When did anyone ask for gay marriage rights in Jamaica when we can't get basic tolerance ......... more smokescreen to deny recognition
The False Dichotomy of the religious right on the LGBT advocacy Godlessness
On my previous post linked above only yesterday the smoke screen that of future gay marriage rights was highlighted and today we see the same foolish rhetoric coming to the fore yet again in the Gleaner now today more garbage in my view plain and simple in a letter to the editor claiming that more Jamaicans want to been involved in the suggested buggery review, a call made by other anti gay voices such as Shirley Richards claiming the conscience vote should be open and not a secret ballot if it happens. Ms Richards has been at this since 1998 after the JFLAG (when they meant something) parliamentary submission/charter of rights debate and the joint select committee report where she and Rev Al Miller got the sexual orientation discrimination protection clause in the 1999 draft removed, she then expressed the same fear in 2006 in : 'Unholy union' - Charter could sanction gay marriage in Jamaica - Christian lawyers and ever since the paranoia has set in. Also see: Shirley Richards breaks silence .......... "Sustain Buggery Law!" and Shirley Richards at it again: 'No truth that repealing buggery law will help reduce HIV/AIDS'
The letter published today read in part:
Jamaicans Demand Say In Buggery Law Debate
"The debate between yourself and former Prime Minister Bruce Golding on the buggery law is an interesting one. I have to agree with Mr Golding's position as it is obvious that the end game is not the removal of the buggery law.
The buggery law in Jamaica is similar to the law on hanging. When last has someone been hung in Jamaica? It has been a very long time and I do not think that we will see another execution by the Government in our lifetime. We should come to this debate with 'clean hands' and put our facts on the table.
Could The Gleaner conduct a research and tell us how many times in the last 10 years consenting adults were convicted of buggery in Jamaica? This law is not being enforced, so why the clamour from gay-rights groups and sections for it to be repealed?
It is obvious that the agenda is to promote gay marriage and silence any opposition to this lifestyle. The activists are taking a piecemeal approach, but they overplayed their hand in calling for Professor Bain's firing, as even moderate supporters have been turned off by the overt aggression displayed by these groups and their attempts to ignore the serious public-health issues raised by the professor.
Former Prime Minister P.J. Patterson may want to tell us why countries in the Middle East are not being called to take into account the prevailing global environment within which they live. It seems to me that global pressure concerning homosexuality is based on a country's income level, but we want to remind the current set of politicians that Jamaica is not for sale.
We demand a voice in this proposed 'conscience vote' by parliamentarians. We need to hear from our respective MPs on this issue. It is the citizens of Jamaica who vote, not the media! We are watching the Government on this matter and, depending on its action, our voice will be heard loudly the next time we are called to the polls.
Same-Sex Unions And The Marriage Contract
Stripped to its core, marriage, in law, is a contract between two persons - in Jamaica's case, a man and a woman - who agree, broadly, to pool their assets and, usually, live together.
Their motivation, mostly, is because they love each other and want to commit their lives together, or so they believe. This sometimes includes having children and raising a family.
But judging from the statistics, marriage is not a particularly popular institution in Jamaica, and is becoming increasingly so. For instance, according to the national census of 2011, nearly 70 per cent of Jamaicans over 16, the age at which people can legally marry, never did.
And those who marry are abrogating the contract at an increasingly faster rate. For example, in 2005, there were just under 26,000 marriages in the island and Jamaicans were tying the knot at the rate of 9.78 per 1,000 population. Five years later, the number of couples walking down the aisles had dropped by approximately 5,500, or 21 per cent.
At the same time, divorce was on the increase. At the middle of the last decade, there were around 1,800 divorces annually, or approximately seven divorces per 100 marriages. By 2010, the number of divorces had climbed by 31 per cent, or at a rate of 111/2 per 100 marriages. A not unexpected upshot of all this is that 80 per cent of Jamaica's children are born out of wedlock and the bulk of them have no registered fathers on their birth certificates.
We draw attention to these statistics neither to ridicule nor undermine marriage, for this newspaper appreciates its potential as an institution of social stability and respect its centrality to Christian and other religious ideologies. But by taking the marriage to its contractual core, it bares the persistence of hypocritical and anachronistic attitudes that perpetuate discrimination.
In Jamaica's case, we refer to Section 28 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, which defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman, thereby ruling out the possibility of formal recognition of same-sex relationships. It is a provision that has its foundation in a deep-seated, if slowly receding, homophobia that has caused us to maintain the buggery provisions, which, essentially, criminalise male homosexuality and allows the State the role of commissar of sexual preferences and to invade the privacy of people's bedrooms. It matters nought that the power is little used; its existence is chilling.
Further, it is unassailable logic that Section 28 represents an assault on the principle of equality of people; people's right to forge relationships, especially when the exercise of those rights does not impinge on the rights of others; and their right to equal protection under the law. Indeed, a denial of these human rights is also an attack on the dignity of individuals who are prevented from the public expression of the powerful human emotion of love within the sanctity of marriage, although same-sex couples could well give the institution a shot in the arm.
The religionists and churches who are not willing to embrace same-sex marriages, but who already co-exist in a morally plural society, need not fear that they may have to compromise their ideologies. While civil registers are not so precluded, ministers of religions who are marriage officers are exempt, at Section 8 of the Marriage Act, from performing weddings that are contrary to the rules of their denominations.
The opinions on this page, except for the above, do not necessarily reflect the views of The Gleaner. To respond to a Gleaner editorial, email us: firstname.lastname@example.org or fax: 922-6223. Responses should be no longer than 400 words. Not all responses will be published.
and the lunacy as well in: Reverend Espeut, West says “Homophobia” was invented to abuse Christians as hate speech and War of words between pro & anti gay activists on HIV matters .......... what hypocrisy is this? (prior to the Professor Bain conflict of interest explosion)
I had warned about the twining of the secular/humanist ambit to the struggle from 2012 and now it seems we are also paying that price as the present impasse rolls on.
also see some previous related entries:
PNP’s Bobby Pickersgill differs on Conscience Vote route to decide on Buggery Law
PNP's Damion Crawford says it's highly unlikely buggery review will happen ........ it's not important now
PNP Wins ................Hope for LGBT People ??
The Line in The Sand for The JLP part 13 - the ascention but the question:Will Holness be a pro-rights PM?
Foreign Affairs Minister says Govt should be cautious on gay rights issues in Jamaica
On Buggery and gays in cabinets with politics ............ some responses ......
Milk River PNP Councillor says no to buggery repeal ..
J-FLAG Disappointed With PM's Unfulfilled Promise, Though She Remains Best Hope
PNP: No election money from gay groups ....
‘Idiot plan that!’ - Many Jamaicans against Buggery Law review .
The Pink Report on JFLAG's handling of the Charter of Rights issue
PNP 2006, No plans to Legalise Same Sex Union (FLASHBACK)
No Same Sex Marriage says Prime Minister in Charter of Rights Bill Debate (Bruce Golding)
Church angry, gays happy PNP on collision course with Christians ………………. but some of us are not impressed
President of the Senate warns against discrimination based on language, sexual orientation
Mark Wignall ....... Gay Lobby will wait in vain
NOT READY FOR GAYS ……. GAY MARRIAGE SMOKE SCREEN REINTRODUCED ……………. POLITICAL DODGING 2011
BUGGERY LAW BACKLASH – BLAIR: THE CHURCH HAS BEEN SLEEPING – BLAIR WARNS REVIEW COULD LEAD TO SAME-SEX MARRIAGES 2011