Rights activist urges action following CCJ ruling

first_imgGuyana’s cross-dressing case– says it may set precedence for entire commonwealthHuman rights activist Vidyaratha Kissoon is urging Government to take heed of the recent ruling handed down by the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) which declared the cross-dressing law unconstitutional in Guyana following a case filed by the transgender community.Vidyaratha KissoonKissoon said the transgender community has welcomed the ruling, reminding that one of the applicants in the case, Gulliver (Quincy) McEwan, has always noted that laws alone are not needed to change hearts and minds, and that other things need to be in place.“Guyana now has to ensure that the duty bearers – public servants, Government, employers, landlords, minibus drives, Police, others recognise what Justice Adrian Saunders wrote, that “difference is as natural as breathing. Infinite varieties exist of everything under the sun.”The CCJ President also wrote in his ruling that civilised society has a duty to accommodate suitably differences among human beings. He said only in this manner can people give due respect to everyone’s humanity.“No one should have his or her dignity trampled upon, or human rights denied, merely on account of a difference, especially one that poses no threat to public safety or public order. It is these simple verities on which this case is premised.”Kissoon told Guyana Times that this recognition of difference is not only about transgender identities, it is about all other differences which are present in Guyana.He therefore recommended that Government make moves to strike down the law. He said too that the Police should engage the transgender community about accountability mechanisms to stop the harassment of transgender citizens.“The Judiciary and the magistracy should take note of the comments made in the ruling about the behaviour of the Magistrate who wanted to use religion as a ground for discrimination,” he said, while calling on the Social Protection Ministry and the Labour Department to ensure that there is no discrimination against transgender persons in employment.PromisesFurther, the human rights activist is also advising that the Prevention of Discrimination Act should be updated to outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.He reminded that political parties in their 2015 manifestos had said they were committed to ending discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. As such, he is calling on these parties to act on those promises.While Guyana is the only country in the Caribbean with the laws against cross-dressing, Kissoon feels the judgement will definitely set a precedent for the Caribbean, but not only the Caribbean, the rest of the Commonwealth and any other jurisdiction which has to deal with discrimination against LGBT citizens.“There are judgements in Belize and Trinidad and Tobago against the sodomy laws, which show that there are Caribbean courts that are moving to deal with the homophobia left over from the colonial masters,” he added.The CCJ has ruled in favour of striking down Guyana’s laws against cross-dressing, saying that the colonial-era law was unconstitutional. After gaining independence from Britain in 1966, Guyana adopted many colonial-era laws, including the 1893 Summary Jurisdiction (Offences) Act that effectively banned men or women from wearing clothing conventionally worn by the opposite gender for “improper purposes”.This section was never clearly defined, leaving the door open for constitutional challenges which appellants Quincy “Gulliver” McEwan, Seon “Angel” Clarke, Joseph “Peaches” Fraser and Seyon “Isabella” Persaud mounted against their February 9, 2009 arrest, detention and conviction in Georgetown.After they appealed the law banning their mode of dress, former acting Chief Justice Ian Chang in September 2013 said while the act of cross-dressing was not a crime in itself, when for an “improper purpose”, it constitutes an offence. That ruling was also appealed at Guyana’s Appeal Court, but their case was similarly dismissed in 2017.The four persons who were born male and later opted for a transgendered way of life took their case all the way to the CCJ, citing their treatment was discriminatory, based on their position that the law violated their constitutional rights to equality and non-discrimination and freedom of expression.The Justices of the Trinidad-based authority agreed with the applicants. They, therefore, declared the 1893 law unconstitutional and ordered that it must be struck from the laws of Guyana, a decision which could unsettle many in religious circles.The Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD), which was initially struck out of the case by CCJ, has nevertheless been fully behind the legal change.last_img read more

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Cell Division Involves “Vast Array of Molecules and Processes”

first_imgScientists continue to probe the roles of individual proteins in the symphony of molecules involved in cell division.  An article on Science Daily discussed work at Rockefeller University to understand one such protein named PRC1 that acts as a kind of molecular foreman for spindle orientation.  The opening paragraph is the notable part: Just before a cell divides into two – the basic act of reproducing life – the cellular environment must be exquisitely prepared.  The exact timing and localization of the vast array of molecules and processes involved in duplicating chromosomes and separating the offspring from the parent is one of the basic wonders of biology and is at the core of both healthy living and diseases such as cancer, which arise when the process goes awry.The article made no mention of evolution, except to hint that it hasn’t occurred with PRC1: “Scientists have known that PRC1, for ‘Protein Regular [sic; Regulator] of Cytokines 1,’ is required in yeast, plants and humans for linking together the polymers that make up spindles, called microtubules, in a specific orientation.”Looks like it will be a great year for intelligent design science, now that the fogma has been clearing from the Darwin Bicentennial for a year now.(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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9 months agoMan City boss Guardiola tells cheeky Ederson: Don’t change!

first_imgMan City boss Guardiola tells cheeky Ederson: Don’t change!by Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester City boss Pep Guardiola was happy with a cheeky piece of play from Ederson during victory over Wolves.The Brazilian registered a clean sheet against Wolves during City’s 3-0 win at the Etihad, but it was a moment in the second half which grabbed the attention of the crowd…Ederson journeyed into midfield just minutes before full-time, passing a number of times coolly and calmly as ever.Speaking after the clash, Pep said: “I’m so pleased because he lives high on the pitch and defends with our back four.”(Adama) Traore is one of fastest payers I’ve ever seen in my life so handle the risk is not easy, our build-up was better and it is what it is.”We love Ederson the way he is!” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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21 hours agoLiverpool make January transfer window call

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Liverpool make January transfer window callby Paul Vegas21 hours agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool expect to have a quiet January transfer window.The Reds have enjoyed a flying start to the new Premier League season, currently sitting six points clear of Manchester City having won eight of their nine matches so far.Liverpool are also on course to make the knockout stages of the Champions League having breezed past Genk with a 4-1 win on Wednesday night.With Jurgen Klopp’s side flying high, the Liverpool Echo says it’s unlikely the Merseyside giants will splash the cash when the transfer window reopens in the New Year.It’s claimed that it will take a ‘huge unforeseen struggle’ for Klopp to delve into the market. last_img read more

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