New Report: How the US Christian Right is Transforming Sexual Politics in Africa

August 2, 2012 • Family Planning, HIV/AIDS, Africa, News

The following article, published at RH Reality Check, gives an overview of a recent study conducted by Political Research Associates, which specializes in researching the activities of right-leaning organizations and individuals. Specifically, they are “devoted to supporting movements that are building a more just and inclusive democratic society. We expose movements, institutions, and ideologies that undermine human rights.” The report is devoted to analyzing how interests in based in the United States have been working to persecuting sexual minorities and oppose reproductive rights in various countries on the African continent.

You can review the executive summary here (PDF):

The full report is also available here (PDF):

New Report: How the US Christian Right is Transforming Sexual Politics in Africa

by Malika Redmond, Political Research Associates

July 25, 2012


Even as delegates gather in Washington, D.C. for the XIX International Aids conference, Political Research Associates released its latest report, Colonizing African Values: How the U.S. Christian Right is Transforming Sexual Politics in Africa, documenting the U.S. Christian Right’s attempts to push an ideology hostile to reproductive and LGBT rights on sub-Saharan African countries.

In one notorious example in Tanzania in 2008, billboards depicted a “Faithful Condom User” as a skeleton — a blatant attempt to discourage condom use as an effective HIV prevention method. Blazoned in clear letters underneath was the billboard’s sponsor: Human Life International (HLI), a group based in the United States.

This timely report, written by religion and sexuality researcher Rev. Dr. Kapya Kaoma, explores how HLI–and other U.S. based Christian Right actors-try to position themselves as key moral leaders shaping African political, public health, and social agendas.

A Roman Catholic organization, Human Life International (HLI) is staunchly opposed to contraception, abortion (with zero exceptions), stem cell research, in vitro fertilization, sex education, and homosexuality. HLI’s director of research and training Brian Clowes, one of the organization’s longest-serving staffers, is responsible for much of the overseas work and is known for explicating doctrinal points, such as the opposition to even “hard case” abortions.

But HLI is not the only U.S. Christian Right group peddling corrosive reproductive politics in Africa. Sharon Slater, head of Family Watch International, a small Arizona-based group, wins a platform with mainstream Christian leaders for her message condemning the United Nations’ efforts to support family planning services and reproductive health options for women. In addition to opposing contraception use, Slater and HLI air conspiracy theories that exploit and exacerbate otherwise healthy concerns about the ethics of Western public health interventions. One such theory charges that vaccine distribution is really a secret sterilization program designed to destroy the African family.

To read the full article, please click here:

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