Internet Helps Africans and Arabs 'Come Out'
Despite repression and hostility towards the gay and lesbian population in Africa, many have still revealed themselves. However, they had revealed themselves through the means of the internet. In a sense it is more convenient because it is generally easier with the sense of anonymity. In Africa, the sense of anonymity is very helpful.
One such blogger is a man named Ali. He posted a blog entry that he was Sudanese and gay. But, Ali did not know that he was not alone. He would learn that there was indeed a network of people in Africa let alone Sudan both African and Middle Eastern who were gay, lesbian, or bisexual.
The site known as “black-gay-arab.blogspot.com” would be flooded with all sorts of incoming messages coming in.
“Keep up the good work,” wrote ‘Gay by nature,’ who is a Middle Eastern blogger from Kuwait.
“Be proud and blog the way you like,” Kuwait’s gayboyweekly had written.
Those blog entries would soon be flooded with all sorts of posted comments with links. It was shown that they were not alone. There were others like them who are from Africa and the Middle East.
Like many bloggers, Ali had kept himself anonymous. It was important that they stay cautious for the time being. Homosexuality is outlawed in most nations within Africa and the Middle East. Penalties for acts of homosexuality are very stiff which can bright either life in prison or execution.
“The whole idea started as a diary. I wanted to write what’s on my mind and mainly about homosexuality,” Ali said to Reuters through an e-mail. He added: “To tell you the truth, I didn’t expect this much response.”
While they cannot publicly come out of the “closet,” they are doing more than enough to spread the message by blogging. It shows that there are other ways of coming out. They have taken full advantage of the internet.
“If you haven’t heard or seen any gays in Sudan then allow me to tell you ‘You Don’t live In The Real World then,’” Ali wrote in his blog. He added: “I’m Sudanese and Proud Gay Alos.”
While they have received positive reception, they too have received lots of negative criticism and abuse on their blogs through replies or e-mails.
A commentator called ‘blake’ posted on the blog called Kenya’s ‘Rants and raves.’
“I will put my loathing for you faggots aside momentarily, due to the suffering caused by the political situation,” the commentator said in regards to the post-election violence in Kenya over the disputed polls. Currently, there are talks going on in regards to a power-sharing deal.
This still shows that gays throughout Africa and the Middle East still go through persecution.
Tags: Sudan , Africa , Middle East , Homosexuality
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.