Canadian tax-funded academic boosts Tanzanian homophobia

Dr. Gary Badcock (Photo by Todd Townshend via Twitter)
Dr. Gary Badcock (Photo by Todd Townshend via Twitter)

Throughout Tanzania, male same-gender intimacy carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment, and according to reports, Canadian taxpayer-funded academic and Anglican theologian Dr. Gary Badcock is urging them to keep it that way.

A Canadian English teacher reported about Dr. Badcock’s homophobic remarks in Tanzania after she returned from a recent trip there for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of St Philip’s Theological College. She taught at the college from 2001-2002, which  is owned and operated by the Anglican church of Tanzania.

The College was founded by a missionary sent by Huron College, now part of the University of Western Ontario. Therefore, Huron sent Dr. Gary Badcock as their representative.

During his keynote speech at the historic centenary celebration on Saturday November 8, Dr. Badcock is reported to have said that homosexuality was a “first world” problem and that Tanzanians should be worried because homosexuals will come and steal their children.  Dr. Badcock is part of the ultra-conservative Anglican Network in Canada that has objected to the full inclusion of LGBT people as equal members of the Anglican Communion.

As I have written before in Erasing 76 Crimes,  this is not the first time that Canadian taxpayers have helped to spread homophobia around the globe.  On March 6 this year, during Michigan’s marriage-equality case, economist Douglas Allen of the publicly funded Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, was called as an expert witness. Under oath on the witness stand, Allen claimed that same-sex parenting was detrimental to children, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.  Additionally, the Canadian government funded a notoriously anti-gay group in Uganda. This support was eventually suspended after an outcry by Canadian LGBT activists.

The Canadian government has made a point of declaring human rights for LGBT people to be a central plank of their overseas development agenda.  It is therefore surprising that Canadian public funds are being used to support the restriction, or elimination, of those very same rights.

Editor`s comment: 

Huron college and Western university are publicly funded by the Government of Ontario as the Provinces have exclusive jurisdiction for Education in Canada. The Government of Canada provides some funding generally to the Provinces through transfer payments which the Provinces decide how to spend.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2011, he launched Erasing 76 Crimes and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, including the Erasing 76 Crimes news site and the African Human Rights Media Network. Contact him via Twitter @76crimes or by email at Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.

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