Many news are comming for the year 2016. I will update this page in early July. In the mean time, you can check for Mista Majah P new CD and videoclip on the internet : 'Gays Belong In Heaven Too'.
Mista Majah P, the Jamaican artist that devoted the recent years of his career to challenge homophobia in Jamaican music is currently working on his third c
'We Are Jamaicans' campaign.. [MUST SEE]
Between January 2013 and December 2014, 52 clips were filmed with moving testimonies. I've selected, among my favorites, seven clips that represent the variety of the testimonies. But all the clips are worth watching. TEXT FROM WEBSITE: "The campaign exploits the unique characteristics of social media to operate in spite of the socio-political oppression and threat of physical violence. STAND UP comes at an exciting time in the history of LGBTQ rights in Jamaica, as individuals and organizations challenge the established political and social discrimination. STAND UP takes the We Are Jamaicans campaign developed by the Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition (CVC) as a departure point. It partners with the CVC and its underground counterpart, the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals & Gays (JFLAG) to counter homophobia with community building, story-telling, and safe visibility"...(More on the links below)
(CLIP No.1: Donovan Leslie)..(CLIP No.2: Angeline & Jalna)..(CLIP No.3: Jeavion Nelson)..(CLIP No.4: Brian)
(CLIP No.5: Carol Chery James)..(CLIP No.6: Carol Narcisse)..(CLIP No.7: Javed Jaghai)
(WE ARE JAMAICANS: list of the 52 clips)..(STAND UP: Courage Is Contagious)
January 5, 2015: CLEAN UP YOUR ACT! Mista Majah P challenge Sizzla and Bounty Killer
Mista Majah P, the Jamaican artist that devoted the recent years of his career to challenge homophobia in Jamaican music is currently working on his third concept album. On January 9, he posted a statement on YouTube in which he calls on the church and Jamaican artists that still haven't cleaned their act. He addresses the clip to two dancehall artists that have a huge homophobic repertoir of songs that haven't publicly denouned that they would stop performing hatered music. He specially calls on Sizzla who is still promoting violence to LGBT when he's on stage, showing a clip recorded in late December 2014 (Hotshot 2014, Guys Hill, St. Catherine, Jamaica). "Enough is enough! Me want to have a debate with you Sizzla... Me not inna gun talk... Leave the gay lyrics... leave the homophobia alone".
(Maverick Challenge Sizzla)
January 6, 2015: LGBT youths can’t even call a gully their home
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Jamaican activists who balk at the idea of forcing LGBT youths to live on the streets are trying to find a feasible alternative now that police have ousted dozens of youths from Shoemaker Gully, a drainage channel in New Kingston. The youths had lived in that gully for two years after being expelled from their homes for being gay, then rousted out of abandoned buildings. Police have repeatedly raided the gully — most recently just before Christmas. Again and again, the youths were arrested, warned, released and then allowed to return to their only home — the gully... (More on the links below)
(Erasing 76 Crimes) .(documentary filmed in mid 2014)
January 16, 2015: World Bank consults Caribbean LGBTI experts
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: The World Bank brought representatives of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community to a one-day meeting on January 16, 2015, in Barbados as part of ongoing consultation with external stakeholders. United and Strong’s Kenita Placide is one of two participants from Saint Lucia nominated to attend the meeting that saw eleven activists from countries that include Suriname, Jamaica, Bahamas and Haiti, dialoguing with the World Bank and the Caribbean Development Bank..(More on the link below)
(United & Strong St Lucia)
February 10, 2015: Gay, Ethiopian and proud
Solomon Georgio made a part of his stand up performance on the Conan O’Brian show in February 2015.
NOTE: I’ve accidently felt on this clip and tought it was nice. Decided to post it because of the strong bound between Jamaicans and Ethiopia.
(Conan O'Brian clip)
February 12, 2015: CLEAN UP YOUR ACT (PART 2): new clip sure to generate a lot of reactions
This new clip posted on YouTube By Mista Majah P (aka: The Maverick) is sure to generate a lot of reactions. Make sure to take the appropriate time to watch the whole thing. Even if all will not agree with the way he chose to aproaching the subject, he is covering a lot of ground and adresses important issues. He sure has a lot of guts and deserve to be listened to. Hope that the singers that have planted these seeds of hate have to guts to communicate with him for the public debate he is requesting on the topic. (More on the links below).
(Maverick Challenge – Part 2) .(Poster for the challenge No.1) .(Poster for the challenge No.2)
February 15, 2015: Jamaica has a new gay-friendly public defender
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Arlene Harrison Henry, who was appointed recently as Jamaica's first female public defender, has indicated that her mission is to defend the rights of all citizens, especially the vulnerable groups in society. Harrison Henry told The Gleaner on the weekend that she has concerns for the disabled community as there are a myriad human rights issues that must be addressed. "The LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexual, and transgender) group is also a delicate matter in our country, but they, too, are entitled to equality, representation, and equal protection of laws," she said. Henry added: "The bottom line is I won't be partial, and if I encounter someone from that group whose rights have been breached, I will be defending them just the same, and every sector in society will be represented."...(More on the links below)
(The Gleaner)..(Erasing 76 Crimes)
February 16, 2015: 'The Abominable Crime' documentary on World Channel
This documentary was shown in several film festivals since June 2013 and is was aired on The World Channel on February 16, 2015. TEXT FROM WEBSITE: The Abominable Crime, at heart, is a story about a mother’s love for her child and an activist’s troubled love for his country. It gives voice to Jamaicans like Simone Edwards, who survives an anti-gay shooting, and Maurice Tomlinson, a leading activist who is forced to flee the country after being outed. Told as they unfold, these personal accounts take the audience on an emotional journey traversing four years and five countries. Their stories expose the roots of homophobia in Jamaican society, reveal the deep psychological and social impacts of discrimination on the lives of gays and lesbians and offer intimate first-person perspectives on the risks and challenges of seeking asylum abroad....(More on the links below)
(Jamaica Observer). (The Abominable Crime website)
February 17, 2015: Jamaica Star's 'Gays caused Jamaican music to suffer'
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Iconic entertainment manger Copeland Forbes says Jamaican music lost the war against the homosexual community. According to Forbes, the war was unnecessary and only served to set back reggae and dancehall music for decades.The manager, who has worked with a long list of icons including Beres Hammond, Gregory Isaacs, The Wailers, Peter Tosh, Ziggy Marley, Sugar Minott and Luciano, was speaking to The STAR at the recently concluded International Reggae Conference hosted at The University of The West Indies. He believes it will take a strong level of professionalism for Jamaican music to bounce back.....(More on the link below)
PERSONAL COMMENT: 'HALF THE STORY HAS NEVER BEEN TOLD'... Or is it 85% of that story? First you cannot count on a newspaper like Jamaica Star to get an in depth view on such a complicate dossier. Bringing the opinion of a few managers who are pised because their business is not like it used to be is just feeding the readers with what they want to read. It's not gays that caused Jamaican music to suffer. It's Jamaican music itself that did that. Don't try to blame someone else. If an industry is not mature enough to regulate itself and closes it's eyes on top performers that largely promote violence towards minorities, of course there are gonna be opposition. That's plain logic. In every conflicts, non targeted people end up sufferening because the're are side effects. Unfortunatley professional musicians like Beres Hammond are caught in that loop. The article only look at this from a monetary point of view. What about the countless Caribbean LGBT (lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgenders) who end up suffering on a daily basis from verbal abuses and violence because of hatered fueled by these entertainers? Music is not the only element to this problem, but it clearly contributes.
February 19, 2015: Queen Ifrica: ‘Reggae artists slammed gays to get applause’
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Reggae star Queen Ifrica says that Jamaican artists who delivered anti-gay sentiments on stage did so to get applause from the crowd. The Lioness On The Rise hitmaker believes that the homophobic slurs that were uttered by some dancehall artists, were never intended to incite violence against gay people, but simply to elicit cheers from the audience. “A lot of these artists who were using homophobic lyrics, were never about inciting violence,” says the singer born Ventrice Morgan. “It was about getting a forward – an applause – from the crowd......(More on the link below)
PERSONAL COMMENT: From my researche, it's partly true, specially between songs. But let's not minimized the problem here: a fair percentage of dancehall singers who jumped on the homophobia band wagon used a lot of venom when composing their songs and have to disagree with her saying 'were never about inciting violence'. You have to read the lyrics for yourself.
(The Voice – Interview Part 1) .(The Voice – Interview Part 2)
February 22, 2015: Ready for dialogue: J-FLAG welcomes open discussion with artistes
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Amid continuous cancellations of shows for several of dancehall and reggae's top international acts, J-FLAG's (The Jamaica Forum of Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays) executive director, Dane Lewis, is inviting reggae and dancehall artistes and their management team to an open discussion on the issues faced by the entertainment industry where homophobic music is concerned. Recently, artiste manager Copeland Forbes expressed that the state of the industry has been consistently deteriorating due to songs that have been produced and performed over the years which call for discrimination and violence against gays and lesbians. In the article, Forbes stated, "You (artistes) don't need to address them (homosexuals) because a lot of them are in the record companies and you are shaking their hands and you don't even know. Leave that alone, homosexuality existed before you and it will be here when you're gone..." ..(More on the link below)
March 2, 2015: Men make sex video for UK Visas
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Two Manchester men who were taped having sex have reportedly gone into hiding after the release of the video which has since gone viral, receiving thousands of shares on various social media sites. ..(More on the link below)
March 4, 2015: Shaggy: 'I'm a lesbian' and Jamaicans killing gays is a myth
Being interviewed at 'Sway In The Morning' (NY), Jamaican born dancehall artist Shaggy describe the situation of gays in Jamaica as being a propaganda. TEXT FROM ARTICLE: " The interviewer asked Shaggy if the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community was making any progress in Jamaica, and he replied: "Sweetheart, let me tell you something, you are talking to the number-one lesbian. Ain't nobody love more women than me, and I am Jamaican so I represent for all the lesbians right there. There has been a movement; I am leading the movement for lesbians," he told the interviewer. The artiste also made an attempt to clear up misconceptions about Jamaica's approach to homosexuality. "There are a lot of gays I see in Jamaica who are openly affectionate. You see, Jamaica has a stigma where people feel like we are the greatest gay bashers in the world; that is not the case. I live in Kingston, and there are a lot of gay people in Jamaica, and nobody is walking around killing gays. If you look at the statistics, there has not been any killing of gays in Jamaica. The only killings you hear is gay-on-gay crime, which is crime of passion. So don't listen to the propaganda and be misled ... have you been to Jamaica? You should visit," Shaggy said. The interview was posted on YouTube on March 4 and the segment can be seen at 6:50 and last two minutes.
(Jamaica Star)..(Shaggy's interview (at 6:50))..(Gay Jamaica Watch)
PERSONAL COMMENT: Make sure you read the answer by Jamaican artist Diana King lower on this page (March 18).
March 5, 2015: Mista Majah P radio interview on Detroit's Rockers Corner Radio
On March 5th, Mista Majah P was invited on Sista Dee's Rockers Corner Radio show. It's a substantial interview that last 3 hours where she invites her audience to be open, not call for bashing but allow the show to be about reasoning and overstanding the artist's quest for tolerance of the gay and lesbians community.
(Rockers Corner Radio) (Poster Of The Show)
PERSONAL COMMENTS: I salute the fact that a roots reggae oriented radio show with a noticable visibility on the Internet make space for that subject and devote the whole show. Although I have three comments: FIRST: I think the legal notice on the poster for the show (see link above) is quite exagerated. The text could have simply be the opinion of the guest does not necessarly represent the opinion of the host and the radio station' Instead it's an unecessary bold statement that looks like a caricature of how the Caribbean community has trouble to deal with that topic in a neutral way. Here's the text taken from the poster: "DISCLAIMER: The views and ideological position expressed by our featured guest DO NOT at all, in any way, represent those of the host, Rockers Corner Radio, or any member or member station of CNP, nor does our invitation for civil discourse with said guest constitute a compromise of our own views and positions".
SECOND: I think the 7-minute pre-recorded clip by Doctor Whomaja (I don't know the proper spelling of the family name) wasn't appropriate to welcome a peaceful reasong on the subject. From my point of view, that's speech is an excellent example of a talented spokesperson, that call himself 'doctor', that uses numbers and dates to make the listener believe he knows his subject but in fact expose a tissue of lies, express in a passionate way to rally people that already feed from the discrimination agenda regarding the emancipation of gay rights. This type of speech is just fuelling animosity and I hope that people are able to think for themsleves and see through. I really have trouble with heterosexuals who pretend they know for a fact that homosexuality is not inborn and is an acquired perversion that can be cured. Too many people knows how to manipulate crowds and that just create divisions. (The speech can be listened at the 8th minute of the program).
THIRD: I haven't listened to the whole show yet, but I feel like commenting on one of the observation brought by Sista Dee: She feels like the homosexual lobby is just pushing thir agenda too much by including gay charaters in TV programs, she feels like she is being imposed a lifestyle that she doesn't want to be advertised in the everyday life. Well, we have been fed with heterosexual lifestyle all our life, with three spoons at the same time. It's everywhere: newspapers, magazines, schools, TV, radio, films, music, art, commercials. It's EVERYWHERE to a point where people who have a different sexual orientation mostly have zero point of references. We represent 5% of the population, therefore it's just fair enough that 5% of the global culture should be representative. To the same extend that Afro Americans and Caribbean duely deserve a representing image in all aspect of our society. We are tired of hiding for the comfort of heterosexuals who are unable to work out differences just because it 'may' shake their system of believes. For many years there was (and there still) that parallel world where gay people have their clubs, cinemas, movies, literature, restaurants, organisations and so forth. It serves it's purpose, but I don't believe in ghettoization. I think ghettoization weakens society. With a heart at the right place and common sence we can work our differences and make this world a nicer a much richer place to live.
These comments are observations and not intend for disrespect. Again I salut the initiative to open a dialogue. I'd like to welcome you, your team and your audience to watch the important movie 'Children Of God', filmed in Bahamas. It's a fiction, not a documentary, but paint a pretty good picture of the situation in the Caribbean. Closer to America, there is the film 'The DL Chronicles'. At present time, 'The DL Chronicles' are available on YouTube, but 'Children Of God' was removed for legal purpose (but the trailer remains). 'The DL Chronicles' features four episodes of 30 minutes. Personal favorite is the 'Boo' episode, but they are worth watching. I could also suggest many documentaries that deals with the daily struggle of LGBT from Caribbean, Africans or Afro-Americans origins. A good point to start, is make a research on the work and position of Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu. Education is the key.
March 5, 2015: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Netflix is now airing the television serie 'Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt' witch features Tituss Burgess, a flamboyantly gay, aspiring Broadway performer. The serie is exclusive to the channel. Rarely a story features a black gay man among the main cast. In May 2015, Ellie Kemper won a Webby Award for Best Actress and Tituss Burgesstheir won a Webby Award for Best Actor. After a successful first seson, the show will come back in Spring 2016.
March 9, 2015: Jamaican gay stoned to death
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Video has emerged reportedly showing the bloodied body of a gay Jamaican man who it is claimed was stoned to death. The video was uploaded and then removed from YouTube last week. Dwayne Brown, a Jamaican gay rights campaigner living in New York City, embedded the video on his blog Minority-Insight. Mr Brown wrote: “Members of the Jamaican LGBT community are deeply sadden [sic] and heartbroken by the gruesome public execution of this young man in the streets of Jamaica.“The video brought tears to my eyes and causes anger to permeate my heart. “Many believe that all hopes for tolerance and respect for LGBT lives in Jamaica was shattered. Fear currently ripples through the entire community.”
(Pink News)..(The Advocate)..(Gay Star News)
March 15, 2015: Teenager who killed gay Jamaican in UK sentenced
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: A teenager who robbed and murdered a gay Jamaican at his home because he believed the victim was interested in him, has been jailed for a minimum of 15 years in the UK. Usher Sawyers was 15 when he stabbed Martin Thomas to death with a kitchen knife at his house in Roehampton, south west London, on April 22 last year. ..(More on the links below)
March 18, 2015: Diana King's answer to Shaggy's recent comment
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Diana King confesses she was raped as a teen, calls out Shaggy for comments about the LGBT community. Acclaimed Jamaican songstress, Diana King made a shocking revelation on Wednesday when she confessed she was brutally gang raped at only 13 years old. The singer stunned her fans with the admission on her Facebook page as she was responding to comments made by Grammy-winning singjay, Shaggy on Sway in the Morning earlier this month. In the interview, Sway asked Shaggy about the state of Jamaica’s LGBT community and whether it was making progress in Jamaica... "I was gang raped for looking at a girl too long,. Blocked it for too long," King revealed in her Facebook post, which has received over 100 comments to date. "I was only 13. That's murder of the soul #Homophobia101" She added, "And you don't even have to physically kills us. We die inside everyday because we are denied our human rights #LGBTJamaica.".
(www.876411.com)..(Diana King's Facebook page)
PERSONAL COMMENT: At time of visit (August 2015), the story on Diana King's Facebook page was removed.
March 26, 2015: Portia Simpson interrupt during her speech in a New York church
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: LGBT rights advocates on Thursday interrupted Jamaican Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller’s speech to members of her country’s diaspora who were meeting at a New York church. Members of Jamaica Anti-Homophobia Stand, a group that advocates for LGBT Jamaicans, interrupted Simpson-Miller as she spoke at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Manhattan. The advocates challenged the Jamaican prime minister over what they perceive as her government’s insufficient response to rampant anti-LGBT violence on the island that continues to make headlines around the world. This includes the release of a video earlier this month that reportedly shows a gay teenager being stoned to death in a street. The Jamaica-Gleaner, a Jamaican newspaper, reported that Simpson-Miller challenged the protesters from the podium. ..(More on the links below)
(Washington Blade)..(Jamaica Gleaner No.1)..(YouTube clip)..(Jamaica Anti-Homophobia Stand (JAHS))..(JAHS Clip)
(Jamaica Gleaner No.2)..(Jamaica Gleaner No.3)..(Gay Jamaica Watch)
April 2, 2015: Zero Tolerance For Homophobic Bullying
Letter adressed to Jamaica Gleaner, written by Jaevion Nelson, a youth development, HIV and human rights advocate. In the letter he mention the beating of a gay man in Montego Bay that occured on March 27, 2015.
(Jaevison Nelson's letter).
April 9, 2015: Obama visiting UWI and congratulating LGBT activist
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: It was not a scheduled item on the agenda for discussion when United States President Barack Obama met with Jamaica's Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller and seven of her Cabinet ministers on Thursday, April 9 at Jamaica House, but the matter was destined to come up. In fact, Obama placed the treatment of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community in Jamaica as one of the first topics to be discussed, following opening statements by the Jamaica team and their United States counterparts, an impeccable political source informed the Jamaica Observer… Obama politely conveyed his Administration's "dismay" that Jamaica had not moved fast enough in ensuring that the rights of the LGBT community were being respected and even protected… The matter of the treatment of the LGBT community was raised only once publicly during Obama's 22-hour stay on the island -- during a United States Embassy-organised Town Hall meeting at the University of the West Indies. After his "greetings, massive ... wah a gwaan Jamaica" introduction, Obama highlighted challenges faced by members of the LGBT community, with specific reference to Angelie Jackson, whom he described as a lesbian."When she was 19, Angelie and a friend were kidnapped, held at gunpoint, and sexually assaulted," the US president told a packed auditorium. "As a woman and as a lesbian, justice and society weren't always on her side, but instead of staying silent, she chose to speak out and started her own organisation to advocate for women like her, in order to help them push back stereotypes and give them some semblance of their own power, and she became a global activist. "But more than anything, she cares about her Jamaica and making it a place where everybody, no matter your colour, class or sexual orientation, can live in equality," Obama said. ..(More on the link below)
(Jamaica Observer)..(clip of Obama speech - LGBT start at 4 mins)
To read opinion of an organisation that stands against the evolution civil rights for all and recent interventions you can read the letter by Jamaican Coalition for a Healty Society (JCHS) 'Don't Bite Gay Bait', published in Jamaica Gleaner.
April 13, 2015: Jamaican-born activist ask US government to keep Visa ban
TEXT FROM BLOG: "According to the Jamaican Star in an article published on April 10, this year, the artists Busy Signal and Bounty Killa are asking for the United States President to intervene and reinstate their US visas... As western nations are relatively new to accepting this severely marginalized group, we as activists are fighting hard to ensure that states refrain from passing discriminatory laws against LGBTI people and trying to ensure that hate crimes are prosecuted. The last thing we need is for any hateful visitors calling for the murder and abuse of our citizens too; and of course we should not be supporting this carnage with our dollars. New York City in recent years has seen a spike in hate crimes and abuse of our LGBT community. One cannot ignore the fact that these songs have a deep impact on people and their lives, no matter where they are. The songs spread misinformation about gays and lesbians endorsing the calls for social inequality and injustice".
The activist also analyses Busy Signal's violent homophobic song and identity change.
April 21, 2015: Teenager found dead in St-Lucia
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Exactly one month after the body of Marvin Anthony Augustin of Grand Riviere, Gros-Islet was discovered with 56 stab wounds, police are yet to arrest anyone, even though a Jamaican male has been fingered by the lawmen in connection with the gruesome homicide. In the last update on the progress of the investigations (April 28), police told St. Lucia News Online that they are following several leads in the hunt for the person (s) responsible for the death of the 18-year-old, whose body was found on Trouya Beach on April 21. ..I need to put in perspective that this news made this page because it occured in the Caribbean, not because the suspect might be of Jamaican origin.
(St. Lucia News Online No.1)..(St. Lucia News Online No.2)..(St. Lucia News Online No.3)
May 5, 2015: Bisexual asylum seeker facing imminent deportation from UK to Jamaica
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: An asylum seeker who says he will be killed if he is returned to Jamaica because he is bisexual could be deported from Britain imminently, his family has said. Thirty-four-year-old Orashia Edwards, who is currently being held at Morton Hall immigration removal centre in Lincolnshire, was refused refugee status in December 2013 when an asylum tribunal refused to accept that he was bisexual. He has since been embroiled in a long-running appeals process to have the decision overturned. ..
May 8, 2015: WNBA’s Brittney Griner and Glory Johnson wedding
Brittney Grine & Glory Johnson, both 24 and players of the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball association) exchanged vows in Phoenix, Arizona on May 8, just nine months after announcing their engagement. Britney Griner came out publicly on April 17, 2013. Five weeks later, it was widely publicised that there was an abrupt ending to the wedding. Although their engagement didn't last too long, I tought their union was worth mentioning...
(The Huffington Post)..(Hollywood Life)..(ESPN: 2013 Interview)
May 23, 2015: Jamaica pressed on gay rights by members of United Nations
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: The government has rejected recurring recommendations from some member states of the United Nations for the country to repeal its buggery law and legalise same-sex marriage. Justice Minister Senator Mark Golding told members of the Upper House of Parliament in a statement yesterday that the proposals from some member countries of the United Nations did not enjoy Jamaica's support. There were repeated calls by some member states for Jamaica to get rid of the law relating to buggery. They claim that the law was discriminatory to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons. ..(More on the links below)
(Jamaica Gleaner)..(Jamaica Observer – Christian group protest)
May 27, 2015: Etana takes a stand for the human rights of LGBT people
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: Popular Jamaican reggae singer Etana, whose name means “strength,” is a voice for change in her industry. Jamaican dancehall music often contains violent and homophobic lyrics. When prominent LGBT activist Brian Williamson was murdered in 2004, the mob that gathered outside his home sang lines from “Boom Bye Bye,” a song that celebrates shooting a gay man. But Etana says that hatred of LGBT people goes against Rastafarian principles. “People have a right to live their life how they feel,” she said in an interview last year. “You don’t get to dictate how a man or woman should live and if you’re a rasta, it is said that every man has a right to his own destiny and if you believe in the Father then you have to allow the Father to direct each life. Let them do their thing. A gay person is just a person like everybody else... Let them be.” Last week at an event with Human Rights First commemorating International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, Etana described how having LGBT friends has shaped her perspective and made her realize how difficult life can be for Jamaica’s LGBT community. She believes that music can have a powerful influence for safety, equality, and positivity and she uses her platform to create constructive dialogue around the movement for LGBT human rights.
(Human Rights First)
June 1, 2015: Is ‘The most homophobic place on Earth’ turning around?
Angeline Jackson looks at the progress that was made in Jamaica in recent years. She's a human rights activist and executive director of Quality Citizenship Jamaica (QCJ).
(Angeline Jackson's letter)
June 17, 2015: Beenie Man makes a duet with Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy has released his first reggae single 'Red Lignt', feat. Snoop Lion in September 2013. He said that he was gonna wait to see the public reception before he peresue that venue. In May 2015, he released a second single 'Oh Jah Jah' wich seems to have enjoy popularity. A month laterhe released a duet with Beenie Man named 'Wonna Deez Nites.
PERSONAL COMMENT: This news doesn't really fit on this page that's why I put it in grey. I couldn't help but smile when I saw the release of that song, as both artists have an history of attacking and/or mockering homosexuals. As for Eddie Murphy, you can watch the stand up show 'Delierious' on YouTube. Later in his career, Eddie made the news a few times being caught in 'comprominsing' situations, regarding his sexual preferences, but never came out publicly. And there's nothing wrong with that. To see the two doing a duet is sign that things are changing. Good for them. a caree
June 26, 2015: US Supreme Court makes gay marriage a nationwide right...
•.HISTORICAL EVENT •
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: In a long-sought victory for the gay rights movement, the US Supreme Court ruled by a 5-to-4 vote on Friday that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage. “No longer may this liberty be denied,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority in the historic decision. “No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were.” Marriage is a “keystone of our social order,” Justice Kennedy said, adding that the plaintiffs in the case were seeking “equal dignity in the eyes of the law.” The decision, which was the culmination of decades of litigation and activism, set off jubilation and tearful embraces across the country, the first same-sex marriages in several states, and resistance – or at least stalling – in others. It came against the backdrop of fast-moving changes in public opinion, with polls indicating that most Americans now approve of the unions. ..(More on the links below)
(New York Times)
MORE LINKS: Map of the countries where gay marriage is legal (link), US same-sex marriage ruling likely to impact other countries (link), Vast majority of Jamaicans remain adamantly opposed same-sex marriage (link)
July 6, 2015: Elephant Man rape trial resumes
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: After several years of postponement due to various hiccups including a backlog of cases, the rape trial involving colourful entertainer Elephant Man is finally set to get on its way this Monday July 6, 2015 inside the Home Circuit Court. The artiste, whose given name is O’niel Bryan is charged with rape stemming from a January 2012 incident involving a 31-year-old woman at his Hillcrest Avenue home in St Andrew.
PERSONAL COMMENT: Starting a court case three years and a half later. When money talks...
July 6, 2015: Queen Ifrica, Capleton and I-Wayne not welcome at reggae festival
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: The organisers of a music festival in Canada are being pressured by their sponsors to axe three Jamaican artistes booked to perform, because of their alleged anti-gay songs. Already, two sponsors, Hot 97 and 97.5 Cruz FM, have pulled out of the Edmonton Reggae Festival scheduled to take place on September five. They say they will only participate if Queen Ifrica, Capleton and I-Wayne are dropped. A report on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, CBC’s website quoted the two sponsors saying "the one rule we have here at both of our stations is we have zero tolerance for intolerance."
A settelment was reached on July 12. TEXT FROM PRESS RELEASE: 'Edmonton’s Queer Black Community, Edmonton Reggae Festival Society and the Pride Centre of Edmonton engage in historic meeting and move forward with a focus on positive relationships and solutions. On the morning of July 12th, 2015 members of the Queer Black and Caribbean community, the management of Edmonton’s Reggae Festival Society and the Pride Centre of Edmonton met to discuss many important issues related to the recent news stories about the event. …All meeting participants recognized the importance of this historic meeting that sets a precedent for unity of LGBTQ in the greater reggae community. Further, it acknowledged the critical importance of centering the voices of LGBTQ People of Colour (POC) in the discussion. They [made] an acknowledgement of homophobia in all cultures in society and in arts that reflect those cultures and that reggae is about healing social and political injustices through love.'
(Edmonton Journal)..(Jamaica Gleaner)..(PRESS RELEASE)..(Erasing 76 Crimes No.1)..(Erasing 76 Crimes No.2)..
(Erasing 76 Crimes No.3)..(Jamaica Observer No.1)..(Jamaica Observer No.2)..(Jamaica Star)
July 24, 2015: African american preacher unloads on church hypocrisy regarding gays
TEXT FROM INTERNET: Pastor E. Dewey Smith of the House of Hope, Greater Travelers Rest church in Decatur (Georgia, USA) gave an impassioned sermon, posted to YouTube on Thursday, in which he slammed church leaders for judging gay people. “We demonize and dehumanize the same people that we use and we don’t say nothing about the gay choir director because he’s good for business” Smith said. “As long as the choir sound good, I ain’t saying nothing about his sexuality. We have done what the slave master did to us. Dehumanize us, degrade us, demonize us, but then use them for our advantage.”
(YouTube clip of the sermon)
PERSONAL COMMENT: Make sure you take 5 minutes to watch this clip: simply mind-blowing.
August 4, 2015: First jamaican gay-pride
TEXT FROM ARTICLE: In a change from Jamaica’s often-deserved reputation as a violently homophobic nation, Jamaican politicians have spoken positively about the country’s first Pride celebration, currently under way. To reduce the possibility of anti-LGBTI violence, PRiDEJA 2015 does not include a parade.
(Erasing 76 crimes)
NOTE: Due to my studies, the amount of time dedicated to update the websites are now limited. You can visit the following website, which provide a wide varity of Jamaican news related to LGBT issued. This is the best website that I found in recent years: Gay Jamaica Watch