Dancehall artists and the gay community are like oil spill on a rough sea. They both dislike each other.
But over the years dancehall artists have toned down their anti-gay lyrics after mounting pressures from gay rights groups overseas. But that doesn’t mean dancehall is anymore acceptable of gays.
A few dancehall artists are voicing their concerns about what they see as an increasing number of homeless gay prostitutes in the industrial section of Kingston called New Kingston.
“That kind of livity need fi get rid of because mi neva born inna dat deh type a Jamaica. The place neva stay suh, so the authorities have to find a way to take that out of the youth dem eye. New Kingston is a place where a lot of people go to clubs and so forth, so it’s just not right. They are always saying artiste fighting against them, suh how wi a avoid dem and dem naah avoid wi? Dem fi guh far up into the woods wid dem thing deh,” Iyara says.
Former Portmore empire artist and Vybz Kartel protege, Gaza Slim, also voiced her concern.
“They should get them off the street and get somewhere put them because to me, they don’t live anywhere,” Gaza Slim says. “They should get them some counselling and put dem inna school and get them off the road. I Gaza Slim do not support homosexuality, but at the end of the day we are all humans. It looks tacky and its prostitution. Most of them are little homeless boys who live same place on the streets. It happens everywhere, but we need to do something about it because it looks really bad, get them some trade because they are parentless and homeless.”
Perhaps because dancehall artists have taken their attention off gays, homosexuals in Jamaica are feeling more comfortable coming out the closet.
We recently saw dancehall artist Pamputae kissing another females and reggae veteran Diana King also came out the closet with a lengthy statement via her Facebook page.
Despite toning down their lyrics, some dancehall stars continues to receive pressure overseas from gay rights activists.
Just last year Beenie Man released a video on YouTube apologizing to the gay community for his past anti-gay lyrics. Despite making such a bold move, some gay rights groups in the United States threatened to protest and a few of the dancehall star shows.
Capleton also saw a few of his shows in the United States cancelled last year due to mounting pressure on the organizers from gay rights groups.