Do you think the Buggery Law should be?

The Safe House Homeless MSM Project 2009 a detailed look & more



In response to numerous requests for more information on the defunct Safe House Pilot Project that was to address the growing numbers of displaced and homeless men in Kingston in 2007/8/9, a review of the relevance of the project and the possible avoidance of present issues with some of its previous residents if it were kept open.
Recorded June 12, 2013; also see from the former Executive Director named in the podcast more background on the project: HERE

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Breast cancer, cancer and Black women

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In essence women of African ancestry are at a greater disposition to have Breast or other cancers.
Do your examination ladies and see your doctor if you find any unusual lumps or raised areas on or around the breast(s)

Peace

H

Venue owner cancels Buju after listening Hate song

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It is becoming clearer to me as I track this Buju scenario with the help of some great links that many Americans though aware of Jamaica's anti gay stance and the murder music involved were not aware of the actual verbiage in the songs produced. This is the umpteenth time I have read and heard comments to the effect that suggest that the actual lyrics and intent of the murder music songs weren't understood until they were listened to and interpreted from patois to English. It's almost a catch up of sorts. Clearly the mobilization is working as gay rights and gay friendly groups crossing state and colour lines are fusing together to cripple Buju's tour.

So much for people power, I wish half as us Jamaicans had the umph or resolve to defend basic rights, tolerance and fairness. Frankly the LGBTQ community here as I see it is too lazy and comfortable with our situation, running to another country or hiding just won't do. It's not about forcing homosexuality on anyone as that doesn't need to happen as one is either gay, straight, bisexual or the other variants of sexual orientation around including asexual (having no sexual desire), to each his own.

ON BAYAREA and OUTNOOW:


Buju Banton’s concert at VooDoo Lounge in San Jose on Oct. 13 has been canceled. Owners of the bar say they don’t want to give his gay hate speech a stage.
Buju advocates in his reggae music that gay people should be killed. The Jamaican native has been singing this type of music for years. When he announced his U.S. tour earlier this year, the gay community jumped into action to get his concerts canceled.
This week, his concerts were canceled in Hollywood, thanks to the efforts to the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center. On Thursday, Oct. 8, OutNow discovered that Banton was scheduled to perform at VooDoo Lounge next week.

Yesterday, OutNow was unable to get interviews with the owners of VooDoo Lounge and sent out a story to our 10,000 e-newsletter subscribers. Then the community jumped into action. Many people called and emailed friends, city officials and the owners of the bar.
The bar owners, Tony Beers and Dave Powell, said they didn’t know anything about Banton’s music or controversy until it was brought to their attention yesterday. The owners started to research Banton online and found the lyrics to his music that advocates for the murder of gay people.

“We took a cold hard look at these lyrics and it was an easy decision to cancel this event,” said Tom Saggau, spokesman for VooDoo Lounge. “We are not going to provide a stage for that activity at all and we condemn it.”

This afternoon Banton’s promoter was notified that his concert is canceled. “We are scratching our heads wondering why we didn’t catch this sooner,” Saggau said.
Often in the entertainment industry, a bar owner is presented with a long list of bands who can perform and they pick a package deal. They often don’t know a lot of details about each band.
“This issue transcends the economy and money,” Saggau said. “It’s about doing the right thing. There wasn’t even a discussion. Once the owners heard the lyrics to the songs, they said get him out, they didn’t talk about money or anything, they just said cancel it.”

Officials at the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center said Banton’s promoters are like the carnival game, “whack a mole.” Once they get him kicked out of one venue, he pops up at another nearby venue. As of today, OutNow doesn’t know of any other venue where he is expected to play.


ENDS

My early work on translating some of the lyrics while volunteering with JFLAG and Outrage UK on the Stop Murder Music, SMM campaigns has helped greatly but more work is needed to spread the real lyrical content of some of these songs that literally call for the execution of homosexuals in the most gruesome of ways. We are told that the lyrics must not be taken literally and Buju's management tries to absolve him of responsibility by saying he was young when he recorded the offending "Boom Bye Bye" albeit the lyrics are clear in their intent.

Age is no excuse and the adults who were handling him were and are irresponsible in using such a young talent to promote death while launching him unto the more competitive dancehall circuit. Many acts have used this avenue of anti gay murder music to resuscitate their fledgling careers or dip in popularity but we are not fooled by it anymore.

Peace and tolerance

Friday, October 9, 2009

October is Breast Cancer Month - Male Breast Cancer

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What is Male Breast Cancer ?

Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that has developed from cells of the breast. The disease occurs primarily in women, but occasionally in men.
Many people do not realize that men have breast tissue, and that it's possible for them to develop breast cancer. Until puberty, young boys and girls have a small amount of breast tissue consisting of a few ducts located under the nipple and areola (the area around the nipple). At puberty, a girl's ovaries produce female hormones that cause breast ducts to grow, cause lobules (milk glands) to form at the ends of the ducts, and increase the amount of stroma (fatty and connective tissue surrounding the ducts and lobules). On the other hand, male hormones produced by the testicles prevent further growth of breast tissue.

Like all cells of the body, a man's breast duct cells can undergo cancerous changes. Because women have many more breast cells than men do, and perhaps because their breast cells are constantly exposed to the growth- promoting effects of female hormones, breast cancer is much more common in women.
There are many types of breast disorders that can affect both men and women. Most breast disorders are benign (not cancerous). Benign breast tumors do not spread outside of the breast and are not life-threatening. Other tumors are malignant, (cancerous), and may become life- threatening. Benign tumors, such as papillomas and fibroadenomas, are quite common in women but are extremely rare in men.

Gynecomastia is the most common breast disorder of males. It is not a tumor, but is just an increase in the amount of a man's breast tissue. Usually, men have too little breast tissue to be felt or noticed. A man with gynecomastia has a button-like or disk-like growth under his nipple and areola, which can be felt and sometimes seen. Gynecomastia, common among teenage boys, is due to changes in hormone balance during adolescence. The same condition is not unusual in older men, also due to changes in their hormone balance.

Gynecomastia may also rarely be caused by tumors or other diseases of certain endocrine (hormone- producing) glands that cause a man's body to produce more estrogen (the main female hormone). Some estrogen is normally produced by men's glands, but not enough to cause breast growth. Because the liver is important in male and female hormone metabolism, liver diseases can change a man's hormone balance and cause gynecomastia.
Many commonly prescribed medications can sometimes cause gynecomastia, too. These include some drugs used to treat ulcers and heartburn, high blood pressure, and heart failure. Men with gynecomastia should ask their doctors about whether any medications they are taking might be the cause of this condition.

Klinefelter's syndrome, a rare genetic condition, can cause gynecomastia and can increase a man's risk of developing breast cancer. It is discussed further in the sections on male breast cancer risk factors and causes.

OncologyStat for additional reading

Understanding some of the key words used to describe various types of breast cancer is important. An alphabetical list of terms, including the most common types of breast cancer, is provided below:

Adenocarcinoma: This is a general type of cancer that starts in glandular tissues anywhere in the body. There are several subtypes of adenocarcinoma which account for nearly all breast cancers.

Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS): Ductal carcinoma in situ is a type of breast adenocarcinoma that does not spread outside the breast. Cancer cells fill the ducts but do not spread through the walls of the ducts into the fatty tissue of the breast. Nearly 100% of men or women diagnosed at this early stage of breast cancer may be cured. Most cases of DCIS are diagnosed by mammography, and the diagnosis of DCIS is becoming more common among women who get routine screening mammograms. However, male breast cancer is so rare that routine breast x-rays are not recommended, and only about 5% of men's breast cancers are found at this early stage. Sometimes DCIS causes a man to develop a breast discharge (nipple fluid leakage) and draws attention to his noninvasive cancer. Comedocarcinoma is a type of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), where some of the cancer cells within ducts spontaneously begin to degenerate.

Infiltrating (or invasive) ductal carcinoma (IDC): Starting in a duct of the breast, this type of adenocarcinoma breaks through the wall of the duct and invades the fatty tissue of the breast. At this point, it has the potential to metastasize, or spread, to other parts of the body. Infiltrating ductal carcinoma (alone or mixed with other types of invasive or in situ breast cancer) accounts for 80% - 90% of male breast cancers.

Infiltrating (or invasive) lobular carcinoma (ILC): Although the male breast has no lobules, cells from the ends of a man's breast ducts can develop into cancers which, under the microscope, look like they come from lobules. ILC is a type of adenocarcinoma. It accounts for about 10% - 15% of female breast cancers, but about only 2% of male breast cancers.

In situ: This term is used to indicate an early stage of cancer in which a tumor is confined to the immediate area where it began. Specifically in breast cancer, in situ means that the cancer remains confined to ducts (ductal carcinoma in situ, DCIS) or lobules (lobular carcinoma in situ, LCIS), and it has neither invaded surrounding fatty tissue in the breast nor spread to other organs in the body. DCIS occurs relatively often in both men and women. In contrast, LCIS is common in women, but very rare among men.

Metastases: These are satellite tumors that indicate a breast cancer has spread from the site where it began (referred to as the primary cancer) to a lymph node or a distant organ, such as the lung, liver, or brain.

Microcalcifications: These are small calcium deposits, often found in clusters by a mammogram. These deposits, sometimes called calcifications, are neither cancer nor tumors. But they are signs of changes within the breast, and certain patterns of calcifications can be associated with cancer or benign breast disease.

Node-positive and node-negative breast cancer: Node-positive means that the cancer has spread (metastasized) to the lymph nodes under the arm on the same side, which are called axillary nodes. Node-negative means that the biopsied lymph nodes are free of cancer. This is an indication that the cancer is less likely to recur.

Paget's disease of the nipple: This type of breast cancer starts in the breast ducts and spreads to the skin of the nipple. The areola (the dark circle around the nipple) may also be involved. With Paget's disease of the nipple, there is usually a history of crusting, scaly, red tissue on the nipple and itching, oozing, burning, or bleeding.

Using the fingertips, a lump may be detected within the breast. If no lump can be felt, the cancer generally has a good prognosis. Paget's disease may be associated with in situ carcinoma or with infiltrating breast carcinoma (see above). It accounts for about 1% of female breast cancers and a higher percentage of male breast cancers.

Because the male breast is much smaller than the female breast, all male breast cancers start relatively close to the nipple, so spread to the nipple is more likely.

Prevention
The large variations in penile cancer rates throughout the world strongly suggest that penile cancer is a preventable disease. The best way to reduce the risk of penile cancer is to avoid known risk factors whenever possible.

In the past, circumcision has been suggested as a strategy for preventing penile cancer. This suggestion is based on studies that reported much lower penile cancer rates among circumcised men than among uncircumcised men. However, most researchers now believe those studies were flawed, because they failed to consider other factors that are now known to affect penile cancer risk. For example, some recent studies suggest that circumcised men tend to have certain other lifestyle factors associated with lower penile cancer risk -- they are less likely to have multiple sexual partners, less likely to smoke, and more likely to have good personal hygiene habits. Most public health researchers believe that the penile cancer risk among uncircumcised men without known risk factors living in the United States is extremely low. The current consensus of most experts is that circumcision should not be recommended as a strategy for penile cancer prevention.

On the other hand, it is reasonable to suspect that avoiding sexual practices likely to result in human papillomavirus (HPV) infection might lower penile cancer risk. In addition, these practices are likely to have an even more significant impact on cervical cancer risk. Until recently, it was thought that the use of condoms ("rubbers") could prevent infection with HPV. But recent research shows that condoms cannot protect against infection with HPV.

This is because HPV can be passed from person to person by skin-to-skin contact with any HPV-infected area of the body, such as skin of the genital or anal area not covered by the condom. It is still important, though, to use condoms to protect against AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases that are passed on through some body fluids. The absence of visible warts cannot be used to decide whether caution is warranted, since HPV can be passed on to another person even when there are no visible warts or other symptoms. HPV can be present for years with no symptoms, so it can be difficult or impossible to know whether a person with whom you might have sex might be infected with HPV.

It is also known that the longer a person remains infected with any type of HPV that can cause cancer, the greater the risk that infection will lead to cancer. For these reasons, postponing the beginning of sexual activity in life and limiting the number of sexual partners are two ways to reduce the chances of developing penile cancer.

Smoking is another factor associated with increased penile cancer risk. And, it is even more strongly associated with several very common and frequently fatal cancers, as well as noncancerous conditions such as heart disease and stroke. Quitting smoking or never starting in the first place is an excellent recommendation for preventing a wide variety of diseases, including penile cancer.

Because poor hygiene habits are associated with increased penile cancer risk, and some studies suggest that smegma (the material that accumulates underneath the foreskin) may contain cancer-causing substances, many public health experts recommend that uncircumcised men practice good genital hygiene by retracting the foreskin and cleaning the entire penis. If the foreskin is constricted and difficult to retract, a physician may be able to place a small cut (incision) in the skin to make retraction easier.
Since some men with penile cancer have no known risk factors, it is not possible to completely prevent this disease.
Diagnostic
The most common sign of breast cancer is a new lump or mass. A mass that is painless, hard, and has irregular edges is more likely to be cancerous, but rare cancers are tender, soft, and rounded. For this reason, it is important that any new breast mass or lump be checked by a health care provider with experience in diagnosis of breast diseases. Once certain signs and symptoms raise the possibility that a man may have breast cancer, his physician will use one or more methods to be absolutely certain that the disease is present and to determine the stage to which the cancer has developed.

Complete medical history: The first step is gathering a complete personal and family medical history from the patient. This will provide information about symptoms and risk factors for breast cancer or benign breast conditions.

Clinical breast exam: A thorough clinical breast examination will be performed to locate the lump or suspicious area and feel its texture, size, and relationship to the skin and muscle tissue. The rest of the body will also be examined to look for any evidence of spread such as enlarged lymph nodes or an enlarged liver. The patient's general physical condition will also be evaluated.

Diagnostic mammography: Diagnostic mammography is an x-ray examination of the breast. In some cases, special images known as cone views with magnification are used to make a small area of altered breast tissue easier to evaluate. The diagnostic work-up may suggest that a biopsy is needed to tell whether or not the lesion (abnormal area) is cancer.

Breast ultrasound: Ultrasound, also known as sonography, uses high- frequency sound waves to outline a part of the body. High-frequency sound waves are transmitted into the area of the body being studied and echoed back. The sound wave echoes are picked up and converted by a computer into an image that is displayed on a computer screen. No radiation exposure occurs during this test. Breast ultrasound is sometimes used to evaluate breast abnormalities that are found during mammography or a physical exam. Ultrasound is useful for some breast masses, and is the easiest way to tell if a cyst is present without placing a needle into it to draw out fluid.

Nipple discharge examination: If there is a nipple discharge, some of the fluid may be collected. The fluid is then examined under a microscope to determine if any cancer cells are present. If cancer cells are not seen in the nipple secretions but a suspicious mass is present, a biopsy of the mass is needed.

Biopsy: A biopsy is the only way to tell if a breast abnormality is cancerous. Unless the doctor is sure the lump is not cancer, this should always be done. All biopsy procedures remove a tissue sample for examination under a microscope. There are several types of biopsies, such as fine needle aspiration biopsy, core biopsy, and surgical biopsy. Your doctor will choose a type of biopsy based on your individual situation.

Fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB): FNAB is the easiest and quickest biopsy technique. A thin needle, about the size of a needle used for blood tests or for immunizations is used. The needle can be guided into the area of the breast abnormality while the doctor is feeling or palpating the lump. A FNAB of solid (not fluid-filled) lumps yields small tissue fragments. Microscopic examination of FNAB samples can determine whether most breast abnormalities are benign or cancerous. In some cases, a clear answer is not obtained by FNAB, and another type of biopsy is needed.

Core biopsy: The needle used in core biopsies is larger than that used for FNAB. It removes a small cylinder of tissue from a breast abnormality. The biopsy is done with local anesthesia in the doctor's office.

Surgical biopsy: Surgical removal of all, or a portion, of the lump for microscopic analysis may be required.
Many doctors prefer a two-step biopsy. In this method, a sample of the mass or, sometimes, the entire mass is removed in the doctor's office or hospital outpatient department. A local or regional anesthesia with intravenous sedation is used and the patient is awake during the procedure. If the diagnosis is cancer, the patient has time after the procedure to learn about the disease and discuss all treatment options with the cancer care team, friends, and family. If additional breast tissue or lymph nodes need to be removed, this will be done during a later operation. The short delay until additional surgery does not affect survival. Of course, a diagnosis made by needle biopsy counts as the first step of a two-step procedure.

With a one-step biopsy, the patient is given general anesthesia and is asleep during the entire process. A biopsy is performed and the tissue sample is frozen. The frozen sample is examined right away under a microscope in the pathology laboratory. If cancer cells are present, the surgeon immediately proceeds with treatment, such as mastectomy, which the patient had previously approved. The patient does not know until after waking up whether the lump was cancerous and whether surgery was performed. One-step procedures are rarely recommended for women since lumpectomy is often a surgical treatment option. Since many male breast cancers are best treated by mastectomy, one- step and two-step procedures are both appropriate options.

Laboratory Testing of Breast Cancer Biopsy Samples
Types of breast cancer: The tissue removed during the biopsy is examined in the lab to see whether the cancer is in situ (not invasive) or invasive. The biopsy is also used to determine the cancer's type. The most common types, invasive ductal and invasive lobular cancer, are treated the same way. In some cases, special breast cancer types that tend to have a more favorable prognosis (medullary, tubular, and mucinous cancers) are treated differently. For example, adjuvant hormonal therapy or chemotherapy may be recommended for small stage I cancers with unfavorable microscopic features but not for small cancers of the types associated with a more favorable prognosis.

Grades of breast cancer: A pathologist looks at the tissue sample under a microscope and then assigns a grade to it. The grade helps predict the patient's prognosis because cancers that closely resemble normal breast tissue tend to grow and spread more slowly. In general, a lower grade number indicates a slower-growing cancer while a higher number indicates a faster-growing cancer.

Histologic tumor grade (sometimes called its Bloom-Richardson grade): Is based on the arrangement of the cells in relation to each other, as well as features of individual cells. Grade 1 cancers have relatively normal- looking cells that do not appear to be growing rapidly and are arranged in small tubules. Grade 3 cancers, the highest grade, lack these features and tend to grow and spread more aggressively. Grade 2 cancers have features between grades 1 and 3. Grade 1, 2, and 3 cancers are sometimes referred to as well differentiated, moderately differentiated, and poorly differentiated. This system of grading is used for invasive cancers but not for in situ cancers.

Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS): is sometimes given a nuclear grade, which describes how abnormal the cancer cells appear. The presence or absence of necrosis (areas of degenerating cancer cells) is also noted. Some researchers have suggested combining information about the nuclear grade and necrosis together with information about the surgical margin (how close the cancer is to the edge of the lumpectomy specimen) and the size (amount of breast tissue affected by DCIS). The researchers have proposed assigning a score to each of these features and adding them together. This sum is called the Van Nuys Prognostic Index. In situ cancers with high nuclear grade, necrosis, cancer at or near the edge of the lumpectomy sample, and large areas of DCIS tend to be more likely to come back after lumpectomy.

Estrogen and progesterone receptors: Receptors are molecules that are a part of cells. They recognize certain substances such as hormones that circulate in the blood. Normal breast cells and some breast cancer cells have receptors that recognize estrogen and progesterone. These two hormones play an important role in the development, growth, prognosis, and treatment of breast cancer. An important step in evaluating a breast cancer is to test for the presence of these receptors. This is done on a portion of the cancer removed at the time of biopsy or initial surgical treatment. Breast cancers that contain estrogen and progesterone receptors are often referred to as ER-positive and PR-positive tumors. These cancers tend to have a better prognosis than cancers without these receptors and are much more likely to respond to hormonal therapy.

DNA cytometry: There are two types of DNA cytometry that are sometimes used to help predict a breast tumor's aggressiveness. Flow cytometry uses lasers and computers to measure the amount of DNA in cancer cells suspended in liquid as they flow past the laser beam. Image cytometry uses computers to analyze digital images of the cells from a microscope slide. Both methods can measure the ploidy of cancer cells, which indicates the amount of DNA they contain. If there's a normal amount of DNA, the cells are said to be diploid. If the amount is abnormal, then the cells are described as aneuploid. Some studies have found that aneuploid breast cancers tend to be more aggressive.

Flow cytometry can also measure the S-phase fraction, which is the percentage of cells in a sample that are in a certain stage of cell division called the synthesis phase. The more cells that are in this S-phase, the faster the tissue is growing and the more aggressive the cancer is likely to be. Image cytometry, when combined with special antibody tests of the tissue to for substances such as proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), can also estimate the grow rate of a cancer.

Other tests for predicting breast cancer prognosis: Many new prognostic factors, such as changes of the p53 tumor suppressor gene, the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor, and microvessel density (number of small blood vessels that supply oxygen and nutrition to the cancer), are currently being studied.

Treatment
Stage O and Stage I Male Breast Cancer
For most men in this group, surgical removal of the cancer is the only treatment needed. This is usually accomplished by modified radical mastectomy. Recent studies have found that extending a modified radical mastectomy to remove an area of involved muscle (and a margin of tumor-free muscle) is as effective as a radical mastectomy, which removes the entire muscle. And the modified radical mastectomy causes fewer side effects.

Lumpectomy or other breast-conserving procedures are rarely an option since the whole breast can be removed under local anesthesia. If breast conserving procedures are done, they should be followed by radiation therapy, unless the cancer is in situ (noninvasive, stage 0).

Chemotherapy may be recommended for some young men with stage I breast cancer. Women with early stage breast cancer who are under 35 have a high chance of cancer recurrence. This is reduced by chemotherapy. But women older than 35 also benefit from adjuvant chemotherapy. As they get older, women benefit less and doctors must balance the risk of recurrence against the side effects of treatment. Most doctors feel these considerations also apply to men with breast cancer. Therefore, chemotherapy will be offered to most younger men with Stage I breast cancer.

Stage II Male Breast Cancer
The surgical and radiation therapy options are the same as with Stage I cancers. But if the nodes contain cancer cells, adjuvant (additional) therapy is usually recommended. Hormonal therapy is suggested for all node-positive, estrogen receptor-positive tumors. Chemotherapy is also usually recommended. Choices about chemotherapy may be influenced by a man's age and general state of health. It is less likely to be recommended for older men, particularly those in poor health.

When node-negative cancers involve the chest muscle or the skin, radiation therapy after surgery may reduce the risk of local recurrence.

Stage III Male Breast Cancer
The surgical and radiation therapy options are the same as with Stage I and II cancers. Except for men in poor health or elderly, chemotherapy is almost always recommended. In some cases, the chemotherapy may be given before the surgery. This is called neoadjuvant therapy.

Stage IV or Stage IV Male Breast Cancer
Systemic therapy is the primary treatment, using chemotherapy, hormonal therapy, or both. Immunotherapy with Trastuzumab (Herceptin) alone or in combination with chemotherapy is an option for men whose cancer cells have high levels of the HER2/neu protein. Trastuzumab is generally not the initial treatment for these men, however, and is usually started after standard hormonal and/or chemotherapy is no longer effective. Radiation and/or surgery may also be used to provide relief of certain symptoms. Treatment to relieve symptoms depends on where the cancer has spread to. For example, pain due to bone metastases may be treated with external beam radiation therapy and/or bisphosphonates such as pamidronate (Aredia). Bisphosphonates are drugs that can help prevent bone damage caused by metastatic breast cancer. For more information about treatment of bone metastases, refer to the ACS document on "Bone Metastasis."

Recurrent Male Breast Cancer
If a patient has a local (breast or chest wall) recurrence and no evidence of distant metastases, cure is still possible. Surgical removal of the recurrence, followed by radiation therapy, is recommended whenever possible. If the area has already been treated with radiation, it may not be possible to give much or any additional radiation without causing severe damage to the normal tissues. Distant recurrences are treated the same as metastases found at the time of diagnosis.

Distortions in abortion debate (Letter to the Editor 09.10.09)

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I don't agree with most of the sentiments expressed here, I am following this debate carefully because I feel the same religious opponents were the same persons who opposed and suppressed the homosexual rights discussion during the Sexual Offences Bill Debate 2006 - 2009 and are also trying to suppress a woman's right to decide her course in aborting or not. We need to watch how this right winged so called concerned christian group operates and see the similarities in their actions to move us to a theocratic state.
H



The Editor, Sir:

The abortion debate carried in the newspapers recently has focused on the moral issues. However, the approach of the Mustard Seed poll, although obviously concerned with moral issues, has for many of us distorted the debate by asking questions in such a way that the issue is twisted.

By this means it tries to smear as immoral those who, unlike its sponsors, support a repeal of the legislation on abortion by implying that they support 1) child murder, 2) the use of abortion as a means of birth control, and 3) the denial of rights to conscientious objectors. This is very regrettable and does not help the country to be informed in reaching a decision on abortion.

Morality grapples with the problems of 'living life' based on principles of good in an imperfect world. Certainly a core moral principle is a concern for the suffering of others, so the public health aspect of this matter is important. Statistics from the Ministry of Health indicate that between 2003-2007 on average 1,173 women per year were treated for often painful complications (which can include infertility) following unsafe abortions.

One in 12 women die

Statistics from an article in the British medical journal Lancet indicate that about one in 12 women dies from unsafe abortions. In countries where abortion has been legalised, mortality has declined significantly and remains low. Over time, the abortion rate declines as women are counselled regarding appropriate contraceptive choices.

There are those who oppose changing the law, contending that from the moment of conception, the foetus should be treated as a child with the rights of a human being, so they view abortion as murder, although if that foetus was removed from the womb of the mother it could not survive and would not even look like a child. By the definition of full development and viability, therefore, the foetus is not yet a human being, capable of life, but still part of the body of the mother, although with the potential to grow over time into a viable human life.

The question that then arise is: What is life? Life is not just a matter of a material physical existence but a matter of emotional, psychological and spiritual existence. Nature itself may abort a foetus with a physical defect in order to ensure optimal physical existence. But it is we who have the power over optimal emotional, psychological and spiritual existence.

Not all sex acts are between adults able to give informed consent; with numerous documented and undocumented cases of rape, incest and intimate partner abuse. One third of sexually active couples not wanting children do not use a contraceptive.

Lessons of love and forgiveness

One of the difficulties of morality (as indeed Jesus showed on several occasions) is that it is not a matter of black and white. The Christian Church from time to time demonstrates that it has failed to learn some of the teachings of the God it follows, particularly the core, but difficult lessons of love and forgiveness.

This was demonstrated again in the recent abortion case in Italy. Doctors who terminated the twin pregnancy of a nine-year-old girl, repeatedly raped by her stepfather, because they did not think her small body of 80 lbs could safely carry two pregnancies to term, were punished - excommunicated by the Catholic Church along with her mother! There was no reference to the stepfather! A Vatican bishop (there are always exceptions who live according to the spirit of the law) criticised the decision for its insensitivity and lack of mercy. He told the young girl that others merited excommunication, not those who helped her regain hope and trust.

Save lives

Let us not make the same kind of mistake. Let us save lives and eventually reduce pregnancy terminations by supporting the recommendations of the Jamaica Abortion Policy Review Advisory Group to the Ministry of Health, with its careful stipulations. Let's facilitate an environment in which conception is a responsible act and every newborn child is wanted and loved.

I am, etc.,
JENNIFER JONES
jennyjones33@gmail.com

October is Breast Cancer Month

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Once again breast cancer month has rolled around also LGBT History month as well so check up on here to see posts on the two subjects. I will try to put together useful information and titbits for my female readers but men must also take this subject of Breast Cancer seriously as there has been cases found in men here in Jamaica. (see more from the JCS as well)

What is Breast Cancer ?

Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that has developed from cells of the breast. The disease occurs mostly in women, but does occur rarely in men. The remainder of this document refers only to breast cancer in women.

Normal Breast Structure
The main components of the female breast are lobules (milk-producing glands), ducts (milk passages that connect the lobules and the nipple), and stroma (fatty tissue and ligaments surrounding the ducts and lobules, blood vessels, and lymphatic vessels).

Lymphatic vessels are similar to veins, except that they carry lymph instead of blood. Lymph is a clear fluid that contains tissue waste products and immune system cells. Cancer cells can enter lymph vessels. Most lymphatic vessels of the breast lead to axillary (underarm) lymph nodes.

Lymph nodes are small bean-shaped collections of immune system cells that are important in fighting infections. When breast cancer cells reach the axillary lymph nodes, they can continue to grow, often causing swelling of the lymph nodes in the underarm area. If breast cancer cells have grown in the axillary lymph nodes, they are more likely to have spread to other organs of the body as well. This is why finding out whether breast cancer has spread to axillary lymph nodes is important in selecting the best mode of treatment.

Benign Breast Lumps
Most breast lumps are benign, that is, not cancerous. Most lumps are caused by fibrocystic changes. Cysts are fluid-filled sacs, and fibrosis refers to connective tissue or scar tissue formation. Breast swelling and pain can be caused by fibrocystic changes. The breasts may feel nodular, or lumpy, and, sometimes, a clear or slightly cloudy nipple discharge is present. Benign breast tumors such as fibroadenomas or papillomas are abnormal growths, but they cannot spread outside of the breast to other organs.

Types of Breast Cancers
Understanding some of the key words used to describe different types of breast cancer is important because these types vary in their prognosis (the outlook for chances of survival) and their treatment options. An alphabetical list of terms, including the most common types of breast cancer, is given below:

Adenocarcinoma: This is a general type of cancer that starts in glandular tissues anywhere in the body. Nearly all breast cancers start in glandular tissue of the breast and, therefore, are adenocarcinomas. The two main types of breast adenocarcinomas are ductal carcinomas and lobular carcinomas.

Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS): Ductal carcinoma in situ (also known as intraductal carcinoma) is the most common type of noninvasive breast cancer. There are cancer cells inside the ducts but they have not spread through the walls of the ducts into the fatty tissue of the breast. Nearly 100% of women diagnosed at this early stage of breast cancer can be cured. The best way to find DCIS is with a mammogram. With more women getting mammograms each year, a diagnosis of DCIS is becoming more common. DCIS is sometimes subclassified based on its grade and type, in order to help predict the risk of cancer returning after treatment and to help select the most appropriate treatment. Grade refers to how aggressive cancer cells appear under a microscope. There are several types of DCIS, but the most important distinction among them is whether or not tumor cell necrosis (areas of dead or degenerating cancer cells) is present. The term comedocarcinoma is often used to describe a type of DCIS with necrosis.

Infiltrating (or invasive) ductal carcinoma (IDC): Starting in a milk passage, or duct, of the breast, this cancer has broken through the wall of the duct and invades the fatty tissue of the breast. At this point, it has the potential to metastasize, or spread, to other parts of the body through the lymphatic system and bloodstream. Infiltrating ductal carcinoma accounts for about 80% of invasive breast cancers.

Infiltrating (or invasive) lobular carcinoma (ILC): ILC starts in the milk-producing glands. Similar to IDC, this cancer has the potential to spread (metastasize) elsewhere in the body. About 10% to 15% of invasive breast cancers are invasive lobular carcinomas. ILC may be more difficult to detect by mammogram than IDC.

Inflammatory breast cancer: This rare type of invasive breast cancer accounts for about 1% of all breast cancers. Inflammatory breast cancer makes the skin of the breast look red and feel warm, as if it was infected and inflamed. The skin has a thick, pitted appearance that doctors often describe as resembling an orange peel. Sometimes the skin develops ridges and small bumps that look like hives. Doctors now know that these changes are not due to inflammation or infection, but the name given to this type of cancer long ago still persists. Cancer cells blocking lymph vessels or channels in the skin over the breast cause these symptoms.

In situ: This term is used for an early stage of cancer in which it is confined to the immediate area where it began. Specifically in breast cancer, in situ means that the cancer remains confined to ducts (ductal carcinoma in situ) or lobules (lobular carcinoma in situ). It has not invaded surrounding fatty tissues in the breast nor spread to other organs in the body.

Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS): While not a true cancer, LCIS (also called lobular neoplasia) is sometimes classified as a type of noninvasive breast cancer. It begins in the milk-producing glands, but does not penetrate through the wall of the lobules. Most breast cancer specialists think that LCIS, itself, does not become an invasive cancer, but women with this condition do have a higher risk of developing an invasive breast cancer in the same breast, or in the opposite breast. For this reason, it's important for women with LCIS to have a physical exam two or three times a year, as well as an annual mammogram.

Medullary carcinoma: This special type of infiltrating breast cancer has a relatively well defined, distinct boundary between tumor tissue and normal tissue. It also has some other special features, including the large size of the cancer cells and the presence of immune system cells at the edges of the tumor. Medullary carcinoma accounts for about 5% of breast cancers. The outlook, or prognosis, for this kind of breast cancer is better than for other types of invasive breast cancer.

Mucinous carcinoma: This rare type of invasive breast cancer is formed by mucus-producing cancer cells. The prognosis for mucinous carcinoma is better than for the more common types of invasive breast cancer. Colloid carcinoma is another name for this type of breast cancer.

Paget's disease of the nipple: This type of breast cancer starts in the breast ducts and spreads to the skin of the nipple and then to the areola, the dark circle around the nipple. It is a rare type of breast cancer, occurring in only 1% of all cases. The skin of the nipple and areola often appears crusted, scaly, and red, with areas of bleeding or oozing. The woman may notice burning or itching. Paget's disease may be associated with in situ carcinoma, or with infiltrating breast carcinoma. If no lump can be felt in the breast tissue, and the biopsy shows DCIS but no invasive cancer, the prognosis is excellent.

Phyllodes tumor: This very rare type of breast tumor forms from the stroma (connective tissue) of the breast, in contrast to carcinomas which develop in the ducts or lobules. Phyllodes (also spelled phylloides) tumors are usually benign but on rare occasions may be malignant (having the potential to metastasize). Benign phyllodes tumors are successfully treated by removing the mass and a narrow margin of normal breast tissue. A malignant phyllodes tumor is treated by removing it along with a wider margin of normal tissue, or by mastectomy. These cancers do not respond to hormonal therapy and are not so likely to respond to chemotherapy or radiation therapy. In the past, both benign and malignant phyllodes tumors were referred to as cystosarcoma phyllodes.

Tubular carcinoma: Accounting for about 2% of all breast cancers, tubular carcinomas are a special type of infiltrating breast carcinoma. They have a better prognosis than usual infiltrating ductal or lobular carcinomas.


Prevention

There is no certain way to prevent breast cancer. For now, the best plan for women at average breast cancer risk is to reduce risk factors whenever possible.

Breast cancer risk reduction with tamoxifen or raloxifene: Tamoxifen has been used for many years to reduce the risk of recurrence in localized breast cancer and as a treatment for advanced breast cancer. (See "How is Breast Cancer Treated?") Results from the Breast Cancer Prevention Trial (BCPT) have shown that women at high risk for breast cancer are less likely to develop the disease if they take the antiestrogen drug, tamoxifen. After taking tamoxifen an average of 4 years, these women had 45% fewer breast cancers than women with the same risk factors who did not take tamoxifen.

Like tamoxifen, raloxifene also blocks the effect of estrogen on breast tissue. In a study to evaluate raloxifene as prevention for osteoporosis, the researchers also noticed that it also seemed to lower the risk of breast cancer. A study to compare the effectiveness of the two drugs, called the Study of Tamoxifen and Raloxifene or STAR trial, is currently underway. For now, raloxifene has not yet been approved for use in breast cancer risk reduction.
Prophylactic (preventive) mastectomy for women with very high breast cancer risk: Occasionally, a woman who is at very high risk for breast cancer will choose to have a prophylactic mastectomy. The purpose of the surgery is to reduce the risk by removing both breasts before breast cancer is diagnosed.

The reasons for considering this type of surgery may include one or more of the following risk factors:

Mutated BRCA genes found by genetic testing
Previous cancer in one breast, strong family history (breast cancer in several close relatives)

Biopsy specimens showing lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS)
There is no way to know how this surgery would affect a particular woman. Some women with BRCA mutations will develop a fatal breast cancer early in life, and a prophylactic mastectomy before cancer occurred might have added many years to their life expectancy. Some women with BRCA mutations never develop breast cancer, and these women would not benefit from the surgery. Still other women might develop breast cancer that can be found by mammography or breast examination, and be successfully treated; these women's life expectancies would also not be affected by the operation. It is important to realize that while this operation removes nearly all of the breast tissue, a small amount remains. So, while, this operation markedly reduces the risk of breast cancer, it does not guarantee that a cancer will not develop in the small amount of breast tissue remaining after surgery.

Second opinions are strongly recommended before any woman makes the decision to have this surgery. The American Cancer Society Board of Directors has stated that "only very strong clinical and/or pathologic indications warrant doing this type of "preventive operation." Nonetheless, after careful consideration, this might be the right choice for some women.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Being a woman & gay in Jamaica

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The double bind -- being a woman and gay

Homosexual women are at increased risk of discrimination. Gay men in Jamaica are treated as criminals by the legal system thus promoting a climate of prejudice, discrimination, physical attacks and other abuses against people who are or are believed to be gay.

The UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences has observed:
"Gender-based violence is also related to the social construct of what it means to be either male or female. When a person deviates from what is considered 'normal' behaviour they are targeted for violence. This is particularly acute when combined with discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity."

Several international human rights bodies have condemned persecution and violence that is inflicted on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity. As the UN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health recently stated: "Sexual rights include the right of all persons to express their sexual orientation, with due regard for the well-being and rights of others, without fear of persecution, denial of liberty or social interference."

Gay women in Jamaica have told Amnesty International that they do not disclose their sexuality to people they do not know, and are not openly affectionate in public. Many lesbian women report being beaten, and they also endure threatened and actual sexual violence, "to be taught a lesson".

Amnesty International has also received reports of women fleeing the Caribbean due to attacks against them which they believed to be based on their sexuality.

"As a gay woman, my fear is not so much about anybody murdering me, but it is about somebody raping me ... so I am really, really careful ... people don't ever ask me."

Again, popular culture and some Jamaican music perpetuates this mindset:
"When yuh hear a Sodomite get raped/But a fi wi fault/It's wrong/Two women gonna hock up inna bed/That's two Sodomites dat fi dead." (When you hear of a lesbian getting raped/It's not our fault/It's wrong/Two women in bed/That's two Sodomites who should be dead.)

Some of the comments and concerns from women interviewed by AMNESTY USA and my coverage of the spectre of lesbian women being raped in this country has earned me some crticism so here are some of the facts then for us to look at.

"The lawyer made me feel like a slut in court. He tried to convince the court that I was guilty for them doing such a terrible thing to me," recalls one Jamaican woman who was abducted from her workplace and gang-raped at gunpoint.
Violence against women in Jamaica persists because the state is failing to tackle discrimination against women, allowing social and cultural attitudes which encourage discrimination and violence. This violates the government's most basic treaty obligations under the UN Convention for the Elimination of Violence against Women (CEDAW), among others. Shortcomings in national legislation do not deal adequately with marital rape, incest or sexual harassment, thereby encouraging impunity and leaving women without the protection of the law. Discrimination is entrenched and often exacerbated in the police and criminal justice system. Women and adolescent girls are rarely believed by the police, so have little confidence in reporting crimes against them.

Evidence is often not sought effectively or professionally, and witnesses are rarely protected. In court, women's testimony is explicitly given less weight than men's, thereby depriving women of the right to equality before the law.In Jamaica, entrenched discrimination against women means many individuals fail to appreciate that forced sex carried out by an acquaintance or family member is a serious crime.The rate of sexual violence against women in Jamaica is very high and is accompanied by spiralling levels of community violence and homicide throughout the island. In 2005, the number of homicides in Jamaica, already high, increased to 1,669. At 0.55 - 0.62 per thousand people, this is one of the highest rates in the world.Sexual assault is the second-most-common cause of injury for women, after fights. Five per cent of all violent injuries seen in hospitals are caused by sexual assaults

For the FULL REPORT visit AMNESTY'S PAGE:
Sexual violence against women and girls in Jamaica: "just a little sex"

Peace
H

Aborting Women's Rights ... broader issues (REPOST)

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C. Cooper

"If men could get pregnant abortion would be a sacrament." This famous feminist prick (as in sharp point) goes straight to the heart of the current debate about parliamentary reform of Jamaica's backward laws on abortion. The reproductive health and rights of women are not taken seriously in much of the talk on this inflammatory subject.

Instead, male authority figures (and their female surrogates) pontificate on a pregnant matter about which they simply cannot speak authoritatively. Who feels it knows it, intimately. It is true that there are enlightened men who try to understand this contentious issue from the woman's perspective. But they are relatively few.

Data from the Ministry of Health confirm that approximately 1,200 women are treated each year for complications arising from unsafe abortions. And those are just the official figures. In the 21st century, women in Jamaica are still risking their lives in order to claim reproductive rights that women in other countries simply take for granted.

IMPRISONED FOR LIFE

The 1864 Offences Against the Person Act declares the following:

"72. Every woman, being with child, who with intent to procure her own miscarriage, shall unlawfully administer to herself any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent; and whosoever, with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman, whether she be or be not with child, shall unlawfully administer to her, or cause to be taken by her, any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, shall be guilty of felony, and, being convicted thereof, shall be liable to be imprisoned for life, with or without hard labour.

"73. Whosoever shall unlawfully supply or procure any poison or other noxious thing, or any instrument or thing whatsoever, knowing that the same is intended to be unlawfully used or employed with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman, whether she be or be not with child, shall be guilty of a misdemeanour, and, being convicted thereof, shall be liable to be imprisoned for a term not exceeding three years, with or without hard labour."

MORAL AUTHORITY?

In plain English: if a pregnant women tries to abort the foetus in her own body, she is guilty of a felony and, if convicted, is liable to be imprisoned for life. If anyone attempts to help her with the abortion, that person is also guilty of a felony and is liable to be similarly sentenced. The 'druggist' who supplies any 'noxious thing' or even the bearer of the thing to facilitate the process is liable to be imprisoned.

This piece of legislation is truly remarkable, especially bearing in mind the history of our country. The act was passed a mere 30 years after the abolition of slavery. All of a sudden, a foetus (not a 'child') was much more valuable than millions of enslaved Africans who were seen as beasts of burden and therefore entirely fit subjects for protracted abuse. Their lives needed no protection. An unborn 'person' now had more rights than actual persons, many of whom still had vivid memories of being brutalised by enslavement. Did this act have any moral authority? Or was it intended to ensure the availability of an unending supply of cheap labour?

These questions are not as far-fetched as they may seem. Historians confirm that enslaved African women aborted foetuses or even committed acts of infanticide in order to ensure that their children would not be enslaved. The most powerful literary treatment of this subject is Toni Morrison's truly disturbing novel, Beloved, made into an eerie film. Ironically, enslaved women claimed reproductive freedoms that their supposedly emancipated descendants are still denied in Jamaica today.

It took more than a century for Jamaica's outdated abortion laws to be modified. In 1975, the Ministry of Health in a Statement of Policy on Abortion made it "lawful for a registered medical practitioner acting in good faith to take steps to terminate the pregnancy of any woman if ... he forms the opinion that the continuation of the pregnancy would be likely to constitute a threat to the life of the woman or inure [work] to the detriment of her mental and physical health".

The Statement of Policy called for amendment of the Offences Against the Person Act (1864) in order to clarify the circumstances in which abortion could be deemed lawful in Jamaica - such as in cases of rape, carnal abuse and incest. Thirty-four years later the antiquated act has still not been amended.

ANATOMY IS DESTINY?

The sexist language of the policy statement takes it for granted that the "registered medical practitioner" is male. Indeed, sexism is at the root of the conservative gender ideology that seeks to keep women in their place as hostages to their anatomy. It was Sigmund Freud who proclaimed that "anatomy is destiny". Gender identity is supposedly fixed at birth - for life.

Karen Horney, one of Freud's rogue disciples, challenged this declaration. She argued that culture, rather than biology, determined one's fate. In a 1939 publication, she deflated Freud's theory of "penis envy". She argued that some men suffer from "womb envy".

In any case, it wasn't the penis itself women envied but the presumed power that the appendage bestowed on men: "[t]he wish to be a man ... may be the expression of a wish for all those qualities or privileges which in our culture are regarded as masculine, such as strength, courage, independence, success, sexual freedom, right to choose a partner." You can bet your last Super Lotto dollar that if men could get pregnant they would find a way to glamorise abortion as a heroic act of sexual freedom, requiring superhuman strength and courage.

Elephant Man may perform in Canada despite concerns

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After hearing complaints from the LGBT community in Toronto, Canada about the controversial performer’s violently anti-gay lyrics (sample: “Queers must be killed!” “Give me the Tec-9/Shoot dem like bird”), Parc Downsview Park CEO Tony Genco has refused to pull dancehall act Elephant Man from an upcoming show scheduled for this Sunday Oct 10 at the federal park.

Elephant Man’s (real name O’Neil Bryan) second scheduled performance in the Toronto area this year is to take place. Back in August, the Circa nightclub gig in downtown Toronto was dropped club officials received complaints and were informed of his homophobic lyrics decided to pull the plug. Word of the show had spread to the LGBT community via Twitter and Facebook and only hours after announcing the show, Circa sent this tweet: “Circa stands for peace, love and equality. Elephant Man has been removed from the Celebrity Ball.”

The present promoter has been informed of Ele's lyrical content including the infamous “Log on and step pon chi chi man/Log on and step on a queer man” PDP CEO Tony Genco refuses to pull Elephant Man from the show at the federal venue even after a privately-owned club decided weeks ago -- in the spirit of “peace, love and equality” -- he should not perform on their stage.

In a publicly released statement (pdf) Parc Downsview Park justified their decision citing a “morality clause” in Elephant Man’s contract, which, they say, will restrict him from using lyrics that “promote the hatred or derision of any group.” That the federal park would welcome performers that need to be reminded of this clause is in itself a red flag.

Genco however in an interview with Rabble a Canadian publication said that Elephant Man hadn’t used these lyrics in “25 years” and that if the rabble representative and the lgbt groups could find evidence that he had used them more recently he would reconsider the show. The promoter, Eric Morgan met with the venue's owner after their meeting, Genco still refuses to pull the show, since he believes Elephant Man has put these hateful lyrics behind him, though there is no public record of Elephant Man apologizing or explaining his lyrics.

According to Justin Stayshyn of Rabble news who spoke directly to Mr. Genco - "One wonders what has prompted Genco to defend Elephant Man like this and why he implies that EM regrets these lyrics as he’s made no public statements to that effect. In fact, when given a chance to do just that -- he has refused. Back in 2007, in response to protests against hateful lyrics a number of artists signed “ The Reggae Compassionate Act” which states that they “respect and uphold the rights of all individuals to live without violence due to their religion, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity or gender.” Though a number of his peers signed, Elephant Man did not."

So it looks like Elephant Man may perform after all even in the face of his own sexuality being brought into question recently with a public feud with another dancehall DJ named Flippa Mafia and allegations of the Elephant and another entertainer found in a compromising position are rife in certain entertainment circles.
Hypocrisy, lies of what???

See: Elephant Man called a "Fish" in dancehall rivalry Dancehall gimmickry escalates as a 'dolphin' curses an 'elephant', this is not the first time we have seen the Elephant being accused of being a closeted homo and one wonders sometimes if these allegations have any truth to them.

Mek wi see nuh.

H
(excerpts from Rabble)

Lesbians becoming increasingly nervous

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Lesbian rights in Jamaica several years ago was hardly discussed or just casually glanced at as most targets of homophobic violence and stigma were directed at gay males. With the increase in the temperature of the venom towards the homosexual lifestyles and the more outward displays by lesbians in general since females can and are allowed some room to express themselves more openly seems to have riled some enough to launch attacks at our sisters, specifically our "butch" brethrens.

With the news of instances of corrective rapes cases across the nation comes to the fore many ladies are becoming circumspect with their actions and male encounters that they come across on a daily basis. As word on the latest installment in the string of incidents hit the streets this further compounds the issue.

Many women in general who find themselves in jobs predominantly filled by men are nervous as well as the instances of rape nationally has increased by several percentage points according to the authorities, of course these are cases that have been reported and a criminal prosecution case filed. Imagine all the others that have gone under the radar.

The latest corrective rape incident involved a lesbian couple in western Jamaica several weeks ago, unfortunately these ladies were also victims of homophobic or lesbophobic attacks early 2008. They had rebuilt their lives after suffering threats and an attack on their home.

They relocated to western Jamaica, St. James to follow up on job opportunities they had heard of. The women were reportedly tricked by a man who had an intense crush on one of the women and they were attacked at gunpoint and the disgusting act carried out.

The term corrective rape was invented in 2000 by human rights groups to describe the seuxal attacks and assaults on South African women since then there have been several cases in that country, I use the term here with the clear understanding of it's history but the similarities between what our African sisters are going through and now our local sisters are indeed close.

Since then the news of the latest victims' plight has been making the rounds and many are nervous and saddened by it. They have been assisted so far by private hands and are recouping gracefully. Please pray for them too if you do that activity. Crime in general is a problem but women in general by virtue of deemed the weaker sex are victims of rape and battery and all should be concerned.

The police have their hands tied and the gay community here is still not given equal treatment in terms of police interactions and stigma and sexual harassment are also problems as well in these same interactions as we have seen male police officers handling female members of the public with suggestive overtones which must not be.

Let us begin to galvanize support for our sisters as well and help each other, look out for each other.

Peace and tolerance

H

Treating vaginal chafing

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ANY activity that requires skin to repeatedly rub against skin can lead to chafing. Therefore, the most common causes of vaginal chafing are prolonged sexual intercourse, rough intercourse or constant rubbing of the outside of the vagina during masturbation.


Other factors that can result in vaginal chafing are tight clothes and obesity, while moisture from sweat makes the problem worse.


According to Dr William Dvorine, author of A Dermatologist's Guide to Home Skin Treatment, chafing usually comes on suddenly and announces itself with a painful stinging or burning sensation.


"If you don't stop whatever's rubbing you the wrong way, inflamed surface skin can actually get rubbed away and the area will begin to ooze," he said.


Anybody can experience chafing if steps are not taken to prevent it. While it is a minor problem that is easily treated and easily prevented, it can be very uncomfortable for women, especially during this hot season when the vaginal area is prone to sweat.


In preventing chafing, use a proper lubricant during sex and wear proper clothing. Here are ways in which it can be treated.


. Once your vagina is chafed, you'll need to give it a chance to heal. Take a break from the activity that caused the problem in the first place. Chafing should heal in a day or two.


. Loose-fitting cotton underwear is best for chafe-prone skin, especially during the summer.


. If your chafing is caused by excessive sweating during exercise, you might want to confine your workouts to cooler morning and evening hours, and avoid long walks in the heat.


Once you are chafed, treat the area like an open wound. Wash and clean with mild antiseptic as often as possible to prevent it from becoming inflamed.


Vaginal mucous tissue
The vagina is covered with a mucous tissue, which is protective and rather strong. The thickness of this tissue is determined by the balance of the sex hormones. This balance changes during the menstrual cycle, during pregnancy and with age. In young girls and older women the mucous tissue is very thin, this tissue is therefore quite vulnerable and the balance of the vaginal environment can easily be disturbed.


The vaginal flora
In the vagina (as well as e.g. in the mouth and the bowels) a great many micro-organisms are living in balance with each other and their hostess. This is called the "vaginal flora". It is important to know that the vagina usually has an acidic environment (a low pH).


Lactobacilli (lactic acid bacteria) are named after their function of producing lactic acid. They are largely responsible for determining the acidity of the vaginal environment. In some women we observe too many lactobacilli. When this condition is accompanied by complaints that resemble those caused by candidiasis the diagnosis is called "Lactobacillosis".


Typically these women are constantly - and of course without result - treated for candidiasis. Next to lactobacilli other bacteria are often present, the cocci, that belong to the bowel flora. These are certainly not useful but the presence of a certain number of these cocci is acceptable in a "healthy vaginal environment" (the mixed flora). When lactobacilli are absent the protective acidity of the vagina disappears. In this case, the vaginal environment becomes alkaline (as opposed to acid). This environment promotes overgrowth of coccoid bacteria, often resulting in an infection called bacterial vaginosis (BV).


To summarize, the natural protection of the vagina is determined by several factors; the cell layers of the vaginal membrane, the acidity of the vagina (pH), the balance between the micro-organisms present and the state of general health of the woman. Disturbing the balances in the vagina has some consequences, in the worst cases it can result in infections and inflammations. The disturbances can be caused by external factors as well as internal factors - or by a combination of both.


Making Sense of Your Cycle
The female menstrual cycle always seems to be a point of confusion and discussion among women, "When can I get pregnant?" being one of the most pertinent questions.


The menstrual cycle actually begins on the first day of menstruation and ends the day before the next period starts. For most women the cycle lasts between 21 and 35 days, commonly 28 days.


Phases of the Menstrual Cycle
There are 3 phases in the menstrual cycle - the follicular phase, ovulation and the luteal phase.


The follicular phase can vary in length, which means that it is difficult to predict ovulation by counting forward from the beginning of the menstrual cycle. The luteal phase, which is after ovulation, is always 14 days.


The phases explained:


Follicular Phase
this is when a follicle containing an egg develops in the ovary


Ovulation
this is when the follicle bursts and releases the egg (ovum)


Luteal Phase
the remains of the non-fertilised egg shrink and vanish


The Cycle in More Detail
The average woman has 400 menstrual cycles in her lifetime, yet many of us aren't aware what happens during our menstrual cycle. The typical 28-day cycle is as follows, however this will vary from woman to woman.



Days 1-5 MenstruationMenstruation starts when the lining of the uterus - called the endometrium - is shed, which causes the bleeding that lasts from two to eight days. This happens because in the absence of a pregnancy, women stop producing oestrogen and progesterone. Meanwhile small amounts of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) are being secreted, which stimulates the egg follicles to start growing in one of the ovaries. As the follicles grow, they release small amounts of oestrogen into the bloodstream.
Women who suffer with PMS will feel a release as soon as their period starts. This is because oestrogen and progesterone levels are low, making you feel more cheerful and energetic than the previous week.
It's not all good news though. According to studies, over 70% of women suffer from painful periods with symptoms including stomach cramps, lower back ache, headaches and nausea.


Days 6-10 Post-menstruationDuring this phase, the pituitary is still producing FSH, which continues to stimulate the follicles to grow, which means more oestrogen is being produced too. This is when energy levels will peak and women will feel the best in their cycle.


Days 11-14 Pre-ovulation
The oestrogen levels peak around now usually around days 12 or 13. The developing follicles move towards the surface of the ovary, but only one keeps growing (the others break down). Due to the high levels of oestrogen, the endometrium thickens in preparation for a fertilised egg. At the same time the cervical mucous starts to thin out, making the way for sperm to pass through to the uterus.
At this time the body is getting ready for pregnancy and produces higher amounts of testosterone, which could lead to feeling more confident and assertive.


Days 15-17 Ovulation
Ovulation is when the egg moves out of its follicle and into the fallopian tubes. Most experts believe this is caused by a surge of lutenizing hormone (LH) that happens between 36 and 48 hours before ovulation. Then, once the egg has been released, the empty follicle transforms into what is technically known as corpus luteum. This, in turn, starts secreting progesterone, the main role of which is to sustain pregnancy. Women are now at their most fertile.


Days 18-23 Post-ovulationDuring this phase, the corpus luteum keeps pumping out progesterone, making the endometrium thicken even further, while the egg travels down the fallopian tube towards the uterus.
Now is the time when women experience PMS symptoms, such as headaches, abdominal and back pain, depression, irritability and anxiety.


Days 24-28 PremenstruationThis is the cycle coming to an end. Unless it has been fertilised, the egg dissolves and the corpus luteum breaks down, which in turn means oestrogen and progesterone production ceases. Once that happens, the endometrium starts breaking down too, resulting in a period.


H


source:

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Experimental sex again ???

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(taken from Star News 06.10.09, this is the second such case I am aware of this year and it begs the question is this experimental sex?. In the first case which was also carried here:

Teen accused of molesting 11-y-o
the accused was beaten by residents and a reader had responded in the comment section to try to justify my questioning the early experimentation of sex whether gay or not and that the child may not necessarily become gay or is gay.

How should cases like these be handled??

the actual story today:

TEEN MOLESTS 5-Y-O BOY? -


Allegedly attempts suicide after incident

A bizarre incident in the Rock district of Falmouth, Trelawny, some two weeks ago has left many residents at a loss for words and two other youngsters seeking medical attention.

According to information reaching THE STAR, the incident took place on September 27. Reports are that a five-year-old boy from the community went over to his neighbour's house to watch television with a 16-year-old boy. While there, it is said that the younger boy was placed on a bed, his pants pulled down and he was forced to have sexual intercourse, causing him to bleed.

The youngster then went home and was questioned by his mother who observed that something was wrong with him. He reportedly told her of the incident.

The child was rushed to hospital where he was treated and admitted for observation. THE STAR was further told that after word of the incident spread throughout the district, the accused teenager attempted to commit suicide. Sources said the teen tied a piece of rope to the ceiling of the house and tried to hang himself. He was, however, saved by family members who cut him down.

Police who confirmed the incident said the teen was taken to the hospital where he remains under police guard.
ENDS



Well it could also be described as paedophilia based on the age of the "victim" but the perpetrator is also a prepubescent teen himself and to think he attempted suicide suggest serious underlined issues could be present apart from the actual sexual act in the end of it all. Sadly there may not be the proper interventions for cases like this and furthermore newspapers and tabloids that carry such stories hardly do the proper follow-ups to bring some closure to the case and settle the public's mind instead we are left with another "young battyman story" which reinforces the idea of paedophiles who will at all costs get ass.

Peace and tolerance.

H

"Keep it to Yuself mentality" on homosexuality part 2 .... on "str8 Jamaica

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In part one of this post I examined the general belief of Jamaicans on the keeping of homosexual tendencies private or to ones self as the only way people will begin to overlook the lifestyle to a certain extent and the music involved.


GO HERE for part 1 see also video on Ernie Smith's interview (MP who lashed out at gays in Parliament recently) where he expressed the same sentiments about gays keeping "filth" to ourselves. MP's Erratic Behaviour in Parliament using or abusing his parliamentary privileges to lambaste even the police.


Also see popular Jamaican homophobic words and their use


People like Shirley Richards and others in the anti-gay lobby get easy opportunities in the print media to spew their homophobic rhetoric without fail or question by the respective editors even when it is clear that garbage is written for example see Jamaicans homophobic? That's a lie! letter to the Gleaner she wrote recently. These folks would prefer us disappearing or retreating in our selves and yet they are members of church congregations and christian organisations if they had magic they would make us straight and win in the end.


Here are some things I think that are worth pondering as a nation in the utopic dream of an all straight Jamaica. These are supposed to be the heterosexual models the anti gay lobby clearly overlook when spewing their words of hate.


Start each point with the following sentence:
In a heterosexual Jamaica and in the interest of protecting children we:
  • Hatch kids like chickens only for our boys to end up homeless in some instances to to become windshield wipers, yet we (including the anti gay lobby snobs) have now set the police to lock them up because they are a nuisance.
  • have female teens who are poked, prodded and penetrated on certain modes of public transportation by grown men sometimes in full view of adults and nothing comes out of it except a baby or a HIV+ teen.
  • allow illegitimate children to be left in the care of the state only for them to die in a fire because they were "trouble makers" so who cares, an inquiry is carried out and no one in charged.
  • loose face and trust in Pastors due to several acts of indiscretion with teenage girls of note the gang rape that was taped and encouraged by a deacon recently as he looked on cheering the youngsters committing the acts.
  • watch pastors left with the care of teens fondles, caresses and has intercourse with three girls at once and gets a slap on the wrist by a light jail term, bail and very little public outrage.
  • hatch even more children as chickens seeing it's what we are here to do, replenish the earth they say, yet we have so many homeless kids as ticking time bombs and prime candidates for crimes in adult life with the children's homes & places of shelter already overcrowded.
  • Allow music that is openly sexually suggestive to ring out at any opportune time without supervision, then wonder why kids take the lyrics literally and go have casual sex.
  • have children only to teach them to hate homosexuals and be violent without even realising that your own child may be gay.
  • teach our children to be selective about "sin" so str8 sin is ok as long as it is not anything gay.
This is the heterosexual model that the anti gay lobby so vigorously defends with a bible beating us over our heads. What a mess and yet most gays and lesbians already just out of decency do keep our sexual preferences to ourselves but the anti gay lobby would love to be a fly on the wall or peek through my key hole to see who is pushing what in where or in the case of my lesbian friends who is dining on who as we are percieved as sex crazed perverts.


I suggest to the anti gay folks that you get to know someting before you criticise it.


We do keep it to ("weself") ourselves and the anti gay lobby and others should stay out of our damn business and leave us alone.


We all can live together if we only try.


H
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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 I examine the possible reasons why we have the homo-negative challenges on the backdrop of a missing multi-generational understanding of sexuality and the focus on sexual reproductive activity in the curriculum.

Newstalk 93FM's Issues On Fire: Polygamy Should Be Legalized In Jamaica 08.04.14



debate by hosts and UWI students on the weekly program Issues on Fire on legalizing polygamy with Jamaica's multiple partner cultural norms this debate is timely.

Also with recent public discourse on polyamorous relationships, threesomes (FAME FM Uncensored) and on social.

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Did U Find This Blog Informative???

Blog Roll

What do you think is the most important area of HIV treatment research today?

Do you think Lesbians could use their tolerance advantage to help push for gay rights in Jamaica??

Violence and venom force gay Jamaicans to hide

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

Hello readers,

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.

Donations presently are accepted via Paypal where buttons are placed at points on this blog(immediately below, GLBTQJA (Blogspot), GLBTQJA (Wordpress) and the Gay Jamaica Watch's blog as well. If you wish to send donations otherwise please contact: glbtqjamaica@live.com




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

Thanks again
Mr. H

Tel: 1-876-8134942
lgbtevent@gmail.com








Peace

Information & Disclaimer

lgbtevent@gmail.com

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 lgbtevent@gmail.com

Peace to you and be safe out there.

Love.

What to do if you are attacked (News You Can Use)

First, be calm: Do not panic; it may be very difficult to maintain composure if attacked but this is important.

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.

Emergency numbers
The police 119

Kingfish 811

Crime Stop 311


Steps to Take When Contronted or Arrested by Police

a) Ask to see a lawyer or Duty Council

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

This Day in History