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May 23, 2014

Supporters tape their mouths in protest of UWI Professor’s termination

University of the West Indies Professor, Brendan Bain was terminated on Tuesday of this week in Jamaica under pressure brought on by advocacy groups who claimed they had lost confidence in Bain. The professor appeared as an expert witness in the Belize Supreme Court in the case brought by UNIBAM challenging Section fifty-three of the Criminal Code which criminalizes sex between persons of the same gender. The termination of the highly respected professor triggered protests in Jamaica, and today it spread to Belize. Bain’s supporters say the regional university acted cowardly. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd, Attorney

“For those people, UNIBAM and the whole set of them, all those advocacy groups, stop your bullying!  Stop your bullying!  Leave it for your bedroom, go bully each other in your bedroom but do not bring it out on our streets.”

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

Words of disdain from attorney Audrey Matura-Shepherd staunchly objecting UWI’s decision to sack Professor Brendan Courtney Bain, former director of the Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training Network.  Matura-Shepherd is one of a handful of activists to have forgone lunch today to silently protest what is being described as the institution’s surrender to the various pressure groups urging for Bain’s removal, following a testimony given in the existing UNIBAM Challenge.

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

“I think they were cowards and as an institution of higher learning that is not the lesson we want them to teach our children.  I think people should boycott the University of the West Indies, they owe an apology not only to Dr. Bain but to the whole region.”

 

At the heart of the uproar is Dr. Bain’s statement, a deposition before the Supreme Court of Belize in which he comments expertly on HIV/AIDS and homosexuality.  The content of that affidavit, its interpretation, the call for his removal as head of CHART and his subsequent termination have created a spread of consequences that is being felt all the way here.

 

Lance Lewis

Pastor Lance Lewis, Chairman, Union of Evangelical Churches of Belize

“Professor Bain has been a lighthouse supporting HIV/AIDS help, getting it non-stigmatized.  He has done a lot of research, a lot of work to help the HIV/AIDS community.  He’s a personal friend of mine and I think this is an unjust situation.”

 

The erudite professor, an authority on HIV/AIDS studies within the Caribbean, was relieved of his post on Tuesday.  In the wake of his release, the Belizean public has offered numerous comments, some of which would not necessarily sit well with the religious community.

 

In response to a story we ran on Thursday, one blogger, referring to Professor Bain’s dismissal, says, “He was supporting Section 53 which goes against one of the core values and globally accepted strategies of every organization working to prevent HIV/AIDS.  It would be like a pastor from Scott [Stirm’s] group saying he didn’t believe in prayer or the existence of God.  The pastor would have the right to his belief, but Stirm would be right to argue that the pastor in question [no] longer would have the confidence of his parishioners.”

 

Pastor Luis Wade has been rather vocal on the issue.  He is of a completely different persuasion.

 

Luis Wade

Pastor Luis Wade

“One of the persons who submitted an affidavit was doctor and professor Bain of Jamaica.  Caleb Orozco’s organization, UNIBAM, as well as thirty-four other organizations banded together to ostracize and ensure the termination of the livelihood of Dr. Bain.  Caleb Orozco is now on Belize media and Jamaican media congratulating the University for dismissing a person who is a witness and an expert in the case.  How can we as a nation, a media and a people accept such behavior that I can only call witness tampering.”

 

That purported obstruction of justice, is also believed to be a breach of Bain’s fundamental right to freedom of speech.  The symbolism of sealing one’s mouth, for members of today’s congregation, speaks volumes.

 

Dennis Requeña, Supporter

Dennis Requeña

“We have to stand up for what is right for freedom of speech.  And freedom of speech like we are in a democratic country and in a democratic country that means that you have freedom of speech and so we are standing up for what is right.”

 

The ongoing row hinges on a decision which remains to be handed down by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin in a constitutional challenge whereby UNIBAM’s Executive Director Caleb Orozco is seeking a repeal of Section Fifty-Three of the Criminal Code.

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

“Imagine the audacity!  The ruling hasn’t even come out yet.  They made a move the minute this man went to give evidence that is very low, very low.  So, they are hypocrites and they are saying that people who do not support a homosexual lifestyle or sodomy are bigots?  I think the real bigots need to stand up.  They need to stand up and they are definitely not out here.”

 

Brendan Bain

Isani Cayetano

“Is it arguable that it would either be ironic or paradoxical that the same people who are saying that they are fighting [against] discrimination it would seem as though they are the very same ones who are perpetuating that discrimination?”

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

“Of course!  That’s the hypocrisy of the situation.  You say you don’t want to be discriminated against and now you want to make sure that you discriminate people.  Now, everybody has the right to work.  Imagine, they don’t even want this man to work.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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8 Responses for “Supporters tape their mouths in protest of UWI Professor’s termination”

  1. CEO says:

    All Bain had to do was to tell the truth and he would have still have his job. It is wrong to mislead especially when you are in a position of authority.

    Homosexuality is not the order of nature but not because you do not agree with the act makes it ok to mislead the public.

    The university is a place of higher learning and keeping a man like this on staff brings into question the integrity of the entire institution. They have a university to run and it is nit a church and should not be run like a church.

  2. Melz says:

    And what does the Government say about this injustice when they are the ones accepting this crap. Government must go!!!

  3. Louisville, Ky. says:

    @CEO, it seems to me, like the homosexuals, you just can’t handle the truth.
    The Learned Professor Bains was only presenting statistical data based on analytical research. Since when should any man, straight or twisted, lose his job and freedom of expression for simply stating facts? I have a serious problem with that!
    By the way, isn’t this the same ‘freedom’ of sorts, that You people are clamoring for?
    If you think that the rest of humanity will just sit back and allow a bunch of men who prefers to have sexual intercourse with other men, to bully them, you had better think again.
    Listen, we straight men, don’t give a rat’s backside what you perverts do in your closets, for real. Trying to force this abomination on us and our innocent youth is where the problem lies.
    It ain’t happening , Jack!

  4. Wiser one says:

    One can never win a group driven by nasty perversion with law or debates… Groups like these lives in denial of their wrong doings… You can only pray for them and ensure you have good family up-bring for your little ones so they do not get polluted by the Unibam and other pagans… God couldn’t win them with bargaining, debates or law… Only the fire can purify things and that will eventually be Gods call… As the Arabs often say… They only have one right and that’s the right to die…

  5. Lord LOL says:

    @CEO, you’re just foolish with you logic.
    “All Bain had to do was to tell the truth and he would have still have his job.” He did tell the truth and look he lost his job. There are hundreds of articles and studies that show Men who have Sex with Men have a way higher chance of contracting STD’s and other health related problems. STDs are spreading among promiscuous persons. The more sexually active you are, the more chances you will contract something.

    Homosexuals are far more sexually active than heterosexuals; Gay men are far more promiscuous than lesbians. Women lack a penis like structure thus lesbians won’t have to worry as much as gay men do.
    Men have a penis and Anal is the gays’ main way of intercourse. Last time I check, the anus is not a sexual reproductive organ and condoms are made for vaginal intercourse.
    In case no one knows, Aids was called by a different name at first, GRID(Gay Related Immune Deficiency). It was called that because the out break of aids were primarily found among Gay men. It is still primarily found amongst gays today.

    Bain was very active at stopping discrimination towards gays for HIV/Aids treatment. He helped many members of that community and look, he told the truth based on scientific facts and now the Gays turned their back at him. All those 30+ organizations who pressured UWI to sacked Bain have one common source of funding, USAID. USAID is known to fund other “gay rights” NGOs’. USAID is also known to fund group to undermine sovereign governments who stand up the US like Ukraine and Venezuela.

    “The university is a place of higher learning ” yes that is true but Bain did not bring that institution into question, Their integrity is being question for submitting to pressure from groups who want to censor data and information than shows the contrary their ways of thinking.

  6. Lord LOL says:

    Homosexuality is a life style that bring a lot of diseases and illness. Just like having sedentary lifestyle brings all kind of health related issues like gaining weight, heart disease and so on.
    Those lifestyles bring heavy burden on the economy of a country in many ways like having sick population that cannot produce goods efficiently, having the state to pay more money for treating the illness that can be prevented and many other consequences.

  7. alberto lagos says:

    To C.E.O That is Caleb”Enfermo”Orozco what the heck are you talkind about saying the truth ,if you cannot handle the same .You do not have any shame because simple and plain you and your group of “locas”no have any decency you have an agenda and that is wanted every body to accept all your nastiness. I felt sorry for you ,you are a sick person and your dad satan is waiting for you in HELL!

  8. r-dale says:

    All studies have shown that anal sex, has a higher rate of hiv transfer, because of bleeding, and fluid transfer. That could be man on man or man with a lady. There is a much higher transfer rate of hiv in anal sex, than vaginal or oral sex. FACT. So quit messing with other people’s bung hole and don’t let them mess with your’s, that area should be exit only.

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