Editorial: The need for a real discussion on homosexuality

POSTED: 08/7/11 8:38 PM

St. Maarten born artist Jabu Arnell has told attendees at a recent panel discussion in Amsterdam that he gets the feeling that the people of the friendly country are accepting of homosexuals. He quickly adds soon after that he has only visited the island in the 20 years since he moved to the Netherlands and his feelings may be based on the knowledge that he will get on a plane and return to the Netherlands, where homosexuality is accepted and the emancipation of gays is promoted by both civil society and the government.

The real assessment is things are not as bad here for homosexuals as it is in other Caribbean islands, where one of the many ways they can show their love is outlawed and their other freedoms are limited for fear that they may labeled as part of an unwelcome social group. Life for gay people in St. Maarten is fairly ok, but when one compares some of the things that heterosexuals are able to do like legally contract a marriage or simply identify with the images of couples that are put out there. And let’s face it the reports of slurs against gay people and the laundry list of demeaning names created here and adopted from elsewhere is long.

The time is here where the nation St. Maarten faces itself it in the mirror and has a fundamental discussion about why love between two people of the same sex gets under their skin and what insecurities that allows to come to the surface. It is time we examine why there is a need to slur two men who love each other and simply want to enjoy that love. It is time to face hard facts that orientation comes at conception and cannot be changed. It is time for a real discussion on letting go of inaccurate perceptions and realizing that all people – same gender loving or not – are just people who want to be happy like anyone else.

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Comments (1)


  1. neville de weever labega says:

    Excellent editorial. I could not have said it better myself. It is time that we start treating all people equal, regardless of their gender, race, religion or sexual orientation.

    Dr. Neville H. de Weever Labega.