|Police officers escorting victims from home|
According to CVM TV News Watch (1/8/2013) "the police had to be called on to rescue two alleged homosexuals from an irate crowd, which claimed the men were engaging in an illegal activity in an house in central village St. Catherine. Prior to the polices arrival, one of the accused men was attacked by other occupants of the very house he was staying."
CVM TV- News Report (August 1, 2013)
Among the mob, an angry male patron voiced, "we need the Fish (Gay) to come out of the house because the police cannot save him." He further uttered a popular phrase "not in our cabinet", Jamaica's past disgraced Prime Minister Bruce Golding shared in a 2008 interview on BBC world news, when asked if he would appoint gay members to his cabinet. The outrage and sentiments expressed by the mob toward gays are similar.
A day before this incident "a group of citizens descended upon a police patrol unit at the Chester Lane/Beaston Street intersection in western Kingston. The residents were in a militant mood, claiming they had spotted a member of the police team whom they claim was the officer in a compromising position with another male in a picture being circulated. Other members of the security forces on the ground had to intervene and warning shots and pepper spray were released when the crowd became boisterous and things threaten to get out of order. Civilians were heard calling for the head of the look-alike police officer as they were sure he was the one in the photograph," (CVM TV News Report, 31/7/2013).
Patrick Bryan (1994) suggested that, "emancipation has from time to time, including now, has been used as a calender date for assessment of achievement or non-achievement. It is a day on which to recall the history of our fathers, and to contemplate the destinies of our children. It should be utilized to the end that the Negro subjects of the British Crown will rise to the full dignity of their national privileges, and enjoy without any distinction, the full political manhood."
Since the passage of the Emancipation Act (1838) in Jamaica as a result of the Slavery Abolition Act (1833) which ended slavery in the British Empire on August 1, 1834, ex-slave Jamaicans enjoyed the fruits and pride of "Full freedom". Yet still, in the 21st century gay sons and daughters of ex-slave Jamaicans continue to be held by the ideologies and inadvertent actions of modern day slavery and bondage carried out by antagonistic anti-gay/homophobic sons and daughters of ex-slave Jamaicans.
Homosexuals are seen as 'run-away slaves' in modern day Jamaican society. How can ex-slave Jamaicans be fully emancipated from the reality, mentality and conditions of slavery when tolerance, acceptance of diversity and respect for others are lacking? How can we then deem Jamaica as a free and equal society, when gays in the privacy of their homes are being publicly beaten and crucified for engaging in an illegal act as our laws stipulated (Buggery)?
Furthermore, due to the recent murder of Dwayne Jones who was found dead on July 22 after being attacked at a party he attended in women's clothing, the Human Rights Watch, international lobbying group advocated that "the Jamaican government should be protecting everyone's rights and safety. The government has a poor record of investigating and holding to account those who commit violence because of the victim's sexual orientation and gender identity," (TVJ-Prime Time News, 1/8/2013).
Finally, in the true meaning and assessment of Emancipation, Jamaica has yet to achieve 'Full Freedom', equality and justice for all Jamaicans, especially for homosexuals who are still deemed and treated as "slaves" and outcasts since the passage of Jamaica's Emancipation Act (1838). Since then, countless gay and lesbian Jamaicans has been beaten, evicted, ex-communicated, murdered and forced to seek refuge in other countries. Now, how can we as a nation then proudly celebrate Emancipation when homosexuals, women and children are not equal and free in today's society?
The demonstration of violence and dismay towards homosexuals is inconceivable and inhumane. The Neo-Nazi treatment of homosexuals living in Jamaica is a true reflection of Jamaica's culture and Identity. It is appalling, and doesn't symbolizes true Emancipation. It is time for change. Once again we are strongly urging the government and church leaders in Jamaica to emancipate all Jamaicans from violence and injustice.
|Police fending off the mob|
CVM TV- News Watch http://www.cvmtv.com/videos_1.php?id=1628§ion=watch
Patrick Bryan (1994). Emancipation. http://www.jis.gov.jm/special_sections/This%20Is%20Jamaica/emancipation.html
Emancipation day http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emancipation_Day