Is It Jamaica A Safe Place? Essay

Is It Jamaica A Safe Place? Essay

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Dwayne Jones was a teenager who was brutally murdered by a vicious mob at a party in Montego Bay, Jamaica, three years ago. Dwayne was shot, beaten, stabbed and ran over with a car at the party. This crime only occurred because Dwayne identified as a transsexual. After hearing about this unwarranted incident, I had a new sense of awareness about the non-existent rights, mistreatment and disapproval of those individuals who did not identify as the socially accepted, “heterosexual”. There is little support for this community as only two organizations exist to help where possible. The Jamaican Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays (J-FLAG) and Quality of Citizenship Jamaica (QCJ) are the two organizations; they work towards making Jamaica a “safe place” for the affected community. Jamaica is still a fiercely homophobic island, so there is a great need for change. Thus, I believe that all citizens should be fairly treated and have rights even if they do not comply with society’s standards. The day I read that news article, I became more aware of the problems affecting the LGBT community; I now aspire to be one such person who helps Jamaica become LGBT-friendly.
This community lacks the necessary rights any other community should have. For instance, one of my uncles wanted to get married to another male, but he was not allowed to do so. Same-sex marriage is not a legally recognized union in Jamaica. Further, sexual acts between two males are acts punishable by up to ten years in prison; this is known as the Buggery Law which is outlined in the Offences Against the Person Act (OAPA). The above made me reflect on the day I read the article about Dwayne; Dwayne too, lacked rights. Had I not read that article, I doubt that I would have...


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... Additionally, I might not have even become an avid supporter for encouraging acceptance of the LGBT community in Jamaica.
Reading the newspaper article about Dwayne’s undeserved death has made me change for the better. As a result, I also realized all the injustices that the LGBT community faces. Jamaica remains extremely homophobic, so some sort of change must be made. As such, I aspire to be one such person who assists in the repealing of unfair laws and the implementing of new impartial laws. I also promote the change in Jamaican society, so that all citizens, regardless of their sexual orientation, are treated fairly. I truly aim to live in a society where not conforming to society’s accepted sexual lifestyles and preferences is deemed acceptable, as well. How can Jamaica have the motto, “Out of Many One People”, and not have complete unity amongst its citizens?

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