Global scientists tell Uganda: Homosexuality is “natural and normal”


Yoweri Museveni, the President of Uganda, has called for scientists to explain homosexuality (Photo: GODL-India)

Responding to a request by the president of Uganda, leading scientists from around the world have outlined what science has concluded about homosexuality.

President Yoweri Museveni previously questioned the medical or scientific views on same-sex attraction.

Last month he said: “The homosexuals are deviations from normal. Why? Is it by nature or nurture? We need to answer these questions. We need a medical opinion on that.”

Museveni has suggested that this could play a role in his decision to sign or veto the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which was recently passed by the Ugandan Parliament.

Now, 15 leaders in their scientific fields from across Africa and the world have come forward with a response in an open letter to the Ugandan leader.

“We cannot say this enough,” said the scientists, “homosexuality is a normal and natural variation of human sexuality. The science on this subject is crystal clear and we call on you in the strongest possible terms to veto the bill in the name of science.”

They cited, for example, the largest-ever scientific study into the genetics of same-sex sexual behaviour which analysed a huge sample of nearly half a million people.

“What did it find? Genetics plays a role in homosexuality. And in fact, it does not just come from one gene, but many,” they said.

The scientists quoted one of the lead researchers from that study who said: “I hope that the science can be used to educate people a little bit more about how natural and normal same-sex behaviour is.”

There’s clear evidence for same-sex relationships in Africa dating back hundreds of years

They urged Museveni to also listen to his very own Uganda National Academy of Sciences or fellow African scientists at the Academy of Science of South Africa.

“In fact, we cannot think of one major scientific organisation – from the World Health Organisation to the World Health Assembly and beyond – which would argue against the idea homosexuality is not normal and natural.”

The scientists also addressed misguided and false narratives that have been accepted as fact in Uganda and in other parts of Africa; that people can be “recruited” into homosexuality and that it is being conspiratorially introduced into Africa by the West.

“Science does not only tell us that homosexuality is normal and natural, it also tells us that it is not ‘socially contagious’. You cannot catch it, like the common cold. You cannot be indoctrinated into it – exposure to rainbow flags will not make a child gay,” they explained.

“Nor is it a Western import – despite what you and many of your citizens have heard. Sexual orientation is not limited to any specific region. It is not confined by borders drawn on a map. It needs no passport to travel. Indeed, there’s clear evidence for same-sex relationships in Africa dating back hundreds of years.”

Science, they said, has also refuted the dangerous myths that homosexuality encourages paedophilia, and that HIV is a “gay disease”.

“In fact, laws, like the one you are considering signing, actually make it more difficult to monitor and control sexually transmitted diseases,” the scientists stated.

“This law is unscientific. We urge you in the strongest terms to veto the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, in light of the wide scientific consensus that homosexuality is a normal and natural variation of human sexuality,” concluded the scientists.

Those who signed the letter include several South Africans, such as Professor Glenda Gray (President and CEO of the South African Medical Research Council), as well as other scientists from the USA, Canada, Kenya, the UK and Australia.

If signed by President Museveni, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, 2023 will impose the death sentence for “aggravated homosexuality” and young people under the age of 18 who engage in “homosexual acts” could be jailed for three years.

It will also jail anyone who participates in a same-sex marriage, who “promotes homosexuality”, or who runs an LGBTIQ+ organisation, as well as anyone who offers accommodation to LGBTIQ+ people.

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