LEADING NEWS SOURCE FOR TURKEY AND THE REGION

AFRICA > I would not worship a homophobic God, South Africa's Tutu says

CAPE TOWN - Agence France-Presse

Print Page Send to friend »
Archbishop Emeritus and Nobel Peace Laureate, Desmond Tutu (L) speaks, as Constitutional Court Judge, and openly gay man, Edwin Cameron listens at a press conference announcing the launch of Free & Equal, a United Nations global public education campaign for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality on July 26, 2013 in Cape Town. AFP PHOTO / RODGER BOSCH

Archbishop Emeritus and Nobel Peace Laureate, Desmond Tutu (L) speaks, as Constitutional Court Judge, and openly gay man, Edwin Cameron listens at a press conference announcing the launch of Free & Equal, a United Nations global public education campaign for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality on July 26, 2013 in Cape Town. AFP PHOTO / RODGER BOSCH

South African peace icon Desmond Tutu on Friday said he would rather go to hell than worship a homophobic God, likening the fight against gay prejudice to the anti-apartheid struggle.

"I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven. No, I would say sorry, I mean I would much rather go to the other place," the retired archbishop said at the launch of a United Nations gay equality campaign in Cape Town.

"I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this," he said, condemning the use of religious justification for anti-gay prejudice.

Launched by the UN Human Rights Office, the public education campaign "Free and Equal" aims to raise awareness of anti-gay violence and discrimination.

Tutu, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, compared the project to the fight South Africans waged to end the former white racist minority rule, a struggle in which he played a pivotal role.

"I am as passionate about this campaign as I ever was about apartheid. For me, it is at the same level," the 81-year-old said.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said same-sex relationships are illegal in more than a third of countries around the world and punishable by death in five.

Even in countries where gay rights are upheld challenges remain, she said, noting that South Africa has "some of the worst cases of homophobic violence" despite having some of the world's best legal protections.

The country has seen brutal, deadly attacks on lesbians, who also risk falling victim to what is known as "corrective rape".

A South African lesbian was last month found dead, having been sexually assaulted with a toilet brush.

"People are literally paying for their love with their lives," said Pillay.

The campaign, which aims to push for legal reforms and public education against homophobia, will have a strong focus on working with governments.

"I constantly hear governments tell me 'but this is our culture, our tradition and we can't change it'... So we have lots of work to do," said Pillay.

July/26/2013

PRINTER FRIENDLY Send to friend »

READER COMMENTS

Notice on comments

john stevens

7/28/2013 1:07:03 PM

Well mr tutu looks like you are going to hell. Even the elect will be deceived in the end times. GOD is the creator not man and mans imagination is not that good that as to make up somthing so real as GOD, he set rules in place so that we may not go to hell, SO THERE WILL BE NO WAR, MURDER, LIES, HOMOSEXUALITY, THIEVING, FORNICATION, RAPE, BLASPHEMY AND SO ON.

Erik Johansson

7/27/2013 6:49:05 PM

@Aaron Cohen. In fact Jesus did not say anything about homosexuality. What He did say though is that love is greater than anything else. If we are sincere when we say that all true love comes from God, that love comes first and breeding is just one aspect of it, we should not condemn those who cannot fall in love with people of the opposite sex.

andrea dealmagro

7/27/2013 6:34:20 PM

I am with the Archbishop. Personally, I believe we made up God and if I am wrong I can't wait to meet the God who has permitted so much evil to be done in his name everywhere.

Red Tail

7/27/2013 4:25:39 PM

Mark you write "Love everyone, but don't approve of everything". Tutu is a HUMAN not God. It is not up to him to approve other peoples lifestyle, just like it is not up to me to approve how you or Tutu for that matter want to live his life. Just let people live the way they want and which makes them happy. I am glad though to see that Tutu, using his position, tries to reduce discrimination and instead has a more inclusive and loving attitude to fellow human beings, We do not need more hate

american american

7/27/2013 2:39:45 PM

and yet you do!

hanni bal

7/27/2013 2:11:15 PM

Good and evil and its complexity.

Aaron Cohen

7/27/2013 7:48:33 AM

Also just as Jesus says: Leviticus 20:13 NAB "If a man lies with a male as with a women, both of them shall be put to death for their abominable deed; they have forfeited their lives." . This nonsense of believing such an archaic non nonsensical belief system goes beyond any comprehension or understanding as to why this priest would even call himself a christian, if he decides to go against the very belief he stands for! Who cares its only Jesus. How convenient

Falk Bernard

7/27/2013 4:35:43 AM

The same could be said of paedophilia or bestiality. Only if you're powerful enough, you can impose your plans to others, in this case the gay lobby. I read also this campaign "Free and Equal" is financed by external groups. Who are those groups?

Rimon Tree

7/26/2013 11:41:20 PM

When will you guys eventually realize that all this god-business is men's invention to discipline societies or claim power over people or having hallucinations or wishful thinking! Wake up! We are living in 21st scientific century! Try to live an honest life caring for yourself and for others, that's all the best you can achieve and die in dignity!

Mark Stephan

7/26/2013 5:25:10 PM

Homophobic = to be afraid of homosexuals.Can God be afraid? All humans are sinners; liars, sexually immoral, etc. all are sinners against God. God is not afraid of their sin. Yet, as God isn't afraid of our sin, doesn't mean he accepts it or approves of it. Yet just as Jesus says, Luke 10:27, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart & with all your soul & with all your strength & with all your mind’; &, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Love everyone, but don't approve of everything.
< >

MOST POPULAR

AcerPro S.I.P.A HTML & CSS Agency