Mob beats cross-dresser
Melee in Falmouth; wig, form-fitting blouse ripped off
HORACE HINES, Observer staff reporter
Saturday, April 28, 2007
FALMOUTH, Trelawny - A cross-dreser was set upon and severely beaten by a mob in Falmouth's Water Square yesterday morning.
Police who were called to the scene had to fire warning shots to disperse the stone-throwing, stick-wielding mob, which succeeded in tearing off the man's black-and-white form-fitting blouse and jet black wig....
"B***y boy fe dead," persons among the mob shouted.
The sentiments were echoed by the rest of the riled-up crowd.
"Falmouth no pet no b***y boy. We no want none a them bout here," one woman yelled.
After the mob dispersed, the victim was whisked off in a police service vehicle, much to the disapproval of the crowd who rushed upon the vehicle demanding the man's release.
"If you ever did see him. Him dress hotter than you and me," one young girl was overheard telling her friend.
"Nu worry man, we gi him a proper [beating]," one man said proudly….
Yesterday's beating was the second such in a month in western Jamaica. In the previous incident, several men alleged to be homosexuals were chased, beaten and stabbed, resulting in one of them being hospitalised, during the Supreme Ventures carnival on Gloucester Avenue, Montego Bay. The men were said to have gone onto the stage and gyrated on each other, angering the patrons.
But the newspaper had this editorial the next day, maybe there is some hope.
Barbarity has no place here
Sunday, April 29, 2007
The graphic images accompanying the lead story in yesterday's Daily Observer should be cause for great concern, not to mention evidence with which to initiate a prosecution against those pictured beating and kicking a cross-dresser in Falmouth's Water Square on Friday morning.
For the matter of mob rule seems to have become par for the course in Jamaica, and as far as this space can remember, no one has ever been brought to book for the vigilante killings of alleged offenders.
According to yesterday's story, the cross-dresser was set upon and beaten by an angry crowd that found his (or possibly her) attire offensive.
Had it not been for the intervention of the police, who escorted the victim to hospital, the incident - which in itself constitutes the common law crimes of assault and battery - could well have culminated in murder.
These considerations seemed not to have occupied the barbarian horde which stationed itself at the hospital awaiting the victim's release, presumably to pick up where it had left off.
Apart from highlighting the citizenry's callous disregard for law and order, we believe yesterday's story points to a breakdown on several other societal fronts.
Take the matter of employment. How on earth can anyone who is about making a productive contribution to society afford the sort of time described in yesterday's story to pursue the fortunes of a cross-dresser?
Is it that those who stationed themselves at the public hospital awaiting the victim's release had nothing planned for the day? No job? No children to take care of? Were they just loitering in Water Square waiting for a cause on which to expend their energies?
Then there are the matters of common sense, values, attitudes, basic education and respect for life, which myriad private and public agencies are responsible for promoting.