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‘Ex-Gay’ myth hits Caribbean: Newspaper ad declares ‘truth’ about gays

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The ‘ex-gay’ religious movement has expanded beyond its American origins throughout the world.

Despite its evident shrinking in the U.S. — with reports that the oldest ex-gay group Exodus International is on the verge of “social and financial oblivion” and widespread mockery of “therapy” operators like Michele Bachmann’s husband — in the rest of the world it is growing.

Reports emerged in October of over 200 “ex gay clinics” in Ecuador, some of which activists had managed to get closed after the torture they were practicing was exposed. It also emerged that the Hong Kong government is paying for so-called Sexual Orientation Conversion Therapy (SOCT) for LGBT citizens.

In Uganda, it is U.S. “conversion therapy” Christian evangelists who have been behind those pushing the ‘Kill the Gays’ bill. Because of them, the idea that ‘the gay’ can be cured is widely believed throughout Africa.

Now the same lies pushed by the same American “ex-gay” propagandists are finding an audience in the Caribbean.

A full page ad (above) published in the leading Trinidad newspaper Sunday Express titled ‘What you should know about homosexuality’ has outraged local activists. They are calling for any further ads to be blocked by local media standards bodies.

Wrote local activist Brendon O’Brien in a letter to the newspaper:

“They looked at this…and thought it was okay to publish? Not that something is wrong with publishing a religiously slanted ad, but one that openly discredits a community, questions their movement towards rights and even, in a sense, undermines their actual existence is definitely a problem. And this tried to do just that, and in a respectful and pseudo-scientific way as well. The publisher should have seen this and seen that it would’ve caused a problem.”

A similar ad was published in Jamaica’s newspaper on World AIDS Day. The blog Gay Jamaica Watch pointed out that the false statements in these ads “would only justify the stigmas that people who experience same-sex attraction are not ‘normal’ but are all sexual defiant, mentally unstable, promiscuous and self-selecting.”

That Jamaican advert was followed up by a symposium on December 10 organized by the Lawyers’ Christian Fellowship and attended by many leading Jamaicans, including two judges of Jamaica’s Supreme Court and the Attorney General, and with American and British Christian speakers. This event was aimed squarely at fighting the growing movement for decriminalization of homosexuality on the island, and throughout the Caribbean. That movement can now count on the support of the head of Jamaica’s Anglican church, who has called for the repeal of the colonial era anti-sodomy laws.

Writes Jamaican activists Maurice Tomlinson:

During the nearly 7-hour symposium, the presenters extolled the virtues of Dominionism — the belief that countries must be governed by a conservative Christian understanding of biblical law — and cautioned (actually, more like threatened) Jamaican Christians that if they don’t organize a counter-offensive against the militant gay agenda sweeping the world, their beloved country will be overrun by aberrant ideas “hell bent” on destroying marriage, children, and, of course, Christianity.

Tomlinson reported that “the entire proceedings were tightly controlled” and organizers tried to stop anyone offering a correction when false information was presented.

Tomlinson is one of those taking Jamaica’s anti-gay law to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. The law in Belize is also being challenged as unconstitutional.

Says veteran Trinidadian activist Colin Robinson of the apparently coordinated anti-gay Caribbean efforts:

“The region is in the cross-hairs of religious groups in the North who think their battles for Christian Dominion ought to be waged on the bodies of Caribbean gay and lesbian men and women, just like they have done on the corpses of our Ugandan brothers and sisters.”

But Robinson also pointed out that in Trinidad, however, heterosexual people, especially young ones, are mobilizing to say, “This is wrong and harmful, and we will stand against it.”

They are doing a much better job than we are of creating advocates for LGBT rights, he said.

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14 more reader comments:

  1. It’s not enough to make Jamaica a dangerous place for LGBT people. Better to turn even more hate loose and destroy tourism economies in one go. As a former resident of the USVI I say hisssssssss.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:02pm
  2. Thank YOU!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:02pm
  3. Then ex-straight propagandists should take action, too! :-)

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:05pm
  4. What the hell would Christians know about being Homosexual. If you not gay you have no horse in this race.You wouldn’t have any first hand knowledge on what it is to be gay.For those that claim they wanna change is because it been inbeded into their heads that it wrong.But i suppose to the Christians it ok that all of they’re priest are have sex with kids.But i guess its ok cause it was gods plan for them!I’m a happy gay man thats been out of my closet for alomost 20 yrs.I’m in a loving relationship and have a nice home together.As far as i can remember i was BORN THIS WAY!!!!!!!!!!!So if your not gay and don’t know what it is to be gay them SHUT THE FUCK UP AND KEEP PS & QS TO YOUR SELF.As far as i can see what i do in my home is none of your business!SO I I WANNA TAKE A GUY OR TWO WITH ME HOME TONIGHT>ITS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:06pm
  5. if you read this and know me. Then you know this is bullshit and delusional!

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:08pm
  6. I can’t even begin to comprehend this!

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:08pm
  7. It’s obvious the publisher is anti lgbt

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:20pm
  8. There’s a difference between legit arguments for both sides which can and should be published and discussed n clarified but this is purely bullshit

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:23pm
  9. I will not visit the islands that are not part of the E.U. When I heard that a British Ambassador on one of those islands had his house broken into by a mob who then took him out in the street yelling batty boy and then proceeded to smash his brains in…Well, No thank you. I will spend my gay money elsewhere.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:28pm
  10. and your god has a plan for me and others like me. Then he has no problem on what i do in the privacy of my home.So think before your preach your crap.I’m homo because its his plan.Remember these are your words that you preach.Well i say F*#@k you.Stick your selfish, intolerant,violent & Spitefulness book written by primitive men up your O”CHOCOLATE WIZZ WAY!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m gay and proud!I’ve been in a 4year relationship that is healthy nad we have a quite ,peace loving home.So if your not gay i don’t wanna hear your crap.As far as i can see Straights aren’t all that perfect.There’s how many moms and pops that don’t take responsibility for they’re own.Or a girl take 25 guys on to a talk show.Trying to find daddy.You call that good family values?You church freaks need to wake up and realized there’s no happily ever after.There only in fairy tales.When are you gonna stop living your life for some dude whom died over 2000 yrs ago,who promises the after good life.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:32pm
  11. Francisco Olivas: When the buybull bashers pull out their crap, I ask them, “Why are there over 600 admonishments to heterosexuals and only 6 to homosexuals in your book of lies? You should see the looks I get.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 12:49pm
  12. Wow u mean christians are responsible for the suffering and potential death of millions? FUCCCK JESUS, FUCCCK HIS PEOPLE, FUCCCK HIS RELIGION. In fact, ALL religion.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 5:10pm
  13. Nothing new their, in Jamaica they kill homosexuals, have these “License to kill Faggots and bull shit like that.

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 8:00pm
  14. Hey Jeff, no thanks, I wouldn’t fuck you if we were the two last people on this earth. Before you go on a rant, never assume that all Christians are bad, and I wont assume that people who look like you are assholes!

    Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 8:02pm