C-FLAG’s objections are endorsed by the UK-based gay human rights group OutRage!, which has long worked in solidarity with the Caribbean lesbian and gay rights movement.
“We support C-FLAG’s campaign,” said David Allison of OutRage! “Beenie Man is an unreconstructed homophobe. He has never expressed a word of regret for his lyrics advocating the murder of gays and lesbians. Indeed, he has proudly boasted that he will not apologise and has continued to perform songs urging the killing of queers. It is totally inappropriate that he should be the musical voice of the 20/20 cricket series.”
But gay and lesbian campaign group Outrage says making Batwoman a lesbian is more about pandering to the fantasies of adult male readers than diversity.
Spokesman David Allison said: ‘Most pre-adolescent children neither know nor care about the sexuality of their comic book heroes. And it is well known that lots of men get turned on by the idea of lesbians.’
In fact, in this country at least, it can be argued that the major religions between them constitute the last great bastion of official homophobia. As David Allison of Outrage!, another gay rights group, puts it: “The churches have stood against every form of social progress since the year dot. The further people go towards civil liberties, the less reliant they are on the church.”
David Allison, a spokesman for Outrage!, said: “Reggae is very popular to a wide cross section of people.
“We feel that some people will take these lyrics as an indication that it is fine to be violent towards gay people.
“It is illegal to incite hatred against a minority group – this must stop.”
But David Allison, of pressure group Outrage, said: “Gay people are too often portrayed as limp-wristed, handbag-swinging poofs. This is a great step forward.”
The findings of the two studies were consistent with the “hedonistic” lifestyle commonly associated with the gay social scene, David Allison, spokesman for the gay rights organisation Outrage! said. “The gay scene has always been linked with clubbing and drugs have always been available,” he said. “A lot of young gay people start clubbing on Friday and carry on until Monday morning. The need to do something like drugs is spurred on by the existence of hedonistic gay bars and nightclubs.”
As well as the social environment, drug-taking may be linked to the fact that young gay people are frequently under more pressure in terms of their sexuality than their heterosexual counterparts, Mr Allison said.
“I think it’s fair to say that most young gay people are under a lot more pressure than your average straight person and taking drugs will be a form of escapism.”
“The image this silence projects is that being gay is bad,” David Allison, from OutRage!, the gay rights pressure group, said. “The will isn’t there (to come out). Until someone makes a stand, there’s no incentive for anyone to take on the issue, but it would take an enormous amount of courage.”
Mr Kirker said that the bishops had become much more willing to talk to his organisation since the OutRage demonstration last November, but that lesbian and gay ordinands were still being denied jobs because of their sexuality. David Allison of OutRage said the Bishop’s decision gave “comfort to all those who want to drive homosexual clergy out of the Church”.