Posts tagged ‘homophobic’

December 30, 2011

Out in the World – a BBC 3 Radio Series.

I have been waiting for the  4th  episode to be uploaded but it would be wrong to not post this wonderful radio documentary series which is a broad  history of LGBT people ( not just homosexuality as the  BBC precis says) . I know many people only look at video these days but the BBC creates such amazing mind pictures I am sure this will be worth the time.

Here are the first 3 parts.

Episode 1 – Richard Coles on the modern construction of gay identity and links with the ancient world is here.

Episode 2 – Richard Coles on the ancient Greek culture where homosexuality was part of a social code is here.

Episode 3 – Richard Coles looks at the conflict between sexuality and gender identity is here. ( It also looks at how the ignorance of  the UK and Spain led to them imposing their legislation on the more complex societies they colonized  – the same legislation that many of the most homophobic governments now hold on to as their own.)

That being said it still drives me mental that the BBC still insists on using a pronunciation of the word “homosexual”  as həʊmə`sekʃuəl – which is not used anywhere else in the world.

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December 29, 2011

PNP headed for landslide win in Jamaica.

courtesy Box Turtle Bulletin

As my Facebook friend, author Nicholas Laughlin so eloquently put it a few moments ago :

“To summarise: in Jamaica, widely considered the most homophobic country in the Caribbean, the ruling party runs a gay-bashing general election campaign and loses by what can only be called a landslide.”

Some background on the campaign from the Washington Post here.

According to Reuters as of right now the ruling party is, how do they say this politically again? Oh yes, they are getting a massive dose of whup ass.

(Reuters) – Jamaica’s ruling party appeared headed for defeat in national elections on Thursday, as the Caribbean country’s leading opposition party capitalized on voter discontent over growing economic woes.

Preliminary results showed the governing Jamaica Labor Party, or JLP, winning just 21 of the 63 parliamentary seats at stake in the national election.

With about 50 percent of ballots counted, the opposition People’s National Party, or PNP, looked set to win 42 seats, according to results from the national electoral office posted on the website of the Jamaica Observer newspaper.

The moderately left-leaning PNP is led by Portia Simpson Miller, a former prime minister who became Jamaica’s first female leader in 2006 and now looks set to ride a wave of popular disillusionment back into office.

I would like to be optimistic and think the change of government will make a difference for the LGBT community in what Time Magazine called “The Most Homophobic Place on Earth” but I doubt it will. It will however prove that trying to win an election by stirring up hatred against a minority sometimes comes back to kick you in the teeth.

December 16, 2011

Anya Ayoung-Chee throws her weight against hate.

The petition to demand the Trinidad Express apologize for running an offensive advert that, among other things, described LGBT  people as ‘broken’  has been slowly picking up speed thanks to social networking and ActUp.org which posted an article but the pace was infuriating. Yes, the signatures tripled in two days but to have a mere 600 signatures for a subject that affects the  lives of so many people was disturbing to me. I am not broken and I will scream it out to the world

Sign the petition here.

Read the ActUp article here.

This evening the wonderful Anya Ayoung-Chee ( winner of Project Runway season 9 in case you haven’t been following this blog) came on board this evening via Twitter and Facebook. It was interesting that I was being treated to an early birthday dinner this evening and my friend Peter asked why I hadn’t encouraged Anya to join the fight. I didn’t have an answer- it was such an obvious thing – and then – as if to  admonish my sorry ass – she tweeted the ActUp post on Twitter followed by a post on Facebook to sign the petition – synchronicity.

The results have been extraordinary and the petition signatures have accelerated. Poor Anya, who is such a sweet person, has had to endure a fair number of hater comments on FB and even personal  attacks for her posts but she stands up for what is  right and we all need to be proud of her. This might be the pivotal moment in this campaign. A small battle but a significant one  for the LGBT community in T&T.

On another front,  a newspaper response is being arranged for the ignorant and cowardly bullies. Copy is being done by a Trinidadian living in the US with great credentials and the funding is being arranged as we speak.  The bigots may have achieved exactly the opposite of what they planned.

So on behalf of all the young lives that have been insulted by this ad  – a giant video bitchslap  to the evil people who posted  it  – from just a few of the wonderful and most definitely not broken people out there like me.

 

And finally, as posted before – for all the  LGBT kids who were driven to suicide because of the hate of people like the ones who posted that advertisement.  Never forget!

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.

December 9, 2011

Homophobic bullying represents grave violation of human rights – Ban

Via the UN

8 December 2011 –Homophobic bullying of young people constitutes a “grave violation of human rights,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today, urging States to take the necessary measures to protect their citizens from violence and discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

“Bullying of this kind is not restricted to a few countries but goes on in schools and local communities in all parts of the world,” Mr. Ban said in a message delivered by Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonovic to a panel discussion on ending violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation at UN Headquarters in New York.

“It affects young people all the way through to adulthood, causing enormous and unnecessary suffering. Bullied children may become depressed and drop out of school. Some are even driven to suicide.”

Mr. Ban stressed the need to change harmful attitudes in society that encourage discriminatory laws and practices by State authorities.

“Tackling this problem is a shared challenge. We all have a role, whether as parents, family members, teachers, neighbours, community leaders, journalists, religious figures or public officials,” he said, adding that States are legally obliged to protect their citizens from this type of violence.

There are currently 76 countries where individuals face criminal sanctions for engaging in private in consensual sexual relations with another adult of the same sex, Mr. Šimonovic told the panel, adding that the UN has been working to establish dialogue with these States to advance the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons and that while several countries have made remarkable progress, there is still much to be done.

“Gradually, States are coming to see that the commitments to eliminate discrimination enshrined in the Universal Declaration [of Human Rights] and in our core United Nations human rights treaties apply to everyone, not just heterosexuals but gays and lesbians and bisexual, transgender and intersex people too.”

October 25, 2011

This is NOT my Canada.

My Twitter friend @PaisleyRae , an activist of  no mean reach, tweeted this video this evening in horror.   I suspect that evil people like Stephen Harper who have worked hard to destroy the national reputation that Trudeau created are responsible. The evil starts at 1:07

That commercial is hateful, evil and un-Canadian.  Let kids be whatever they want to be. Pardon my Quebecois but fuck you Harper!

Signed,

Vern. A proud Canadian who is enduring you and your kind trying to muck up my Canadian dream for me and my kind.

 

March 23, 2011

UN Joint Statement of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

 

From African Activist

Via African Activist ( rapidly becoming my favorite site) ,

“Eighty-five nations endorsed the UN Joint Statement on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identitypresented by Colombia to the UN Human Rights Council, an inter-governmental body within the United Nations made up of 47 states. The statement was signed by the Central African Republic, Rwanda, and South Africa.”

As usual, in the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic was progressive. Surprisingly, Cuba also voted in support. The English Caribbean ( including T&T which continues to betray its alleged commitment to human rights)  was notably absent except for Dominica. I can only surmise that the normally homophobic Dominica either had a coup or someone pushed the wrong button.