Today, artist and humanitarian Whoopi Goldberg released a video with the Human Rights Campaign with a message for the presidents of Uganda and Nigeria, “you’re on the wrong side of history.”
Last week, Uganda's president signed a bill into law that allows sentences of life imprisonment, just for being gay. The law also criminalizes advocacy for LGBT rights with up to seven years imprisonment. In January, Nigeria enacted a similar law that punishes LGBT individuals with up to 14 years in prison, and anyone who supports equality with prison sentences of up to 10 years.
Goldberg says, “it isn’t right to imprison someone for who they are, for who they love.”
Goldberg recognized the anti-LGBT “round ups” that are occurring in Nigeria following enactment of its anti-LGBT law. Nigerian activists and human rights groups have reported dozens of LGBT individuals have been arrested, many of who work to combat HIV/AIDS in the country. Moreover, immediately after enactment of the anti-LGBT law in Uganda, a Ugandan daily paper published the photos of 200 “top homosexuals”– putting these individuals in the crosshairs of danger.
In her message, Goldberg highlights the disturbing reality that members of LGBT NGOs “like the Human Rights Campaign” could now be subject to prison sentences in both Uganda and Nigeria. She also criticizes Ugandan and Nigerian officials for listening to the rhetoric of anti-LGBT hate mongers from the U.S. who have promoted these policies abroad.
Goldberg concludes, “I’m asking people to show their solidarity. Share this [video] – let people know what’s going on in the world because you can’t stand by.”
We encourage people around the globe to use their voices and social media platforms to continue to educate their friends, family, and co-worker about the distributing situation in Uganda and Nigeria. We must stand in solidarity with our LGBT brothers and sisters overseas. In the end, we know Love Conquers Hate.