Monday, December 14, 2009

Williams on Ugandan Legislation

Archbishop Rowan Williams Finally Expresses a Bit of a Quavering, Timid, God-Forbid-I-Should-Be-Charged-with-Colonialism Misgivings about the Ugandan “Anti-Homosexuality” Law

Q: What could possibly be worse than the Archbishop of Canterbury remaining silent on the proposed "anti-homosexuality" legislation in Uganda?
A: His expression of quasi-support for the damnable legislation.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has managed to achieve the worst possible statement now.

Thank God for the Episcopal Church I love ... and the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri which I treasure. If I were judging Christianity in general and the Anglican Communion in particular based on the "courage" and "leadership" of Rowan Williams, I'd choose atheism over Anglicanism.

Episcopal Life Online reports:

In a Dec. 12 interview with a London newspaper, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said legislation pending in the Ugandan Parliament that would introduce the death penalty for people who violate portions of that country's anti-homosexuality laws "is of shocking severity."

These were the first public comments Williams has made about the proposed changes to Uganda's existing laws against homosexuality. The bill being advanced by a member of parliament has drawn opposition from leaders and advocates in the Episcopal Church and elsewhere.

The news story goes on. Read it. I’m grateful that Episcopal Life ran the story.

It’s high time that the Purportedly-Intellectual-and-Spiritual Bearded One has finally found a moment in which he could align his vertebrae so he could express some “misgivings” about this hideous legislation from Uganda. Of course, it’s embarrassing that the purported “leader” of the Anglican Communion took a lot longer than His Odium, Pope Benedict XVI, to reach this obvious conclusion.

Alas and alack … What is one to do when Benedict XVI is a downright progressive compared to the Archbishop of Canterbury??

Mind you, Archbishop Rowan Williams does not oppose the hideous legislation. He merely thinks the death penalty is “of shocking severity.”

Gosh! Ya think????

Let’s cut to the chase: His supposed friend Jeffrey Johns would be sentenced to death in Uganda. Death! So would the gay/lesbian priests Rowan has knowingly ordained and the closeted gay bishops he has knowingly consecrated. And Rowan simply thinks the law might, MIGHT! be “of shocking severity.” Well … I think Rowan Williams might be a victim of shocking cowardice and (as they say in the Ozarks) pure chicken-shittedness. In a word, he is an embarrassment.

Here’s the “letter to the editor” that I sent to Episcopal Life in response to
their story about the Grand Tufti's quavering misgivings about the proposed Ugandan legislation:

===

Dear Editor:

Thank you for sharing the news that Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, has finally managed to express some qualified misgivings about the anti-homosexuality law currently under consideration in Uganda. He took a mere 12 hours to decry the election of a lesbian as bishop suffragan in Los Angeles, but apparently required weeks and weeks to decide that perhaps there’s a problem with imposing the death penalty on homosexuals in Uganda.

You wrote: "Opponents fear that people, including family members and clergy, who support and advise homosexual people could be prosecuted and punished under the proposed law." I think you are dancing much too carefully on this point. This is not simply a matter of what some opponents fear. The legislation is clear: If anyone in Uganda knows a person has had homosexual relations and fails to report it to the Ugandan government, that person would be liable to imprisonment. This would include priests to whom a person made a confession; the draconian Ugandan law allows no exception. Secular and religious people throughout the world – with the exception of the Archbishop of Canterbury (until now) – have opposed this part of the legislation.

As currently written, the Ugandan law would impose its penalties even on Ugandans who "commit the sin of homosexuality" in Antarctica or in the U.S. or anywhere else on this planet. Under the proposed law, the Ugandan government would have the right to extradite that person and imprison or kill him/her. The current Archbishop of York, Ugandan by birth, was able to gain asylum in England. No such asylum would be allowed to Ugandan-born homosexuals, if the Ugandan law is passed.

You wrote: "He [Archbishop Williams] also noted that while the Anglican Church in Uganda opposes the death penalty its archbishop, Henry Orombi, has not taken a position on the proposed changes to the law."
Would you please direct me to the official statement from the Anglican Church in Uganda, in which it has stated its opposition to the death penalty proposed under this law? I may have missed it, but – in my weeks of monitoring this legislation – I have seen no statement in which the Anglican Church of Uganda has taken any official statement/position against this legislation. In fact, several of the Anglican priests and bishops in Uganda have been at the forefront advocating for the passage of this legislation. So I hope you will correct me and direct me to some official statement in which the Anglican Church in Uganda has breathed a word of opposition to – or even doubt about – this legislation.

As you are surely aware, Roman Catholic Pope Benedict XVI – certainly no friend of "homosexuality" – decried the hideous Ugandan legislation several days ago. The U.S. Department of State decried it months ago, as have myriad human rights organizations throughout the world. I am pleased that Archbishop Williams has finally tumbled to the conclusion that has been so abundantly clear to secular and religious leaders throughout the world for weeks and months. Better late than never, I suppose, that we are finally hearing from the supposed “leader” of the Anglican Communion.

====

I know that many of you have been much more outspoken and effective than I on this topic. This is my meager offering.

Frankly, I think Archbishop Williams' timid, chicken-shit misgivings about the Ugandan legislation have me even more angry than the inept, quavering silence he had maintained until now.

Has the Archbishop of Canterbury utterly lost the courage and voice that that marvelous bishop in Wales, Rowan Williams, once had?? I desperately miss that brave Welsh guy.

6 Comments:

Blogger Ann said...

ya think? wow - a good one.

12/14/2009 11:05 PM  
Blogger Fivestones said...

Lisa, I'm with you. I was surprised to find that Williams could still disappoint me. Having seen some speeches and essays by him before he became abc I was so excited. Since then it's been one giant /facepalm.

12/14/2009 11:11 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Yes, Ann. And yes, Fivestones. I grieve the loss of that wonderful Welsh priest whose statements and writings I treasured.

12/14/2009 11:26 PM  
Blogger Suem said...

Absolutely spot on. His answers on the Ugandan legislation in this interview were an exercise in hypocrisy and cowardice.

12/15/2009 2:09 PM  
Blogger MarkBrunson said...

Lisa,

If you haven't seen it already, go to MadPriest's and see this.

I'm too livid to talk about it much, but I'm absolutely sickened by the backpedaling and qualifying this Richardson person does to justify having written such a vile pile of garbage.

12/16/2009 3:40 AM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thanks for that link, Mark. The Ugley Vicar leaves me speechless. Yuck!

12/16/2009 11:20 AM  

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