A Christian couple opposed to homosexuality had lost a battle over their right to become foster carers earlier this year in the UK.
Eunice and Owen Johns, 62 and 65, from Derby, both Jamaicans who moved to the UK said the city council did not want them to look after children because of their traditional views.
The pair, who are Pentecostal Christians, say they were "doomed not to be approved". they appeared alongside Lawyers' Christian Fellowship spokesperson anti sodomy laws decriminalization advocate Shirley Richards. The topic of discussion aired on the Love FM 101 weekly program sponsored by the Jamaica Theological Seminary was the recent comment and or threat by the United Kingdom Prime Minister David Cameron on the withdrawal of aid to countries who do not remove or repeal anti sodomy/buggery laws on their books.
Miss Eunice Johns one half of a Jamaican couple who have lived in the United Kingdom for just over forty years said that the couple wanted to continuing running their foster care activity while they were full time employed in total they fostered around fifteen children from the early nineties. They had another business outside of that which was short lived so in 2006 the couple decided to foster care as a business but when they went to sign up and go through the legal wranglings they were naive to the sexual orientation law, " ...we didn't know there was a sexual orientation act ...." she continued " we were so naive and so is a lot of Christians, we seem to think that politics has nothing to do with us, well politics has everything to do with us because its affecting us as parents, we applied to foster just to be told we had to go the line of an assessment and while we were going down there was a question, no it wasn't a question it was a scenario, they the, the social worker er um put a scenario to us she said, what if a child of eight comes to you and tell you they were homosexual what would you tell them? so I said I don't think a child of eight would know their sexuality but they said yes, so I said well I couldn't tell a child of eight that it is alight to be homosexual, she said you would have to, you would have to tell children it's alright to be homosexual because these issues that children has when you do not explain to them what is happening and then it can mess them up later life.
Mr. Johns was asked to add to the above and he continued that he felt bad after looking after three generations he explained how the fostering worked, He said when the orientation matter was raised he said although they were bible believing Christians they would have worked with the social worker however the law was brought in through the back door in 2006.
Shirley Richards past President of the Lawyers' Christian Fellowship, LCF when asked about her point of view she began by saying that people were clamoring to do what they want to do in the privacy of their bedrooms but the host interjected that the current Prime Minister Andrew Holness said that what happens in private has public effects to which Miss Richards agreed:
Eunice Johns agreed: "it came to England overnight, we didn't realize cause we had fostered before we had fostered 15 children we didn't know about the new sexual orientation act."
The host of the program before going to the break set up the stage for the discussion hinting to the effects on countries who have "legalized homosexuality" she also tried to present a tolerance card by saying "we are not talking about people shouldn't have their rights, we not going against people who shouldn't have their rights but what would legalization do in Jamaica, would it prevent the paedophiles from buggering our little boys?"
After the break it was instructive to hear the host of the program mention in a question she posed describing us as "The homosexuals" and "The Gays and lesbians" she said that persons were touting for the legalization of homosexuality. She again after the break repeated her stance on her version of tolerance, "I just want to make it very clear here we are not by any chance saying that if anybody knows of anybody who is involved in homosexuality they should be destroyed, they should be beaten, they should be mobbed, I've had to work with persons like that," Shirley Richards concurred "In fact we want to say that that type of response is absolutely wrong (host - "exactly") and we want to condemn it" (host - "if you know of anybody at all it is not in your right to call out for anything and want to make that very clear.") Ms Richards ended "Absolutely" The host continued in saying she lectures on mental issues and she drew inference to suicides, mental problems, HIV/AIDS high incidence and relationship problems in the same gender loving community in countries where homosexuality is legalized.
Mrs. Shirley Richards answered the following: "....one point I need to make though is that what our law penalises is anal penetration, you know, it's sodomy which is penalised by our laws in Jamaica, there is no law saying, you nuh the law just goes straight to that."
The host however either not understanding what was pointed out by Miss Shirley or that was a gratuitous move repeated a question posed before imputing that homosexuality is illegal, "Would legalizing homosexuality prevent paedophiles, because I've heard the report on the news the victims support unit that many of the little boys age 12 years old they need therapy, would would legalizing this stop anything like that?"
Shirley Richards responds: "I can't see why, I can't say that there is any direct correlation between the repeal of that law and a lessening in the incidence of abuse of minors, I can't see why, I can't see that logically that would follow, I really can't see it, what is needed is for these people, these men to be brought to justice, you know as you mentioned there is still a problem in these countries, look um there is a football coach who was who was, who was fired from his job what was it? at University of Pennsylvania, you know in a country in which there is no sodomy law, there are no sodomy laws in the states of the US and um just recently just a couple days ago he was found guilty of having molested a number of children over the years so to say that if you repeal the buggery law that the incidence of child abuse in this particular area would go down I can't see that that would necessarily follow because it still happens in these countries in which there is no such law."
The host posed a question to the Johns who were present in studio as well: "Mr & Mrs Johns would it then mean like in Britain a man can marry a man a woman can marry a woman then who would have the children? (all laughing) Mrs Johns: "yes I know" Mr. Johns: "It's happening already, a law is coming like Elton John for instance, you know." (host - "so women soon can't find husbands,come let's talk") Mrs. Johns continued: "well yes that what happen and the Bible says go out and replenish two men cannot do that neither can two women so you know that where we know it's wrong, it is wrong the Bible tells us first and foremost that it is wrong, alot of people sometimes say that this is old testament it tells you quire clearly in the new testament that it is wrong for two man to sleep together, two men and two women to sleep together, you know cause you cannot have children, two men cannot have children and two women cannot have children."
Shirley Richards interjects: "You know what too Mrs. White (the host's name called for the first time) what they need to explain to Jamaica David Cameron needs to explain to the Jamaican people you see is why is it HIV/AIDS is still, is out of control (host - "in the countries in which...yes yes") in those countries .. maybe they need to reinstate the law (host - "France has one of the highest cases of HIV where it has been legalized for so many years") among that population among the msm population, the highest incidence."
The host, one Mrs. Blossom White asked if could we suffer and loose financial aid if we don't legalize it in Jamaica? Mr. Johns replied: "That's the problem is the government going to hear the British law? (host- "yes yes") aah if they do and the cutting of funds that means they are open for all kinds of things .. and the Bible say in Leviticus 8 that it is abomination." The host continued that the present Prime Minister that people's private actions have public effects. Miss Richards responds: "Let me tell you why (host - 'yes yes") let me give you an example of that over two years we spent approximately $594 million I think it was on just prevention of HIV/AIDS, you understand? in a country which is strapped for cash and this is just prevention you know, 594 over a two year period, when you look at it the doctors have said anal sex anal penetration ids the most efficient way of passing on the HIV/AIDS virus, shouldn't we then be warning these people against these types of activity? eeeh (host - "..and the mental pressure")
In closing the host asked the guests to give their final words:
Mr Johns: "Be more opened minded and make sure you know what's happening in the world because these are laws being brought in the back door and you just find about these things happening until the challenges, you need to be more aware."
Mrs. Johns: "As Christians out there as people in Jamaica be ye very careful because we in England alot of us as Christians sort of sit and says it doesn't affect us but it affect all of us in the end and whenever you go to get a job or anything like this so many people in jobs in England they cannot speak out against homosexuality, we were fortunate we didn't have a job, we were retired people and we could speak but there are so many people that have been muzzled in the job places, so be very careful and Christians stand up for what you believe in, stand up like the three Hebrew boys, stand up and say God will deliver." Mr. Johns intervened: " ...and we are not into gay bashing (host - "no we not we not destroying anybody, that is their right as it were.") don't go out there and do things, you know?
Shirley Richards: "Yes I would say to Jamaicans just find the ways of letting the government know of your disapproval with the repeal of the buggery laws"
Prayer by Mr. Johns ............ program ends
So we see folks we have a long way to go it seems with old misconceptions and confusing paedophilia related to us is still ripe in the minds of the traditional Christian community and some members of the legal profession.
Peace and tolerance