The US Republican Executive Committee Members of the Tom Lantos Human Rights CommissionÂ has appeal to the Ugandan President, Mr Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to soft pedal on the proposed anti-homosexual law.
The letter signed byÂ Frank Wolf, Chris Smith, Rep. Joe Pitts,Trent Franks, and Anh â€œJosephâ€ Cao for the committeeÂ frowned at theÂ Â life sentence and mandatory death penalty the Uganda government is planning to entrench in it constitution.
The letter reads in part thus
Dear President Museveni:
We write to you in our capacity as Republican Executive Committee Members of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission in the U.S. House of Representatives.
We were deeply troubled to learn of legislation being considered in the Ugandan parliament that would reportedly penalize a single act of homosexual conduct with a life sentence and a mandatory death penalty if the person is HIV-positive.
While we understand that the legislation is being amended, we still urge you to oppose it.
President Ronald Reagan famously referred to the U.S. Constitution as a â€œcovenant we have made not only with ourselves, but with all of mankind.â€Â In this spirit, we, as elected officials, aim to advocate for human liberty and dignity around the world.
As such, we ask that your government continue to make it clear that you are opposed to such legislation and that you do everything within your constitutional authority to stop such legislation from becoming law in Uganda.
Earlier this month, American faith leaders Charles Colson of Prison Fellowship Ministries, Robert P. George of Princeton University and Timothy George of Beeson Divinity School voiced â€œgrave concernâ€ in a letter to Ugandan faith leaders characterizing this proposed legislation in the following way: â€œThe harshness of these proposals is, we believe, inconsistent with a Christian spirit of love and mercy.â€
As you may know these men are the primary architects of a historic document called the Manhattan Declaration, which at the time of its release on November 20, 2009, was signed by more than 140 leaders representing every branch of American Christianity.
The Manhattan Declaration has been characterized as a call to â€œChristian Conscience.â€
As Members of Congress, and as men of faith, we support the principles set forth in the Manhattan Declaration and are thankful for the principled position of these faith leaders on a host of issues, from the sanctity of life for the unborn and others, to religious freedom, to human dignity, to the belief that marriage is an institution between one man and one woman.
Furthermore, we firmly believe that people of faith have a moral obligation to be involved in the public square.
In fact, people of faith have been central to many of the great moral debates of modern times, including the abolition of the slavery and racial segregation, the call to end apartheid and discrimination, and the battle against human trafficking just to name a few.
Often times these individuals were propelled by a foundational Christian belief in the inherent dignity and worth of all men and women.Â We believe this legislation, if enacted, would be antithetical to that premise.
Thank you for your consideration of these concerns.
Rep. Chris Smith
Rep. Joe Pitts
Rep. Trent Franks
Rep. Anh â€œJosephâ€ Cao