The Controversy Of Homosexuality: A critical look at the issues that make legalizing homosexuality in Malawi difficult
Homosexuality still remains to be one of the most controversial issues in the world today. The United Nations and other human rights bodies have postulated that all laws that discriminate against people on the basis of their sexual orientation violate human rights. However, despite this, many countries around the world including Malawi still maintain laws that object to same-sex relationships. In Malawi the issue of homosexuality was not in the public domain until recently after the arrest of a gay couple in 2009. In reaction to the arrest, the government, religious leaders, traditional leaders condemned same-sex relationships. They asserted that homosexuality is against Malawian culture and is ultimately against the will of God. Since the arrest, there has been an intense debate between the Malawian Government and some Civil Society Organizations (and donors) on whether to legalize homosexuality or not. The study aimed at finding out the factors that could make legalizing homosexuality in Malawi complex. A qualitative study was employed to find out the attitudes that people have on same-sex-relationships. The study also aimed at finding out the reasons why people hold particular attitudes on same-sex relations. Religion, Culture, politics and the media were determined to be the major factors that shape peoples’ attitudes on same-sex relationships in Malawi. A discussion on how criminalization of homosexuality violates human rights in the Malawian context was also central to this study. The research concluded that the government should repeal the old colonial laws and enact new laws based on a number of facts unveiled in the research.
ForlagUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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