In Court: LGBT People of Uganda vs. Scott Lively

Virulent anti-LGBT activist Scott Lively will appear in court today. He is being charged with “crimes against humanity” by the Ugandan LGBT advocacy organization, Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG). Today, a judge will hold a hearing on Lively’s petition to dismiss the charges.

Lively’s anti-LGBT words and actions have earned him a space on GLAAD’s Commentator Accountability Project, which provides history and context for anti-gay activists who appear on mainstream media. You will not hear him praising the “Kill the Gays bill” or declaring that the Nazis were gay militants on cable news networks, but his inflammatory rhetoric has created direct harm to LGBT people in Uganda. Here is a sampling of some of Lively’s work:

  • Called for the criminalization of "the public advocacy of homosexuality"
  • Warns parents about "poisonous" gays: "…the “gay rights” movement is not benign. Its history is a poisoned stream whose headwaters begin in the swamp of Sadean perversion and whose direction was set by the same people who created the Nazi Party. In America its course has run mostly through underground sewers until the past few decades when control of the movement fell into the hands of modern marketing experts who have hidden the truth under a white-washed facade of their own shrewd design. And it is this sugar-sweetened poison that is about to be spoon-fed to America’s public school students. It is a 'gay' Kool-Aid of dangerous lies and it is to our great shame that this once-Christian nation will allow these innocent children to consume it without so much as a whimper of protest."
  • Said: "The gay movement is an evil institution that’s goal is to defeat the marriage-based society and replace it with a culture of sexual promiscuity in which there’s no restrictions on sexual conduct except the principle of mutual choice."

The LGBT people of Uganda are fighting back. SMUG is being represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR). On Friday, CCR’s Executive Director wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post, detailing exactly why charges are being brought against Lively.

This case isn’t simply about Lively’s “hate preach.” He long ago moved beyond “mere” hatemongering when he became a kind of persecution consultant, strategizing with influential leaders and cohorts in other countries about ways to further silence and remove LGBT people from basic protections of the law, in particular by criminalizing their advocacy. Persecution, defined as the “severe deprivation of fundamental rights” on the basis of identity, is a crime under international law; to be exact, it’s a “crime against humanity.” This deprivation of fundamental rights of LGBT communities is exactly what Lively aims to bring about. Under U.S. law, foreign citizens who are the victims of crimes against humanity can sue American perpetrators of such crimes. And so Sexual Minorities of Uganda (SMUG) is suing Scott Lively for persecuting them. Staff from SMUG and other LGBT advocates who have suffered persecution --arrests, raids, and other severe deprivations of basic rights --will be there on Monday, when the Center for Constitutional Rights will have the honor of representing them in court.”

You can help publicize this hearing by participating in a Twitter rally today and supporting their courageous plaintiffs, who will be in court face to face with Lively. Follow CCR on twitter @theCCR the day of the hearing.  Retweet CCR’s posts to share in real time the events as they unfold in court. Show your support with the hash tag #StoptheHate.

You can use these tweets or create your own:

  • In #solidarity with @SMUG2004 & #Uganda's #LGBT community: Call on #ScottLively and other US evangelical Christian leaders to #StoptheHate!
  • Help @SMUG2004 & @theCCR stop #LGBT persecution at one of its most insidious roots: here at home w/ the likes of #ScottLively! #StoptheHate
  • Speak out against #ScottLively and other US evangelicals exporting their #LGBT hate agendas to #Uganda and other countries! #StoptheHate
  • #Uganda #KilltheGays dead for the moment but violence against #LGBT Ugandans is ongoing. Help @frankmugisha @theCCR #StoptheHate!