Some of the exchanges post the Buju/lgbt group meeting

As the mainstream media in the US follow the intensified campaign the stop Buju Banton’s performances especially in the gay capital San Francisco here are some of the comments from those who participated in the LGBT meeting in San Francisco Oct 12, 2009 and more from the local media who now are beginning to catch up or forcefully so based on recent developments.

CBS 5 also reports:

“It was a good meeting today. It was cathartic, I think for the artiste because he had never met with representatives of gay organisations. Not in America, not in Jamaica,” said Bevan Dufty

“He made some awful anti-gay mistakes when he was younger,” Petrelis told CBS. “I was encouraging him to explain that this was his past and that now would be a good time for him to call for love and tolerance of gay people in America.”

Jonathan Mack, promoter of Monday’s show, said Banton listened to the concerns, but made no promises. He believes the artiste has been unfairly targeted.
“In Jamaica it’s illegal to have homosexual activities in public, it’s a crime,” Mack said. “It’s not about lyrics to a song, it’s about changing a societal view.”

Meanwhile the local media plays catch up as they ignored or skewed the protest action as noise from the penny section of note the Jamaica Observer where one journalist lifted elements of a press release from Traci McGregor (Buju’s Manager) to report the few concerts that occurred as success.

Latest publications
The Gleaner today:
Buju meets gay group in San Francisco
Published: Wednesday October 14, 2009
Howard Campbell, Gleaner Writer

Jamaica Observer:
Buju breaks under pressure?
Deejay holds meeting with gays

The meeting with the LGBT representatives seems to be an effort yet again by Buju Banton and his team for damage control as his pocket now feels the impact of the cancellations, it does not seem to be about the concerns on the inciteful nature of the song “Boom Bye Bye” and what it seeks to promote which is basically death the gays particularly men. Lesbians are not mentioned.
Will the song be ever pulled? one never knows it seems to be more about grandstanding and using the meeting as a photo opportunity to capitalise on the mainstream attention. I guess Buju’s team not so stupid after all and are just working the story like the big names in the US entertainment industry would as well.

There are some in the San Fran area who are questioning the validity of Mr. Petrelis’s involvement as his credibility comes into question based on his unique style of activism.

The pepper spray incident does not help anyone in my view as if the meeting is interpreted as a start then such incidences may be seen as setbacks and aggravating a very delicate posture now.

Let’s watch this one carefully, the Stop Murder Music has an American base now.


Author: GLBTQ Jamaica Moderator

Activist and concerned gay man in Jamaica with over 19 years experience in advocacy and HIV/AIDS prevention work, LGBT DJ since 1996.

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