The wealthy will get abortions, buy alcohol after curfew, and sleep with people of the same sex without fear of retribution even though all of these activities are illegal.For Kenyans who have the money to circumvent it, the written law is irrelevant.It did, however, launch gay rights into the public consciousness, with columnists, TV personalities and average citizens discussing their campaigns and likelihood of winning.
Like many of its laws, Kenya’s legislation criminalizing homosexuality hasn’t changed since the country was colonized.
Last year, discussions of gay rights played a prominent role in the nomination proceedings for Kenya’s new chief justice. Willy Mutunga, the nominee, was responsible for the public registration of a gay rights organization, Kenya Gay, and has been an outspoken advocate of gay rights.
He also wears a diamond stud in one ear, which has caused more than one Kenyan eyebrow to raise.
Accordingly, gay rights were seldom discussed publicly or privately.
In 2012, just over a decade later, 14 different LGBT organizations are registered as part of the Gay and Lesbian Coalition of Kenya (GALK), an umbrella organization and the face of gay rights activism in Nairobi.