Saturday, September 12, 2015

People Say I am Mental...Belizean Art with a message

RePosted: September 12th, September, 2015

Anthony Berbey

People say I belong in a mental institute.
I say, y’all belong in a fucking zoo.
People say I’m not mentally well.
 say y’all can go to hell.

People say I don’t fight real causes.
I say I can’t even find a word that rhymes with causes.
‘Cause it doesn’t matter what people say Whether you’re straight, bi, les, trans or gay.
‘Cause I don’t discriminate.
I’m not the one showing all the hate.
I call their hate-mongering bullshit when I see ‘em.
‘Cause their bullshit is the size of a Roman Colliseum.
While they’re getting high and playing Yahtzee.
I say you’re no better than the Nazis.
‘Cause we have stupid people in power so let’s watch ‘em crash and cower.

People say what I’m saying can’t be true.
I say y’all don’t even have half a clue.
‘Cause it doesn’t matter what people say Whether you’re straight, bi, les, trans or gay.
‘Cause I don’t discriminate.
I’m not the one showing all the hate.
I call their hate-mongering bullshit when I see ‘em.
 ‘Cause their bullshit is the size of a Roman Colliseum.

People say I’m a lunatic.
 I say y’all are drug addicts. People say I hate Jesus.
 I say since when did I say anything about Jesus.
People say I don’t believe in God anyway.
 I say what do you mean? I talk to him everyday.
 ‘Cause it doesn’t matter what people say Whether you’re straight, bi, les, trans or gay.
 ‘Cause I don’t discriminate.
I’m not the one showing all the hate.
I call their hate-mongering bullshit when I see ‘em.
‘Cause their bullshit is the size of a Roman Colliseum.

People say I make no sense.
I say your heads are dense.
People say I’m full of trash.
 I say y’all can go die in a car-crash.
People say I got no class. I say take your hate… AND SHOVE IT UP YOUR ASS!

Source: Image Factory BAFFU collection...

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Belizean SOLT LGBT Love, by Fr. Scott Guilinni pastor of Divine Mercy and San Pedro Catholic Churches and missions

Posted: 15th July, 2015

To my brothers and sisters with same-sex attraction:

Let us all love one another as compassionate human beings should!

As a member of the proudly diverse community of Belize I want to take this opportunity to reach out to all our brothers and sisters who have same-sex attraction. Whatever your sexuality or gender, I want to make clear that I love you and most importantly any God in whom you have faith, who claims to have created you in His image, loves you too. As we all know, there is a wonderful diversity in creation and surely God did not make a mistake with anyone. I understand the sufferings, confusion and loneliness that many of you experience in silence because of the hurtful words of religious extremists and I want you to know that the unconditional love provided by people who share your struggle will guide you through..Strengthened by those that serve instead of judge and those that promote inclusivity, thousands of men and women with same-sex attraction have experienced freedom and love. The established churches have struggled with radical factions within their ranks for some time, who prefer to create a God in their own image to justify their judgment and bigotry. Please know that if you are one of the thousands of gay, lesbian or transgender people who has been hurt, excluded or bullied, it does get better. Online support and resources for you can be found at
Unfortunately, as we all know too well, good information does not always make the headlines and the members and leaders of churches often fall short from the fullness of their chosen gospel. They sometimes even are bullied themselves by extremists and fundamentalists within and outside of their ranks, forcing them to isolate and exclude members of their own community rather than focus on service and humility as they know they should. Experience shows that human weakness, sin and selfishness can arise from anyone’s heart. As we all know, the Ten Commandments say nothing at all about who people can and cannot love; though you are urged not to covet your neighbor’s ass. The power of your chosen God’s grace and mercy in the face of human weakness only strengthens the unbroken teaching that your particular church is guided by and generally it focuses on being a kind person and doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. In truth, in our weakness we are strong and we are tempted to think, sometimes obsessively, about the sexual activities of others. The spirit of truth continues to blow and it is this truth, which is that we are all equal on this earth, and that will set you free. A church, as a self proclaimed pillar and foundation of truth for those who rely upon it, is there to accompany you in experiencing the joy of the freedom of a child of your God! Do not be afraid and do not be misled to believe that freedom is only for some but not for others! You do not have to settle for labels that other countries put on you, no matter how hard their religious fundamentalists (some of whom, such as Scott Lively, are currently being prosecuted for ‘crimes against humanity’) throw money around trying to convince you to be unkind to your family, loved ones and neighbors. You do not need to settle for less. You are created for more! Your dignity does not come from your desires but it is rooted in your being created in your God’s image and likeness and as stated previously, no one could suggest that their God makes mistakes. Know your dignity as a child of your own personal God or of no god at all!

You do not have to live your life hidden in shame just because some religious bullies try to force you to. As a child of your personal God, do not be fooled to believe a foreign ideology that exploits cultural tensions as many human traffickers have done before on this island such as pedophiles among priests and missionaries; nor should you accept that participating in drag queen events are necessary for you to know your dignity; because as we all know, those are just great fun. (The well organized and enthusiastically attended event at a community complex demonstrates clearly that we, as a strong and unified community, love and celebrate all of our members. If freedom of expression is curtailed, how will be able to encourage the next generation of artists, musicians and leaders?) There is another way than living a promiscuous lifestyle to come to acceptance and freedom, which is something many religious people have yet to learn even though they attend church on Sundays and try to buy their forgiveness.

The wisdom found in the families of San Pedro is a source of hope and peace for you as brothers and sisters. Beware of empty promises of fulfillment from money making religious organizations that are not looking out for your benefit or respecting you as persons. Opportunists have always used the beauty of San Pedro island for their own benefit, demanding for tithes, but doing little to help the most vulnerable members of our community. A wise grandmother will support you in your weakness and correct you in your faults; however, she will never stop loving you and will only wish that you are truly happy and find true love in your life.

Churches teach that as a person you have an inestimable dignity as a child of your chosen God ; you also have just as much without one. The inclinations you have to judge those who are different to yourselves do not define your identity since you are more than your inclinations and feelings. One of the ways you can become a better person is to deny yourself the urge to think you are better and to judge others, but rather to focus on making yourself a kinder and more loving person. Some churches support you and pray for you in your noble pursuit of holiness and love, while others will condemn and judge you for it. They might even expect you to silently suffer detraction and slander from their children with patience. To do so, would not be love. To say that love is a sin is always a lie that leads to selfishness even if it is done in private. But, if you must say it, it’s definitely best done only in private. Do not impose it upon others.

For a family to remain together it must have the kind of love that is able to sacrifice for the other. Selfishness always leads to division and we should all work to bring unity. In our days, unity is not easy for anyone but it is worth the sacrifice. By persevering in a life of virtue and self control you can stop yourself from insulting, hurting or patronizing those who are different to yourself. You can have the grace to love and to appreciate love among others. You can be fulfilled and be accepted by your family and community. Some churches hope to accompany you on this pilgrimage of faith and love, while others do not.

Love always wins. With Holy water behind on the Island of San Pedro

A friend in humanity who understands,

Caution: This is satire, and not meant to be taken seriously, except for the priest who thinks holy water on the street is useful
Chat Conversation End

Friday, June 19, 2015

LGBTTI Coalition work,Nationalistic Pride, Protests and Fundamentalistsin in DC

19th June, 2015

The coalition has met since 2007 in Panama, Medellin, Honduras, El Salvador, Peru, Bolivia, Guatemala, Paraguay and Washington DC in 2015. Belize have been to all OAS General Assembly through the LGBTTTI coalition. Learning about thematic hearings, the Inter-American Court and Commission, resolutions process and its value. No where in the world, has any international institution adopted seven resolutions on Human Rights:Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.

This year was different as our trans colleagues were denied visa to attend the meeting to attend the OAS meeting. The coalition was upset about it and issued a release in response. We engaged the LGBT Unit to speak about reporting process and followed up in regards to it internal programs on another day. We strategised about how to respond to the fundamentalists along with coordination process.

Belize has appeared in Washington three times, one for coalition meetings and twice for thematic hearings concerning Belize and Guyana. We have made reports directly to their L.G.B.T Unit and have gotten precautionary measures for one person in Belize.

It is clear, the success of the coalition has led to the arrival of the fundamentalists, in Guatemala, Paraguay and Washington DC this year. The clash was classic, in DC. In the middle of all this, our new (ASG) Assistant Secretary General in waiting, Nestor Mendez must navigate as Caribbean diplomats and Latin American Diplomats and activists push and pull the system towards the right side of history.

      In addition, Ambassador Mendez,  arrives at a time when the OAS is experiencing financial owes, where the OAS system has repeatedly looked at LGBTTTI issues at the country level through thematic hearings and Belize being challenged in its Belize Guatemala dispute.
    First, I beam with national pride to see one of our own making it to the post of ASG at the Organization of American States. As I have come to learn it was no easy feat. A feat, a small country  achieved nevertheless.It proves we can do anything in the international community, once a clear vision to act, is articulated, and action is taken to give life to the vision. While the new ASG Nestor Mendez, is in waiting, he has now has become a model of what is possible for any Belizean, no matter what political isle a person may belong. 

Still, while the ASG in waiting, is doing his thing at the OAS, we have Belizean, Erika Castellanos, focal point of T.I.A Belize, who added her mark in the OAS process. More precisely, we see a cultural first, the posing of a transgender Belizean with not only our Foreign Minister, but with the ASG in waiting at the OAS. A mile stone, for we do not know if the Foreign Minister or the ASG in waiting ever met a transgendered Belizean. She also met Belizean Emil Waight of SICA who knew her well through engagement work in HIV.

In Addition, she met with the US representative to the OAS to discuss, colleagues visa troubles and expressed signed to engage the new Secretary General in the informal dialogue section of the meeting. In the middle of it all, delegates exploded into thunderous applause as the Argentinean representative defended proactive protections for LGBTTTI people's across the hemisphere and shared their leading initiatives inviting member states to adopt them to ensure the human rights for all. Erika was present in supporting the statement and joined the LGBTTTI coalition in its applause. Canada, in contrast, spoke for less than a minute, saying nothing of note and Paraguay made a total anti progressive statement in which her main message was in favor of the protection of the right to life of the unborn child and spoke of the historical relationship of the church and state.

While Erika was expressing her solidarity with the coalition, the fundamentalists where out in droves. I met personally Helene Coley-Nicholson. A google search found a report done in July, 2014, that gives insight into her mind set and professional background.The interview reported the following,  

'Helene Coley Nicholson, a member of the Jamaica CAUSE Secretariat, the group finds the agenda of  the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex, LGBTI community, to be a cause for concern. Nicholson further stated that Jamaica CAUSE stood to oppose said agenda which, according to her, seeks to foster a society where all sexual expression is free and those in opposition are punished.'

Mrs. Nicholson was the President of the Lawyers Christian Fellowship, in 2013, worked at the Jamaican Broadcasting Corporation. She pursed a  law degree at the University of London and later entered the Norman Manley Law School. Coley-Nicholson landed a job as the legal officer for CVM Communications Group and while there was also the co-host of Drive Time Live. In 2004,s he opened her own law practice. Coley-Nicholson became a Christian in first form at Ardenne High School, and was very active in the Inter-School Christian Fellowship and Jamaica Youth for Christ. 
While Phillipa Davies of Jamaica  in an editorial of November, 2014.  '..But isn't forcing unwanted laws and behavior on the majority of a population an act of oppression? Where is the justice in that move, Minister Golding?..' about discussions by Justice Minister Senator Mark Golding about efforts under way to review, laws pertaining to sexual conduct. Both can be seen below.

Their presence is important to note, as the fundamentalists had their own press conference outside the OAS building with Helene Coley Nicholson who spoke of the Jamaican Coalition for Healthy Living and Lawyers Christian Fellowship supporting the fundamental rights of all human being, but rejecting  contentious political phrases to write ( in the working groups) , that are not compatible with faith nor moral law are not universal, fundamental or defensible see speech There was an Argentinean woman in the group, upon review by one person, he said, 'OMG! I am amazed by the way in which the Argentine woman can speak so much nonsense in such a carefree way. She is both ignorant and malicious in the worst way possible.' The response can be note in her comments that can be scene here,  another person, highlighted on facebook, the following,'A 72 year-old fundamentalist civil society representative from Argentina at the OAS claimed that a resolution on human rights for the convention for older persons should not contain any reference to sexual rights because SHE does not need them. To her, it was common sense that old people are here because of "normal sex" so why spell out these rights? And this summarizes the problem with fundamentalists. Because THEY don't need protection, then CLEARLY no one else needs protection.'

We saw the fundamentalists in the group for Human Rights, Democracy, development and security. Trying to take over the note taking and moderation. We saw how actual discussions in the working group was co-opted by the fundamentalists concerns especially in the working group for human rights.


        The result of that co-opting resulted in  Civil society recommendations prepared on the previous day on Democracy, Human Rights, Multidimensional Security and Integral Development, under the framework of the central topic of the Assembly: "Present and Future of the OAS!" being ignored. The coalition issued a release stating,"Spokespeople only had to read  the texts agreed by the thematic work groups. However, in a shameful episode, the spokesman of the Human Rights work group performed an arbitrary reading, censoring the points he disagreed with and adding paragraphs that had not been discussed. He also decided to use this time to personally attack the candidate for the Inter-American Court Eugenio Zaffaroni, violating previous collective agreements favoring  his own ideological and professional interests.
      The interventions of government representatives who defended advances in L.G.B.T rights and in the fight against discrimination in the region, again faced the rage of anti-rights activists, who yelled to interrupt the representatives.We denounce these methods of ideological violence and misrepresentation of reality that do not belong to a civil society working space, but to the exercise of power of military dictatorships. The LGBTTTI Coalition will remain vigilant to ensure that such behavior is not repeated. "
We saw the unwritten rules of democracy were alive when, we learn the position of the the new Secretary General, who said "we want no voice nor any rights of anyone in this room to be silenced". He added that "as a general rule we will promote the logic of non-discrimination, our motto is 'More rights for more people'" and that "any form of discrimination, every right that is not respected, affects the Americas, " while allies and coalitions members applauded, anti-rights groups in the room reacted aggressively and disrespectfully, shouting and booing the Secretary General.

The first civil society member to take the floor in the dialogue was gay activist Yonatan Matheus, a member of Venezuela Diversa, who highlighted "The importance of the OAS member states fulfillment of their obligation to guarantee the rights of LGBTTTI people in the region, without interference of partisan ideological and confessional positions that oppose  social inclusion and full exercise of rights of this and other vulnerable groups in the Americas".
Iren Rotela, Paraguayan trans activist emphasized the need to implement the right to equality and affirmative action to ensure non-discrimination against groups and historically excluded populations.
In the second part of the day.

The coalition did not stop at the release for it shouted down the shameless human rights speaker, can be seen with allies turning their backs when the speaker spoke, and countering positions in other areas of the OAS meetings on other days. We saw fundamentalists trying to undermine the Convention for Older persons and worked to counter their process.


Caribbean Activists where no slouch either as they held up signs, took notes and tweeted about the event in any space they could. Zenita Nicholson of Guyana's SaSOD, did her thing with her sign and in trying to engage the secretary general, while Maurice did his thing with Jamaica and Belize. There was another fellow who had a sign for Trinidad, it was interesting to see the combinations at work.  

We made due with the space as we were told that the space would be a confined area. So we coordinated imagery were every we could fine a socket, or where we could sit and twitter, facebook and email.

On the side, time was taken out to to share our experience with the Futures group, and international NGO that worked closely on USAID projects in Central America. We spoke to their Caribbean team on work on the ground regarding what opportunities may exists. I made it clear that my story was not just about victimhood, but it a story of resistance and explained what I meant. I had invited other activists, but they could not make it on short notice. Maurice Tomlinson, spoke of his work in the region around police security and LGBTI issues. I must mentioned Ryan who has crazy energy, a good heart and whom I met accidentally at a latin club during pride week. He even allowed me to embarrassed him with the introduction to the Kiki. I have no idea, the concept, but I sold him out. Until the next general assembly.



Phillipa Davies


Sunday, May 31, 2015

Amandala Editors Lies: Reflections of the Editor about the New York times piece

Posted: May 31, 2015
Written by Kay Johnson

An indignant opinion piece entitled The New York Times Magazine Lies! was published in The Amandala on May 29th, 2015, by Russell Vellos, regarding Caleb Orozco, and UNIBAM -
Vellos' outraged spluttering was an attempt to buttress The Amandala's penchant for slandering the LGBT community. It seems poor Russell Vellos is under attack at every turn by those not in sympathy with the Amandala's blatant bigotry.
In fact, in an opinion piece from 2011, Vellos portrayed himself as being constantly in fear for the sanctity of his body, due to his irresistible attractiveness to men. Amandala - 25 November 2011, by Russell Vellos
Using the "find" feature, search for "homosexual" (found 54 times) and you'll see clearly who is obsessed, to the point of a seriously unhealthy fixation.
If his words are to be believed, Vellos spent his youth dodging predatory males, and in fact, lived a hellish life due to his astounding ability to attract unwanted attention from men.
Poor Russell!
The story, of course, is a gross exaggeration regarding the life of Russell Vellos. It was written to garner sympathy and support for oppressed straight men, seemingly under siege from aggressive gays. Unfortunately, we cannot know much about Vellos’s real life, but Belizeans who know, see and interact with him would condemn the greater part of the story as a flaming tall tale.
No less than four times in his life, poor Russell claims he was subject to unwanted attention from a man. Shudder in vicarious fear, as Vellos describes in detail how, forty years ago, a man telephoned him! (If Vellos was so "young" how could he go to a bar? Or be employed? This fairy tale does not add up, nor does it even remotely indicate that gays are predators on the "young") Another man asked Vellos to a party! A man invited him to his house for a few beers! Tremble in terror as you realize that poor Russell had no earthly idea the man was one of "those" types, finding out later, much to his everlasting horror and dismay!
Of course, if every adult female in Belize toted up all the unwanted attention in their lifetimes, including telephone calls, leering looks, disgusting comments, rude gestures, filthy cat-calls, unwanted date invitations, lewd street accosting, gropings, (and worse) from arrogant, obnoxious, pushy males, the count would be in the thousands, if not tens-of-thousands. People like poor Russell Vellos simply cannot abide being treated the way many men constantly treat females.
While there are many Belizeans who are homosexual, they nevertheless know that Vellos just AIN'T alla dat!
"The other thing I want to talk about is the homosexuals’ practice of name-calling, a time-honored and proven way of getting people who abhor their way of life to quit opposing them, and just shut up, leaving them to their stated policy of trying to change the world from “Adam and Eve” to “Adam and Steve.” Oh yes, they call you all sorts of names: homophobic, backward, stupid, uneducated, ignorant, and the like."
Let's compare being called ignorant and backward with some of the terms and phrases The Amandala (Evan Hyde, Colin Hyde, and Russell Vellos) have used to label the LGBT community over the past four years: "predator" - "danger" - "disgusting" - "evil" - "an abhorrence" - "perverted" - "scourge of wickedness" - "disgusting" - "drooling" - "dribbling" - "sickening" - "prey on young boys" - "wicked" - "sick" - "blasphemous" - "depraved people" - "misbegotten creatures" - "nastiness" - "aggressive" - "a nasty, despicable, God-forbidden way of life" - I'll leave you to decide just WHO is doing the vast majority of name-calling, and of the worst sort.
There are people who will mock Vellos, of course, but there were simply not enough of these incidents to even faintly buttress Vellos' argument that he lives a life pursued by aggressive men, slavering after his derrière.
In fact, not only does Vellos' tale itself appear to be a skillful fabrication in pursuit of the Belize Action Anti-Gay Agenda, (which falsely claims gays are "after the children") but it also seems Vellos’s histrionics regarding his close calls were penned under the coaching of Pastor Scott Stirm, and Pastor Louis Wade.
The Amandala, Belize's largest newspaper, published a page-long editorial under the headline UNIBAM divides Belize which properly points out that the churches need to clean up their act before pointing fingers elsewhere.
The Amandala has ALSO published many anti-gay screeds, among which was this: "Homosexuals are predators of young and teenaged boys,’ wrote the editor-in-chief, Russell Vellos. ‘Woe unto us, Belize, if homosexuals are successful in our court. Woe unto us! In fact, since ours is a ‘test case,’ woe unto the world!"
I have checked Google and can categorically state that the entire quote was published by The Amandala and is only one among numerous other such poison-pen pieces. The EXACT words Vellos denies, (and was unable to find, in his own paper's archives) do indeed appear in a section called "Of This and That" - Features— 17 November 2011— by Russell Vellos
If Russell Vellos can blatantly lie about such a thing to suit his purposes, then the veracity of his entire newspaper has to be questioned.
The puzzle for me is, why would a media entity such as The Amandala think it necessary to resort to “gutter journalism” in pursuit of their anti-gay agenda? Ain't nobody got time fo' dat.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Belize IDAHOT 2015: LGBT Youth, Social Complications, quiet resistance

17th May, 2015

IDAHOT is not a single day, but a daily reminder how Young Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender resist threats, beating, murder, accusations, the lack of legal protection and political indifference in not giving up on their lives. It is a story of victimhood and we in Belize must acknowledge the pain of our Y.L.B.G.T. A pain that crosses a generational divide where the older generation have sought to self-medicate in binge drinking and smoking to help to sustain personal calm, in an atmosphere of hostility and self-guarded socialisation. To the media, he was 18 year old Joseph Sanchez, cross-dresser, murdered victim who died in January,2014 in women's clothing. To the police, ASP Calbert Flowers he was  simply a person, who experienced an attempted robbery and was murdered as a result. Flowers said in a channel 5 interview, "The investigation reveals that this person was walking on Elston Kerr Street when he was attacked by two persons. The investigation revealed that these two male persons that attacked this person tried to rob him. During that robbery a struggle ensued and this person was stabbed once to the chest.   The investigation is ongoing and we have what we think is enough evidence to show that it was an attempt robbery.”  

To the LGBT community, she was a friend, a brother and a son to a mother. He was not just a murdered victim,not just a person or a cross-dresser found in women's clothing. She was a Youth, who's experience, remain undocumented, who lost her life in a senseless killing, who lived under constant threat for her gender expression and identity. She was Cenida Ramos, a trans youth. The lost of her life was symbolic of a system of social, legal, cultural oppression the community lives under that remains invisible to the wider public and the political directorate, who's response has been mimimal in recognizing that there is need to uphold concerns of dignity and rights. This was Cenida Ramos as she was, alive and in burial. Sadly, I learned that some of the same people who harassed, mocked, insulted her, attended her wake looking for rum. One person in particular, on the day of the funeral shared his experience of hearing, on the bus, while going to the  cemetery,someone, making a homophobic remark and he had to put him in his place. Nevertheless,the people who showed up was not three persons, but many at her final resting place and showed nothing but respect.


We celebrate Cenida Ramos life as a symbol of resistance, as she lived in an area where violence, harassment, threats, mockery was the norm, not the exception. I say this because of my personal experience of driving in the area to deliver community donations, after she died to her moms house. A  child, no more than 12, decided it was his right to stone my car. In addition, a separate experience prior to her  death occurred where persons told me, " come back on this street, again" took pride in shaking up my car, just before, I was able to drive off. This incident happened not more than 100 yards from where she was murdered. Personally, I am surprise, she lasted that long in the area.With low conviction rates, we don't have any expectations that justice will be found.

As we explored the murder of Cenida Ramos, it is important to remember that the general youth population lives a complicated life affected by violence in homes and streets, poverty and unemployment. When sexuality, psychological maturity and inadequate access to sexual health education is added, life skills for the most hardy, can be tested to the extreme, affecting, life decisions that add to the struggle of navigating all the cant do's and clouding the path to the can do's. In this regard, family becomes crucially important as a social safety net to ground individuals, but for transgendered persons for any youth who belong to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender population, there is no guarantee of such a safety net. The result is perpetuated violence, not by strangers, but by blood. We came across one 15 year old story, in October, 2014 who wrote,"They took me in a pick-up truck out on land....and they beat me with stick and they kick me while I was lying on the ground trying to cover my face and head. I could hear my pa said that you spare the rod and spoil the child so he was kicking me to save me from hell." Like most, no state services will ever document such a case, and so family abuse for young LGBT persons will remain invisible, for such experiences are almost never reported in Belize. 

With the April 9th, 2014 mob attack of 19 years old Vanessa Champagne Paris on Central American Boulevard, we discovered, how transgendered youth are on the frontline of violence, it is not just effeminate gay men. While many will ask what was she doing on Vernon street looking like a woman. The no one asked, what her family life was like, about her school experience as a child where she lived, if she was employed or skilled to be employed and why she did not finish her education. What we got were news reports of stealing women's clothing, burglary and other accusations.Vanessa story, is a case of contradiction. A case that showed the effects of how social and cultural oppression can impact a youth psychology and socio-economic standing in Belize, while showing that not all LGBT persons are able to  to make healthy-judgements to survive in an atmosphere of psychological and potential physical violence. It is a story, of poor-judgement and unwritten social background and living a self-prophecy that invites instability and social isolation.

      On 21st, January, 2015, the body of a 26 year old was found in a decomposed state, in the roaring creek area. While the story speaks in generic terms, it also was implies that even in death, injustice is going to be norm in any criminal investigation as the Belize justice system is challenged by its evidence collection process, trained personnel, inadequate data structures and a wall of social silence. 

We know that 13.85%  of men who have sex with men were found to have HIV prevalence rates that disproportionately affect men. What we have not seen is the quite erosion of dignity that impacts health. The system often touts the need to do more test, to do more prevention work. It never ask how discrimination impacts the health of young persons. Here are two, one that have already died because family support was not possible. While we got him connected to his family weeks before he died. It was clear that advance HIV had ravaged his body.The 2nd person is still alive, I place cream on his shingles years ago, but he is still struggling with recognizing his worth as a gay man. These pictures were taken years apart, but they hold true, still today. That the violation of an individual dignity and worth has lasting effects that is years in the making.

      Despite, the silent, dark, invisible experiences, our community have shown that we are willing to resist, mockery, threats, insults and physical violence and so create social spaces of every kind to remind ourselves. Allies share in the vision of reminding us about our humanity and in celebrating life. Allies provides hope to the future an amplify our voices in government, business, among friends and family.


We see the struggle is not just an LGBT issues, but every citizen, as Civil, Social, Economic and Cultural, Political rights can be violated everyday, for anyone. The United Belize Advocacy Movement calls on all citizens to act shamelessly to uphold the rights of all citizens, but especially, young Lesbian Gay Bisexual and transgender persons and show the right to personal security, expression, association, education and dignity upheld, in social practice, in policy, in institutional mechanism that promote tolerance. The recent UNAIDS launch of a poll which said 68% of Belizean's are tolerant or accepting, is important, for it shows we are a society of extremism, that families still matter. In the end, ff blood is before church and politics, let families lead this day, of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia to act and support our youth, in improving their quality of life and in the upholding of their human dignity.The Special Envoy for women and children leads the way in her actions. Can we see other Belizean's move from the role as fence sitters, to champions?


A look at the possible  motive of Joseph Sanchez murder

Accused of stealing Female Clothing

Transgendered woman robbed

Special Envoy statement on IDAHOT 205