Afrikaans singer Steve Hofmeyr is currently sitting in hot water with the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), following its investigation into his comments on Disney’s expansion toward LGBTIQ+ inclusivity.
The SAHRC is now charging Hofmeyr a fine of half a million rand according to multiple reports.
The video, which went out on 1 April and has since been deleted, appears to see Hofmeyr imply that the LGBTQI+ inclusion for characters was akin to bestiality, the SAHRC’s official statement on the matter expresses.
When one considers that other characters who have what seems to be heterosexual relationships like Mickey and Minnie Mouse or Donald and Daisy Duck don’t qualify for the same apparent slashing, the ‘criticism’ encroaches on bullying, as was the opinion of many users on social media.
Of Hofmeyr’s comments, The SAHRC’s Dr Eileen Carter said:
“On the 2nd of April 2022 the South African Human Rights Commission (The Commission) was alerted to concerning remarks made by Afrikaans musician Mr Steve Hofmeyr on social media relating to the LGBTIQ+ community. The Commission was further approached by a Non-Profit Organization stationed in Gqeberha, reporting the comments to our offices, as an alleged human rights violation, The statement from Mr Hofmeyr, and with reference to the “+” referred to in the LGBTIQ+ abbreviation,” Dr Carter expressed.
The Commission noted that the comments appeared to have included the following:
“Waar my generasie geleer het om met muise eende en honde te praat gaan ons kinders geleer word hoe om met muise, eende en honde seks te he.”
The English translation reads: “Where my generation learned to talk to mice ducks and dogs, our children are going to be taught how to have sex with mice, ducks and dogs.”
The SAHRC’s assessments of the comments noted that they appear to “liken the LGBTIQ+ community to be inclusive of bestiality (which constitutes a sexual offence) and determined that the comments equate “a vulnerable section of society to criminals having sex with “mice, ducks and dogs”, something the Commission states may “seriously demean and humiliate members ascribing to the LGBTIQ+ community, thereby affecting their rights to Equality and Dignity.”
Additionally, the Commission assessed the comments as apparent to hindering Disney’s moves towards further inclusivity, which may be in contravention of Section 11 of the Equality Act, as per Dr Carter.
“The Commission has an express mandate to take steps to secure appropriate redress where human rights have been violated,” Dr Carter expressed in light of the letter of demand to MrMr Hofmeyr.
“Serious harassment towards the LGBTIQ+ community therefore needs to be addressed summarily. The Commission underscores the importance of promoting, but also protecting the rights of all LGBTIQ+ and gender non-conforming persons and will seek to provide and attain redress in the matter at hand,” the statement added.