Cayman Islands Hub




News: Michael Jackson, Tortoise, Whitney Houston, Caymans, Halo

RoadFormer Idaho senator Larry Craig opens consulting firm.

RoadPolice surround Michael Jackson doctor Conrad Murray's house in Las Vegas. Murray administered Jackson Propofol the night before his death. Home raided.

Transit RoadDocked Space Shuttle and ISS transit sun. FLASHBACK: Space Shuttle and Hubble transit sun.

RoadAspray: The cure for stank ass.

RoadHalo vs. Already Gone: Did Ryan Tedder sell Beyoncé and Kelly Clarkson the same song with different lyrics?

RoadBill in Uganda would ban free speech on behalf of LGBT people: "Recently, [Minister of State for Ethics and Integrity James Nsaba] Buturo said that once the two bills are passed into law, it will be an offence to publish and distribute literature on homosexuality. He also said it would become impossible for homosexuals to address press conferences and attract people to support their cause."

RoadNearly-extinct Galapagos tortoise may become father at the age of 90.

RoadWhitney Houston moves up date of album release, offers free track on website.

RoadGay cruise to visit Cayman Islands again: "Three years ago, Atlantis Events brought 3,200 gay tourists to Cayman. A small number turned out to protest when the passengers came ashore in 2006, but the visit passed off without much disturbance. Mr. Yuan said he believed people’s attitudes had changed since 1998, and that the tourism industry in Cayman had extended a welcome to Atlantis and its customers."

RoadACT UP veteran and film and music critic Robert Hilferty takes own life.

Gyllenhaal_namath RoadConfirmed: Jake Gyllenhaal to play Joe Namath.

RoadJosh & Josh visit World Outgames for Passport magazine.

RoadProtect Marriage chairman Ron Prentice holds secret meeting, tells followers to pray for LGBT divisiveness in repeal of Proposition 8.

RoadBoy George says Elton John helped him through prison experience: "Elton offered me love and support from both himself and David [Furnish]. He also sent me a lovely music player...Stephen Fry, Matt Lucas, Antony Hegarty and Holly Johnson wrote to me too. The only time I got emotional in prison was when I got letters from friends. People that beforehand I wouldn’t have thought I could rely on."

Fwbartender RoadFort Worth Rainbow Lounge bartender killed in car wreck.

RoadTired of vampires yet?

RoadGrace Jones plays Hollywood Bowl.

RoadACLU of Florida gets $150,000 in funding from Tides Foundation to help end Florida's gay adoption ban.

Road500 protest Gay Pride in Charlotte, North Carolina: “We are not here to have a confrontation…We are here to send the message that God has a better way.”

Road$294K: Proponents of Vermont's marriage equality bill outspent opponents by a margin of 7 to 1. "Meanwhile, same-sex marriage opponents spent only $41,769 on their campaign, according to final disclosure forms filed Monday."

RoadUN grants official status to LGBT Brazilian organization: "The victory for the Brazilian Association of Gays, Lesbians and Transsexuals marks the third consecutive year the U.N. Economic and Social Council has overturned a decision by a 19-country committee blocking gay groups from participating in the global body's debates."

RoadWilliam Shatner makes poetry of Sarah Palin speech.


News: Pajamas, Salman Rushdie, Ipod, Zac Efron, Meat Eating

road.jpg Gay marriage ban unanimously approved in Cayman Islands.

Pajamasroad.jpg NY fashion week menswear trend: pajamas?

road.jpg Piece of what? Britney Spears cleans up at VMAs.

road.jpg All of Daniel Radcliffe on stage in Equus (nsfw): the smuggled phone-cam shots.

road.jpg Russian prosecutors want to ban 'extremist' cartoon South Park from playing in the country: "South Park, a cartoon aimed at adults and featuring a group of nine-year olds in a Colorado ski town, has courted controversy from its 1997 debut, parodying celebrities, politicians, religion, gay marriage and Saddam Hussein. Basmanny regional prosecutors office spokeswoman Valentina Titova said investigators filed a motion after deciding an episode broadcast on Moscow television station 2x2 in January 'bore signs of extremist activity.'"

road.jpg UN suggests "one meat-free day a week" to help combat global warming: "The UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation has estimated that meat production accounts for nearly a fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions. These are generated during the production of animal feeds, for example, while ruminants, particularly cows, emit methane, which is 23 times more effective as a global warming agent than carbon dioxide. The agency has also warned that meat consumption is set to double by the middle of the century."

Transsexualroad.jpg Salman Rushdie reports on the transsexuals of India: "'The MSM sector is getting so strong,' Laxmi says. 'But we are not simply MSMs. We are not even simply TGs [transgendered persons]. We are ... hijras. I am carrying a whole culture with me. It's that collective aspect, the hijra culture, that is important. We cannot sacrifice it. We are different.' The hijras of Bombay and the rest of India are held to be the community most at risk of HIV infection. There have been improvements in organisation, outreach, education and self-help, but for many hijras, their lives continue to be characterised by mockery, humiliation, stigmatisation, fear and danger. Laxmi of Thane and the 'peer educators' of Malwani may be success stories, hijras who have taken charge of their destinies and are trying to help their fellows, but many hijras are mired in poverty and sickness."

road.jpg Focus on the Family's James Dobson is mum after McCain campaign aide tells Log Cabin Republicans: “Your organization is an important one in the fabric of our party.”

Ipodroad.jpg Apple admits British man invented iPod, and uses him to win a patent lawsuit.

road.jpg Zac Efron to make West End debut in Andrew Lloyd Webber's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat?

road.jpg POLL: Romania remains extremely homophobic. "According to the poll, more than half of the Romanians do not want to have HIV infected persons within their group of friends. Moreover, close to 40 per cent of them would not agree with having HIV infected persons among their neighbours. 39 per cent of them prefer not to work alongside persons infected with HIV or diagnosed with AIDS. The Romanians have the same attitude when it comes to sexual minorities. Most of Romanians discriminate against them in public places, on employment or in the education system, and close to 70 per cent of Romanians perceive homosexuality as something bad. More than a third of the respondents consider that homosexual relationships should be sanctioned. More than half of the respondents claim that homosexuality should be punished by restricting certain rights and almost a third consider that homosexuals should be jailed. More than 60 per cent of Romanians think that homosexuals should not be able to marry or adopt children."

road.jpg VMA's: Miley Cyrus almost gave Katy Perry what she wanted.


As Puerto Rico Votes Down Gay Marriage Ban, Caymans Proposes One

Late last week, Puerto Rico voted down a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, the Advocate reports:

Puertorico"Rep. Victor García San Inocencio says Resolution 99 failed on Thursday to make it to the house floor for voting, effectively killing the proposal for this legislative term. The measure would have amended the U.S. territory's constitution to establish that marriage is between a man and woman and that no other types of unions could be recognized. Thus, it would have made it harder to allow civil unions or grant marital rights to unmarried couples."

Meanwhile, a Cayman Islands lawmaker has proposed a sinister measure:

Cayman"Leader of the Opposition McKeeva Bush has filed a Private Members Motion proposing an amendment to the Marriage Law that would define marriage in the Cayman Islands as being between a man and woman. The motion also proposes the Marriage Law only recognise a person’s gender at birth and that no other form of civil union be allowed in the Cayman Islands to recognise same–sex partnerships. The motion was filed with the Legislative Assembly Monday and Mr. Bush wants House Standing Orders suspended to allow the motion to be dealt with during the current meeting of the House."

Given recent events, it's a surprise a ban on same-sex kissing wasn't proposed as well.


Cayman Kisser Sends Island's Bigots into a Gay Panic

Chandler

The Cayman Island same-sex kiss incident that led to the arrest of 23-year-old Massachusetts resident Aaron Chandler earlier this month has apparently shaken the anti-gay hornet's nest. Chandler was arrested and detained by police after kissing his partner on a dance floor. The island's Tourism Director later apologized. But the whole brouhaha has bigot officials worried that the island's tolerance of the incident will lead pastors to be punished for spewing their hate, and cause same-sex couples to seek it out as a vacation spot.

CaymanSaid JP Julianna O’Connor–Connolly during her budget debate in the Legislative Assembly: "I must say that the news headlines of this past week…certainly have caused the conservative voters…to be a little bit leery. Assurances were given that these things wouldn’t happen…now we have this test case...What happens when we get an Order in Council saying we have to [legalize gay marriage]? If (visitors) want to see that they can go to Los Angeles or Second Street in New York…is this the kind of tourism we want in the Cayman Islands? Are we just inches away from telling our pastors that they can’t preach about this lifestyle? Or that they have to marry (same sex couples)? Once doubt enters in the equation that we have to pander to these people…then we are diminishing our faith in God. Each time, I get more and more concerned as I see a lack of commitment to these values."

In related news, it appears that the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism PR Officer is responding to letters of concern from potential visitors by cautioning that "while we absolutely do not discriminate against any race, gender or sexual preference we do sometimes feel uncomfortable with overt displays of intimacy."

In other words, be warned you may suffer the consequences should you decide to show any outward affection to your partner.

READ THE LETTER sent to one of our readers, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Cayman Kisser Sends Island's Bigots into a Gay Panic" »


Cayman Islands Dept. of Tourism Apologizes to Gay Kiss Arrestee

Cayman Islands Director of Tourism Pilar Bush sent a letter of apology to Aaron Chandler, the 23-year-old Massachusetts man I posted about yesterday. Chandler was arrested last Thursday in the Caymans after kissing his partner on a dance floor while vacationing there.

ChandlerSaid Bush in the letter, which Chandler received on Friday: "On behalf of the entire Department of Tourism, I apologise for your upsetting experience and want to assure you that the Cayman Islands is a welcoming jurisdiction to all people. What happened to you was an isolated incident, and is not representative of Cayman. We know that thousands of gay and lesbian visitors travel to the Cayman Islands every year and enjoy their vacation."

Chandler told the Cay Compass that he appreciated the response: "I should say that, yes, her prompt decision did ease the anger for me a bit. In addition, it’s just good business sense for Ms Bush to have apologised to me. The [Department] of Tourism surely doesn’t want to have someone leave the Cayman Islands not wanting to come back."

Bush had reportedly told Chandler that she would call him at his hotel, but he did not receive the call prior to leaving on Saturday. There has been no word from the Royal Cayman Islands Police, to whom Chandler also complained.

Previously
Cayman Islands Police Arrest Massachusetts Man for Gay Kiss [tr]


Cayman Islands Police Arrest Massachusetts Man for Gay Kiss

Aaron Chandler, 23, from Amherst, Massachusetts, was arrested in the Cayman Islands last week after kissing his partner on a dance floor. The arrest was preceded by two confrontations with an unidentified local who asked them to stop what they were doing.

ChandlerThe Cay Compass reports: "About a half hour later – about 11pm – an unidentified woman approached the two men and asked Mr. Chandler to follow her to meet a friend. The friend turned out to be an off–duty police officer. 'He told me he did not want me to show public displays of affection,' Mr. Chandler said. 'He said it was against the law for two people of the same sex.' Mr. Chandler said he kissed his partner again, just before his party was going to leave the Royal Palms. 'The officer grabbed my wrist and told me he was placing me under arrest.' Mr. Chandler said a crowd of people – some tourists and some residents – followed the police officer while he was leading him away. 'They were asking him why he was doing this and one asked how he could do this in a British territory.' The officer called a superior, who arrived about five minutes later, Mr. Chandler said. On the way to the George Town police station, Mr. Chandler said the superior officer told him the 'law was stupid' but that he had to enforce it. Once at George Town Police Station, Mr. Chandler was made to wait to speak to an inspector. The inspector never came, but the original officer came back and gave him a stern talking to, telling him he didn’t care what he did in private, but that he could not kiss his partner in a public place. He attempted to make Mr. Chandler promise not to kiss his partner in public again and then released him."

Said Chandler: "I do display affection when I’m with my boyfriend, publicly. “It’s never anything most people would consider obscene however; usually it’s in the form of holding hands or a quick kiss."

The Caribbean has never been a safe place for gays and lesbians. While I certainly sympathize with Chandler's situation, it's important to remember that displaying same-sex affection can get you much worse than an arrest. Be careful out there.


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