Tack­ling the wrong prob­lem

Jamaica Gleaner - - OPINION & COMMENTARY - Ron­ald Th­waites is mem­ber of par­lia­ment for Kingston Cen­tral and op­po­si­tion spokesman on ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing. Email feed­back to col­umns@glean­erjm.com.

POOR DELROY Chuck. He has to be work­ing up a big sweat dis­tin­guish­ing his ob­vi­ous per­sonal view that there are lim­its be­yond which the crim­i­nal law for­bid­ding ho­mo­sex­ual con­duct can­not go, from his po­lit­i­cal party’s manic fear of of­fend­ing Ja­maica’s ho­mo­pho­bic ma­jor­ity.

He can’t win this one. Fancy hav­ing to go to Santa Cruz (trans­late ‘Holy Cross’) to pro­claim his opin­ion on the ap­pro­pri­ate use of the anus!

And don’t hold your breath for the ref­er­en­dum on the bug­gery mat­ter ei­ther.

Few is­sues ex­cite and in­flame our pub­lic more than re­ports of ‘fishy’ be­hav­iour. It is an­other in­stance of us rush­ing head­long to tackle a rel­a­tively mi­nor prob­lem while leav­ing a real can­cer­ous so­cial mal­ady unat­tended.

What­ever one’s views on same­sex con­duct, the huge prob­lem fac­ing the so­ci­ety is not the an­tics of those at­tracted to the same gen­der but the life­style of we het­ero­sex­u­als.

Com­pare the fetid pas­sion, the reach­ing for Leviti­cus, the vi­o­lence of tongue and trig­ger against the ‘b***yman/sodomite’; the ex­pen­di­ture of stage, pul­pit and par­lia­men­tary time, by con­trast to the ‘a no nut­ten’ re­sponse to the head­line story in last Wednesday’s STAR (‘One daugh­ter dead, an­other preg­nant at eleven’).

This was the all-too-fa­mil­iar tale of a mother (not ever a men­tion of a present fa­ther) , liv­ing in poverty, sad­dled with sole re­spon­si­bil­ity for a grand­child, born to her el­der daugh­ter who left home at 14 to live with a man who is on a charge of mur­der­ing her. The younger daugh­ter is now preg­nant at the ripe age of 11 years.

“She too careliss, A so man stay,” were the tepid re­sponses to that story. We have nor­malised a slack way of life that weak­ens, if not de­stroys, the lives of many and the prospects of all.

Check out the dance halls pic­tured as the height of so­cial life in our press; the minibuses on our coun­try roads in the morn­ings, car­ry­ing the im­pres­sion­able school­child­ren and belt­ing out the nas­ti­est lyrics, now de­bauch­ing the sa­cred cause of equal rights and jus­tice for which our he­roes died, to the level of equal en­ti­tle­ment to oral sex.


Re­call, too, that per­haps half of our peo­ple grow with­out any, or any sus­tained, re­la­tion­ship with their fa­thers. And al­most a fifth of births are to teenagers.

This is the big prob­lem, with mas­sive and ex­pen­sive in­ter­gen­er­a­tional reper­cus­sions, which Ja­maican so­ci­ety re­fuses to tackle while we have all the en­ergy to ‘bun di gay dem’.

Chuck is right to stand up against the dis­crim­i­na­tion of ho­mo­pho­bia, as I be­lieve he would be put off by the raw pushi­ness of the LGBTQ agenda.

In­stead, how about some qual­ity thought, dis­course and strong ef­fort to pro­mote lov­ing, com­mit­ted re­la­tion­ships in­stead.

And the best part is that to do so won’t breach the pri­mary sur­plus tar­gets but will, in short or­der, de­liver rich div­i­dends of hap­pi­ness and pros­per­ity.


Delroy Chuck, the jus­tice min­is­ter, has taken flak for his re­cently ex­pressed views on ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity and ho­mo­pho­bia.


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