The Most Homophobic Countries Are Also the Top Searchers of Gay Porn on Google

Early on Friday (1/17/2014), Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni announced that he would not approve legislation recently passed by the country’s parliament that would not only make homosexuality punishable by life in prison, but would also imprison people for not reporting homosexuality within 24 hours.

Museveni basically said that legislating against “abnormality” would just make homosexuals go underground, and that the best way to deal with homosexuality was to improve the economy.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni

The magazine Mother Jones published a piece last year analyzing which countries used Google the most to search for gay porn. Kenya, Pakistan and Uganda, all of which have laws making homosexuality illegal, were at the top of the list.

To understand the extreme homophobia in Africa, it is crucial to note that talking publicly about sexuality is a huge cultural faux-pas not just in Uganda but across the continent, so very few Africans were even aware that there were homosexual communities within their countries until very recently.

David Bahati- Ugandan MP who co-sponsored the anti-gay lesgislation
David Bahati- Ugandan MP who co-sponsored the anti-gay lesgislation

A number of social psychologists are theorizing that the seemingly odd correlation between homophobia and homosexual curiosity (ie. Google searches) can be explained by Sigmund Freud’s “reaction-formation” theory.

The theory basically says that when people feel anxiety about something, they respond by overreacting in the opposite direction to try and compensate for their own internal battles.

Clearly, not everyone who is anti-gay is overcompensating for sexual-confusion, but in a country like Uganda where education levels are relatively low and most people are totally unfamiliar with homosexuality, it’s easy for a few fear-mongers to create mass paranoia, especially when they can also use God (through extreme Christian evangelism) to justify the witch-hunts.

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