What interesting developments in politics take place these days!
Yesterday Mr Zuma, president of the ANC and also the man grooming himself to be president of South Africa after next month's election, addressed upon invitation, the Rhema Bible Church - known also for it's blatantly homophobic stance.
In an article in the Burger today, Zuma claimed that the ANC received its "strong moral vision" from the church and that after the 2009 elections, the ANC would continue its partnership with religious groups.
He also invited churches to enter into dialogue with the government over matters such as same gender marriage and legalized abortion. So now it seems the ANC is siding with the fundamentalists and has invited this dialogue to address their views on same gender marriage and legal abortions, presumably to romance them for their vote.
What, I wonder, would be the purpose of dialogue on matters which are already written into law, except of course if there was a clear possiblity that these matters may be written OUT of law?
This also raises the matter of the SA governments annual signing of a UN declaration on religious rights (which it DOES sign) and its notable refusal last year to sign a UN declaration on the global decriminalization of homosexuality - which it said was on the basis of "having principles". Don't forget the ANC government's stony silence on the widespread human rights abuses of our neighbouring African countries on the grounds of their sexuality. What about the overtures of the African Union of creating a pan-African Parliament and a union of these countries, including those who outlaw and persecute GLBT along with the one country in Africa which (so far) has not?
Interesting choices facing open minded voters and those with a mild pink streak this year, I would say. The field is looking narrower almost daily. I am starting to feel the same kind of nausea and sensation of mild panic I felt back in 1994. THis election is not just going to be about who will be president and which party will get a turn to rule - it is going to be about human rights - OUR human rights - and whether we will hang on to them - or whether we will have to fight even harder to keep them - or as the case may be - to get them back.
COPE, which late last year romanced the gay vote and then left them out of their manifesto and policies is now nothing less than a religious party already making noises about "morality" and "traditional family values".
ACDP and CDA and a host of other small fundamentalist parties have admitted discussing unity and forming one super "Christian" party after the elections. Their common denominator is their Christian fundamentalism and the desire to remove gay rights and marriage equality from the constitution and to recriminalize us all.
The ANC seems inclined to let them, as long as it can hold onto power, even if it has to sleep with the Devil to do it.
Frankly I'm starting to reach for the panic button. It's right next to my passport. But then I remember, this is my home too - and they have no right to drive me from it. Nor any right to treat me like a criminal or a second class citizen simply because of how I was born, or who I love - or to deny that I was created by the same god which the bigots claim made everybody else. They can take whatever they can from me by force, but I will will give them nothing. I won't ever give them that right.
The only party left for us is the DA - and I fear they may not be big enough to stand in everybody's way. But like me, they are big enough to get run over, and I intend to make the biggest speed bump I can.
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