The Blogmaster does NOT support hate speech or hate crime and abhors bigotry and prejudice wherever and whenever it shows. However, there is the obligation by democratic societies to protect the right of citizens to practice freedom of speech. How societies evolve to be inclusive will have to be managed sensibly by today’s leaders. There is no room for the usual rhetoric.
Addressing hate speech does not mean limiting or prohibiting freedom of speech. It means keeping hate speech from escalating into something more dangerous, particularly incitement to discrimination, hostility and violence, which is prohibited under international law.— United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, May 2019
The news a man entered an entertainment establishment in the USA where members of the LGBTQ community hang out and shot up the place, reportedly killing 5 and injuring several others, must be condemned. The firing of a homosexual talk show recently from Voice of Barbados because management of the station prefers to operate right of centre should signal to wider society what is to come. It is an impractical position to take that Barbados will be able to avoid the call to integrate the rights of gay, trans community and non binary being stridently advocated into the legislative framework of Barbados.
If there is doubt, check the call by some contributors to the Constitutional Reform Commission (CRC) to exclude sexual orientation matters from a new Constitution. Across the globe the matter of adopting an allyship approach to building inclusive societies has identified LGBTQ, transgender and non binary issues as contentious. As the USA is finding out with the shooting in Colorado, wedge issues create the opportunity to feed political rhetoric with the objective of winning votes and finding favour to satisfy narrow interest. It seems we have adopted a furtive approach to dealing with this issue. Barbados is proud to be the first to achieve many milestones, having gay prime minister is no big deal. Let us be honest with the people by shedding the hypocrisy.
Here is an issue we should not bury our heads because it will not go away.