Posts tagged ‘his way out’

December 13, 2011

Preaching the Gospel of Hate

On Sunday the Trinidad Express published a vile advertisement that can only be described as hateful, mean spirited and  a pack of lies. I missed the ad when it ran but thanks to Colin of CAISO|GSPOTT posting it on Facebook it became a subject of much discussion and anger. Naturally, as is typical of such adverts, the usual suspects are mentioned as the saviors of  LGBT people – the ‘pray the gay away’ crowd of evil clowns.

Reputable psychological associations worldwide and even the WHO have indicated that human sexuality is naturally diverse and being lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans is not in any way shape or form a mental illness. Of  course the advertisement doesn’t even use any of those terms because they show that sexuality is only part of the equation that makes us human and also includes such things as gender identity.  The  people who write and publish such things don’t really care about the people they condemn –  they are just fodder for their  moral egos – humanity has no place in their warped and blinkered world. Even they can’t  honestly believe the rubbish they write.

They say they are doing it to save LGBT people from certain hell while doing an excellent job of creating a hell for them in the here and now. If they really want to save large numbers of people from Hades perhaps they should take out ads condemning the wrongs of Islam or Hinduism – there are a lot more Muslims and Hindus than there are LGBT people I assume. The problem is they can’t. Most countries including Trinidad and Tobago have strong laws against inciting religious hatred. So what the bullies do is pick on the ultimate marginalized and often not legally protected group – queer people.

Unable to fight inexorable progress towards full equality in their home countries ( or having lost the fight in places like Canada) they are now trying to export their hateful ideas to the developing world – often in countries where LGBT people’s lives are already threatened.  It is ironic that the advertisement here was placed one day after World Human Right’s Day and a few days after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s groundbreaking speech to the UN on equal rights for LGBT people.

One can safely assume  that any intelligent person would find the ad laughable and dismiss it ( quite rightly) as a feeble attempt by nasty bigots to inflict harm on another group – that is not the worry. The real worry is that some little kid somewhere who is beginning to feel the first stirrings of his or her  attractions might see it and genuinely believe he or she is ‘broken’. If a kid feels he or she is ‘broken’ and knows instinctively that he or she cannot change – they might pursue that one avenue that has seen us lose so many great kids over the years.  The only ‘broken’ people are the ones who can’t love and accept, who can’t resist imposing their beliefs on others, who don’t care about the hurt and damage they can cause and who are the very hypocrites that their Jesus would have soundly condemned.

They should remember that their savior spent his short life with people on the margins preaching the message of love.  They need to remember words ascribed to Jesus at the Last Supper – “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love “one another.”  They also need to go back to the New Testament and count how many times Jesus discussed the ‘sin’ of  homosexuality.

There are some people in T&T and around the world who aren’t taking this hateful ad placement on the chin. A petition is being circulated demanding that the Trinidad Express apologize for publishing it.  Please sign it as every signature makes a difference. As my  friend Bruce in Nova Scotia  points out there is some problematic wording about ‘lifestyle’  ( it isn’t a lifestyle – it is a life) in the petition but we can forgive that for the while as the general point is still there.

The other great news is that after I tweeted the lovely folks of ActUp.org , an international LGBT activism group, to retweet the petition  – they did – and they went further and posted it as a news article on their site.  Read it here.

It is sad that the petition is taking so long to build up momentum but given the fact that  gay sex is still criminalized in T&T (though seldom if ever applied) and there is still much stigma perhaps it isn’t that surprising. Still, standing up for our rights and the rights of others is a measure of our humanity and I am still hoping that more people show their humanity in this regard.

UPDATE

As a media advertising person who I used to work with just noted on a friend’s FB page –

Besides this advertisement being malicious and disgusting…it is also illegal. The Advertising Standards Authority prohibits ads to be published without a clear indication of who is paying for the ad and re-dress information. Letters should be sent to the Media Complaints Council (800-4622); Trinidad and Tobago Publishers and Broadcasters Association (TTPBA); Chamber of Commerce (Media Committee); and MATT.

Advertisements
October 28, 2010

My friend Alvin marks the birth of a movement.

 

My very close friend Alvin - who is mad as hell.

 

 

We have had this  Ex-Gay minister here for a week and apparently the LGBT  community has reached a boiling point. A second  protest was held today at the University of the West Indies  for this vile and peculiar person to spout his misinformation. I assume that UWI will also be hosting the KKK when they arrive on these shores.

In any case the CAISO group sat there in their protest t-shirts which said:

HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA

  1. Buy Crix
  2. Spend time with family
  3. Work for equality

By all accounts it was all very peaceful.  Unfortunately for them my best friend Alvin was also there. He decided to stand up in the middle of the gospel meeting and ask the strange Pastor questions. I guess the pastor now knows that saying weird things to an audience in this part of the world is not the same as Uganda.

Alvin posted this on Facebook.

Today I witness first hand a “bully” disguised in a blanket called
religion as he tried to influence young folks into believing gay persons
will go to hell and they are Sinners who are the cause of spreading
diseases to mankind.
This former United Airlines flight attendant/homo (talk about flying the friendly skies) whose days living in San Francisco and, one would guess, wearing flowers in his hair; suddenly had a vision one night and the “Homosexual Chains” were broken. Now this brings several questions to mind.

1.Were the chains holding up a sling with you face up on it?

2. Were you doing a David Carradine at the time?

3.Was it a S&M routine gone bad or were you caught with Granma’s pearls again?.

Nevertheless some Bad Romance or Experience has made this poor soul into a self hating homo who is on a relentless pursuit to convince the world that Homosexuality can be cured and he’s living proof of it. Mind you if I was gay and looked like Phillip Lee I would hate myself so much that I also would start wearing polyester shirts and spread hate. Anyhows the born again Pastor not only passed judgment on those whose bedroom business is no concern of his and his flock of fools but went as far as to say that we are all rampant drug users who practice promiscuous sex and are trying to bring down the Church with our forbidden lifestyle.I am trying to find right now at least 1 Anti-Heterosexual group or religion but it seems we “Children Of God” are much too busy just trying to live our lives which may just be a great bother to Pastor’s like Lee and other Men of the Closet..sorry Cloth or just maybe they are missing out on that extra 10% of our salaries to help furnish penthouses for their boytoys and taking them on getaways to Ibiza .

Your rantings are not god’s word u ignorant red neck. And if that is what your ministry believe is salvation then drag me str8 to HELL. The messengers of HATE must not be allowed to spread propaganda to the young minds. Love yourself no matter if you’re Gay/Straight/Black/White/Poor/Rich . Do not ever think you are a Sinner because of who you choose to Love or have Sex with. We are no longer a silent minority ..Let your voices be heard..Be Proud of who you are..This is our time..SPEAK UP.

CAISO has published their own comprehensive take on the minister and his activities here.

October 27, 2010

Interview with Brendon O’Brien of CAISO

This interview with Brendon aired today on ieTV Channel 1 on the FLOW cable network. The group CAISO ( Coalition Advocating for the Inclusion of Sexual Orientation) is the one that held the t-shirt protest against a visiting ex-gay minister on October 20, 2010 – the first such protest in the country. I guess as Bob Dylan famously sang – The Times They Are a-Changin

For those puzzled by the first list item, “Crix” is a  cracker made in Trinidad & Tobago and is widely considered a food staple.

(NEW) on Vimeo as one high quality video

or on YouTube in two parts

CAISO has just posted an entry on their blog about the issue. Read it here.

October 21, 2010

The ex-human movement

Spirit Day has helped to draw attention to bullying and more specifically LGBTQ bullying but it doesn’t end with just a day. The problem persists and while the attention of the world media has been drawn to the cause it cannot be allowed to just end there.

Every day in a myriad of ways kids growing up knowing that there is something different about them are subjected to taunting and ridicule that too often leads them to give up hope. The pressure on them comes from words of hatred they hear constantly online, in the media and often in their own homes. This drives many a kid to think he or she is  an aberrant freak of nature – an unpleasant thing that just happened and that is inimical to the functioning of society. Kids don’t always know there is a bigger picture and that not everyone thinks the same way. They often just hear the loudest message  and internalize it.

As they try to deal with all the other pressures of a young life this nagging assault on their being can be a significant presence . They often have to spend so much energy hiding their feelings and their essence that it prevents them from realizing all they can be. It affects how they socialize, how they develop their romantic attachments and their self esteem. How wonderful it would be if LGBT kids could just be allowed to blossom and be themselves. Every young LGBT life lost is a possible Alan Turing, Oscar Wilde or E M Forster that the world will never be enriched by.

Here in Trinidad & Tobago where I work and live lately there is both latent and overt homophobia. It is not as bad as it is in other parts of the English Caribbean such as Jamaica but it is a reality. A kid growing up here is constantly aware of the hate. They are probably aware of the fact that if they are caught in any physical act there are laws that can put them in jail. They constantly hear from their churches ( and it is almost a universal message in this multi-religious society) that they are evil and going to hell. Imagine what that does?

Things have been better here in little ways for LGBT people and I suppose that filters down to young people. Now I see that a group  called ( no CAPS for them) his way out ministries is going to be here to spread the message that they can be converted to being straight. Apparently, this deluded group of bigots will be on the island  to tell parents of gay kids and kids that they can change. I am sure they can be ‘changed’ from being heterosexual too. To the extent that they can be turned into fucked up heterosexuals. Like young LGBT kids need another message telling them that there is something wrong with them. I suspect the message of every major psychiatric organization that says being LGBT is not a problem will be unheard here – except for me. And that assortment includes the WHO.

At least I see one good development . The group CAISO plans to protest him. This will be a first for this country. It requires a lot of bravery on the part of the protesters but I suspect they will pull it off. I know at least one friend who will be putting his money and his feet behind them.

The time has come for every LGBT person who has survived the hatred and stupidity to not think “well that is their problem now”. Every LGBT kid who gives in to the hatred and commits suicide is an indictment of every older person who doesn’t speak out – who doesn’t become a role model.

T&T can become a shining beacon to the rest of  the Caribbean that difference can be accepted. Not tolerated – I hate that word. It just takes all the LGBT voices to speak as one for politicians to realize that they have to pay attention.

Speak out!  Do you want to be on your death-bed knowing you sat quietly and let LGBT kids die because you didn’t say a word to make the world a little more welcoming?

If you want to add me feel free to do so at  @globewriter on Twitter and at www,facebook.com/globewriter ( just say LGBT in your message). Let’s expand the global conversation.