What the people say about – Cross-dressing being an offence

This week we asked the man, woman in the street what they thought about the cross-dressing charges that were brought against seven men last week.

20090216_toussaintNoleander Toussaint, Student: ‘I think cross-dressing should be an offence for men. They should be charged. I mean if a lady wears pants there’s nothing wrong with that because women are still recognizable as females and there is no conflict in our minds to figure out whether it’s a man or woman. However, when a man dresses like a woman we know it’s a man and we wonder why he’s dressed like that. It affects children to see men dressing like that as well because they become confused about the physical appearance of a given gender. Male children may look at these men and think it’s some sort of fashion and they decide to dress like that when they become older. I don’t think it’s unfair that women can wear men clothing and not be charged for it. Even if a woman is wearing a loose fitting shirt she still looks feminine because of her body structure, her breasts would still be noticeable for example. These men who cross-dress are fooling themselves and trying to fool society that they are something that they’re not and at the same time they are messing with God’s creation, that is themselves.’

20090216_hardingJoel Harding, Self-employed:
‘We shouldn’t allow men to dress like women. If a woman dresses like a man then nothing is wrong with that because it does not affect her appearance as a female and it does not question her femininity. I think if a man wears tight jeans, skirts and dresses they do so because they wish to be a woman and not because those clothes are more comfortable or fashionable. Even if it means that we’re discriminating against gay men when we prosecute those who cross-dress then I don’t think there is anything wrong with that because there are no gay rights in Guyana. Besides I don’t think that being gay is legal in our country so the police have every right to arrest these men for cross-dressing. If a man dresses in a skirt or dress he is pretty much selling out his sexuality to the public.’

20090216_mosesSharlene Moses, Student: ‘Cross-dressing should definitely be an offence for men. Allowing men to cross-dress is bringing more homosexuals into our society. Gay men and women as well should not be given rights in our society. This is not good and highly immoral.’

20090216_fieldsLinden Fields, Private Sector Employee: ‘As far as cross-dressing being an offence goes I think it is a ridiculous idea. If men are being charged for cross dressing then women should be charged as well. All men who cross-dress aren’t necessarily gay but the majority are and so what if they are? Homosexuality has been around since biblical times and has been there from creation from what is said in the bible. I feel these are people who have an imbalance of male and female components in the body and they honestly cannot help who they are. Plus there are women who look like men when they dress but they aren’t charged for cross dressing, I think this is discriminating. I remember watching Oprah one day and seeing the life story of a pastor who discovered he was gay. The man had a family and explained that while he’d never done the act he knew he was homosexual. He is still a pastor, he is God’s child and God wanted him to be that way.’

20090216_matthiasCloreen Matthias, Self-employed: ‘Of course, it should be an offence. I am totally against cross-dressing. I’ve noticed that a lot of young boys are doing it and they should stop this nonsense. I think they cross-dress to get away from the responsibility of being a man. I am not sure why these men do this but I think parents aren’t doing enough to control the situation. If a parent notices their male child behaving too feminine or perhaps favours cross-dressing they should object to it. I admit that there are children born with both male and female organs but still there are proper men who are becoming gay. In addition to this gays contribute to our prostitution population. I think cross-dressing is a form of fraud because they are fooling society that they are women.’

20090216_dickS. Dick, Public Sector Employee:
‘Men who cross-dress should most definitely be charged. I know there are many countries that have made provisions for gay rights in their legislation but I don’t think Guyana should do this. These men who prance about in women’s clothing trying to be something they’re not are staining our society’s image.’

20090216_bacchusH. Bacchus, Public Sector Employee: ‘Why should we charge people who cross-dress for their own entertainment, personal style or fashion? Cross-dressing should not be an offence and it should not be associated with homosexuality because not every person who cross-dresses is gay. I think that with Mashramani coming up we will see lots of people dressing out of sorts. They may be preparing for the day of celebration and getting in the spirit. Besides we are promoting freedom of expression for Mashramani and what these cross-dressers do is their own business and their own right to expression.’

20090216_bovellA. Bovell, Private Sector Employee:
‘Cross-dressing should be a crime for many reasons. There are men who dress like women to avoid the law and in so doing the fool the police. A male police officer cannot take a female into custody without a female officer being present and so some male criminals dress like women because they know it is beneficial to them. There are major disadvantages to males when it comes to making cross-dressing an offence though. I’ve seen many females dressed like men and they get away with it.’

20090216_knightsClive Knights, Public Sector Employee: ‘When God created this world he made man and woman so why should we have a third party? Cross- dressing is that third party’s way of stamping their presence in society and should be made an offence. Guyana’s moral standard is dropping and our society seems to be accepting homosexuality. I think this is a spiritual war between the devil and God’s children.’

20090216_cole D.C Cole, Security Guard:
‘I don’t believe that men should be allowed to parade around our society in female clothing. I know for a fact that all the men we see cross-dressing are gay and they should be charged and taken to court for doing so. If you’re gay there’s no problem with that. Gays can wear their jeans and tight tops if they want people will recognize them from their behaviour and how they carry themselves but there is absolutely no need for them to wear a dress or skirt.’

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