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Austin Cline

Jamaican Companies Warn Homophobic Singers

By October 14, 2004

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Several very popular reggae artists in Jamaica have songs that include violently homophobic lyrics - lyrics that call for or praise the killings of gays, in fact. This has come to the attention (finally) of corporate sponsors who have begun to warn the artists that if this continues, sponsorships will end.

Gay.com reports:

In a joint statement released Wednesday, the companies involved in this new threat said that as well as withdrawing funds from anti-gay singers, they would also develop a new code that all artists sponsored by the companies must adhere to. "As a group of corporate sponsors of the entertainment industry, we are concerned that the continued use of violent lyrics could ultimately lead to the decline of our music industry, as well as a social and economic backlash," the statement said.

This is the first time that Jamaican companies have taken such a stand... and it's about time, too. Life for gays in Jamaica is terrible they are in real fear of their lives, even from family members, if their sexual orientation is made public. It will take a long time for Jamaican society to make much improvement in this matter, but this is definitely a good step.

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