14 December 2005

Out of tragedy - creative ferment

Our recent losses have necessarily elicited grief, anger, frustration, resentment, fear - you name it - feelings and sentiments that under normal circumstances we would have kept under circumspect wraps, sharing perhaps with only our key spars. Stressful situations can often bring out the mettle in us and this seems to be the case, as fingers fly over keyboards and e-mails traverse from one end of the world to the next.

Here a few excerpts which i share and hope that the originators will themselves join this board.

First volley:
... I don't like the idea of the kind of political agenda and pressure on the Jamaican government that seeks to show only the one side of a situation. Without question I believe and want to see Jamaica repeal the sodomy laws and amend the discrimination ones too. But I also want Jamaicans and the world to know that while we live unprotected by law, publicly unsupported yet privately encouraged by Jamaican society - we have a rich and amazing history, we have heroes and heroines, we have contributed much to the development of this country and still do and that we are living as loudly and proudly as we can here.

Response 1:
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 cant 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 ain't glib about a thing. I too want the repeal of the sodomy laws and any discriminatory ones too. But I'd rather the political agendas be based on fact (steve Harvey was shot) that fiction (Steve Harvey was found with his throat cut). I'd rather it be fought not only with the focus on the struggle(the laws that don't protect us, the societal machinery that doesn't support us) but also with stories of our successes ( the men and women living well, loving long, partying hard, things being done). Political activism is not only about people within organizations doing what they do best, but also about the many others outside of the organizations who have chosen to live and love regardless.

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