Thursday, May 7, 2009
(May 13th, 1922—April 25th, 2009)
In the final season of The Golden Girls, it is revealed that Rose’s (Betty White) husband Charlie may have slept with Blanche (Rue McClanahan). The news horrifies Rose but Blanche produces records that keep track of her ‘social’ activities to ease any fears. Rose then asks her if she didn’t sleep with all the men why is it that the books are labelled B.E.D. Blanche replies that it stands for her initials—Blanche Elizabeth Devereaux. Dorothy (Bea Arthur) who has been watching this interplay then quips a deadpan yet classic line, ‘your initials spell B.E.D?’ and gives the audience a kind of half-winking look and you can’t help but erupting with laughter.
Bea Arthur was to elicit such smart and tart-tongued dialogue over the thirty-eight years she spent doing comedy. The Golden Girls series itself was not the start of her immense relevance as a comedienne but rather a continuance. Her deep voice and imposing height had prevented her from landing the classical feminine roles on and off Broadway but were the very tools that landed her fame on television, a medium she was initially skeptical of.
In 1971, her friend and All in the Family producer Norman Lear asked her to guest-star in an episode as Maude Findlay, Edith Bunker’s (Jean Stapleton) cousin. Lear wanted the character to be the direct opposite of Archie Bunker (Carroll O’Connor), hence modern, feminist and loud in intent. Arthur, who was near fifty at the time—an age where most careers have already peaked, proved to be a smash and the following year landed her a series of her own simply called Maude.
The rest, as they say, is history but the success of the show is deserving of real analysis and not just clichés. Maude was the first real outspoken female lead character on American television. She was several-times divorced, spoke back to her husband and the intimacy of the conversations was at times shocking. Of course, Lear’s savvy as a producer was to mimic the wider popular culture and foment subtle change through the writing and his characters. Arthur fleshed out Maude as a real woman, not the stereo-types that dominated the screen in the 1950s. Maude was not the model housewife nor always had dinner waiting for Walter (Bill Macy) and would often threaten him with the catch-phrase, ‘God’ll getcha for that, Walter’. Through Maude, Arthur connected to an audience of people, mostly older women and feminists who felt due representation of their issues had finally captured real interest. It’s most definitive moment though came when Maude had television’s first abortion (November 1972), a mere two months before the landmark Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision. Arthur, in subsequent interviews, exclaimed surprise at the heated reaction of the letters she received from fans for and against the decision. It showed though that television didn’t operate in a vacuum but helped to foment a conversation among individuals. Through it all the show was a hit in the ratings and she won an Emmy for her lead performance in 1977. Watching the episodes on YouTube, one senses that Arthur was being led unwillingly into the type of celebrity that the stage hadn’t prepared her for. She hadn’t expected to have a real impact on lives but more so the reverse; drawing inspiration from the lives of others to help shape her character. Never one to overstay her welcome, Arthur left Maude in 1978 after six years, thus ending the series. She hoped to get back on stage and never expected to do another series again.
All that changed in 1985 when NBC had an idea for a series with four older women living together in Miami and the role of Dorothy Zbornak was being floated around as a ‘Bea Arthur type’. The role proved to be a pivotal one; the character being the lynchpin for everyone else. Dorothy was level-headed, harsh yet fair and good in a crisis. Her daughter-mother relationship with Sophia (the late Estelle Getty) is among the most revered in television still and her dealings with her ex-husband Stan (the late Herb Edelman) garnered many guffaws. Dorothy’s relationships with these two characters are so realistically portrayed that it allowed the series to defy the odds of success. I doubt now that the show, or Maude for that matter, could thrive in the Neilson ratings without Arthur’s presence being able to command a slight awe yet grasp on comedic timing. Her one-liners are priceless: telling Rose that her daughter moves faster than Marcus Allen after sleeping with her son (Michael) after knowing him for one day. Intimating that Blanche had landed on her back more than the American Gladiators. Telling the girls how Stan surprised her with a wedding ring in a wine glass and it turned up three days later…on the Home Shopping Network when Rose’s naiveté presses the issue. The caustic wit with which these lines are delivered and her serious expressions remain the true legacy of her work and she was honoured with another Emmy in 1988. As in the case of Maude, she left the show feeling it had explored all its avenues and couldn’t possibly top itself.
The influence of The Golden Girls is palpable enough, from the several American spin-off shows and global affiliates it spawned. It remains in syndication long after it ended and shows like Sex in the City and Desperate Housewives wouldn’t have been possible without the success of The Golden Girls and the topics discussed. The fan base of the show has expanded to more than just women over fifty but also purists of good comedic writing and gay men in particular, for whom Bea Arthur is an icon. One can see the clear correlation between Dorothy and a character such as Miranda (SITC) and Lynette (DH).
Thirty-eight years after introducing a smart, feminist type to television audiences, Bea Arthur leaves the stage knowing that her legacy has secured the continuity of such strong-willed female characters. Bea Arthur died of cancer-related illness and was eighty-six (86) years old.
Bad Man Nuh F*** Batty (Masculine Men Don't F*** Ass) (The Fear of The Feminine in JA) 16.04.15
Dr Shelly Ann Weeks on Homophobia - What are we afraid of?
Former host of Dr Sexy Live on Nationwide radio and Sexologist tackles in a simplistic but to the point style homophobia and asks the poignant question of the age, What really are we as a nation afraid of?
HYPOCRISY FROM THE PULPIT ON HOMELESSNESS IN THE MSM COMMUNITY?
Days later the same paper in the print edition only carried the cartoon as done by its resident cartoonist Clovis on December 11, 2013 parodying Tiana Miller transgender spokesperson for the JFLAG We Are Jamaicans Campaign and another member of the homeless MSM in New Kingston
The Reverend Father Sean Major-Campbell washes the feet of two Jamaican lesbians, Jalna Broderick (in the background), director of Quality of Citizenship Jamaica, and Rochelle (surname withheld) during an observance in celebration of Human Rights at Christ Church in Vineyard Town, St Andrew, Photos by Rudolph Brown/Photographer
When Same Gender Relationships go Bad
A JAMAICAN WOMAN was remanded to Dodds for a month today after being charged with causing serious bodily harm to her live-in female companion.
Kerreon Ishane Kelly, 25, of Barker's Road, Haggatt Hall, St Michael, was not required to plead to the charge of doing serious bodily harm to Tishana Alphonso of the same address, with intent to maim, disfigure or disable her on January 8 this year.
I was also made to understand that the alleged attacker later apologised for the vicious attack on Instagram.
She allegedly wrote: "Sometimes we let ignorancy get the best of us n we tend to do stuff we don't wanna do and then having regret ... today (Saturday), I did the most cruel thing of all my life and I just want to take a minute to just say how truly and deeply sorry I am. I never really get the seriousness of it until my fren send me a pic ... I want to make a public apology to my ex. I wouldn't wish such a evil act on anyone."
War of words between pro & anti gay activists on HIV matters .......... what hypocrisy is this?
Urgent Need to discuss sex & sexuality II
Following a cowardly decision by the Minister(try) of Education to withdraw an all important Health Family Life, HFLE Manual on sex and sexuality
Calls for Tourism Boycotts are Nonsensical at This Time
(2014 protests New York)
Calling for boycotts by overseas based Jamaican advocates who for the most part are not in touch with our present realities in a real way and do not understand the implications of such calls can only seek to make matters worse than assisting in the struggle, we must learn from, the present economic climate of austerity & tense calm makes it even more sensible that persons be cautious, will these groups assist when there is fallout?, previous experiences from such calls made in 2008 and 2009 and the near diplomatic nightmare that missed us; especially owing to the fact that many of the victims used in the public advocacy of violence were not actual homophobic cases which just makes the ethics of advocacy far less credible than it ought to be.
See more explained HERE from a previous post following the Queen Ifrica matter and how it was mishandled
Newstalk 93FM's Issues On Fire: Polygamy Should Be Legalized In Jamaica 08.04.14
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Violence and venom force gay Jamaicans to hide
a 2009 Word focus report where the history of the major explosion of homeless MSM occurred and references to the party DVD that was leaked to the bootleg market which exposed many unsuspecting patrons to the public (3:59), also the caustic remarks made by former member of Parliament in the then JLP administration.
The agencies at the time were also highlighted and the homo negative and homophobic violence met by ordinary Jamaican same gender loving men.
The late founder of the CVC, former ED of JASL and JFLAG Dr. Robert Carr was also interviewed.
At 4:42 that MSM was still homeless to 2012 but has managed to eek out a living but being ever so cautious as his face is recognizable from the exposed party DVD, he has been slowly making his way to recovery despite the very slow pace.
Thanks for your Donations
thank you for your donations via Paypal in helping to keep this blog going, my limited frontline community work, temporary shelter assistance at my home and related costs. Please continue to support me and my allies in this venture that has now become a full time activity. When I first started blogging in late 2007 it was just as a pass time to highlight GLBTQ issues in Jamaica under then JFLAG's blogspot page but now clearly there is a need for more forumatic activity which I want to continue to play my part while raising more real life issues pertinent to us.
Activities & Plans: ongoing and future
- To continue this venture towards website development with an E-zine focus
- Work with other Non Governmental organizations old and new towards similar focus and objectives
- To find common ground on issues affecting GLBTQ and straight friendly persons in Jamaica towards tolerance and harmony
- Exposing homophobic activities and suggesting corrective solutions
- To formalise GLBTQ Jamaica's activities in the long term
- Continuing discussion on issues affecting GLBTQ people in Jamaica and elsewhere
- Welcoming, examining and implemeting suggestions and ideas from you the viewing public
- Present issues on HIV/AIDS related matters in a timely and accurate manner
- Assist where possible victims of homophobic violence and abuse financially, temporary shelter(my home) and otherwise
- Track human rights issues in general with a view to support for ALL
Information & Disclaimer
Individuals who are mentioned or whose photographs appear on this site are not necessarily Homosexual, HIV positive or have AIDS.
This blog contains pictures that may be disturbing. We have taken the liberty to present these images as evidence of the numerous accounts of homophobic violence meted out to alledged gays in Jamaica.
Faces and names witheld for the victims' protection.
This blog not only watches and covers LGBTQ issues in Jamaica and elsewhere but also general human rights and current affairs where applicable.
This blog contains HIV prevention messages that may not be appropriate for all audiences.
If you are not seeking such information or may be offended by such materials, please view labels, post list or exit.
Since HIV infection is spread primarily through sexual practices or by sharing needles, prevention messages and programs may address these topics.
This blog is not designed to provide medical care, if you are ill, please seek medical advice from a licensed practioner
Thanks so much for your kind donations and thoughts.
As for some posts, they contain enclosure links to articles, blogs and or sites for your perusal, use the snapshot feature to preview by pointing the cursor at the item(s) of interest. Such item(s) have a small white dialogue box icon appearing to their top right hand side.
Recent Homophobic Incidents
CLICK HERE for related posts/labels and HERE from the gayjamaicawatch's BLOG containing information I am aware of. If you know of any such reports or incidents please contact email@example.com
What to do if you are attacked (News You Can Use)
Try to reason with the attacker: Establish communication with the person. This takes a lot of courage. However, a conversation may change the intention of an attacker.
Do not try anything foolish: If you know outmanoeuvring the attacker is impossible, do not try it.
Do not appear to be afraid: Look the attacker in the eye and demonstrate that you are not fearful.
This may have a psychological effect on the individual.
The police 119
Crime Stop 311
Steps to Take When Contronted or Arrested by Police
b) Only give name and address and no other information until a lawyer is present to assist
c) Try to be polite even if the scenario is tensed) Don’t do anything to aggravate the situation
e) Every complaint lodged at a police station should be filed and a receipt produced, this is not a legal requirement but an administrative one for the police to track reports
f) Never sign to a statement other than the one produced by you in the presence of the officer(s)
g) Try to capture a recording of the exchange or incident or call someone so they can hear what occurs, place on speed dial important numbers or text someone as soon as possible
h) File a civil suit if you feel your rights have been violatedi) When making a statement to the police have all or most of the facts and details together for e.g. "a car" vs. "the car" represents two different descriptions
j) Avoid having the police writing the statement on your behalf except incases of injuries, make sure what you want to say is recorded carefully, ask for a copy if it means that you have to return for it
Sexual Health / STDs News From Medical News Today
Alleged Gay Vice Principal Story & Securing Personal Digital Data
some angry residents reacting to the matter nearing the school
He says the images have been tampered with.
Dervon Wellington, Acting Principal of the Christiana High School in Manchester speaking to Nationwide’s Abka Fitz-Henley said but the shots looked quite clear to most and not photoshopped as is being contested.
In the meantime the Chairman of the Board of Christiana High, Calvin Lyn says a meeting was being organized then in December to address an issue which he says has implications for the institution.
All in all the gentlemen involved have since relocated overseas to avoid issues but a word to the wise is sufficient secure ones personal digital materials so that they do not get leaked, or hacked or stolen and then inadvertently find themselves online.
Peace and tolerance
SEE the CVM TV report HERE