BY HG HELPS Editor-at-Large firstname.lastname@example.org
THE ghastly gouging out of the eyes of self-confessed homosexual Claude Pryce by his enraged lover last week, brought into sharp focus the often spine-chilling, bloody end that awaits, when love goes wrong among gays.
Police investigations of gay deaths are replete with scenes in which the knife - the apparent weapon of choice - is plunged over and over into the body of the victim, leaving a trail of blood that frequently leads to prominent doors in affluent St Andrew.
Former trade ambassador Peter King, described by one member of the homosexual community as an "aggressive male hunter", was arguably the most high-profile Jamaican to have perished in that tragic style.
Police said they found several tapes containing explicit sexual scenes in King's house and the names of prominent Jamaicans apparently caught on tape, have been mentioned.
King, who at one time headed the trade board and led Jamaica's talks in countless international fora, was found lying face-up on his blood-soaked mattress at his St Andrew residence on March 20, 2006. His throat was slashed and his body had numerous stab wounds.
"In the gay community, there are people whose passion finds expression through bizarre sexual experiences and through the infliction of pain," said top psychiatrist Dr Aggrey Irons.
"And so it is not unusual to find acts of cutting off the genitals, gouging out of eyes, personal attacks that have to do with knives and other sharp objects, and so when there is a homosexual to homosexual crime of passion, it is going to seem to be of a bizarre and exaggerated nature," Irons told the Sunday Observer in an interview.
Popular radio talk show host and psychologist, Rev Dr Aaron 'Dear Pastor' Dumas, attested that the knife was the preferred weapon in times of dispute among gays, not only because the gun was harder to get, but death by the knife seemingly allowed for "a greater sense of satisfaction" by the killer.
"They use the knife frequently, because the knife, unlike the gun which is an easier way to kill, is more punishing. When they stab, they don't want the person to survive. Callous and cold-blooded murder seems to depict a lot of these guys," said Dumas, a Baptist pastor who counsels troubled gays.
Homosexual spin doctors in lobby groups such as Kingston-based Jamaica Forum for Lesbians All Sexuals & Gays (J-FLAG) and London-based Outrage! often attempt to deflect blame onto 'homophobic' Jamaicans, a ploy, critics suggest, to pressure the Government into relaxing anti-gay laws.
Homosexual groups claim that there have been over 50 acts of fatal violence against their members in the last five years, although they failed to say how many of those were committed in their own camp.
The common feature - the spilling of blood by the knife - and the gruesome nature of the killings, have been more difficult to explain.
. Claude Pryce's alleged lover gouged out his eyes in a fit of rage, police said, because he (Pryce) had "slept out" the night before.
. The body of well-known lecturer, Dr Cliff Lashley, 57, was found in a gully along Lady Musgrave Road in Kingston in February 1993. His head had been severed and his hands and legs chopped off and stuffed in a bag. Peter Rowe, identified in court as Lashley's young lover, was convicted of non-capital murder for the crime.
Vincent Tulloch, a well-known newspaperman, had over 40 stab wounds when police found his body at his Calabar Mews, St Andrew home in September 1994. The case remains unsolved, but police have not closed the files.
"We are still working on that case, and we are seeking someone who we are told was his lover," a senior investigator told this newspaper last week. Psychic Safa Asontuwa, popularly known as Safa, was brutally beaten and stabbed on June 25, 2002 in Seaview Gardens in Kingston's westend. His body was later cremated. Founder of the J-Flag, Brian Williamson, was stabbed to death on June 9, 2004 by a man from Jones Town who was later charged with his murder. Eyewitnesses stated that the man visited Williamson at his home regularly, until he slaughtered Williamson, following a lover's quarrel.
Psychiatrists, trying to get to the bottom of that homosexual mystery conclude that gay-on-gay violence often resembled that between heterosexuals.
"Homosexuals are no different than heterosexuals in terms of the distribution of other psychiatric disorders, especially personality disorders," said Dr Irons, who also counsels homosexuals.
"Homosexuality in and of itself is not considered a psychiatric disorder, but within the homosexual community there are certain persons with psychiatric disorders. Unfortunately, many of them have personality disorders attendant on their homosexuality and because homosexuals are so focused, perhaps even more so on the importance of attention and affection, especially from other men, they are renounced nationally and internationally for their jealousy. "When you add to that a paranoid element or an anti-social element, that multiplies the rage and jealousy and you see that expressed in their particular crime of passion," he said.
Dr Irons said that attacks by homosexuals on their own could rise to unthinkable levels of gory conduct.
"Stabbing is not specific to homosexual behaviour, it is a sort of tautological connection," said Irons. "But with each stab would come some kind of exclamation, some expression of hatred or disgust. This is physical, emotional and verbal. So with repeated stabbing, you would find bizarre amputations as well and even relocations.
"I have had to counsel patients who have been battered by their same sex lovers. I don't do it often, but I have had to do so and I treat all patients equally, regardless of whether or not they are homosexuals. If you are having a problem with a relationship or within the context of your life, then the appropriate treatment is offered to you," said Irons.
Dr Dumas argued that homosexuals were still in the minority and tended to be very protective.
"To leave one for the other is to play with one's life," he said. "I have counselled many homosexuals, both male and female. Some have told me that if they are out driving with their partners and one looks at another person, the partner is ready to attack. It is a big problem. Just like how a man will take care of his woman, homosexual lovers are like that too.
"Many of the guys who have been fortunate to have good education will tell you that they are afraid to leave the homosexual community because of the reprisals. Some want to start their own families, but fear that if they do that, they could be in danger," Dr Dumas added.
Roman Catholic deacon and counsellor Peter Espeut, while acknowledging that violent homosexual behaviour was outrageous, argued that homosexual conduct was a reflection of the wider society and no different from heterosexual violence occurring here.
"Not only gay lovers are violent, but heterosexual ones too. They chop up and poison each other like the gays do," he said.
"I don't know if it is true that homosexuals are more violent than heterosexuals. We in Jamaica seem to have a way of turning to violence to resolve certain things and we need to ask ourselves why this is so, because the same thing does not happen in countries like the Cayman Islands, St Vincent and Dominica."CONTINUE HERE