Badpuppy Gay Today

Wednesday, 04 March 1998

CARIBBEAN ISLANDS RESIST BRITISH PRESSURE ON GAY SEX

Caymans, Virgin Isl., Anguilla, Montserrat & Turks/ Caicos Isl. All Angry
200 Attend Chinese Gay Conference in Hong Kong

By Rex Wockner
International News Report

 

CARIBBEAN TERRITORIES RESIST BRITISH PRESSURE ON GAY SEX

Officials of Britain's Caribbean Dependent Territories--Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Montserrat and the Turks & Caicos Islands -- are angry over the British government's demand that they legalize homosexuality.

Britain took the stance last month due to concerns of being found in violation of its international human-rights agreements. Anti- gay sentiment in the region was highlighted recently when the Cayman Islands denied docking privileges to a cruise ship carrying 900 gay men. The tourism ministry said homosexuals could not be counted on "to uphold the standards of appropriate behavior expected of visitors to the Cayman Islands."

"We are a simple Christian society," Anguilla head minister Hubert Hughes said in response to London's demand. "That is the foundation of our society. People say homosexuality is sinful. We would like Britain to understand that even though we are dependent on British aid, we will not, definitely, compromise our principles when it comes to Christianity."

Montserrat chief minister David Brandt said: "This issue runs to the core. ... This society will not stand for it. No politician could vote for such a law [allowing homosexuality]. There will be great anger in the community. ... There will be protests everywhere on this island and in other dependent territories [if Britain imposes the change from London]. I don't know what the people will do. The only thing they could do is civil disorder."

London previously forced abolition of the death penalty on the colonies in defiance of local public opinion.

200 AT CHINESE GAY CONFERENCE IN HONG KONG

Two hundred delegates from 17 nations gathered in Hong Kong February 5-8 for the 1998 Chinese Tongzhi Conference. The word "tongzhi"\ is inclusive of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered people.

Among other projects, they set up the Tongzhi Cultural Foundation to channel donations to gay undertakings in Chinese communities, including in the People's Republic of China.

Entertainment included a variety show and a campfire evening. A book fair presented more than 100 Chinese-language books on tongzhi themes.

According to a press release: "The les-bi-gay movement in many Western societies is largely built upon the notion of individualism, confrontational politics, and the discourse of individual rights. Certain characteristics of confrontational politics, such as coming out and mass protests and parades, may not be the best way of achieving tongzhi liberation in the family-centered, community-oriented Chinese societies which stress the importance of social harmony. In formulating the tongzhi movement strategy, we should take the specific socio-economic and cultural environment of each society into consideration."

The delegates came from Australia, Canada, China, France, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the USA and Vietnam.


Rex Wockner's weekly international news reports dating back to May 1994 can be searched at http://www.wockner.com. The reports in their original form are archived at http://www.qrd.org/qrd/www/world/wockner.html, which also archives Wockner's Quote Unquote column and some of his longer gay-press articles.


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