President Obama Dings Jamaica on Gay Rights During UWI Town Hall

President Obama Dings Jamaica on Gay Rights During UWI Town Hall

President Obama Dings Jamaica on Gay Rights During UWI Town Hall (Photo Credit: Donkey Hotey)

Jamaica gay rights

President Obama dinged Jamaica on gay rights by singling out LGBT activist Angeline Jackson for standing up and no backing down in her fight for equality. That was a strategic jab at the island nation for it horrible record on gay rights.

Obama singled Jackson out as one of two extraordinary young people who were in the audience at the Youth Forum at the University of the West Indies.

angeline jackson LGBT activist

President Obama Singles Out Jamaican LGBT activist Angeline Jackson (Photo Credit: Twitter)

Here’s a little about Angeline Jackson (@angelinejackson):

Angeline Jackson is the executive director of Quality of Citizenship Jamaica, which advocates on behalf of lesbian and bisexual women and transgender Jamaicans.

Jackson was kidnapped and sexually assaulted as a teen.

Angeline Jackson’s tweet after President Obama singled her out:

Jamaican PM Portia Simpson Miller Should Take Obama on Tour of Her Constituency

Jamaican PM Portia Simpson Miller Should Take Obama on Tour of Her Constituency

Jamaican PM Portia Simpson Miller Should Take Obama on Tour of Her Constituency (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

President Obama visits #Jamaica

:  I will be the first to say, I beamed with joy when I heard President Obama’s plane had landed at the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, Jamaica, a short time ago. It is a historic visit. What I am upset about is the sanitization of New Kingston and the National Heroes Park area ahead of his visit. The street vendors were kicked off the streets in the Heroes Park vicinity. This was a problem that didn’t arise weeks before the president’s visit. It had been ongoing. Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller is going all out to show a version of Kingston that is far from reality. Jamaica is sinking under the weight of strong austerity measures, due in large part to IMF requirements and total mismanagement and nepotism on the part of the government.

Most Jamaicans are thrilled President Obama is on the island for a visit, what is unnerving, is that the government continues to turn a blind-eye to the poverty, crime and mismanagement that is rocking the country.  The homeless people were moved from New Kingston to parts unknown. This reminds me of when Queen Elizabeth II visited Montego Bay in February 1983 and all the insane and homeless people were moved off main street where her party travelled through the city.

The Jamaica Observer reports:

PREPARATIONS for this week’s visit of US President Barack Obama have triggered anger among street vendors in sections of the capital city as their stalls have been destroyed.

“We understand that they have to be fixing up areas where Obama will be travelling, but what they are doing to us is unfair,” said 67-year-old Claudette Reid who sells crabs at National Heroes Circle.

“Is more than 40 years I have been selling right here so. Is through this selling I was able to send all of my children to school. Imagine, the Queen come here and them never remove wi, the Prince also come and we were allowed to stay, so why now?” said the distraught woman.

She was supported by several other angry vendors who said they, too, were affected by the demolition that was carried out Sunday night.

I wonder if Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller will take President Obama to visit her constituency so he can see what a good job she’s doing. Of course, I am being sarcastic. According to a report on the Jamaica Survey of Living Conditions (JSLC) 2012, 19.9 percent of Jamaicans are living in poverty, with that number inching up every year. Seems to me that sanitizing certain areas on President Obama’s travel route should be the least of the Simpson-Miller’s worries.

Here’s an excerpt on the effects of austerity measures crippling the nation:

The Caribbean island nation has had declining living standards for the past 20 years. Per capita GDP has fallen by an average of 0.3 percent annually, making Jamaica the worst-performing economy in the hemisphere over that time frame. And this measures only average living standards. It is much worse at the bottom, with poverty more than doubling since 2007 and unemployment surpassing 14 percent – higher than its peak from the 2009 world recession. (More detail can be found here.)

But where Washington bears the most responsibility are the country’s dim future prospects. It is currently under an IMF agreement that requires the government to run annual primary budget surpluses – revenue minus spending, excluding interest payments – of 7.5 percent. This is the worst such burden in the world. For comparison, Greece was projected to run a primary budget surplus of 3.0 percent this year and about 4.5 percent thereafter. This goal is so unsustainable that it is causing a political crisis as well as a widespread belief that it can’t possibly happen.

Robber Killed in Hanover Was Actually Police Officer Kemar Beckford

Robber Killed in Jamaica Was Actually a Cop ID'd as Kemar Beckford

Robber Killed in Jamaica Was Actually a Cop ID’d as Kemar Beckford

A robber killed in Hopewell, Hanover, early Sunday morning, was actually a police officer, identified as Kemar Beckford.

Beckford was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer during an attempted robbery at a local bar.

Kemar Beckford, 25, was stationed at Bethel Town, Westmoreland, the Jamaica Observer reports.

Police recovered Beckford’s service revolver and a .38-caliber revolver from his body.

Shyheim Lewis, 12, Stabbed to Death in Class at Jamaican School

Shyheim Lewis, 12, Stabbed to Death in Class at Jamaican School

Shyheim Lewis, 12, Stabbed to Death in Class at Jamaican School (Map Credit: Google Maps)

TRAGEDY:  Shyheim Lewis, 12, was stabbed to death by a classmate at Barrett Town All-Age School in St. James, Jamaica, on Monday.

There are reports a fight allegedly broke out between the two over a seat. Lewis was stabbed in the neck. He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

Shyheim Lewis’ alleged killer was arrested by Barrett Town police.

Shaya Prince, 8, Among 4 Killed in Richmond Hill Shooting in St. James

shaya prince , 8, Among 4 Killed in Richmond Hill Shooting in St. James

Shaya Prince, 8, Among 4 Killed in Richmond Hill Shooting in St. James

Shaya Prince

JESUS TAKE THE WHEEL:  Eight-year-old Shaya Prince among four people shot to death in Richmond Hill, Jamaica on Thursday.

Loy Loraine Watson (Latti), 28; Junior Peter Scott, 26, and Kimali Walker, 22, were killed in the shooting. Police have named Kevin Hodge, also known as Tafari, as a person of interest in the shootings.

St. James police have launched a manhunt for Watson’s ex-boyfriend. It is believed he allegedly trailed Shaya Prince home from her school in Montego Bay to her family’s home in Richmond Hill. The estranged couple reportedly had a verbal altercation on the same day.

The shooting occurred between 2:00 and 2:30 a.m. yesterday.

Report: President Obama to Visit Jamaica in Early April

Report: President Obama to Visit Jamaica in Early April

Report: President Obama to Visit Jamaica in Early April

President Obama is set to visit Jamaica in April, the Jamaica Observer reports. The newspaper reports, “Obama is scheduled to attend a meeting in Kingston on April 9, after which he will leave for Panama to attend the Summit of the Americas that will be held over April 10 – 11.”

Report: St. Lucia Police Allegedly Kept “Death List” and Planted Guns

Report: St. Lucia Police Allegedly Kept "Death List" and Planted Guns

Report: St. Lucia Police Allegedly Kept “Death List” and Planted Guns

Report:  St. Lucia’s prime minister Kenny Anthony investigators have issued a report accusing the police force of maintaining a “death list” of people it characterized as criminals and even planted guns at police shooting scenes.

PM Anthony said a “team of Jamaican investigators” looked at the fatal police-involved shooting of 12 people in 2009 and 2011. The investigators found that the shootings were “staged by the police to legitimize their actions.” Guns were also planted at the scene by the officers.

Dr. Anthony explained: “The report confirms that the black list or death list referenced by the media, human rights organisations, victims, families and citizens alike did exist. More alarmingly, the investigators report that all the shootings reviewed were fake encounters staged by the police to legistimise their actions.

“Further, that the weapons supposedly found on the scene of the alleged ‘extra-judicial killings’ were from sources other than the victims. The investigators say the weapons were ‘planted on the scene of the shootings’.

The investigators also advised that ‘a number of shootings were done by police officers and are listed on the murder statistic as being done by unknown assailants’. “Revealingly, the report suggests that ‘the crime problem in St. Lucia is facilitated by corrupt politicians, government officials, business persons and the police officers.’ Source:  St. Lucia News Online

The police shootings occurred during the “Operation Restore Confidence” security initiative.

 

Haitian Police Fire Rubber Bullets at Gas Price Demonstrators

Haitian Police Fire Rubber Bullets at Gas Price Demonstrators

Haitian Police Fire Rubber Bullets at Gas Price Demonstrators (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Haitian police fire rubber bullets at gas price protesters in Port-au-Prince on Thursday. Six student protesters were wounded.

It was the second protest this week in Port-au-Prince to demand lower oil prices, in an impoverished country also struggling with political uncertainty.

Haiti recently announced a 30 US cent price reduction for a gallon of gas (3.8 liters), which sells for just over $4 in the country, but protesters said that was insufficient in light of falling oil prices on the international market.

Members of political organizations and students rallied at several university campuses.

In downtown Port-au-Prince, protesters threw stones at police who approached the law faculty located just meters from the presidential palace. Source: France 24

2 Teens Arrested for Murder of Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden in Trelawny

2 Teens Arrested for Murder of Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden in Trelawny

2 Teens Arrested for Murder of Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden in Trelawny (Map Credit: Google)

Two teens, both aged 16, were arrested for the murder of 79-year-old retired nurse Hyacinth Hayden, who was found fatally stabbed in her Green Park, Trelawny, home on New Year’s Eve.

The boys, who were arrested on Saturday, are expected to be charged on Monday for the Hayden’s murder.

It is a sad commentary that Mrs. Hayden did so much good in the community to have her life taken by two young thugs. That’s assuming they are indeed the murderers and aren’t taking the rap for the real killer or killers.

Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden Killed in Her Trelawny, Jamaica Home

Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden Killed in Her Trelawny, Jamaica Home

Retired Nurse Hyacinth Hayden Killed in Her Trelawny, Jamaica Home

SHOCK:  Hyacinth Hayden, a retired nurse, was stabbed to death in her Green Park, Trelawny, Jamaica, home on New Year’s Eve. Police are trying to locate her suspected killer.

According to a distraught Ashley Hayden, husband of the slain retired nurse, shortly after 3:00 pm he left the family home to purchase a phone card and other items for his wife at a community shop.

He said that on his return, about 15 minutes later, he discovered the blood-drenched body of his wife slumped on the kitchen step. She was found with multiple stab wounds to the upper body, he said.

“… Her mouth [was] open and [there was] blood all over her chest. They (attackers) must have been around watching me. Is only someone who know that the dog was chained and could only reach a certain distance that could have done it,” said Hayden. “When me come back the dog a raise hell!”

There was speculation that the killer or killers, who might have been known to the retired nurse, lurked near her house until her husband left the premises to commit the crime.

Hayden said that when he went inside the ransacked house, blood was spattered all over the floor, which suggested that the killers may have been searching for money and other valuables.

“There was blood, from living room come right down. Every drawer pull out, everything turn upside down,” the widower said. Source: Jamaica Observer

This is a travesty. Hyacinth Hayden was doing a lot of good in her community and was taken away from her family as a result of a senseless act of violence. Absolutely reprehensible.