15 December 2005

Full text of response 1 (See below)

A killing based on homophobia does not always happen in a clear cut way. It is almost never as clear cut as Matthew Shepard's killing in the US. But it is not rocket science either.

On the face of it, it may appear to be a "normal" murder in the course of a robbery. But on not even very close examination, one will note that there is a special motivation of hatred towards battyman. Why stab Brian a few dozen times for example? Or why not just rob Steve's place and leave him the hell alone? There is the added antipathy towards the victim because he is gay. It doesn't matter if there is a robbery or some other criminal enterprise, alongside the clearly demonstrable hatred of gays.

So while there is an intolerable level of crime generally, gay people have an added problem. If they exhibit courage and report crimes relating to their sexuality, there is every chance that it will not be properly investigated - precisely because there is institutional homophobia in the police force (See HRW report or just talk to a few sport).

You will also agree that in spite of all the wonderful parties, people tend to be scared to self-disclose sexual orientation even to prosecute a criminal claim. Why ? Because people have real fears about phyiscal harm being done to them based on their sexuality.

As a middle class lesbian, you can create rarified spaces to socialise. You are for the most part, insulated from the full blast of nasty homophobia accorded to de "sodomite gal dem". But even you (and I) are not exempt. We are all at risk for crime in general, yes. And the added thing of our homosexual orientation, does put us at a particular risk. That is the concern being highlighted by gayrights activist - local and international.

So do not for one second be glib. Our governments can't claim any sovereign right not to be criticised for its failure to protect their citizens, gay and straight. Their is nothing uniquely "Jamaican" about this dereliction. I would hate to think that in your views, you are enabling this utterly vile propoganda.

I am angry, but not full of hate

( one a de pesky gay rights activists-at-large )

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