Enough Of The Hypocrisy Nigerians, Leave Gay People Alone!

By Ikenga Chronicles October 31, 2016

Enough Of The Hypocrisy Nigerians, Leave Gay People Alone!

Nigeria is a huge country with a lot of diversity. Be it in the area of culture, language, religion, etc. Yet when it comes to certain things, we let our “morality” kick in, and refuse immediately to be accommodating. This is especially so when it comes to issues of sexual orientation. In recent times, there have been several talks about some Nigerian gay men trying to come out, and wild condemnations of them, with many drawing everybody’s attention to the fact that we have an existing law prohibiting the existence of gay people among us. This has of course led to some trying to deny their sexual orientation. But what struck me the most was the public outrage at the case of Miss Anambra and the many jokes people began to make about the use of cucumbers.

Miss Anambra’s crime was not that she had sex. It was that she had sex with a lady and was unfortunate enough to have it recorded. So our “holy” Nigerians must condemn her as loudly as possibly lest they be equated with her by virtue of their silence. That is how we are!

But the truth remains that there are a lot of prominent people in this country who are gay(or at least bi-sexual), but would rather openly condemn gay people because of the feel-good-nature of our type of hypocrisy. Our claim to a moral high ground is most times so disgusting. Yet we wouldn’t have needed to lay claims to dubious morality if we had not decided to re-define morality when it better suits the majority(or some set dogmas)

In 2014, former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan signed into law, the anti-same sex law. It was a law that banned gay rights (and same sex marriage)by Nigerians. The polity went wild with jubilation as many saw it as a statement to the fact that we are a God fearing country, or in more exact terms, that we are not a country of queers! Even those who barely have any respect for the dictates of the Bible came up with quotes about how the Bible frowned at it, while some asserted that being gay is Western, and has no place in “our culture”.

What followed were several complaints by Human Rights bodies outside the country(the ones within the country could not really stand up to it),with the US leading the pack. In churches, pastors waxed lyrical about how their prayers had stopped Nigeria from toeing the path of Sodom and Gomorrah. Somehow, most Nigerians felt it was right for a government to impose a restriction to someone’s sexual orientation and never for once gave a though to the fact that such an action was tantamount to the violations of the human rights of certain people.

Yet recently, the president who signed that bill into law(President Goodluck Jonathan) has come out to say that he only signed it because it was passed by the legislature. Which invariably means that he did not approve of the law deep down his heart.

But what we forgot was that the issue of gay rights is strictly the issue of human rights and tht by endorsing it, we are invariably saying; “to hell with the concept of human rights”.

A person has the right to his or her sexual orientation. If I feel attracted to a man, it is well within my rights to do so, just as it is within the rights of another person to be attracted to a woman. Saying that another’s sexual orientation is queer and yours right is like saying being a man is right, and being a woman wrong– both are cases of biological configurations. However one looks at it, it is restricting and a violation of one’s rights, to prescribe what should be the right sexual orientation. Should we in the same vein prescribe what should be the right religion?

And talking about religion, all the hypocrites who state that being gay is wrong because the Bible prohibits it, didn’t the Bible also say that fornication and adultery are wrong? When are we going to enact a law that criminalizes those two? Hypocrisy is a hot coal that burns the wielder!

Hypocrisy has of course always been our thing. We prefer to hound and condemn others for being slightly different from us, even when the difference does not hurt us. We would rather watch while the things that hurt us are perpetrated, and even support it. But whatever affects the “weaker”(in terms of numbers) section of our communities, we tend to shout ourselves hoarse, condemning it. It is all about the numbers. Take for instance that we have more gay people in Nigeria, than “straight” people, and the predominant gay people decide that being straight is criminal. How exactly would the straight people feel? When you think of it this way, you begin to understand that gay rights issues are primarily the issue of human rights, and not of religion and culture!

One of the worst and stupid analogies aimed at proving that being gay is wrong, that I have heard was one where somebody said; “so being gay is right? Good, then I wish for you that your child travels abroad and returns with a fellow man as his husband. I hope you will accept that happily”. It is not about whether one person likes it or not. Neither is it about acceptance of it. It is simply about the fact that it is well within the rights of a person to choose his or her sexual orientation! It is strictly an issue of human rights!

Our problem in Nigeria is that we like to hate on others for being slightly different from us. That is why we continue to be embroiled in so many ethnic squabbles. Be that as it may, it is time to let gay people be. Let them live their lives freely, as others with a different sexual orientation do. Gay people are not criminals, they should not be made outcasts. Enough of the hypocrisy already, let gay people live!

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