Posts tagged ‘Verna St. Rose Greaves’

March 6, 2014

Happy Birthday To Verna St. Rose-Greaves

I love her beyond words. She is an amazing woman. Image

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November 26, 2012

My Interviews With the Incredible Verna St. Rose-Greaves

I love few guests as I love Verna St. Rose -Greaves. She is also a friend and when my Dad passed away one of the first people I had to call to give me strength was Auntie Verna. She was there at the funeral giving me her quiet strength.  This was the first time she spoke to media in this way and discussed governance, alcoholism and Jack Warner ( sorry CNC3) the action gets going at 14:40) . She is an extraordinary woman and, like dad, she is completely fearless. Another regret of many I have is that I never brought her to dad and Myda’s home to see them interact. When I die I want Auntie Verna to ring the bell at my funeral. Crazy Verna my ass – she is the sanest person I know.

 

 

 

 

June 27, 2012

Interview with Verna St. Rose Greaves Part 2

Aired June 27th on ieTV, Trinidad.

June 26, 2012

The Amazing Verna St. Rose Greaves.

T&T has many problems but one good thing was that it had the most incredible Minister of Gender, Youth and Child development.  Verna St. Rose Greaves is a social activist and a fighter of much ferocity who amazingly ended up as that Minister.  Suddenly the talk became about human rights for all people and she was the champion of that fight. Last Friday she was removed from Cabinet for political reasons and my heart broke. She is the most wonderful compassionate person I know and she is a friend.  If the world were ending I would want to call Auntie Verna.

Here is Part one of my interview with her today.

 

June 11, 2012

Why Christ Would Shake His Head In Disgust If He Saw His Church,

As Trinidad and Tobago prepares to update the gender policy there has been a lot of stupidity and obfuscation emerging. While LGBT people ask for even basic protection from discrimination and equality under the law as seen in the brave protests of people from CAISO and The Silver Lining Foundation, we see the tactics of those opposed to all citizens having equal rights. One inexplicable tactic has been to bring up same-sex marriage ( or as I like to call it – marriage) and abortion as all being connected. Now I am sure to the more pea-brained this makes sense. Watching their poorly scribbled signs I see that the connection is that anything that doesn’t result in a baby popping out is anathema.

Apparently the fact that a few of those babies popping out turned out to be gay escapes the few religious zealots that have been protesting. Yes, those babies grew up in heterosexual homes surrounded by everything heterosexual and still ended up gay. Shocking.  I suppose in ignoring the no judging thing in favor of the more attractive Torah they seem to have lost the fact that the record of their own savior has nothing to say on the subject. The worst crime on the calendar to them didn’t merit a  mention from the mouth of  Jesus – despite  two thousand years of manipulation.

But just in case anyone thinks the irrelevant argument about marriage is the sticking point – despite nobody even asking for it – the Archbishop shows that his  vile message is even more general:

Archbishop Joseph Harris is calling on citizens to resist moves to accept homosexuality. He is the latest religious leader to speak out against what he described as society’s increasing acceptance of same-sex relationships. His comments come in the wake of the government’s new national gender policy, which promises to promote fairness and equality among citizens.

We are copycats in T&T. We look at the US and what they do and want to do it too. But one of the things nobody thinks about is structure and the importance of it,” Archbishop Harris said. “If we facilitate sinful structures, which are against God’s law, we are teaching our young people that it’s okay to lead a sinful life. We must turn back to God.”

Read more idiocy here.

Ignoring , for the moment, that the Archbishop’s church has been actively involved in covering up pedophile scandals for decades and overlooking apparent Mafia ties to the Vatican bank, one wonders what his church wants?  Kill all LGBT people? Force them to undergo pointless and dangerous  reparative therapy when even the WHO regards it as just another human variation?  Live in the shadows like scurrying insects because that is okay with your worldview?

Inquisitions and torture aside Archbishop, does your church have a death wish to forever remain on the wrong side of history? Galileo’s ghost is wondering. Look up ‘hypocrisy’ online when you get a chance.

March 22, 2012

Minister of Gender, Youth and Child Development, Verna St. Rose-Greaves interview

Interview was conducted at ieTV studios on March 14, 2012 and aired at 7pm the same day. Technical crew: Leroy Smart -Director and Ryan Gomez-Burke.

 

February 27, 2011

Young T&T activists speak out against the death penalty.

Faced with a major problem with serious crime in Trinidad & Tobago, the current government is ( rather predictably) pushing for the reimplementation of the death penalty. The penalty has never left the books but following the Privy Council decision in the case of Pratt and Morgan , governments have been unable to execute anyone for many years. To circumvent this the government is now moving to amend legislation to essentially limit the time frame for appeals to 18 months. On the face of  it this flies in the face of  due process but that is another matter  .

A recent survey indicated that 91% of the population are in favor of  a return to the death penalty. In an interesting turnabout, when asked if they would support the possibility of the death penalty if an innocent person might end up hanged the  support level dropped to 35%.

The Trinidad Express has an interesting look at the survey and the death penalty internationally here.

There are a few voices locally such as Verna St. Rose Greaves who have taken a strong moral stand against the return to hangings in T&T . Even more heartening are a few young activists who are also speaking out like twins ( so yes, you are seeing correctly) Brendon and Brandon O’Brien. Check out their videos and spread the word.

October 15, 2010

Verna St. Rose Greaves on bullying

As part of my commitment to helping draw attention to bullying and the effects it can have on vulnerable individuals such as LGBT kids I have been conducting a series of interviews on my show. This is an interview with the wonderfully warmhearted Social Activist Verna St. Rose Greaves who devotes much of her time to working with kids. This is the second interview about bullying I did with her this week but I think this part was more personal for both of us.

It is in three parts because of You Tube time limitations.

Don’t forget to wear purple on October 20, 2010 for Spirit Day to honor all the kids who were bullied to the point of suicide. One of my twitter friends suggested that you post a pic of yourself wearing purple on Twitter or Facebook – I think that is a great idea.

I will be uploading my interview with Psychologist and Criminologist, Renee Cummings who also speaks about bullying. She spent much of her career in the US working with LGBT people.

I wish you all peace this Friday.

October 12, 2010

A most interesting day…

 

One day everyone will have a place at the table.

 

It was a pretty exciting day for me and that isn’t even including the 19 stories we had in our newscast this evening.  It was a pretty significant day for observers of LGBT rights  as three developments in the US kept my Twitterfeed buzzing all afternoon.

The first:

At 1:34pm @PrideinUtah was to first to introduce this story to my feed ( and everyone needs to follow Pride in Utah):

BREAKING: Judge Orders Immediate End To DADT Discharges

Posted by Admin (Eric) at 1:34 PM. Placed in National/International category

California – (via the daily kos) U.S. district judge Virginia A. Phillips orders the Defense Department to ‘immediately to suspend and discontinue any investigation, or discharge, separation, or other proceeding.

Later on The Advocate posted an excellent analysis of what the development means.

A bit later on that news was dimmed a bit when I got a tweet from @GLADlaw ( an excellent group that I would urge everyone to support)  stating that

Today, the Department of Justice filed a notice of appeal in Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, GLAD’s challenge to Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  The case was heard in May 2010 by U.S. District Court Judge Joseph L. Tauro, who issued a decision finding DOMA Section 3 unconstitutional on July 8, 2010. “

I guess that is part of the Administration being the ‘biggest supporter’ or maybe not. Read the full story from GLAD here.

Then I saw via @eqca ( Equality California) that

Florida’s ban on same-sex couples adopting children has been overturned and won’t be appealed: http://ow.ly/2Sy3G Congrats,Florida!”

A mixed day indeed. @PrideinUtah also posted a link to an interesting study from OkCupid :

Gay Sex vs. Straight Sex

I think it is interesting that they went to the trouble of undertaking the study and their reasoning is rather touching:

Gay issues have been in the news a lot lately, from the debate over same-sex marriage in Congress to a sickening rash of gay-bashing here in New York City. We see a lot of emotion out there, instead of information, and we wanted to provide some data-based context on sexuality so that people might make better choices about what they say, think, and do.

We run a massive dating site and therefore have unparalleled insight into sex and relationships. Here’s what we’ve found, in numbers and charts.

Good for them and pretty amazing their sample is 3.2 million users.

On a personal level I tried to do my little part. I did two interviews with the lovely Verna St. Rose Greaves today on bullying. Verna ( or Auntie Verna to many) is a social activist here who has dedicated her life to helping others and especially children and victims of abuse. She campaigned for the current government here which was her first foray into politics other than a brief senatorial position preceding the election. She is essentially out of politics now and she was my first choice to talk about the subject.

Most people love her but a lot of people also dislike her because of her principled stand against the death penalty. It may well be the reason she has no position in the current government. She is pretty fearless and has one of the biggest hearts I have ever encountered. We spoke about the responsibility that we all have in stopping an environment that encourages bullying and the feeling that it is okay to prey on those who are weaker or different in some way. I liked her statement that we should all put a camera in our home or workplace  and then rewind and look at how many of us practice some form of cruelty to those around us on an everyday basis. She dealt with things head on including dealing with bullying because of sexual orientation in which she said the fact we live in a homophobic environment makes it even harder for those kids.

Towards the end of the second interview I asked Verna what she would say to one of the kids who is being bullied. She came close to tears when she spoke to camera and said that she was sorry because we are all responsible for not getting more involved. I was glad the camera stayed on her because I was actually closer to tears. I admitted during the interview that I had been bullied relentlessly in elementary and high school. I guess that makes the interview my little contribution to the “It Gets Better” project.

I will try and upload the interviews after the second one airs tomorrow.

October 11, 2010

The sadness that dare speak its name.

Moving tribute to all the kids who lost hope. Let’s see if we can all intervene and stop this ugliness.

Via Pride in Utah a great site that needs support.

On the good side I have two interviews scheduled tomorrow both dealing with bullying and one specifically with bullying based on orientation.

Happy N.C.O.D. to my UK friends ( and that means you M and C)