Huarrah! Google hasn't caved to the Kenyan government's demands for this powerful gay rights music video to be taken down.
Positive gay rights news incoming: Google has seemingly ignored a request from the Kenyan government to remove a LGBT music video.
Kenyan band Art Attack covered Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ song Same Love uploading their accompanying music video to YouTube last month, but the Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) denied the video a license on the basis that it did not not ‘adhere to the morals of the country’ and they were worried that the country would turn into ‘Sodom and Gomorrah’. (No you haven’t time-travelled back to the dark ages, it’s still 2016 and that was the KFCB’s actual response).
The regulatory body then had the audacity to threaten Google with legal action (LOL) as the video was uploaded onto YouTube’s servers without their ‘permission’.
According to AllAfrica, KFCB Chief Executive Ezekiel Mutua warned Google (on March 1st) that it had just one week to comply.
He said: ‘Kenya must not allow its people to become the Sodom and Gomorrah of the current age through psychological drive from such content.
‘The video currently circulating on YouTube consists of lyrics that strongly advocate for gay rights in Kenya, complete with graphic sexual scenes between people of the same gender, as well as depiction of nudity and pornography.
‘We have written to Google to remove the video from their platforms. We expect they will do it within one week from now to avoid further violation of the law.’
But unsurprisngly, the multi-billion conglomerate Google isn’t scared of Kenya’s discriminatory film board and has shrugged off the threat and kept the video online – which has now been watched almost 150,000 times. What’s more, the controversy sparked by the KFCB’s response (and the fact that the board tweeted out the link to the very video they wanted to ban) has caused #KenyanGayVideo to trend on Twitter.
The music video contains footage of two Kenyan women kissing, as well as images of anti-gay protests in Nairobi and president Barack Obama’s visit, with the chorus containing the lyrics ‘I can’t change even if I tried’ which plays over a montage of disturbing newspaper headlines, which read things like ‘Homos Are Filthy’.
Art Attack said they set out to provoke a gay rights debate with their cover, after the original song was used by Macklemore to campaign for gay rights in US back in 2012. In the East African nation, homosexuality is punishable by up to 14 years in jail.
‘We expected that this will create controversy, we expected that a lot of people will talk about it but we didn’t expect the amount of publicity it has received’ they said to Reuters.
Watch the powerful video in full below: