Frankly Speaking… By A.A. Fenty

Former American Vice-President Al Gore has done his significant bit to heighten our awareness of the clear and present dangers of global warming and climate change generally. (Even if some of his theories and “facts” are now being seriously challenged). But there is another Inconvenient Truth within Guyana’s society which, when not being ignored or tolerated, is causing “regular” persons to be embarrassed, upset or sometimes, quite outraged. I refer to the social phenomenon that is homosexuality and lesbianism. Yes, I mean the existence of increasing instances of same-sex relationships.

I understand that there is physical, visible, factual and verifiable evidence of such an increase in what many of us still view as abnormal behaviour. Again, as I wonder about this phenomenon and provoke your (peaceful, nonviolent) reaction to this issue, I won’t attempt to be too academic or “intellectual” about it. I’ve been reading a Roger Williams and others -virulently anti-gay- as well as the seemingly SASOD types who defend their (gay/lesbian human) rights, aggressively. The debate, naturally, raises issues such as “rights”, morals, regulations and laws to “protect” society and to prosecute behaviours seen as deviant, as well as, yes, health issues and even the fate of the young. Quite akin to the question of Abortion, isn’t it.

I suspect that when I passed my fiftieth year on this earth – many years ago -1 became much more tolerant of behaviours my youth found to be offensive, illegal or of undesirable influence. (Homosexuals lived in hell in old time Guyana!). So I now can tolerate certain behaviours as long as the protagonists do not offend me openly or interfere with my rights (to disagree or express opinion on the behaviours, for example).

In this country there is still no right to be a murderer or to smoke marijuana openly. You do not even have a right to express yourself in obscene language, though at no time have I ever been shown a list of words deemed obscene. (I suppose language that rankles our peace and sensibilities and which threaten our security are “obscene”.) So too there is no right to legal same-sex marriages in Guyana or even any legal approval of same-sex reputed unions.

What there certainly is – and must be – is freedom of choice!

Why the same sex?

You realize, of course, that life itself is largely a question of choices. Yes, on many occasions, you have no choice or limited options. But you choose your own paths and preferences – religion, job, profession, spirit, hobby and yes a life-partner.

Now, in terms of homosexuality and lesbianism because I’m no militant Christian, I won’t invoke the usual Biblical injunctions against the antisocial behaviour being discussed here. And whilst I am indeed impressed by the Roger Williams case against same-sex behaviours – with all his scientific facts and his explanation of how eroded straight people’s rights become when gays insists on their rights -1 must state that frankly speaking, I respect the choices gays and lesbians are entitled to, when they choose to live with their own gender. The problem, I appreciate is that these folks must not dare to propagate their lifestyle and its consequences. So I am defending their right to choose. Not to aggressively influence though the chances and risks will be there. We just can’t trample people’s rights to choose, however.

Amidst all the debate world-wide, what I don’t see enough of is the reasons persons turn to the same sex? What factors contribute to the making of homosexuals and gays? Genetics, Acquired behaviours in particular environments? Becoming fed up with abuse from the opposite sex? This is what I want to delve further into. Can SASOD individuals assist?

Guyana Gays

Years ago, I did a piece in these columns remarking on the prevalence and positions male homosexuals hold in Guyana.

Whether in their closets or outside, I found that there were Homos in high places then. In politics – in many political parties – in the Arts and Entertainment, in the Police and Defence Forces, even in the Church. I

quipped then that gays would leave more females available for me – as I still find women extremely attractive and normal. My naughty but knowledgeable friends quickly cautioned that many homos of “standing” actually had wives!

Now those friends, who move around towns and out-of-city haunts, tell me that in 2007 girls are turning to girls more! What!? I exclaim in indignation. The fellas then direct me to certain houses in Georgetown, certain “spots” on the East Bank of Demerara and its West Coast and to certain discoes I know little of. Girls pair up at tables. Not to await male partners but to have a swinging night out with their own. Must I believe this? (Mind you I can understand girls “understanding” their own better than dominant males…)

Boy, oh boy (?) Global Warning is certainly upsetting many balances. Even “normal” human relationships. But we should research, and explore these phenomena. For Guyana’s sake. What think you?

Poor rape victims

I mean the genuine victims of that most heinous manifestation of women abuse – rape. Not those who are caught consenting only to cry rape.

The real victims of rape in this society are abused and condemned many times over. Even after the actual act and crime. I can’t elaborate today. That will be done next Friday. Until then, I ask all good people to do this: think about all the odds and circumstances rape victims have to confront as

they boldly face the criminal perpetrators in our court system.

Until…

The well-prosecuted summary against the gross withdrawal of taxpayer-funded ads from Stabroek News: (i) the right to protest does not prescribe the quantity or form of speech to be used; (ii) government ads should not automatically go to “state” papers; (iii) the Stabroek News is a popular paper enjoying distribution in Guyana and overseas – moreso than say the pro-PPP Mirror; (iv) if I am a subscriber to the Stabroek, I can’t access government ads?

Coming soon: Barama, Bulkan and Bharrat.

Also: How Business Places Exploit Needy Workers.

Happy Diwali Rastafari!

‘Til Next Week!

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