Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Apologize, Shellie

It's taken her a few months, but I finally got a response from Ms. Shellie-Ann Anderson of May Pen, Jamaica a few days ago. Seems like Miss Thang wants me to take her picture off the post I wrote slamming her for her anti-GLBT comments she left on my blog. That post also renews my call for GLBT people and our allies to forgo tourism to Jamaica and boycott all Jamaican products until they mend their GLBT bashing ways.

Just to refresh 'errbodys' memory banks, here's what home girl posted to my blog in the comments section of the 'I'm Boycotting Jamaica' post

batty bwoy fi get buss ass fi true.
unnu too raasclaat nasty and friggin fool.

if unnu nuh waan nobody lick unnu dung unnu keep unnu homo self to unnu self and mek peace remain as much as possible.

The sad thing is that she has a great essay featured in an article in the Jamaica Gleaner entitled Internet Use Opportunities and Risks but at the same time chose to post that trifling anti-GLBT crap on my blog.

Now she wants me to pull her picture off my blog.

Not until I get an apology posted for your insulting comment.

I don't know if you thought posting that comment was funny or whatever was going through your teenage mind at the time, but my fellow GLBT peeps being beaten and killed in your country ain't no laughing matter. When your political leadership in Jamaica and various people interviewed about it are unrepentant, dismissive or defensive about it, all it does is piss people off who see the injustice even more.

So you're not liking your picture being plastered on this site and connected with your homophobic comments. How do you think your fellow GLBT Jamaicans feel who are living in exile in the UK, Canada, the US and various other countries and can't come home? Some of you Jamaicans may not see it that way, but for every GLBT person that leaves the island for other nations, we get the benefits of their talents.

Just because people disapprove of their same-gender love or they're transgender doesn't give them the right to verbally abuse, beat or kill somebody.

So roll your eyes, suck your teeth, cuss me out in Patois, whatever. The pictures don't come off this site until I get a sincere apology in the comments section of this post.


Polar said...

They're just that way in Jamaica. I've been there. Rednecks of color, unless they're Rastafarian.

Keep that witch's picture up until she learns how to write and communicate in English. Which she obviously can, but is unwilling to do so.

Folks in Jamaica, you have a beautiful island, but ugly attitudes. Get over your homo/trans phobia. You will see your tourist trade, and your tourism $$$$$$$s, go up exponentially. Bigotry is bad for business, and you know something? We KNOW you like to do business.

little light said...

Polar, that seems kinda of needlessly...well, racist. "They're just that way in Jamaica." That is: don't speak proper English. (Who decided the patois isn't proper?) "like to do business," indicating money-grubbing. So on.

I think we can criticize this woman's vile attitudes--and those of many of her countrymen--without resorting to blanket statements about the faults of the Jamaican people as some undifferentiated mass.

Keep the heat on, Monica.

Monica Roberts said...


Yo Shellie, I'm waiting.

danadocus said...

Wow polar.. Speaking of bigotry, please cut the stereotyping.. The government and society overall got a long way to go in terms of respect for GLBT peeps, but showing the people some respect too would be more than appropriate.

Polar said...

It's hardly racist, if you judge people because of things they have actually done and said. Racism isn't something one can credibly judge in themselves, but I'll let Monica make that judgment about me.
Suffice to say that my wife has informed me that we will be traveling to Africa on vacation in the next couple of years. I don't think a racist takes that trip. I can't wait to go, and I'm expecting to meet some cool people - and maybe a jerk or two. That's traveling.

Some observations from my brief stay in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.

1. The Rastafarians we met are really nice people. Really sweet folk, kind, well-mannered, respectful, honest, and nonjudgmental. We spent much of our day with them. And no, no pot was smoked, so drop that stereotype. They like to do honest business. Doing business is no sin.

2. There is a bit of money grubbiness about many there, but I was in a port city, admittedly, and tourism is probably the main generator of income in the port cities. But the begging and trying to sell pirated goods and pot gets tiresome, and they do it more aggressively than anywhere else I've visited in the Caribbean. I don't mind purchasing official goods. I bought plenty of their rum to take home. Picked up some non-bootlegged reggae disks that are hard to find/out of print here. We bought craft items from the Rastas. But pirated CDs and joints are not cool, and they literally line up where you exit the port with that crap - and talk you down in patois when you say no thanks. Not charming.

3. Jamaicans, by and large, are perfectly capable of speaking the Queen's English, accented to be sure, but perfectly understandable. However, many have the ugly habit of not doing so when they don't want you to know what they're saying about you or other tourists. It happens in our own country, too. It's their country, sure, but at the point where that girl posted on Monica's obviously American site, she came here, where English is spoken.

4. I happen to understand most of that girl's remark to Monica. If said in English, it wouldn't be printable.
The girl figured Monica and her readers wouldn't know better. Guess again, little Shellie. The girl writes in proper English on her prize winning essay. Using "patois" to obfuscate and insult is not acceptable. Her prejudiced attitude toward GLBT people is also unacceptable in someone who's purported to be a leader among young people of her nation. She's doing a truly lousy job of representing her nation.

5. Jamaicans do not bother, in general, from what I observed, to mask their open contempt for GLBT people. The cruise line warned the GLBT passengers that PDAs (public displays of affection) between same-sex couples are dangerous in Jamaica, and to a lesser degree Grand Cayman. I observed snide remarks and catcalls from many Jamaicans towards people they thought were lesbian or gay (I got a couple for my long hair, despite having my wife there), and anti-gay remarks graffitti'd on walls and cars and signs there, all over the place. A couple cabbies left gay couples at the curb and picked up straights instead. A lesbian couple I met on board reported that they couldn't get served in a restaurant near the dock - a restaurant catering to cruise tourists - and went back to the boat. The restaurant served plenty of straights who were seated after them.

Sorry, it's the truth. Jamaica remains a place that is not fit for GLBT people. They should change their attitudes, just as American Religious Reichers should change their attitudes towards GLBT people. When I hear that they do, I will change mine. It is a beautiful place, and I'd like to return, when they fix their attitudes. I stand by my statement: you want tourist dollars, get the hell over your GLBTphobia! Once you go, you know....they don't like GLBT people.

danadocus said...

The word redneck has a lot of classism wrapped up in it. Calling everyone (except the Rastas) a redneck is stereotyping, and ugly. Your attitude that Patois is somehow less valid than English is imperialist and comes out of racism.

I don't know why you think racist people don't travel to Africa.. The tourism industry is built on the exotification of people and culture.

And pointing out that people are poor is hardly a reason to be calling them all "rednecks". The country is kept in extreme poverty through economic policies of the West. When people can't afford to eat, and rich Americans come by to "experience the natives", yeh, they're going to try get some money. Really.

I don't know why you think that she would assume we couldn't figure out what she wrote. I can understand it perfectly, and yeh, it's not cool, but don't retaliate by insulting all Jamaicans back (oh except the Rastas right?). That's not cool either. Monica's post has got style, your comment's have none.

And most places in the world English is not the first language, and people will speak their own language and talk about you anywhere. I guess that's part of the whole exotic tourism experience. The problem is Shellie's attitude, not that she is speaking patois. Don't confuse the two.

No one's standing up for anti-GLBT attitudes in Jamaica. And yeh, they are pretty prevalent, and when showing support for GLBT people gets you run down too, then all you're gonna see is the bad side. But don't generalize and start insulting Jamaican people in general. Yuh too renk.

Monica Roberts said...

Folks, don't be too hard on Polar either. Polar calls it like he sees it and he's been invaluable to me over the years for helping me understand how many whites think about race and color issues and how that viewpoint eveloves from birth to adulthood.

I was a bridemaid/DJ of his wedding and he's kicked more knowledge on the African-American history of Louisville to me since I arrived in 2001 than native African-American Louisvillians have been willing to share.

Lets get back to focusing on the real issue, Jamaica's jacked up treatment of its GLBT citizens and creating a climate hostile to their survival here.

Should we as GLBT ciitzens be spending our cash on tourism and on priducts from a country that disrespects and physically harms our GLBT brothers and sistaers?

Hu-elll no!

As to young Shellie, I'm STILL waiting for that apology.

No apology, no picture removal.

anhavana said...

I was innocently searching for my name and found my photos on here. I am not sure how I arrived on this blog but whatever comment was 'posted' by me here was not posted by me. I have used a million computers in Jamaica and perhaps someone was on searching for something and found you guys and decided to leave a post. I really do not have time for this and it certainly does not look good.

anhavana said...


I would really appreciate being removed from this forum. I can assure you that, although I am heterosexual and believe it is wrong to be gay and even far worse to embrace the 'transgender' concept, I have left no such comment on your blog and do not wish taking credit for it.

Thanks and best regards,
Shellie Ann

Monica Roberts said...

Shellie, that's why your picture is staying on my blog.

You claim to worship God, but post hate here. You won't admit you made a mistake, but are arrogantly and disrespectfully making demands as if you're the aggrieved party.

You gcame to my blog posting hate, not the other way around. I think people need to see the true face of Jamaica and how homophobia has infected its children.

anhavana said...

My first time on your blog was when i googled my name and saw it there.

I have told u before over and over that I did not make those comments, now you have deleted the posts that I made trying to 'clarify' my position.

I really don't care what you want to be, but it would be really cool for you to see through your anger because it is the only thing that has 'inspired' your forming a subculture against me.