Target: President of Gambia, Yahya Jammeh
Goal: Abolish law that imprisons homosexuals for life
A cruel and inhumane law that discriminates against those who are homosexual was recently passed in Gambia. Those who have committed homosexual acts can now be imprisoned for life. This unethical law should be removed, as it violates the human right to freedom of expression. Urge President Yahya Jammeh to reconsider his stance, and instead focus his efforts on giving everyone the right to have sex with and marry whomever they wish.
President Jammeh has been extremely outspoken against homosexuals. In 2008, he instructed all gays and lesbians to leave the country or risk decapitation. The law sentences those who have committed homosexual acts or who have HIV and AIDS and was signed into law on October 9, 2014. The government, however, has not announced it to the public as they do not want their citizens to know that this inhumane law has passed.
Even more troubling are the lengths to which Gambian authorities will make victims confess their homosexual acts. Amnesty International gathered evidence to conclude that Gambian authorities were torturing victims in raids and threatening them with rape and other violence to force a confession, even if the victim was not guilty. These victims were also forced to give out the names of other gays or lesbians. This conduct is a grave violation of human rights, as torture is outlawed, and confessions obtained in this manner should never be used in a court of law.
President Jammeh does not believe in treating all human beings in a dignified manner, as can be seen by the way he treats homosexuals. A person’s sexual orientation should not be probable cause for a prison sentence or torture. The president should respect the wishes and actions of his people, not sentence them to jail. Sign this petition and urge President Jammeh to revoke his law and issue an apology.
Dear President Yahya Jammeh,
Recently you signed into law a piece of legislation that will sentence homosexuals to prison for life. I do not understand why you would give homosexuals such a harsh sentence when murderers and rapists should be the ones wallowing in jail. A person’s sexual orientation should not be your business, and it certainly should not be a reason for incarceration.
I implore you to remove this law immediately and issue an apology. Your people have human rights for a reason and you have no authority to remove these rights. If such an unethical law existed for straight people, you would no doubt be protesting.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Nxwj via Wikimedia Commons