Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Fallout Over Belize's Anti-Sodomy Law

The University of West Indies (UWI) has terminated the contract of Professor Brendan Bain as the director of the Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training (CHART) Network.

In an official statement, the UWI said it had become increasingly evident that Bain has lost the confidence and support of a significant sector of the community, which the CHART program is expected to reach.

Bain's termination came after he provided a statement in a high-profile case in Belize, in which a gay man challenged the constitutionality of an 1861 law that criminalizes sodomy.
Thirty-three ‘gay’ advocacy and civil rights groups want the University of the West Indies to fire Professor Bain from his position as head of the Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training (CHART) Initiative, claiming his expert testimony in Belize represents a conflict of interest.

They say his testimony in the case brought by one Caleb Orozco in an attempt to overturn Belize’s anti-sodomy law has ‘destroyed their trust in him’. The sub-text is that they all want Jamaica, Belize and other Caribbean Commonwealth members to legalize sodomy.

Bain stated, “Behaviours that are helpful to individuals and to the community are to be encouraged. On the other hand, there are instances in which private behaviours result in considerable public cost due to illness, with accompanying loss of productivity and social disruption and the prospect of premature death. The public cost of these private behaviours must be acknowledged and actively reckoned with."

“The risk to MSM and their intimate sexual partners is not just to their physical health. The adverse physical and physiological consequences of STIs (including HIV) in MSM create significant and avoidable financial costs to individuals, households and governments. These important considerations must be included when considering whether to give public approval to risky behaviours such as are often practised by MSM,” Bain argued.

Related reading:  Sex Against the "Order of Nature" Challenged in Belize; Homosexual Activists Pressure Belize; Genesis on Homosex: Beyond Sodom; Bisexuals Have Greater Health Risks; Why Does the Bible Prohibit Homosex?; Gene Robinson on the Bible

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