The Star carried this yesterday:
The demonstrations came on the heels of a rally by gay rights lobbyists for the withdrawal of reggae artiste Queen Ifrica from a concert in New York recently.
But last night, Capleton's Manager, Claudette Kemp, told THE STAR that despite the gay lobbyists' effort, the artiste was unperturbed and was focused on more important things.
"We have more important issues to deal with, it's foolishness and we are ignoring them, we are not going there," she told THE STAR.
Capleton was scheduled to perform at the BB King Club and Grill, in New York last Wednesday night. On the day of the event, the Jamaica Anti-Homophobia Stand (JAHS) issued a release calling for the cancellation of the artiste's performance.
"The protest calls for the cancellation and condemns the promotion of and profiting from anti-gay hateful music here in NYC where LGBT lives and rights are valued."
The release also stated, "Jamaican reggae performer Capleton is known for his songs that call for LGBT people to be killed and makes comments from the stage calling for LGBT people to be killed. Capleton signed the Reggae Compasionate Act agreement (an agreement to not promote hatred and violence) in the middle of 2007 and broke the agreement on 12/24/07.
But, despite their efforts, their protest, outside the club was in vain, THE STAR contacted the BB King Club and Grill and was informed by a member of the club's management team, that Capleton did indeed perform that night.
THE STAR spoke with the President of the Caribbean Alliance for Equality, Jason Latty-Travis, who was also present at the protest and he told THE STAR that although disappointed that Capleton's performance was not cancelled, that was not the main object of their protest.
"We protested because we wanted the world to know that people like Capleton are causing the death of innocent Jamaicans, our main aim was to let people know what his lyrics are and how they are contributing to the disenfranchisement of gays in Jamaica."
This is the second protest that was held by members of the gay community against a Jamaican entertainer.
Recently, members of the gay community staged a protest outside the Amazura Concert Hall in Queens, New York, for the removal of reggae artiste Queen Ifrica from the 'Invasion of the Queens' concert, which was hosted at the club.
The day after the protest at Amazura, another protest was allegedly staged by members of the gay community at the Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania. Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller received an honourary degree from the institution.
Queen Ifrica told OBSERVER ONLINE that she is not homophobic, insisting instead that she has love for everyone in spite of their beliefs.
“One thing that a lot of people don’t know about me is that I love people, regardless of their religious, sexual or any other belief they might have. I just love people in general,” she said.
The outspoken artiste has come under increased pressure in recent times because of anti-homosexual lyrics she used while performing at the 2013 Independence Grand Gala in Kingston. As a result she has been banned from performing at several shows, the latest being an event at the Amazura Concert Hall in Queens, New York where she was the headline act.
Meanwhile veteran artiste and producer Tony Rebel who also spoke with OBSERVER ONLINE Monday supported his colleague saying a lot of people are not aware of the love she has for people, including those of the gay community.
And to think some dancehall acts wanted to help with the homeless MSM/Trans youth in the Shoemaker Gully in New Kingston and the same lobby seem to have overlooked their overture, "Artistes want to 'clean up' the streets - Say homeless gays not a good look for Jamaica" was a story published in 2013 which read:
"Entertainers are concerned about the growing number homosexual prostitutes lurking in and around the New Kingston area.
According to the artistes, it's not a positive look for the corporate area.
Dancehall artiste Iyara says Jamaica has changed for the worse.
"That kind of livity need fi get rid of because mi neva born inna dat deh type a Jamaica. The place neva stay suh, so the authorities have to find a way to take that out of the youth dem eye. New Kingston is a place where a lot of people go to clubs and so forth, so it's just not right. They are always saying artiste fighting against them, suh how wi a avoid dem and dem naah avoid wi? Dem fi guh far up into the woods wid dem thing deh," said Iyara, who also pointed out that he does not even sing about them in his songs.
"Mi nah call up dem name and mi nah sing bout dem," he said.
Gaza Slim is also calling for their immediate removal from the Corporate area.
"They should get them off the street and get somewhere put them because to me, they don't live anywhere. They should get them some counselling and put dem inna school and get them off the road. I Gaza Slim do not support homosexuality, but at the end of the day we are all humans," she said.
The female Artiste of the Year was also adamant that gay prostitution was as a result of poverty.
"It looks tacky and its prostitution. Most of them are little homeless boys who live same place on the streets. It happens everywhere, but we need to do something about it because it looks really bad, get them some trade because they are parentless and homeless," Gaza Slim said.
Several other dancehall artistes contacted by The STAR declined to comment on the matter, despite having an issue with the situation.
According to one artiste who refused to have his name published, said, "Mi a leave dem yah man, cause next thing mi guh bash them and when mi guh fi mi visa dem tell mi sey memba deh quote deh wey yu did give STAR. But the police should just scrape dem up and drop dem off at the nearest airport fi guh to a next country, because New Kingston is a business area and that bad for business."
Recently members of J-FLAG had reached out to the local music industry. They conceded that local artistes had reduced their production of hate music, and therefore, they would offer assistance in making it easier for their international success. However Sizzla said thanks, but no thanks.
"I, personally, as Sizzla and president of the Nyabinghi theocracy, I don't want no sponsor from no homosexual," he declared in a recent Gleaner article.
Late last month, police personnel assigned to the St Andrew Central Division told the media that New Kingston was engulfed by self-proclaimed gays. The police also said neither the residential community or business districts were spared the "wrath" of the gays who are sometimes violent."