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We cannot accept cultural imperialism

By Asser Ntinda
THE United States has developed a sickening habit of masquerading as the world policeman which does not hesitate to pass comments on developments in other countries no matter how far removed from its shores.

Right now, the US is busy meddling in a dispute between Russia and the Ukraine, a former republic in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics despite the fact that there are no Americans in Crimea but thousands of Russians.

Ugandans recently overwhelmingly endorsed a law outlawing homosexuality, and the US took it upon itself to masquerade as the repository of Ugandan opinion by condemning the Bill that was signed into law by president Yoweri Museveni a few weeks back. It did not matter to the US that it is not President Museveni who originated the Bill that was moved by a Ugandan MP and received overwhelming backing from the majority of Ugandans serve for a few compromised voices in the donor driven civil society. Ugandan legislation is for Ugandans.

Ironically as we report elsewhere in this issue out of the US' 50 states, eight have laws criminalising homosexuality and same-sex unions while antigay "religious freedom" legislation is currently pending in the Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, and North Carolina We would have thought that true to the dictum, charity begins at home, the US would deal with the logs in its own eyes before pointing at the imaginary twig in Putin's or Museveni's eye.

We find the self-serving statements from the United States government quite regrettable and the roping in of what should be multilateral institutions like the world bank that end up tying development assistance to the campaign for the so-called gay rights is quite shocking. In the wake of the anti-gay law, Uganda was threatened with the withdrawal of aid, and the World Bank has made good on these threats by announcing that a $90m loan earmarked for healthcare has been postponed, ostensibly to evaluate how the gay law will impact on development in the country.

What this proves is that far from being an independent multi-lateral lending institution, the World Bank is an instrument of US foreign policy which is used to achieve Uncle Sam's foreign policy objectives. This makes the case for the reform of the UN system and global financial system all the more urgent.

For years Africa had to contend with slavery, colonialism and neo-colonialism, we cannot accept the attempts at cultural and moral imperialism from people who should know that the solution to their ageing and regressing populations are heterosexual unions.

Nothing good, not even babies, can come from homosexuality.





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