I am not surprised as it was said before in a subtle way by then Member of Parliament and attorney at law Ernest Smith, one wonders if he will jump on this one to gain political mileage? given all the trouble and stumbling the Jamaica Labour Party Administration has been facing, after all the Prime Minister did use the issue to prop up support in the early days of his entering the hoouse with that "Not in my Cabinet" rant on the BBC.
Public official however need to be mindful of the stuff they put out in the public domain this also reminds of the Public Defender Earl Witter when he said gays should keep it to themselves some years ago and hold their corners, his intentions may have been good but it was interpreted for some to mean profiling and deliberately look out for the stereotypical hints then launch an attack.
My hope is that now the police won't see this as license to be abusive and send the gains made down the drain back to the late nineties when all hell broke loose sometimes when it came to LGBT people and encounters with elements of the security forces.
go to about 2:59 to see the comments by Superintendent Bailey
Ernest Smith on his feet in Parliament making the original statement that gays are in crime etc, the PNP did respond but one wonders if that was to just appease the large LGBT following they had at the time?
Update July 13, 2011
and my two cents attached plus ...........
Observer cartoonist Clovis weighed in with this some what damning piece, I am not aware that the JFJ Jamaicans for Justice were opposed or expressed any such opposition to the issues as expressed by SSP Bailey. Sadly this is what many maybe thinking now as well as profiling and stereotyping has always been an issue with associated the vilified effeminacy in males which is also not only a part of Jamaica's homophobia but also a stinging effemophobia within the LGBT body politic.
also this letter appeared on their mobile site:
The Civil Society Forum of Jamaica notes with horror the statement made by Senior Superintendent Fitz Bailey on TVJ's Prime Time News on July 11, 2011, that homosexual men are responsible for 80-90 per cent of organised crimes. This statement could be misused to fuel prejudice against a community that is already faced with the impact of hate crimes.
Such a statement coming from SSP Bailey, a senior police officer, will do more harm than good in our society. This is irresponsible, given the high levels of stigma and discrimination against members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community which makes it difficult to address HIV and AIDS in Jamaica.
It is also very disconcerting, given that in the western region, the HIV infection rate is climbing. SSP Bailey should show us the facts about the perpetrators of organised crimes that his division is investigating. We encourage SSP Bailey not to use broad brush statements in such a thoughtless way to add to the burden of an already marginalised and stigmatised community. We also encourage SSP Bailey to restate his position and set the record straight and protect the lives of citizens of Jamaica as he signed on to do.
Interim Chair - Civil Society Forum of Jamaica
UPDATE July 14th
COMMISSIONER of Police, Owen Ellington, says that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) withdraws the statement by Senior Superintendent of Police Fitz Bailey, head of the Organised Crime Investigation Division (OCID), which identified homosexuals as being prominently involved in the ‘Lottery Scam’ and highly lucrative criminal enterprise.
In a statement this morning, Ellington said that he had spoken to Bailey and that the JCF regretted any prejudice that might have arisen from the remarks.
"He shared information with me supporting his assertion and cited discussions he has had with representatives of J-FLAG (the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays) about the problem. He fully understands the basis of concern for the safety and well-being of members of the gay community who may be targeted by misguided individuals simply because of the statement's under reference," said the commissioner.
He assured the public that the JCF has no policy of singling out individual social groups for special attention.
"Our focus is on enforcing the laws without fear, favour, prejudice or ill-will. The JCF stands willing to receive and deal dispassionately with feedback from our publics. Our mission remains to serve, protect and re-assure all," said Ellington.
He reasoned that the matter demonstrated that the JCF was willing to listen and review its positions accordingly.
Also see another take I came to after talking to persons on the issue:
An audio response I tried, I hope to restart audio commentary soon
This video also sheds some new light on the issue as the person named is said to be gay, maybe this is where SSP took his cue to arrive at his conclusion.
Peace and tolerance
Peace and tolerance