As memories of Rio 2016 fade, the sting of negativity surrounding T&T’s performance persists.
There was no shortage of puerile, less-than-clever memes targeting gymnast Marisa Dick.
Social activist Hazel Brown, co-ordinator of the Network of Non-Governmental Organisations for the Advancement of Women, yesterday tried to educate an anti-gay group of protesting gospel ministers that there was no law, bill or anything else legalising gay marriage.
The group of approximately eight pastors, who protested outside Parliament yesterday morning, erroneously believed the Government was about to pass legislation granting same-sex couples the right to marry. While members of the media were interviewing the group, Brown walked up to them and said, “There is no proposal for a law like that in Trinidad. Have you seen anything, a draft or anything like that?
“This is malicious propaganda. There is no such law being proposed today.” Brown is a Special Envoy on Women and Children’s Issues to the Commonwealth Caribbean. She was appointed by the Prime Minister last year. She is also a member of the Cabinet-appointed committee on the Draft Gender Policy, which met yesterday morning at the Gender Ministry in Tower D, the building that also houses Parliament.
When the group responded that what Brown does is “malicious propaganda,” she said firmly, “There is no proposal, no bill, no law to do that right now. There is no such thing! So what you are doing is malicious and misinforming people.” Members of the group then surrounded her, shouting questions.
She told them to go into Parliament and enquire about it. Pastor Phillip Simon of the In the Name of Jesus Christ Fellowship on the group’s behalf said,“We have banded together with the single purpose of expressing our concern for our nation. We stand for traditional family values, that is, the male and the female coming together to produce the human family. Homosexuals cannot procreate and we see this as a very odd thing. We are standing for traditional family values and that is how we would like to see our nation continue.
“The male and the female have been forever, making young ones. Homosexuals, those who practise this lifestyle came from male and female, so we cannot understand the logic when the Government wants to follow other nations and legislate against traditional family values.”
He said if the Government continued in this mode there would be a protest in the country the like of which has never been seen. The group is also calling on Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to leave the issue alone. Another of the pastors said, “The problem of homosexuality is not, as mentioned by the scientists and by the doctors, anyone that is homosexual.
The Bible says that God created male and female. Anyone that has that homosexual problem is one that is demon-possessed. Anybody that is unnatural is a demon that is occupying them and therefore they need to be delivered in the name of Jesus Christ.”
Marc Moore, another protesting minister, said they are not against homosexuals but the practice of homosexuality, and that they want homosexuals to come to the love of God. “We want to get this clear. We love them,” he said. The group also said they are speaking out now as the church.