November 16 is observed as International Day of Tolerance as part of the United Nations thrust on tolerance to cover racism, sexism, and homophobia indeed bi and transphobia as well. Locally we have everything from now gun totting and losing men of the cloth with double convictions as pious Reverends declaring that LGBT advocacy pressing for tolerance rebutting that said calls are a farce to force homosexuality on Jamaica or tolerance does not mean acceptance, complete with near hero worship support from blind followers who swallow and hang on every word they get without questioning the integrity of said persons, namely Reverend Al Miller and to an equal extent Dr Wayne West. Stoking such strong intolerance in the name of correctness and indeed God is so hypocritical while promoting prosperity gospel, theocracy, maintenance of old laws of buggery and conflating male homosexuality with paedophilia and yet still being selective on other supposed societal ills to include clerical abuse of boys, psychologically weak church sisters yet no response to aforementioned in any serious way.
Then to openly support Donald Trump’s racist sounding, misogynistic thrust in a misguided belief that he is antigay as he appeals to conservative values is just shocking; and having the vacant seat on the US Supreme Court with a said conservative judge to supposedly numb the alleged activist court judgement; namely gay marriage judgements. The extremes some fanatics will go to is just disturbing then they pat themselves on the back and mirroring on social media and reside in vain holiness while ignoring God’s basic principles of forgiveness, non-judgementalism and respect essentially. As long as ignorance is preyed upon to reshape so called values then this sort of madness indeed acquiescence by others will continue. Some of these groups and pastors try to present some balance mostly hypocritically by infusing some conflict of interest in their arguments even as they celebrate Trump’s win, they claim his business interests may cloud his presidency in terms of his announced handing over of his Trump businesses to a blind trust and to his children to run, they ignore however that the law in the US says that such release of possible conflicts of interest with public officials must be done by way of said businesses by operated by some independent committee or management devoid of direct intervention by the absentee owner or management. I am not surprised said pious individuals see what they want to see as long as it suits their interests.
Fearmongering & victimhood ploys
While they celebrate the Trump win mostly openly and praising God in thanks for it, a misogynist and such, I concur that God can use certain situations for his will but these modern day Pharisees are more interested in self aggrandizement and imperialism than anything else. The even more bizarre belief that Trump has given his life to Christ and even being likened to Sirus but they conveniently ignored the liberal positions on abortion, same sex marriage and that trump will bring America bring back “righteousness” then if Trump gave his life to God why is it that he was able to win an election with the awful philosophies he has subscribed to? The victimhood card is also being used most deceptively framed as protecting ‘religious freedom’ or freedom of speech and there is some expectations for Trump to right size the situation while removing things like the transgender laws or the upcoming the Supreme Court case on same according to a pastor from the New Redeemer Church in the USA. The said pastor one Ralph Chitum says he believes also that public policy and the church should be one, in other words good old fashion theocracy.
But like in most circumstances these days truth is so hard to find let alone decipher as one repeats crap long enough it becomes believable; hence the magnitude of the charges are what makes them convincing sadly.
One would have expected a more sensible discourse in an age of LGBTQI visibility thanks to social media, readily available information (facts not dribble) and the ability to fact check same but instead homophobes hang o for dear life; it very difficult to set something aside when one does not see that what they are doing is plain wrong. The longstanding ‘HIV is a gay disease’ narrative and sub text that says gay men who practice anal sex deserve AIDS and no interventions to curb such infections as it is our fault for its spread in the general population continues unabated. These voices do not see the crime out there or at least with the same anti gay stridency they have for LGBT matters and homosexuals, they find all the strength for that in a narrow focus. They claim they want family or the threat to family by LGBT thrusts to be defeated but ignore the overflowing populations in prisons or the mismatch of numbers of churches per square miles in Jamaica often used to justify their values impositions while per square inch increasingly on city streets and towns homeless, abandoned or street children they pass them or offer very limited tokenism gestures framed as social outreach and kindness.
The selectivity hypocrisy continues
The recent unfortunate murder of the Jamaica College student on a bus showed the hypocrisy of these groups and where they choose to turn up. Ironically when students in more lower economically situated students are killed or attacked sometimes even on campus as an invasion incident only a day ago occurred not a sound from these groups, pastors and such but the Jamaica College matter as it was an uptown matter had all asunder crawling out of the woodwork dressed in black in protest, when the Haille Selassie students since this year were attacked and a shooting incident went down, deafening silence. I guess only schools above Half Way Tree are of import since the student phone robbery crime menace has been creeping uptown and are now at the doorsteps on the powerful. Who cares about the nigga kids and their challenges as they have nowhere going it seems but let this had been a Campion or other such ‘traditional’ high schools impacted.
The selectivity gets more bizarre with respects to the dignity that ought to attend to the first lady as tradition for example has shown over successive presidents; to have a President now on his third wife with alleged nude photos of her circulating but that does not seem to stir any disgust or concern; so long a Trump gets rid of gay marriage by any means necessary and preserve abortion laws, all else is unimportant. Then what about the stanza of our anthem: “Teach us true respect for all ........ Strengthen us the weak to cherish, give us vision lest we perish” indeed we are perishing with the well supported divisiveness. Intolerance is not manifest with fanatics but is still an issue in dancehall, and John public’s continued homo-negativity.
There is the egregious intolerance from within the ‘LGBT community’ is deeply disturbing after all these years, the snobbery, indeed institutional bigotry and classism that still carries through. As November is also observed on this and sister blogs GLBTQ Jamaica as Homeless Awareness Month the sheer isolation, scorn by some and condemnation that often comes to the populations although their behaviour can be unbecoming, however when privileged persons can suggest that whatever violence and homophobia alongside police pressure comes then they the homeless MSM/trans deserve it as they give the rest of ‘LGBT community’ a bad name but leave out the rehabilitation component, the very NGOs and allies have simply treated such groups as lepers and only use them when it suits them for statistics for HIV prevention and well written reports. Yes they are needed for evidenced based advocacy but where is the real care and concern? as careers and image management take priority and are propped up as groups and individuals jostle for social media attention with portrayed altered or bettered versions of themselves and agencies, funding flows like water and yet no clear interest to change the situation as it worsens.
It is indeed a sad state of affairs when after some forty plus years of some kind of organized LGBT advocacy from Gay Freedom Movement to present, to include the HIV years in the 1990s and slow periods yet with all the hard and anecdotal evidence of stigma driven displacement and homelessness there is no proper response to same. The fundamental question as to why this is so is yet to be properly and honestly answered. Nationally the class divide is still a challenge as the snobbery, political manipulation of certain inner city communities to gain state power, the skewed rivalry still to death to defend political parties and sheer intolerance of positions and views.
Where is the true tolerance anymore, where has it gone more than just for show for likes and social media mirroring and crowd gathering while powerful and notarized elites continue to thrive in their privileged state? I have to concur with former JLP spokesman (although he is antigay) that Trump is going to become the very thing he has demonized; as the reality hits him, trade deals he wants to change will be problematic and so on he will have to adjust. He cannot have his cake and eat it too.
Hope remains while company is true; there is a lot of work to be done for understanding and towards a better world.
Peace & indeed tolerance