Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cayman Islands Police Enforce Antiquated "Gay Affection Law"

UPDATE: According to Towerload:

"Cayman Islands Director of Tourism Pilar Bush sent a letter of apology to Aaron Chandler, the 23-year-old Massachusetts man who was arrested last Thursday in the Caymans after kissing his partner on a dance floor while vacationing there.

Said Bush in the letter, which Chandler received on Friday: "On behalf of the entire Department of Tourism, I apologise for your upsetting experience and want to assure you that the Cayman Islands is a welcoming jurisdiction to all people. What happened to you was an isolated incident, and is not representative of Cayman. We know that thousands of gay and lesbian visitors travel to the Cayman Islands every year and enjoy their vacation."

According to: Queerty:

"Homophobia’s got a way of lasting the test of time. Massachusetts-based gay activist Aaron Chandler certainly learned that lesson this week.

The 23-year old wrote in from the Grand Cayman Islands, where he and some friends are currently on vacation. Chandler explained that he, his boyfriend and some gal pals went out for a night of dancing when a police officer broke up their party to reprimand Chandler for “showing public affection” with his boyfriend.

The men originally blew the copper off, but learned a lesson when, after they kissed again, the copper called for backup.

There are two problems here, one more severe than the other. First, the fact that sexual policing remains on the books in this British territory confounds, but doesn’t surprise. Gibraltar, another British overseas territory, maintains discriminatory age of consent laws. Former protectorates such as the islands - and other sovereign lands - cling to Britain’s antiquated anti-gay laws."

Feel free to voice your concern to the Cayman Islands tourism website, Gay travel enthusiasts may think twice about traveling to a country where affection can get you arrested.

Contact Cayman Islands Tourism Board


Anonymous said...

Well I believe Cayman Islands is typically a gay friendly destination so it may not be the case there but this particular story is very disturbing.

Anonymous said...

I'm really surprised to hear this news. I guess I won't be vacationing there again soon. It's so pretty there though.

Anonymous said...

It is very gay friendly, but you just need to know your path...I'm a lesbian here fighting for the rights of my child.

Anonymous said...

Apparently they regularly turn away gay cruise ships in the Cayman Islands. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1066926,00.html

Anonymous said...

Pretty scary stuff, especially as I'm planning to check out the Cayman Islands soon.
I don't agree with the writer's comments about Britain.
Have you every been to London? I'd say 70% of the inhabitants are gay.
Don't blame the mother country. Blame the local Government for the apparent homophobia in the Cayman islands

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