February 4th, 2010
10:03 AM ET
5 years ago

Obama criticizes Ugandan anti-homosexuality bill

President Barack Obama strongly criticized controversial anti-homosexuality legislation being considered by Uganda's legislature during an appearance Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast.
President Barack Obama strongly criticized controversial anti-homosexuality legislation being considered by Uganda's legislature during an appearance Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast.

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama strongly criticized controversial anti-homosexuality legislation being considered by Uganda's legislature during an appearance Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast.

The organization which sponsors the breakfast, the Fellowship Foundation, has been associated with efforts to pass the bill, according to the ethics group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW).

The measure would punish sexual activity between persons of the same sex with long jail terms or death.

It is "unconscionable to target gays or lesbians for who they are," Obama said.

The measure being considered in Uganda is "odious," he added.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also criticized the bill during an appearance at the breakfast.

CREW had protested Obama's appearance at the breakfast, claiming in a statement that the event "designed to appear as if government-sanctioned, actually serves as a meeting and recruiting event for the shadowy Fellowship Foundation," also known as "The Foundation" and "The Family."


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (73 Responses)
  1. Sgt. USMC

    Oh get over it you monsters... quit trying to make the President out to be an anti-American, anti-gay, anti-white, etc... You guys need to get a life!!!

    February 4, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  2. Cindy

    As much as I agree with the President, he has NO business in another countries business.

    Let's get back to what ails us before we take on "NeoLib" stances on other's stances.

    NEOCON = one who believes that OUR democracy should be had everywhere in the world.

    NEOLIB= one who believes our social standards should be had everywhere in the world.

    February 4, 2010 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  3. Tram

    A bill like this should be criticized, stomped on, shredded, ripped up, tossed in the garbage - you get the idea.

    February 4, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  4. T'SAH from Virginia

    EVERYONE wants to challenge everything President Obama does...

    President Obama is a very intelligent man and knows how to use his PLATFORM to get his points across. Instead of DEMANDING he not attend the breakfast, CREW should have DEMANDED he challenged the anti-homosexuality legislation – WHICH HE DID!!!! Jeez!

    STOP underestimating our politicians and making EVERYTHING this administration does TABOO!!!

    February 4, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  5. Lacharga

    Way to turn a prayer breakfast into a political speech. Come on man! Quit talking and start doing. I'm sick of Prez Obama reading his telepromter saying he's gonna do this and is gonna do that. Action speaks louder than words. And he sure isn't acting on any of his promises.

    February 4, 2010 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  6. Tom Tracy

    What are we going to complain about next. For years the President has been going to the Prayer Breakfast. Now its an issue. This constant bickering on every issue is really sickening.

    February 4, 2010 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  7. An 8 year old ELEPHANT dung heap, does not transform into compost in just 1 year!

    BAM! Take that CREW.

    I will take a President that goes to the breakfast and confronts the issue over a President that stays silent and avoids the issue and the breakfast!

    February 4, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  8. c spurgeon

    Good for him. It is an odious thing and should not be supported by any decent American...

    February 4, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  9. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I love Barack Obama but he needs to stay out of this.

    BEING GAY IS WRONG AND IMMORAL!!!!

    Barack has shown his true talent and that is criticizing others. He talks down to everyone.

    February 4, 2010 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  10. Tony

    Why, it's almost as if we now have a President who "thinks" and we can't seem to handle it. Wake up, so-called adults! Life is complicated – not black and white and this guy actually acknowledges that. We all personally witnessed the folly of "pretending" the world is simple under W (gave us Iraq, corporate excess, along with worldwide disrespect). If we choose to go BACK down that road again, he (Obama) ain't the problem – it's US!

    February 4, 2010 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  11. Chris D.

    That was very brave Mr. Prez. Kudos.

    February 4, 2010 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  12. A4H

    Obama should concentrate on across the tax cut and cut on entitlement programs, eliminate Department of Education, eliminate Department of Energy and IRS; instead of talking about Uganda anti-homosexual bill, it's NONE of our business to interfer what Uganda is doing; we have enough problem in this country with unemployment increased again last week by 8,000; YES Obama last week 8,000 Americans lost their job – for christ sake WORK instead of talk!. The Mayor of Las Vegas is correct, Obama is a SLOW LEARNER.

    February 4, 2010 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  13. polly

    Agree with Obama on this one.

    February 4, 2010 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  14. Caesar the Great

    I also dont agree with this bill. But last I checked Uganda was its own country and allowed to make its own laws. Mr. President, start focusing on the US for once.

    February 4, 2010 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  15. shame

    Bravo to the Uganda government for having the guts to do the right thing!!

    February 4, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  16. independent_josh

    We know liberals and homosexuals are anti-christians. It is not a surprise. But they will be defeated in November.

    February 4, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  17. Marc

    'President Barack Obama strongly criticized controversial anti-homosexuality legislation being considered by Uganda's legislature'
    There is NOTHING controversial about this legislation.
    It is an attack on a specific group of persons based solely in what they are, not what they've done. State Sponsored Persecution of a Minority.
    Pure and simply that.
    Didn't those guys with the swastika had similar legislation?

    February 4, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  18. RTB

    The President appearing at the breakfast and speaking strongly against the hateful Ugandan legislation would prove more powerful than boycotting
    it. His action is indeed bringing attention to a barbaric act.

    February 4, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  19. pkb

    After watching Rachel Maddow's show in which she described this organization which sponsors the National Prayer Breakfast, this President should have excused himself. I hope next year, he will say no.

    February 4, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  20. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    And the thing is, if they had their way, the so-called "Christians" in our government would propose legislation like this. As Frank Zappa said: If there is a hell, surely its fires wait for them and not for us. Organized religion of all types should be destroyed. Have a nice day!

    February 4, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  21. morgan thomas

    No wonder Hillary doesn't like the bill.

    February 4, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  22. nannette

    Obama was right to criticize the Ugandan bill. Good for him! Gay people are children of God, too.

    February 4, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  23. Sniffit

    CREW, like all special interests who like to make headlines by inventing some cacamamee nonsense like "showing up to engage people in discussion is automatically sanctioning their position," shouldn't really receive the press they get...it's free advertising and that's why they say these things...but they will continue to get it because the "news" media is drunk on "controversy" and corporate advertising revenue.

    February 4, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  24. MC

    Good for him, this bill is a outrage to human rights, shame on Uganda!! SHAME!

    February 4, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  25. J. Richter

    CREQ jumped the Shark on this one.

    Obama attending and criticizing a law criminalizing a private way of life no matter if its mainstream or other sheds more light on the issue in a dcisive way than if he stayed away.

    Its like the argument that somehow avoiding or not talking to adversaries will somehow marginalize or defeat them. You can talk to AND still take on those who you dont agree with and also highlight areas you agree on.

    February 4, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
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