The recently publicised DVD of a gay party that was held in Jamaica in 2007 has another gay person on the run and in hiding. The 22 year old young man (we call him John for this post) has been in hiding since last year as he was “discovered” by citizens in his community in St. James.
John has since tried to seek refuge in other parts of the island but has to be in disguise wearing hats and keeping a low profile so as to avoid attacks, jumping from house to house and friend to friend to avoid getting them into trouble as well.
The first attack happened in St. James in late 2007 just after the disc went public when he was pointed out by thugs in his community who then ordered him to leave or be killed. He has sought solace by his close friend (Bob) in Kingston but was recognised and both men were attacked one evening as they ventured home. The would be victims defended themselves thus holding off their attackers but have had to resort to travelling under cover of darkness to secure clothes and food and have even slept in parks and on the road just to avoid detection.
No one can ascertain how the recording ended up in the public domain for sale however it has been sold for double and triple the price of a regular DVD in the initial release. “The Tape” as it is known is still the source of ridicule and derogatory comments by the public to this day.
Bob in question who was assisting John now finds himself in the same predicament as he cannot venture to his house as he is accused of harbouring “the boy on the DVD” and that he is a “battyman” he has been told to leave the area as well or he will be killed. His family is somewhat aloof since the incident at the home.
The matter has not been reported to the police out of fear of reprisals and the non interest in the case.
One of the problems the boys face is a lack of understanding from other GLBTQ persons as most tend to shy from helping brothas in trouble due to the negative outcomes of previous cases where persons try to intervene to help only to be harmed themselves by thugs or unruly behaviour by the persons seeking to be assisted.
How can we begin to deal with this set of issues, they have approached the FLAG but there is no available resources at this time as with many other NGOs the financial problems are plaguing as well.
Stay tuned for updates as I follow this case.