaw marrying girls that young, Robertson adds “You need to check with mom and dad about that, of course.”

Thursday
Nov142013

Abortion Rights News: USSC Let's Stand Oklahoma State Court Ban On Mandatory Ultrasounds & Abortion Pills

1. After many years playing defense on abortion rights, advocates seeking to protect women’s health options launched a new offensive strategy on Capitol Hill. The first initiative is the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), sponsored in the Senate by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)  and in the House by Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA).

WHPA is designed “to protect a woman’s right to determine whether and when to bear a child or end a pregnancy by limiting restrictions on the provision of abortion services.

If passed, the WHPA would pit the federal government against states rights advocates and new laws “that fail to protect women’s health and intrude upon personal decision-making,” according to its sponsors. Asserting that “a woman’s constitutional rights should not depend on her zip code,” the bill “promotes and protects a woman’s individual constitutional rights, no matter where she lives.”

2. In a second action, women’s reproductive health professionals around the country have launched All Above All, dedicated to educating members of Congress and their staff on the importance of public funding of abortion care for low-income women.

All Above All is supported by 28 organizations throughout America and intends to lift bans on public funding for abortion as blocked by the Hyde Amendment.

Organizers describe the campaign as a “bold, national, multi-year effort to bring together Millennials, people of color and groups from around the progressive universe to build the political power and will to lift these bans on coverage.”

WPHA does not address funding bans, writes RH Reality Check. The reality is that passing WHPA tomorrow would still leave the option unavailable to America’s poorest women. Removing the Hyde Amendment is a long-term goal that will take persistence and countless hours of dedicated efforts.

3. This week’s New York Magazine profiles the real life stories of 26 women — in honor of 26 Republican legislature states that have passed over 111 provisions that restrict abortion access. Of all the battles in our half-century culture war, “perhaps none seems further from being resolves, in our laws and in our consciences, than abortion” writes Meaghan Winter.

The article points out what we all know: the experience of abortion in America is increasingly based on one’s zip code. Not only does it vary by state but also by culture, race, income, age, family — and by the response of a boyfriend.

Also in NYM Why the Abortion Pill Didn’t Change Everything.

In 1993, Time magazine declared mifepristone — the abortion pill that’s often called RU-486 — “The Pill that Changes Everything.” In 1999, The New York Times Magazine called it a “little white bombshell” with “enormous political consequences.”  Think again.

4. The state of Oklahoma lost another round in its battle to restrict abortion access in the state when the US Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal in which a lower state court found HB 2789 requiring women to have an unnecessary and expensive ultrasound scan to be unconstitutional.

The new law mandated that the pregnant woman be given the chance to view the ultrasound image and be given a medical description, including “the dimensions of the embryo or fetus, the presence of cardiac activity, if present and viewable, and the presence of external members and internal organs, if present and viewable.”

Last week, the USSC dismissed an Oklahoma appeal on the permissibility of limiting abortions based on RU-486. The Oklahoma laws are important because they are among the earliest enacted after the Tea Party came to power in 2010, launching the Republican War on Women and women’s health as its top priority. via CNN

5. A major decision due any minute from the USSC will send the clearest signal yet of the court’s view on all the challenges to women’s abortion rights. The state of Texas filed a defense of the state’s new abortion restrictions, after Planned Parenthood and others appealed directly to the Supreme Court to reinstate an injunction blocking portions of the new law that introduce doctors’ hospital admitting privileges requirements.

The emergency appeal and Texas response was filed with Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia who can rule on the injunction himself, or present the case to the full court.

Access to contraception is also under assault in Texas. A new report confirms that more than a quarter of the family planning clinics are shuttered in the Rio Grande Valley, leaving Texas’ poorest women without access to cancer screening and birth control — previously provided by Planned Parenthood. 9 of 32 family planning clinics in the area — most not providing abortion services — have closed.