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Texting while gay is a crime — in Cameroon

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Post Partisan (The Washington Post)
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December 19, 2012
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As gay men and lesbians in the United States fret over whether the Supreme Court will affirm the humanity and dignity of same-sex couples by granting them the right to marry, Roger Jean-Claude Mbédé frets for his life. Yesterday, an appeals court in Cameroon upheld his conviction for violating that repressive nation’s anti-gay laws. His offense? He sent a picture of himself holding a sign that read “I’m very much in love w/u” via text message to another man. Mbédé had already served half of a three-year sentence when he was released from jail in July. Unless the Cameroon supreme court throws out the appeals-court ruling, the 32-year-old man will be tossed back in jail. “I am going back to the dismal conditions that got me critically ill before I was temporarily released for medical reasons,” he told the Associated Press by telephone. “I am not sure I can put up with the anti-gay attacks and harassment I underwent at the hands of fellow inmates and prison authorities on account of my perceived and unproven sexual orientation. The justice system in this country is just so unfair.”