Here is the editor behind this hatred.
This could have been a Nazi newspaper publishing the photos and names of Jews, but it’s 2015 and hatred again raises its ugly head.
Newspapers like Kenya’s ‘Weekly Citizen’ gains readers – not by raising the humanity of the country, but by stooping into the dirt, stooping into the sewer – and degrading its fellow citizens. It is still illegal to be gay in Kenya.
This scrum newspaper based in Nairobi, is under fire for publishing a list of Kenya’s “Top gays, lesbians,” in a move eerily reminiscent of media practices in neighboring Uganda that many believe have prompted homophobic attacks and murders.
Kenya’s Weekly Citizen, which bills itself as “Kenya’s most authoritative political newspaper,” published a front-page story featuring photos of what the paper describes as “Top gays, lesbians list in Kenya.”
“The article was clearly written to instigate violence towards the LGBT community and activists in particular, but that won’t stop us from fighting for our rights. We shall not be cowed or intimidated,” George Barasa, a Kenyan gay rights activist told Uganda’s Kuchu Times, a news outlet run by LGBT activists in east Africa.
Following Uganda’s “Rolling Stone” Newspaper
Newspapers in east Africa are no stranger to splashing the names and photos of leading LGBT activists, along with provactive headlines, across a publication’s front page. In 2011, a now-defunct Ugandan tabloid ran a similar article listing the country’s “Top Homos,” including prominent activist David Kato, under a text banner that read “Hang Them.”
Shortly after Kato’s picture appeared on the tabloid’s front page, he was bludgeoned to death with a hammer inside his own home. A judge ultimately rejected a “gay panic” defense from Kato’s killer, sentencing Enoch Nsubuga to 30 years in prison
Pastor Scott Lively
Many ugly and unChristian pastors like Scott Lively and Rick Warren went to Uganda to vent their hatred and lies about homosexuality. Scott Lively is facing charges of “Crimes Against Humanity,” in a USA court. Many link these visits with the death of David Kato.
Paper’s Online Commenters Reject Homophobic List
While the Citizen‘s list seems intended to incite anti-LGBT hatred, the good news is that readers seem to be unwilling to accept the transparent, homophobic premise of the coverage.
Comments on the newspaper’s website were overwhelmingly supportive of the gay and lesbian people outed by the publication, including words of encouragement directed at the activists listed who ventured into the Citizen‘s comment board. In fact, at press time, there was not a single comment supporting the list on the first page of comments at the paper’s own site.
‘If homophobes were looking to target people, if the police were looking to arrest people, if anti-gay youths were looking to attack some teen they assume is gay, they now have a face and a name,’ Denis Nzioka, one of the names mentioned, told Gay Star News.
‘We are now walking targets. While some of the people on the list are open about being gay, some are not. It is putting every person’s career, life and family at risk.’
Working together with fellow Kenyan LGBTI activist Eric Gitari, Nzioka is reaching out to every person mentioned in order to ensure they are out of danger.
They are currently considering a class action lawsuit against the newspaper for endangering the lives of the people listed in the article.
‘I would not be surprised if we see other names exposed,’ Nzioka added. ‘Right now, everyone in the community is a target. With the media ready to incite violence like this, we can’t think about the laws right now, we just have to ensure everyone stays safe.’