Posted by: zebbook | June 8, 2012

We Are All G.A.Y! – by @iDova

We Are All G.A.Y! – by Isi Esene

Sexuality is a touchy subject all over the world, more-so in Africa where such subjects are almost seen as taboo. On twitter, Babatunde Rosanwo got more than he bargained for when he questioned the decision of Covenant University authorities in expelling a final year student for allegedly engaging in lesbian conduct. The institution is a faith-based university located in Ota, Ogun State, and founded by a highly respected Bishop David Oyedepo.

A number of tweeps reacted by upbraiding the university authorities’ conduct, while majority of respondents supported the action describing the ‘offence’ committed (by the student) as unnatural and un-African. Some even went as far as suggesting the lady should be killed for her indiscretion.

There are several questions which I’d like to bring to the fore: Is it right for a ‘faith-based’ school operating under the constitution of Nigeria to trample on one’s right to freely express her sexuality? What good would her expulsion from the institution do to her psyche? Did she in any way coerce her fellow students into engaging in homosexual acts? Since she was the only one expelled, did she practise the act with herself? Has she been subjected to psychological evaluation or counselling before resorting to expulsion? Do the school rules and regulations supersede that of the Nigerian Constitution? The terse public statement released by the school did little to answer these questions and more.

Reading through Rosanwo’s timeline and digesting people’s contribution to the subject did not faze me one bit. Majority of Nigerians are intolerant of others’ idiosyncrasies, let alone a seemingly exotic sexual orientation. To us, anyone who engages in acts of homosexuality is an unbeliever (or infidel, depending on the faith one professes).

The Bible is clear in its position on homosexuality and I unreservedly subscribe to its stand. But the problem lies in the fact that we selectively define what is sin and what is not depending on how it relates to us. We manage to ignore the dead log in our eyes while we deride the proverbial speck in our neighbour’s eye.

The prevailing argument against homosexual practice among the responders was the fact that it ‘negates the natural order of sexual relations’ with many quoting the well-worn “Adam and Steve” cliché. By our warped estimation, corruption, adultery, pre-marital sex, lying, and gossiping are lesser sins compared to homosexuality and incest. Can you explain what is natural in the inordinate proportion of married individuals (especially men) who engage in extra-marital affairs with their innocent spouses at home getting the “just pray he changes” advice from friends and relatives? What is natural about our propensity to blame rape victims for being at the wrong place or/and indecently dressed, therefore deserving her comeuppance of sexual assault, not minding her emotional scar and stolen dignity?

As free citizens, every Nigerian has a right of choice as it relates to sexual orientation as long as it does not infringe upon the right of others. Homosexuality will remain legal in the country until a bill criminalizing it is signed into law by the government. Since various studies have shown that homosexuality is an acquired trait (not genetic) and “there is a strong evidence as to family dynamics in the development of homosexuality”; re-orientation can only be achieved by showing love and taking time to understand the anomaly. You do not change a person by condemning and judging them. An issue that is not understood can never be changed, rectified, or even accommodated.

Condemning others and outwardly posturing ourselves to be better individuals will not help the development of our faith. Even Jesus Christ spared the prostitute and condemned the Pharisees’ pseudo-piety. Let’s come together to properly identify the problems plaguing us as a society and proffer lasting solutions. We must be wary of joining the fanatical mob of hypocrites whose stock in trade is shouting “Crucify him, crucify him” at every opportunity. Because, whether we admit it or not, we are all GAY (Guilty Ass Youths).

Isi Esene

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  1. Well said, and well detailed article. I however commend this writer for an unbiased expression. As a matter of fact, i was not able to deduce whether the writer is of the Christian Belief or Islamic Belief.

    Nevertheless, i have a few thing to say. Anyone who applies to a Tertiary Institution or any Institution for that matter is indirecty implying that he/she shall abide to the rules and regulations of such establishment. Its not the case to say that ”but” the school actually advertised in dailies that they needed people. In as much as you apply,write their examination, get qualified,and actually pay the school fees and you admission has been certified, it means that you ordinately; diectly or indirectly have to abide by their rules.

    Now using the words of the writer..”is it right for a ”faith-based” -emphasis on faith based please- school operating under the constitution of Nigeria to trample on one’s right to freely express their sexuality?” These are not my words now. Now, i will concentrate on the words Faith Based. If i apply into a school like OAU,UNILAG,OOU etc, its fundamental that not being a Faith Based school to some extent, i can as well dress indecently to classes or around the school (after all, i have a right of expression right?). This is not the case with a school like Covenant,Redeemers etc and even Islamic Oriented schools. The reason for this is not far-fetched! Because they probably base their rules and regulations according to their Faith!

    Now, its not my intention to be mis-understood. I certainly refuse to accept the dismissal of the final year student. I see the purnishment as being discriminatory and even spiritually condemning. I wonder if students who are caught in exam malpractise, stealing etc are purnished likewise.

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