Gleaner's Lasmay touched the latest controversy
Is the PNP machinery obfuscating on the election debate to avoid controversial issues as buggery?
check out previous lines in the sand (PNP) series: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 & 7 & 8 & 9 & 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15
I must really vote for the PNP after all this? ..... When they had captured my interest despite the buggery law baiting by some of their own; plus the CCJ dangling carrot trick by Mark Golding earlier this year.
A dem su'm Portia wah free up inna ja.. An d damn ppl dem a bout 'powa, powa. Kmft das y mi seh str888 showa all wen mi dead mi a laborite
I am now wondering as I cannot believe that a simple barb about who is a con as expressed from both sides is now the reason being banded about as a cop out from a pre election debate. Bearing in mind that in 2011 it was the PNP via its leader Portia Simpson Miller who despite a perception of her less than articulate skills in public speaking who came out shinning none the less against her counterpart leader of the opposition Andrew Holness. Social media has exploded since the release of a letter via general secretary Paul Burke with awful comments and why was the letter dated February 12 despite the fact the letter was released on February 11. Is the 10 point plan and the central minimum wage increase suggestion by the JLP is too strong to challenge by the PNP so they are using all kinds of methods to tear it apart? The rebuttal by the Finance Minister though sounding plausible on the face of it when stripped down is nonsense and the press conference also yesterday alongside the signing of the code of conduct by both parties in 11 parishes seems to suggest an orchestrated strategy to avoid addressing it fully. The JLP’s 250k jobs proposal has simply died down since the new brouhaha as that plan seemed unreachable to me.
So they both create smoke screens over the years to obfuscate the matter instead of having a sensible emotion free debate. I guess the Prime Minister or PNP party leader Simpson Miller does not want to be cornered into making any more suggestions of a buggery amendment/review or promises for that matter. I am in shock as well to think that the rest of the PNP hierarchy has agreed to this obvious debate dodging exercise it something else is happening behind the scenes we are not aware of. Are there pressures pulling on the structure in terms of funding and what issues must be addressed? Let us bear in mind that LGBT considerations come fast furious within the last couple of years with regards to grant funding from places like the EU, the UK and the of course the US since Obama’s ascension to the Presidency. China’s buying influence strategy worldwide does not come with such considerations and I dare say trample on some rights environmental considerations as we have seen in Africa and even locally. China Harbour’s (CHEC) seeming shoddy handling of the dynamiting of areas nearing residencies only for said residents impacting with property damages being misled in a pretentious administrative processing to be told the company cannot be held responsible; leaving many in rage over it especially in St Catherine with the recent completion of the latest toll booth and the highway towards Flat Bridge.
The JLP is obviously courting the religious groups as a previous post had dealt with but the PNP has a problem as well in that department; the tradition so called big churches are also aligned with them and has been so for so many years but the the strong theocratic typed opposition is coming from extremist section of the Christian community who have formed themselves into groups; so the Jamaica Council of Churches, JCC aka PNP at prayer as coined by former PM Edward Seaga decades ago has been very cautious in its public pronouncements on homosexuality and the buggery law while espousing tolerance (whether they mean it or not is another matter); hence there is a rift sometimes made bare by the antigay groups that traditional churches tend to ‘hug up’ homosexuals more so than supposed true fire brand Christians. So we get a two tiered approach to this matter being properly ventilated.
One would think the PNP knowing the party enjoys larger LGBT support for so long would not be afraid to join the pre-election debate and deal with the matter. The utterances from the outgoing if not pushed out unceremoniously Raymond Pryce often perceived as gay and who in 2014 via a Jamaica Observer forum spoke to the buggery law in his own opinion could help and that he Pryce is close to the party leader and even writes her speeches could assist her to articulate the navigating of the matter and the broader issue of homosexuality. We cannot leave out the other party stalwarts and rising stars who also subscribe to popular sentiments to remain popular and the aforementioned propagandists to say the JLP will change the law.
The PNP’s use of logistical incongruence to avoid the debate too is also disingenuous suggesting they wanted a town-hall structure similar to the USA style as they want not just journalists to ask questions but members of the public. Yet the middle of the road suggestion to have every three questions from journalists posed then a member of the public can also pose a question was flatly rejected by the PNP. The numbers game has not worked in terms of the taxes issues, minimum wages, GDP targets, extra liquidity and the NDX payout seems insignificant in the eyes of the ordinary man as they have not translated to improved everyday living for him. Then there is the issue of the timing of the high court constitutional challenge to buggery via Maurice Tomlinson plus the tolerance ad appeal pitted against the aforementioned Justice Minister Mark Golding’s baiting of the same to force a positive vote on the CCJ one wonders if the election call is also to race towards wining it despite the uncertainty of the judgement of the two actions. Curiously the minister had mentioned the challenge long before the press release and announcements came on Tomlinson’s legal action so someone inside the PNP was obviously aware of what was on the horizon although public photos on Facebook of a supposed consultation in Kingston was out.
I agree with Professor Trevor Munroe of the National Integrity Action, NIA that the 2007/11 pre-elections debate that they are needed and had both leaders promising transparency and dialogue while the campaign ads have not addressed the issues properly and are more about belittling each other’s parties. The debate is a chance to raise issues and not one-upmanship in the old style of politics that have come to still be a factor of campaigning and hustings work. The JLP despite the change in strategy from JFLAG et al of decriminalization advocacy instead of a full repeal they via its leader have been deceptively too obfuscating the matter towards a suggestion of a call for a full repeal being justifiably denied when that is not the case for the call by LGBT lobbyists.
The stoning of a PNP motorcade on its way to Junction last evening is not helping any alongside the two shootings of persons in western Jamaica since last Sunday and on nomination day in Flankers is disturbing and reminds me of the old days of violence and fear driven action to stop middle of the road prospective voters from participating. The rapid signing of contracts and sudden accessibility of the Prime Minister by media, sudden decreases in student loan interest rated conveniently as the JLP has an ad saying if they win they will do, MPs now showing up after protracted absence are indicators of the silly season once again but yet all the political parties including the lesser visible ones do not want to touch the buggery law not even with a long stick and are more pandering to popular sentiments of outright rejection of any suggested change or the misplaced perception of a repeal.
Sense & sensibilities anyone.
Peace & tolerance
Also watch & see:
Vaz claims Warmington was provoked & called a B-Man (gay) in parliament
Andrew No Longer My Son - Portia (Gleaner)