Haitian Gays And Lesbians Alliance Org

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Post by admin » Thu Jul 06, 2006 4:23 pm

Johanne,
Welcome to Ann Pale! I had to delete two of your other posts, as I do not allow such replication on the forum. Also, please use the forum for dialogue if you like, on the core subjects of homosexuality and lesbianism, and not just as a way to promote your organization.

Also, you registered both as Johanne and Radio Vonvon. It is better that you use the "Johanne" username, as I can picture most people feeling more comfortable speaking to Johanne than speaking to Radio Vonvon.

This forum is several years old, and we have devloped some protocols along the way. Please look them over to familiarize yourself with the way that I run this forum.

Anyway, glad to have you on board.

Guy

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Post by admin » Fri Jul 07, 2006 6:07 am

I agree. That's what I tried to communicate. My only reservations were procedural: do not replicate the messages in different places throughout the forum and do use a conversational username (as that is more inducing to a free exchange). Those rules apply to everyone on the forum.

When you are not sure of where it is best to post, please do it right here [POST HERE (main port of entry)]. I will later categorize all the posts, as I see fit.

Please do not use this space just as a way to advertise your organization. Come in the spirit of a frank dialogue. That is always welcome.

Guy

P.S. We have had some exchanges before on homosexuality and transgenderism, such as http://www.annpale.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=4340. I look forward to more discussions with Johanne [and Gelin].

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Fri Jul 07, 2006 9:50 am

My appologies to the members, i come in peace. I in no way shape or form want to promote my organization nor do I want to destroy the reputation of this forum. I manly want the people to know that there is such an organization and that help is available to them. Shall we start over and let good conversation begin.

Michel Nau_

Post by Michel Nau_ » Fri Jul 07, 2006 5:03 pm

Johanne wrote: [quote]Shall we start over and let good conversation begin.
[/quote] Sure! Why don't you start by telling a little bit about yourself?
Guy wrote:[quote] I am sure that there is a feminine side of me.
[/quote] We don't want to challenge your certainty about the existence of a feminine side of you. Could you Guy share with us and Johanne a couple of instances where this feminine side of you had taken over?

Michel :? :?

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Post by admin » Fri Jul 07, 2006 6:03 pm

What???????????

Michel, I won't say that I did not write that -- ever, but in what context? You misuse the art of quoting people like a dirty trickster from a Republican Party campaign. Have you been taking lessons from Karl Rove or one of his illustrious predecessors?

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Mon Jul 10, 2006 2:05 pm

Michelnau (I will be brief I am at work),

Have you heard of the two young men (Haitians) who killed themselves nearly a month apart a little over a year ago ( Queens, NY ) ?

If not, it is to no surprise at all. I was seriously disturbed for weeks after finding out what happened. Can you imagine something like that happening to you with one of your kids and you figure the best way to handle the situation is to selfishly keep quiet, while speaking up could help not only you but others in your community. Can you imagine? How many kids must be going through what those young men went through? How many more will take the same path, thinking destroying themselves over nonsense is the best solution to it all.

I was approached by one of the deceased lovers, at an all gay party. He introduced himself and told me that he dated a Haitian once. As he continued his friend held his hand as he got teary eyes explaining to me how his friend took his life, unable to deal with the gay lifestyle and his strict/religious family. I was shocked; first of all, at one point I did believe that I personally had a problem. I thought I was the only Haitian lesbian out there; (since everyone's in the closet) I had never met a Haitian gay or lesbian before I came out. Let alone to have another out there to kill himself over family and religious "B.S."

Had I met him I could have told him my story, about how the thought had crossed my mind once or twice but I never could go through with it ( too chicken, lol ). Besides, I always thought I had a reason not to.

After talking to him at the party we decided to get together. He trusted me with his story and I am sharing it with you, as he would want me too. This is the letter his lover left him.

Dear Larry,
It's difficult to know where to start,
but I'll do it by saying sorry. I'm sorry I
left you, I'm sorry I broke the promise. You
helped me so much, but when pain reaches the
limit it all means nothing. You know that.
Next I want to say thank you. You
dedicated your life to me, and I failed. You
were my shoulder to cry on. You got me off the
sh*t, but here I sit pumped full of it. I'm
not as strong as you.
I have written a note to my mum telling
her everything. I wanted her to know how much
you helped me.
Sorry, and I love you.
Alex.


Talking to him was an eye opener, getting an understanding of what happened. Everything in my life just changed after that. I learned so much, I started doing research, talking to others, asking questions, etc. So I decided to form this organization to help others. What I find out about our Haitian people was very disappointing and I am still fiding more out. One of the craziest things I've discovered, my people will go the extreme to save face.

Facts: Based on the 50 that HGLA personally interviewed

-In NYC we have young Haitian boys and girls 14-17 who are homeless because of their sexuality and are living on the pier.
- To survive they must steal or prostitute themselves to support sometimes their new found habits
- The oldest from any shelter would rob them of their money and personal belongings.
- 38 out of 50 came from a religious family or has a parent who is a pastor
- 35 out 50 think their parents would deal with it, if it weren't for their involvement in the community, extended family and/or society.
- 2 out 50 were accepted with no problems
- 7out 50 were accepted but became the laughingstock of the family
- none of them were molested
- 35 out 50 watch their mothers sit down quietly in a corner while their fathers kicked them out.
-15 out 50 were kicked out by their mothers
- One of the first Haitian lesbian couple to get married are two of the most outspoken human rights activists in NYS ( in the closet).

My question to you all, is it that serious?

So serious that one would risk losing their children over society. How can any parent live with such decisions?

What are they so afraid of?

Help me understand, what more can I do to help?

Is homosexuality new to the Haitian society?

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Post by admin » Tue Jul 11, 2006 5:18 am

[quote]One of the first Haitian lesbian couple to get married are two of the most outspoken human rights activists in NYS ( in the closet).[/quote]
Johanne, I am not sure that I understood correctly. They are most outspoken and in the closet at the same time?

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Post by admin » Tue Jul 11, 2006 5:35 am

[quote]Is homosexuality new to the Haitian society?[/quote]
I don't see how homosexuality could be new to any society, only the openness about it. In that sense, yes, that you are willing to have a support organization for Haitian gays and lesbians is something very new, I think. Perhaps something that only fully assimilated Haitian-Americans could accomplish?

By the way, from what I have read on this forum and elsewhere, it was clear that homosexuals were much less discriminated against in Haitian culture, compared to other Caribbean cultures, especially Jamaican. It would appear that in Jamaica (Michael Deibert had posted an article to this effect) gay people are routinely harassed, threatened in popular songs, and occasionally murdered. The article depicted a rather chilling reality.

How much Pan-caribbean solidarity exists in the Haitian gay community and perhaps in your organization in particular?

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Post by admin » Tue Jul 11, 2006 5:58 am

[quote]I was approached by one of the deceased lovers, at an all gay party.[/quote]
Dear Johanne, sorry to delve into what must be some painful experience. Since you brought it up however, I would like to get some clarification into what happened and what could be done to prevent this sort of tragedy in the future. Here are some of my questions: How soon after this young man spoke to you did he kill himself? How did he commit suicide? How did his former teen lover? Had either of them sought professional counseling? Were they assisted by any organization, their schools or others? Was the tragic story of those two young men picked up by the news media? Are you the first to write about their story?

Also, many young people have killed themselves (in the last ten years or so) because of clinical depression. Could untreated depression be first and foremost responsible for those young men killing themselves rather than their homosexuality or the response of their families to their homosexuality?

To which extent do you hold Haitian society responsible for those deaths?

Sorry if I cause you some discomfort by asking all those questions. However, since you related the story, it would make sense to probe into it further, so that the full truth be known about it and the rightful lessons be learned from it. In order for that to happen, one must first know the facts and understand the realities, as this is life and not just a sad novel.

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Post by admin » Tue Jul 11, 2006 6:44 am

Johanne, on your website, you say: "Let's get something straight. I am not." A rather bold statement. Have you always been so outspoken?

Ignore the question if it is too personal, but I will ask it anyway since you have joined our close-knit forum family. How old were you when you discovered that your were gay? Who did you tell? Did you go through a denial period? How long did it take for you to fully reconcile yourself (or align yourself mentally) with your sexual orientation? How supportive were your friends and family? How did you turn into such an outspoken young adult?

As I said, if any of those questions are too personal, just ignore them. I am not trying to be a voyeur into your personal life, but in order for us to discuss homosexuals and lesbians in Haitian society openly and frankly, it would help to know them on a personal basis (or as close to that as possible).

Also, why "Haitian" gays and lesbians? How unique is your experience compared to other nationalities? Are there other "national" gay and lesbian organizations out there (forgive my ignorance)? Do you have formal contacts with other Haitian organizations either in Haiti or in the United States or Canada?

What about the influence of Christian religions in your lives? Since the Church generally shuns gays and lesbians, how do you gays and lesbians deal with it, if you are at all religious? Have you met some understanding and welcoming Haitian clergy? How have they helped you in embracing your faith, or have they invariably tried to make you abandon your lifestyles and "change" somehow into heterosexuals (that is, "normal" not "inherently sinful" children of God)? Do you also know about the links between the Vodou culture and openly gay lifestyles?

OK, my questions have ranged from the personal, to the national, to the religious and other cultural aspects of gays and lesbians. I hope that I have not overwhelmed you. Take your time to approach them from any angle that you wish. But here's a last one (I promise) :

Are male Haitian gays completely supportive of female Haitian lesbians, and vice versa? Which group is discriminated most against? Are the general attitudes of Haitian society the same with respect to lesbians as they are to gays in general?

Well, I have asked dozens of questions. It's now up to you to pursue the subject and begin an honest conversation on those issues.

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Wed Jul 12, 2006 5:04 am

Wow, Slow down Cowboy.

Outspoken? No, not at all; in the closet, yes. Mordantly speaking, I ask the questions. The way Haitians react to the subject when brought up you would think it was fresh off the six o'clock news.

Whenever my non-Haitian friends ask me questions about homosexuality in my country, the best answer I can muster is that it's a taboo conversation.

Homosexuality is not new to any society, specially ours.

Have you heard the term “GAYDAR?” (Radar) It's a term used to describe the ability of a gay person to recognize another gay even in the darkest of rooms. Growing up, I was always able to make the comparison although I wasn't sure what exactly I was comparing. When I was old enough to understand, I realized how many older men and women (Haitians) I've come across throughout the years that were no doubt gays or lesbians.

The “openness” to get this organization started is the beginning of something major. To be clear, this organization is going to be HELL for us, lol. We know it's not going to be easy, but we have met and we discussed it and we the body, think it is about time that someone in our community here or abroad starts addressing one of the most relevant subjects that affects all of our lives. (If you want to know how ask me)

GuySanto says: “Perhaps something that only fully assimilated Haitian-Americans could accomplish?”

Not at all. We want to be the voice of those unable to travel to escape the agony they face everyday going about their business.

Anne Lescot and Laurence Magloire did a very educational documentary piece on Haitian gays called "Of Men and Gods" ( ‘Des Hommes et Des Dieux'). If you haven't seen it, I strongly suggest it.

In Haiti, right now, we have more gays and lesbians roaming the streets openly than the state known to be the gayest of the USA. I have young Haitians (living in Haiti) who have access to the internet e-mailing me and calling me from various USA area codes using internet cafes asking me how they can be part of this organization. They are much more responsive to this movement than those living in the US. I stand a better chance getting this started in Haiti than NY.

We are very much discriminated against in the Haitian culture mainly because we lack of human right power. From the beginning of time, Haitians have been living this lifestyle, as the kids here so elegantly put it: on the DL “down low, hush hush”

You compare the Jamaican culture with ours. There is almost no difference between the two.

GuySanto says, quoting an article: “(Michael Deibert had posted an article to this effect) gay people are routinely harassed, threatened in popular songs, and occasionally murdered”

“batty boys,” I have heard many horrific stories about them, but as barbaric as they are you can't possibly compare the two islands.

Moun sa Jamayik gen plis chans jwenn jistis ke yon ti ayisyen nan Port-au-Prince.

Right now you find a dead young man lying in the streets of Port-au-Prince what will be your reaction? “Ti Vagabon wi depi ou wè sa”, "Zenglendo! yo pran li nan volè”, “Podyab! Peyi ya fini". It has never been mentioned that maybe a homophobe may have caused his death, poukisa? Paske peyi ya an dezòd. Pa gen moun kap fè bon envestigasyon, jenn gason nan lakou pòtoprens ap tonbe kou grenn lapli. Peyi ya ap travèse yon kriz kote ti bagay konsa pa regade anken moun sitou leta. Do you understand what I mean?

When it comes to this, Haiti has 2 classes: malere ak grannèg.
Malere fè masisi sal (excuse my French), grannèg pederas ou masisi.
Malerèz fè madivin (sal) ( I hate that word, it's a derogatory term; again my apologies for the terms used). Grannèg la se lesbyèn.

Wondering what ever happened to the so-called “Classe Moyenne” ? Oh, I'll tell you. They are too busy hiding in the closet and putting others' business in the street instead of worrying about their own happiness. Yap konsantre sou fè lasosyete plezi pandansetan sosyete ki gen pouvwa (ability to live with no care) yo ap viv ti vi yo.

Gade byen nan EU kiyès ki gen plis mwayen ekonomik (the gays). Gade Ayiti kiyès plis kòb pase nan men yo: grannèg la ak malere ya. 2 group sa yo fè nenpòt ki travay, vann nenpòt kisa pou l fè kòb. Klas mwayèn nan toujou nan yon tyans. Pale franse, sou blòf , toujou sou woulman. (If you don't get my point, I will try a different approach next time.)

“Pan-Caribbean", je ne comprends pas très bien l'anglais.

About the young men who committed suicide. They were gay and dealing with a lot of family issues, trying to come out. I am quoting what one of the boys lover told me, religion played a major role in this particular young man's life (father is a pastor) marriage, kids etc. the other I have yet met any one who have seen the notes or spoke to the family since then to give me more detail but believe you me it was both GAY related. Both families were very adamant about media coverage, why? It beats me everyday. Maybe shame, embarrassment, fear, confusion… I don't know.

I am not holding the Haitian society responsible for those deaths. But I am questioning the parent's ethics in raising these kids especially in the US. (Valè movie, soap opera, talk show. Kalte bagay moun sa yo wè nan gro peyi sa. Kisa ki pase? I am not saying that the American way is the greatest way to raise your child or teach them values... men, mezanmi rayi chen di dan li blan. Si gen youn ou de bagay nou aprann pa bò isit se kominikasyon. Ke anpil nan yo pat genyen lakay. Konpreyansyon, yon ti afeksyon, yon ti tolerans, paske yo se pa-w avan tou and nothing the neighbors or other families, church members can say will ever change that.

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Post by admin » Wed Jul 12, 2006 6:54 am

Thank you, Johanne. You made some points that were not at all expected. That's the value of an open forum like Ann Pale. Yours is truly an excellent piece and I am happy that this cowboy quickly asks all the questions that nobody else seems willing to raise. I will slow down just enough to let other people participate (hopefully).

I hope that you do not mind that I edited your piece for spelling (I see that you are new to Haitian Creole writing. Don't get offended, I am just trying to help.)

By the way, by "pan-caribbean" I meant "a feeling of oneness across the Caribbean islands", based on similarity of culture or ethnicity, leading to solidarity to conquer the common adversity. I knew that the Jamaicans had it real bad. I never was aware that in Haiti, people would be (physically, viciously) assaulted and even killed simply because they were gay. I have to confess, as naive as that may sound, that I never knew that. Certainly, growing up there, I have heard all the insults heaped on homosexuals and the constant teasing, but I have never witnessed any physical aggression. Times have changed, I suppose?

Yes, I have seen Anne Lescot and Laurence Magloire's "Of Men and Gods" at a film festival in New York, and I thought that it was a really good movie, an eye opener specially for people who do not know much about Vodou culture. But, as I recall, it addressed the tolerance of homosexuality in Vodou and not so much the intolerance for gays and lesbians in Haitian society in general. Perhaps, it was all implied and I missed the point.

Not that I am not aware of the intolerance, mind you. I even wrote extensively about that on this forum. But I understood it to be based on religion, mostly fundamentalist protestants with their literal interpretation of biblical verses. I had (or tried to have) some conversations with Gelin on that topic, but it was obvious that Gelin was struggling with his desire to stay true to the Bible and his otherwise more compassionate nature.

However, it's the downright homocidal intolerance I am talking about. I did not know that it existed in Haiti.

On a lighter topic, it was always funny to me when I heard women call their men or husbands "MASISI!" in a fit of anger. Sometimes, they would even expand on that to imply that the men must have been involved in homosexual acts with their friends or perfect strangers, just to humiliate them (the worst way they could). Later on, when the men would do whatever they had to do to make up for their transgressions, the women would them call them "chouchou" and other endearing terms, and supposedly, they would happily get in bed with them. So, to me, the lesson was that in many if not most cases, "MASISI" is really just an insult (on the same level as "gèt manman w") and not truly an indication of one's belief in the other's sexual orientation.

It's the irony that I found funny, because if the woman truly believed that her man was homosexual, would she then be content to jump back in bed with him?

[quote]one of the most relevant subjects that affects all of our lives. (If you want to know how ask me) [/quote]
I am asking. Educate me.

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Thu Jul 13, 2006 2:25 am

Are you ready for this? It's long.

First of all, I want to Thank you Guysanto for the corrections, I sometimes feel the need to express myself better in Creole, although I am positive that I am butchering my native tongue. (be patient, I am learning)

GuySanto says:
On your website, you say: "Let's get something straight. I am not." A rather bold statement. Have you always been so outspoken?

Always, I can't see myself any other way. I was born and raised in Haiti I have never heard Haitians stand up for themselves especially the women. I always knew something was odd with my people even when I was younger.

Outspoken, se rans, lol. I got tired! tired of lying, tired of not being happy, tired of pleasing people who did not give a rat's ass about my well-being, tired of society, just tired.

I wanted to take my own life at one point. (that was Bold)

Get to know me:

I have had 3 boyfriends in all my 29 years. My first butterfly love, I 've had a crush on my 5th grade teacher (Boston Ma) which was a male (bel gacon). I 've had 2 serious relationships with proposal and all. I have never been molested or raped in all my life. My father was married to my mother until death separated the two. None of my boyfriends ever disrespected me by cheating, raising their hands or voices at me. They were both perfect gentlemen; if anything I did a lot of the screaming and hitting myself, out of frustration and sadness. I have spent the greatest time with those men and, if you must know, sexually wasn't one of them. I wasn't in my skin, you know what I mean? With all due respect, it's like asking one of you to sleep with a man; Ouch, exactly!

When I broke up with my last boyfriend I came out to my mother, because I did not want peple (friends and family) telling her when they found out. I made sure I told her first. I owed her that much. “Kote ou pran bagay sa wap di la... is it so and so?" was the first words that came out her mouth. Why did it have to be “so and so's fault" why couldn't it be me?

#1 mistake Haitian parents make, blame someone else for their kids' outcome. It is not that serious folks, your kids will for sure make decisions that will not please you, especially if you are concerned with society (then nothing will be acceptable, epi sak pase ou rann lavi timoun nan enposib epi that's it!)

Second thing she asked me with such disappointment was “are you sure?”
Am I sure? NO! I worked up all this nerve to joke with you.

#3 mistake: denial. There is no way in hell my mother did not see this one coming, parents always know. It's like shopping for a new house, the minute you walk into the home you want you will know, (that's the best way I can explain this to the H.H. Haitian Hetero, lol.

Would you like to know what my mother advised me when she noticed how serious I was with what I had told her. She said “why don't you do like everyone else, get yourself a husband and have you affairs on the side?” I was shocked. For months, she was cold towards me.

When I came out to my family, my younger sister started hiding herself from me when she got out the shower, for me not to see her body. lol (now I can laugh about it)

Can you imagine? After many years, they slowly came around, but never once missed the opportunity to bring up kids and my old age ( “pitit, lè ou granmoun wa regrèt ou pat fè yon ti moun, si m pat genyen nou la mwen pa konnen kisa mwen ta fè?”) you know, the whole nine yards.


Religion:

Religion is a lot like politics (I hate them both), you will never catch me having a discussion on neither. They are both a matter of understanding, believing and respecting others' opinion. You never win no matter what. I think it is very rude to impose one's belief on another. It is what it is, no need to analyze any of it.

My lover and I are riche d'esprit . We go to church every Sunday, pray before our meal, do right by others. We have the utmost respect for the Highest power and that's about how far it goes.

We are at peace with our selves.


GuySanto asks:

“Are male Haitian gays completely supportive of female Haitian lesbians, and vice versa? Which group is discriminated most against? Are the general attitudes of Haitian society the same with respect to lesbians as they are to gays in general?”

Pretty much, you see, to us it is not as confusing as it is to you. Everything falls into place as for you in your surroundings. We can't discriminate against each other, it's a double negative. It's like a black man calling a brotha a nigga (get it).

Both sexes are discriminated by outsiders, (straights or heteros). People are afraid of the unknown, it's easier to outcast, belittle, and ridicule us. I guess it's the reason why we stay within ourselves and work 10 times harder than anyone else to have it all. That way we don't have to deal or bother with anyone that doesn't want to bother with us. But the curse is, we do it so well, even if you don't want to deal with us you have to.

The Gays today occupy the highest Job positions in America.

Nou nan Bank, Nou lekol, Nou Legliz, lol, Lopital menm se pa pale, ou gen problèm lalwa avoka yo la, jij, lapolis, ponpye, nan kuizin menm se koupe dwèt. You name it, we are there.

I got bad news for the HOMOFOBS: we are everywhere.

Which explains the reason why the Gays are financially more stable than the heteros. Even the ones in Haiti.


Reality check:

Straight men see lesbians (femme) as fantasy. No respect; they tease and disrespect those who are butch ( madivinn, bòs, lapen, just to name a few derogatory terms used to keep our beautiful sisters down)

They terrorize the men ( masisi, makòmè, demwazèl, kòkòt, grimel. Again, more derogatory words used to keep our strong and powerful men down) for entertainment's sake.

The masculine ones blend in (ou pap janm konnen). If anything, se yo ki premye kòmanse choute sou lòt yo) showing their macho side although dying inside.

WE DON'T HAVE TO LIKE A PERSON'S LIFESTYLE, BUT WE DO NEED TO RESPECT THEM.

Epi n'ap mande kòman peyi ya fè vinn konsa. It's a chain reaction problèm peyi pa senp ditou.

We have these sexually repressed men running the country. They are husband at home, another man's bitch at night. The women have best friends, sisters, cousins (I am tired! And I am just writting, too much! I could never live like that. It's exhausting.)

I know a couple in Petionville, very successful (Haitian style), both gay, married with kids. Two best friends since high school. For years, they lived together. They still do. Living in separate bedrooms since day 1. What do you make of that? And they are not the only ones….Think about it.

But guess what, society accepts and they are both miserable.

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Post by admin » Fri Jul 14, 2006 8:21 am

Hi Johanne, thanks for your openness and willingness to discuss a topic many consider as taboo in our society. It's telling how many people have commented on it so far. Nevertheless, I see this as a unique opportunity to educate oneself about people we live with every day, while we choose to ignore their sexual orientation, because it makes many among us feel distinctly uncomfortable, for a variety of reasons.

I am sorry to go back one more time to one of your quotes, because I still do not understand it. This is it:
[quote]One of the first Haitian lesbian couple to get married are two of the most outspoken human rights activists in NYS ( in the closet).[/quote]
My understanding of being "in the closet" is that of a homosexual that hides his/her sexual orientation, one who pretends to be straight. Concerning that Haitian lesbian couple that you speak of, if 1) they got married, 2) they are outspoken HR activists in New York State, then how could you still refer to them as being "in the closet"? I am missing something...

On Religion, you say:
[quote]Religion is a lot like politics (I hate them both), you will never catch me having a discussion on neither. They are both a matter of understanding, believing and respecting others' opinion. You never win no matter what. I think it is very rude to impose one's belief on another. It is what it is, no need to analyze any of it.

My lover and I are riche d'esprit . We go to church every Sunday, pray before our meal, do right by others. We have the utmost respect for the Highest power and that's about how far it goes.

We are at peace with ourselves. [/quote]
Thank you for saying that. I think that what you express however is about your spirituality, which goes beyond the scope of religion. While there is way too much political analysis all around us, or what passes as such, I don't think there is enough analysis of religion as a human institution and its effects on people and society. Religious organizations spring up all around us and influence our responses to events, societies, cultures, and different people. Some of them strive to nurture our spirituality and give it a mode of expression that is beneficial to the communities we evolve in. Others do the exact opposite, as they exploit our fears of the unknown and whatever seems different from us. Many exist simply for financial reasons (take away the profit motive, and they simply disappear). For better or worse, religions like governments exert a tremendous influence on our social interactions, whether we are atheists or believers, "riches d'esprit" or spiritually challenged. [By the way, I have met many fervently religious people who seem to me quite challenged spiritually, and vice versa.]

So, while I agree with you on the virtue of tolerance (which is very spiritual...), I do not think there is nearly enough analysis of the nature and influences of religion in our lives. The lack of such analysis has some quite tragic results, in that it leaves many of us quite vulnerable and easy targets for religious exploitation.

You could say though that the extra tonnage of political analysis about Haiti has not changed it for the better! So should we expect better from the analysis of the role and effects of religion in our society? I say "yes". When you cannot find solutions in the box, it may be that the solutions reside outside of the box.


[quote]The Gays today occupy the highest Job positions in America. [/quote]Hmm...
Vice-President Dick Cheney?
Vice Vice-President George Bush?
Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice?
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld?
Chairman of Microsoft and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates?
Chairmen of GE, Westinghouse, Halliburton, General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Disney, Sony America, etc?
Top religious leaders???

I never thought of that... are you sure?

[quote]We have these sexually repressed men running the country. They are husband at home, another man's bitch at night.[/quote]
Really? And here I thought they were just constipated!

But, Johanne, is it really as bad as you say? Perhaps you are taking the exceptions and making them the rule... because in a society like Haiti, where people make it their business to tell everyone else about other people's business, I don't see how such knowledge would not be widespread and that "the scandals du jour" would not become fodder for dedicated periodicals.

Unless Haitian society has become a lot more mature about homosexuality than I knew it to be. After all, there was not that much of a big deal made about the adventures of a recent American Ambassador...


Finally, I would welcome your thoughts on other not-strictly-homosexual-not-strictly-heterosexual behaviors in Haitian society (bisexuality, transvestism, transgenderism, ...) To your knowledge, has any Haitian ever undergone a sex change operation?


Thanks for your willingness to answer all my questions, and sorry for the non-participation of my colleagues.

Gelin_

Post by Gelin_ » Fri Jul 14, 2006 9:31 am

[quote]...and sorry for the non-participation of my colleagues.[/quote]
Why do you say that?

gelin

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Post by admin » Fri Jul 14, 2006 10:28 am

Just checking on your pulse.

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Post by Liline » Fri Jul 14, 2006 3:12 pm

Thank you Johanne for sharing, and welcome to the board.

Nothing specific to add just my own thoughts on some of the things said above.

First of all, I believe you have a good idea, and I wish you the best with the organization. I hope it helps many down the road, who need it.

Side question, have you any plans on maybe opening phone lines for these discussions? I would believe that many people would feel more comfortable speaking to someone they didn't have to face(not to mention several people to face), specially for those who are still struggling with their emotions over the issue. That way opening the door for even more people you guys can help.


Moving on...

It's always sad to see how people can turn their backs on one another, more specifically, how parents can just turn their backs on their children. What possible reason(logical reason) could you have to turn your back on your child. What ever happened to the "bond between child and parent"? Mwen pa gen timoun, ki vle di mwen ka selman imajine jan mwen ta renmen yon pitit ke mwen met sou latè sa, yon timoun ke mwen fin elve, ki pase tout vi l nan men m, poutèt sèks moun li ta chwazi renmen an, sa ase pou fè m paka tolere l anko? Mwen pata ka fè kouzen ou kouzin mwen sa, ni frè m ou sè m sa, ale wè pwòp pitit mwen.

What could possibly be going through this parent's mind to abandon his/her own child for such a reason?



As for people who are homophobic, or simply people who look down on other people, I also can't understand. If someone chooses a lifestyle that in no way affects anyone elses lives but their own, why should I make a big deal out of it? Kot sa deranje m? M vreman pa konn poukisa gen moun ki aji konsa. Mwen menm gen zanmi m ki konn di "O ou twò liberal pou mwen", mande yo bay yon bon rezon ki fè yo pa renmen ide omoseksyèl lan, yo pa gen rezon, anpil ladan yo vire l sou relijyon, epi agiman yo tou fini la. :roll:


Antouka, m panse ke moun sipoze gen plis respè pou dwa lòt moun.


As for Haitians themselves, you're right Guy, I really haven't heard stories about people being killed for being homosexuals, but then again maybe they are hushed up or I just wasn't paying attention. But I do understand Johanne when you say someone can easily get killed in Haiti and the murderer is quite likely to get away with it. Sad but true, just one more thing to add to the list of things we need to help fix.


Bon I think that's it for now :)



Johanne

Post by Johanne » Sun Jul 16, 2006 12:04 am

It's good to see you all taking such in interest in this matter; it means the world to me.

I am still young and I do have much to learn, I didn't think I had or knew much of anything to educate anyone; I just thought it was about time that we (Haitians) started looking into our society which has inflicted so much pain and chaos into most our lives.

We have all, in one way or another been infected by the closed-mindedness of our people.

We lack of so much when it comes to dealing with each other.
No Communication
No Sympathy
No Affection
No Forgiveness
Too much talking not enough listening.
Too much yo di-m mwen pa bezwen konnen.
Too much kite mele-m sa pa gade-m.
TOO MUCH MWEN REZIYE-M. (I Hate that word, it needs to be removed from the Creole dictionary)
Koman ou fè viv nan peyi fatra sa? Hmm, e byen mwen reziye-m.
Peyi ya san limyè. Koman ou fè? Sa w vle-m fe mwen reziye-m.
We are sometimes too passive.

Not enough how was your day?
Not enough I am listening without a sapat or rigwaz in the hand.
Not enough I love you's.
Not enough you are beautiful.
Not enough that's my boy! I am proud of you.
Not enough competition (san poud).
Not enough charity.
(My lesbianism by the way is an act of charity. All those women out there praying for a man, I've giving them my share.)

I try to understand all that for the life of me and I just can't! I can't understand most Haitians' inability to copy the good and leave the bad of what the United States has to offer. Such as respecting the rights of others, freedom of speech to a certain extent, customer service, talk not shout, spend more time educating your kid, not comparing them with madan zotobre's ki pi byen pase-w, veye mayi pa-w pa pa zòt.

Being Gay (lesbian) is who I am and Have always been. Je ne suis pas à la morde.

I love myself and I am very comfortable within my skin. I am beautiful and smart, I am caring and very passionate about many things. I live a very full and exciting life, I travel a lot and I have friends from all walks of life. They respect me as I respect them.

I am no different from you or the women in your lives. I do put on my undies one leg at a time just as they do. (lol)

And no, I do not have on any part of my body the numbers 666 tattooed.

I am not evil nor do I consider this lifestyle an abomination. I am human. I am NOT perfect, I want to love and be loved is that too much?

In 2006, why most people are still astonished to meet a human being who wants to love another?

Who matters the most, me or society?

The bible was totally altered and proven by many experts; what/who should I believe?

Why is it that, as a culture, we are more comfortable seeing two men holding guns than holding hands?

If God had wanted me otherwise, wouldn't He have created me otherwise?

L'amour, c'est d'aimer une personne et non un sexe.

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Sun Jul 16, 2006 1:27 pm

To Jaf: (My lesbianism by the way is an act of charity. All those women out there praying for a man, I've giving them my share.)

Your cousin is nothing but a man, what can I say, boys will be boys. In my case, I understand there is a shortage of good men out there why not give them my share? I dated two of the best, now somewhere in Florida. Two women are in the relationship of their lives, happily married. Thanks to me.

My choice of words may have been a bit harsh nevertheless, what I needed to say didn't come out the best way possible. We are talking about the Haitian society, were we not? The other cultures and nationalities you speak of are irrelevant. Pa pale-m de lot moun.

How open-minded is our society? Ban-m eksplike-w pi byen an detay.

We are so open-minded? It is viewed as the ultimate shame to mess around/have an affair with the jeran lakou/bòn (a human being). Oh, I know, it's a class thing right? Wrong, it's called respecting oneself. How many "pitit kay" have fallen in love/lust (hetero/homo) with "the help" ? More than you could imagine. But if the word got out, these young adults' lives are doomed as we know it.

So "open-minded" molestation and abuse are done everyday almost openly in the victim's home by close friends and/or family members and no one is doing jack about it. We are protecting the molesters so they can help keep their face and reputation in the public eye.

Even more "open-minded" to look down at someone because you don't understand their financial situation leading to certain lifestyles. Kounyè a li nan fanm tou wi. Nan pòtoprens yo tout bèt. Pwoblèm ekonomik la vrèman pa bay moun yo chwa nan anyen.

Egzanp: Lesbian born living life as a hetero, Why?

Li leve nan fanmi k'ap bat dlo pou fè bè; ti frè ti sè sou kont li; manman malad; papa swa fin granmoun, mouri, ou byen li pat janm konnen-l ditou. Li bèl ti fi, li jwenn yon nèg ki swadizan ka leve-l atè a. Ki chwa li genyen sitou an Ayiti?

Nèg la Gay (butch); tout mesye yo marye gen timoun se li k'ap rete dèyè kamyonèt la. Yo si tan fawouche nèg ki sisi nan prezans li, li oblije pran yon fanm. L'ap bay fanm nan zoklo ak yon nèg, joure tout lasentjounen menm rive frape li pafwa. Pou kisa? Tout bèt jennen mòde.

Maladi menm ap rantre nan kay sa; madanm yon bò; mouche yon lòt; it's a mess if you ask me.

Si nou kite Ayiti anvan ane 85 nou pap konn istwa sa. A couple married, they certainly did make a name for themselves. Well known, madanm Doktè, mari a gwo bizismann. Pandan manmzèl ap vin sot travay, konsa bòn lan di-l: "Madanm Entel, Mesye Entel di-w konsa antre ou antre pou al kote-l, Madanm Entel si m' ta ou mwen ta gade nan chanm nan anvan. Si-l pa la, w'a gade nan ofis la. Madanm ale vre nan chanm nan, ouvè pòt la. Mari li k'ap devore (her choice of words) yon jeunne homme ki ap travay avèk yo. Bagay sa te fè yon eskandal total-kapital nan Pòtoprens. Misye a oblije te bay kapital la blanch pou yon bon 2 zan deyò pou yo teka bliye-l.

Mwen si tan gen istwa kote anpil ladan yo se mèt afè a ki eksplike-m yo.

You are all so sheltered, there is so much happening out there it is scary. Keep your eyes and ears open, you will notice.

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Thu Jul 20, 2006 10:05 pm

Communication is a major problem, it's a given. One thing I need you all to understand is that just because you don't hear of gay bashing stories in the Haitian news, it doesn't mean that it's not happening. Priyorite kounyè a se nan politik ayisyèn nan li ye. Kesyon masisi madivin se rans, moun sa yo pa enpòtan tou. Vòt yo pa konte?

Michel Nau_

Post by Michel Nau_ » Fri Jul 21, 2006 9:29 am

Johanne ekri: [quote] Priyorite kounyè a se nan politik ayisyèn nan li ye.[/quote]
Wi Johanne, w gen rezon, priyorite pèp la an jeneral se wè e twouve youn konsansis pou tout fòs politik e sosyal nan peyi a viv ansanm "dans la paix".
Afè jwèt masisi e madivin sa se zafè moun vant plen e ki pa gen lot priyorite kankou manje, sante, edikasyon, lòjman, sekirite, etc...

Johanne ekri: [quote]Kesyon masisi madivin se rans, moun sa yo pa enpòtan tou. Vòt yo pa konte?[/quote]
Johanne, I am encouraging you to promote your lifestyle and to persuade as many people as you can to come out of the closet and join you and your posse.

Above all, this is a free country!!
Good luck!!

Johanne

Post by Johanne » Sat Jul 22, 2006 10:43 am

[quote] Johanne, I am encouraging you to promote your lifestyle and to persuade as many people as you can to come out of the closet and join you and your posse.

Above all, this is a free country!!
Good luck!! [/quote]

Are you kidding me? "YOU'RE ENCOURAGING ME TO PROMOTE MY LIFESTYLE"... which is what? The right to be respected, dwa pou yon mounn viv vi li san annui. Nou genlè pa nan menm paj la ditou. My posse which will soon have a couple of your friends and loved ones in it if not already, have you thought of the possibilities? This whole conversation is to raise awareness in the community, not to promote . Ou genlè kòmanse touche ak sa m'ap di yo. Si sa deranje-w, move on to the next topic, don't feel compelled to answer to anything I put down here. Ou te mande-l kounyè a w'ap kouri.

Dapre nou tout la mwen pa konnen sitiyasyon peyi-m? Mwen pa kwè ke nou ka pi okouran de detay anba pase-m. My point is, with all that's going on, no one gives a stitch, no one takes the time to investigate the real cause in which these young men are dying; which is not necessary their thieving nor is it always gang related.

Let's put it this way, you go to Haiti going about your business and you get killed. Wouldn't your loved ones want to know the what/why/who of the situation? (pi klè ke sa envizib) si ou pa konprann pwen-m ou pap janm konprann ankò.

Se pa fòt ou, ou abitye avèk “l'enquète se poursuit”.

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