Throne Speech: “No Place For Discrimination”

February 8, 2013

[Updated] The new Government confirmed in this morning’s [Feb 8] Throne Speech that they plan to introduce amendments to the Human Rights Act to include protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The relevant portion of the speech said:

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A number of groups combined to create a booklet calling for the change including The Centre for Justice, Amnesty International Bermuda, the Human Rights Commission, Rainbow Alliance of Bermuda, The Vision Ministry and Two Words and a Comma. The booklet was presented to the new

A bill calling for the amendment has been brought before the House before. In 2006, then-MP Renee Webb [PLP] a Private Members Bill to add sexual orientation as a protected grounds of discrimination under the Human Rights Act, which failed to pass.

You can view all our coverage of the 2013 Throne Speech here.

Update 12.23pm: The Centre of Justice has responded, their full statement follows below

We applaud Government’s commitment to amend the Human Rights Act 1981 to expand the protected grounds of discrimination to include sexual orientation and age to ensure fairness and dignity.

For those who have had no protection in law, these amendments are very welcome and long overdue. The inclusion of age and sexual orientation in the protected grounds of discrimination also means that the Human Rights Act moves us in the direction of conforming with fundamental human rights standards.

We look forward to seeing these long awaited amendments being introduced in the House in this session with great anticipation

Update 12.49pm: The Rainbow Alliance of Bermuda has issued a response to the news that the new Government palns to introduce amendments to the Human Rights Act to include protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation. It can be read here [PDF]

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  1. Portia says:

    As I posted on another article:-

    Unfortunately, despite what some groups would have you believe, protecting gay rights is not as simple as “two words and a comma”. It actually would involve a review of other current legislation as well. The Marriage Act, which sets out that marriage is between a man and woman, would also need to be amended, and you would also have to review the law regarding inheritance to ensure that there is nothing in the Succession Act that discriminates against a gay partner inherting from their gay partner, in the absence of a will.

    Not only that, but you would also have to review the current regulations that determine who can receive benefits of health insurance, life insurance, etc. This would involve consultation with the stakeholders who manage that business. Why is it fair that a person cannot put their elderly or out of work parent on their health insurance, but gays want the right to put their partner on their health insurance if they need it? Isn’t that discrimination on the grounds of age?

    And furthermore, if the Human Rights Act is amended, then you would need to put provisions in the law to ensure that religious organizations are not obligated to hire a gay person, if it conflicts with their religious doctrine. They have a right to freedom of religion and to not be discriminated against as well. Also, an individual should be not forced to rent their apartment to a gay couple if they don’t agree with it. It is THEIR home and property – why should Government have the right to dictate to people who they should have on their property? We all have freedom of conscience and if our conscience makes us feel strongly about something, that too deserves to be respected, as much as others are seeking respect for the way they are.

    It’s all about finding the right balance and respecting the rights of ALL. It cannot be accomplished overnight, and the gay community needs to understand that and realize that Bermuda is not like Canada or other liberal places, so they may not get everything they want.

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    • E says:

      Discrimination is discrimination - you can't say amend the act but then that people can still deny work/home to homosexuals if its the employers/owners 'choice' - That is the Definition of discrimination.

      Unbelievable.

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      • Hell in a handbasket says:

        So like in "Animal Farm", some people are more equal than others? You support religious rights, but gay rights trump religious rights? What a mess!

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        • Common Sense says:

          What on earth are you talking about?!! You can belong to any religious group you please. You can belong to a church that does not marry gays, just as some of our churches refuse to marry those who have divorced. Unless you are suggesting that your church wants to refuse to allow gays to attend, there is absolutely nothing that will result in gay right trumping religious rights. That is just a lot of hot air!

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          • Hell in a handbasket says:

            Again, you are not understanding my statement. In a court of law, if a person denies housing to a gay couple due to their religious beliefs, and they go to court. The religious person says it's their religious right and to go against it violates that right; the gay couple says they are having their right violated. So who wins? I believe the answer is obvious. It has happened in many other countries.

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    • Sandgrownan says:

      That's the whole point!

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    • Rich says:

      Your comparison with a person putting a parent on their health insurance is not all apt and is a complete red herring. You can't compare a straight person putting a parent on their insurance with a gay person putting their partner on. It's not like-for-like. Rather, a straight person CAN put a partner on their insurance, which is currently denied to a gay person. THAT'S the discrimination [BUT for what it's worth, the government will also be bringing in an amendment to cover age as well.]

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      • Portia says:

        Rich, I disagree. There may be some cases where a hetersexual partner receives benefits that a homosexual partner does not, but this is not always the case. My insurer, one of the big local companies, allows you to put a "spouse, common law partner or child" on your insurance, but no one else. This is their policy, BUT it is interesting to note that Bermuda does not actually recognize common law marriages.

        Here is a quote from an RG article last summer about estate planning:

        "Colloquially, the term ‘common law marriage’ is used to describe the relationship of a man and a woman who live together as husband and wife without having gone through a legal ceremony of marriage.

        The non-recognition, in Bermuda, of common law marriage however long-standing or permanent the relationship is a striking example of public policy designed to uphold the sanctity of marriage by the total denial of intestate succession rights to unmarried cohabitants in Bermuda.

        In the case of unmarried cohabitants, the surviving partner will have no claims, under Bermuda intestacy rules, to the estate of the deceased partner. There is no statutory remedy in Bermuda law, as there is for such persons in the United Kingdom (UK) under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975, as amended by the Law Reform (Succession) Act 1995."

        So, how can you say that homosexual couples are the only ones being discriminated against? If a man and woman live together for say, twenty years, and have kids, but the relationship is not recognized by law, and neither can receive an inheritance from the other, than how can gays say this is exclusive to them?

        Back to the insurance issue - this just illustrates what I said earlier, that the regulations and rules concerning insurance, benefits, etc. will all need to be reviewed and revamped with the stakeholders if the Government intends to follow through with equal rights for gay couples. This is no small task, and something that CANNOT be achieved with just two words and a comma. It is misleading to say so, and I wonder if Government and the groups who are advocating this have even thought it through at all.

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    • Truth Seeker says:

      Sorry Portia, but you are clearly wrong. The Human Rights Act only applies in rather limited areas such as employment and housing (where the onwer lives on the property), and any change in people's attitudes can take many many years. It took the Catholic Church about 400 years to finally apologize to Galileo for having the temerity to suggest that the earth revolved around the sun rather that what the Church erroneously believed was the other way around.

      Yes, we need to find the right balance and respect the rights of ALL, and we need to start with including "sexual orientation" in the Act. Believe it or not our society will not crumble! Just look at it this way. Nowadays we accept adulterers in our midst despite the fact that my bible makes clear what punishment they should receive, and we accept the children of unmarried mothers in our midst. The latter had to be included in the Human Rights Act.

      As a happily married heterosexual I strongly support equal rights for gays, but if you want me to respect you and your views, you need to start recognizing the right of those in our community who happen to be gay. It's called "equality". It will take time but we will slowly and steadily move forward despite those who wish to instill their so-called morality on others.

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      • Portia says:

        Truth Seeker - it is not a matter of instilling "so-called morality" on another person - it is a matter of a person having the right to adhere to a system of beliefs without the criticism or derision of others in society who believe that the other person's views are outdated, irrelevant, and it is just time to "move on". Your attitude is clearly a reflection of that. You talk about mutual respect yet their dismissiveness of the rights and the interests of others flys in the face of that.

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    • Judge Dredd says:

      So will this include rights for incest couples? Does this mean that incest couples will be able to finally marry now? Is this government going to decriminalise incest between consenting adults?

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      • Will says:

        once again Dredd what is your fascination with incest? how is it in any way similar to gay marriage? its between two consenting adults..how do children fit into this?

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        • Judge Dredd says:

          Incest is not, nor does it need to be, similar to gay marriage any more than gay "marriage" needs to be similar to marriage. So stop being a bigot. You ask me how does children fit in? Can't we all the same question about a gay couple who want to adopt children? Or are you sneakily trying to paint incest as other than two consenting ADULTS? As for my "fascination" with incest how dare you discriminate against a sexual orientation by labelling it a "fascination"? What's your fascination with homosexuality? See how bigoted you are? Incest is a sexual orientation, not a fascination you bigot. And when this amendment is passed we are coming out. Joy to the world! On what moral basis do you claim that incest between two consenting adults is wrong? Why should incest couples be excluded from this amendment? Discrimination is discrimination period.

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          • haha says:

            im all for gays being happy and all that there... but incest? thats completely different... that is wrong. you're just a sick weird sad fu***r.

            "hey im attracted to the same sex."

            hey im attracted to my mom."

            see the difference, strange one?

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            • Judge Dredd says:

              You all are really showing your @$$e$ (pun intended). If all orientations were the same we wouldn't be having this debate. How date you call me a sick weird, sad fu***r because of my sexual orientation? It doesn't matter what your preference is, it matters that others have the right to their preference no matter how much you don't like it. Gays keep it in the gender, we keep it in the family. AND?

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          • Familiar says:

            Actually, I believe you'll find incest is not an orientation, it's labeled a fetish at this time, and I don't believe there is any law against adults in that sort of relationship marrying, even though it is frowned upon due to the genetic issues should they have children.

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            • Judge Dredd says:

              I don't give a $h!t what you or anyone else "lables" the incest lifestyle. Who the £uck are you to say it's not an orientation when people have been brought into the world that way and genetically have an attraction to their own bloodline just like gays have attraction to their own gender? You're a bigot hypocrite! Look up Oedipus! It is an orientation from beginning of time. Love and marriage is not a fetish you £uck!n& hypocrite. We can say the same about homosexuality. Why don't you say that's a fetish too? We are coming out! Joy to the world.

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    • Chen Foley says:

      Hi Portia - You are confusing two separate issues, equality and non-discrimination. The Human Rights Act deals with discrimination. It is not deal with broader issues of equality.

      An amendment to the Human Rights Act will not require the type of consequential amendments you suggest. The Act only applies in relation to discrimination in the areas of housing, employment and the provision of goods, facilities and services.

      While the Succession Act is in my view outdated, and should be amended to give same sex couples the same inheritance rights as opposite sex couples, such a change is outside the ambit of the Human Rights Act.

      While on that point, I fail to see why anyone would get excited about a change to our succession laws that would grant committed same sex partners the same rights as heterosexual partners. I wouldn’t dream of dictating what should happen to your assets at the time of your death, or your partner’s death. I don’t see what business it is of you or anyone else to dictate what should happen to mine. In any event, this is an issue that must be dealt with separately, and would not require a consequential amendment as you suggest.

      Your comments about ‘common law’ heterosexual couples actually illustrate why some form of legal recognition must be given to same sex couples in Bermuda. If mixed sex couples want the rights associated with marriage they can always choose to get married. If for whatever reason they choose to remain in a relationship that does not accord legal rights associated with marriage that is their choice. Same sex couples do not have that option. That however, is a discussion for another day.

      Your insurance example does relate to the issue of discrimination. However, no consequential amendment is required to compel an insurance company to comply with an amendment to the Act that introduces protection on the basis of sexual orientation. Section 5 of the Act, which prohibits discrimination in relation to the provision of goods, facilities and services would be sufficient to do so following the addition of ‘two words and a comma’ in section 2(2)(a) – which addresses direct discrimination - and 2(2)(b)(i) and 2(2)(b)(ii) – which address indirect discrimination.

      You will know that given the implications of the proposed amendment there is likely to be lead-in time between the amendment being passed and coming into force. This gives organizations, like the insurance company in your example, the opportunity to consider how its policies and practices should be changed to ensure they are compliant, and to take legal advice to the extent they need to do so.

      The amendment does not infringe on the rights of religious people who do not agree with same sex relationships – I think it’s important to draw a distinction between those types of religious people and others who are LGBTQ affirming, because many of us are. I digress; following the amendment a religious person who doesn’t agree with same sex relationships will be in the same position, for example when renting an apartment, as they are when approached by an unmarried heterosexual couple.

      Also, there is already considerable protection built into the Act under section 6(6) and 6(8) that would protect a religious organization in the circumstances you cite. I would encourage you to read those.

      Discussions of LGBTQ rights lately are coloured by the issue of marriage given developments throughout the world, and most recently in the United Kingdom. It is important to view marriage as it is currently recognized as fundamentally a legal institution that, and I think we both agree on this discrete point, confers certain rights to individuals.

      Additionally though, many of us view the celebration of marriage as a religious sacrament. Different religious groups have differing views of the sacraments. My view, and the view of many like me, is that the sacraments of our faith are available to all. While I support marriage equality because I believe there should be equality under the law, my faith also compels me to support such unions because I believe we are all created with the capacity to love and are entitled to celebrate that love and commitment in a manner that is faith affirming.

      Same sex marriage is as much about religious rights and equality as LGBTQ equality. You will know from having followed the events in the United Kingdom that vocal support for the changes there came from religious groups that have historically been on the forefront of the fight for equal rights, namely the Methodists, the Quakers and the Reform and Liberal Jews.

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      • Judge Dredd says:

        I hope you'll fight the good fight for our rights to incest marriage too and not be a bigot on that matter because thus far everyone wants to ignore the incest couples' rights especially the LGBTQ's. Whenever I mention it they insult me and deny that incest couples should have rights. Two words and a comma includes incest couples so please be as passionate about their rights and stand up for them too as you promote the cause.

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  2. Sandgrownan says:

    Finally. We'll get us out of the middle ages yet....

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  3. Choice says:

    This simply means that they have stated that they will introduce the legislation - - it didn't say when - - the previous government made a similar pledge at one time (not as openly as this one, however "pun intended").

    I have no issues with the inclusion of sexual orientation - - however, I do not believe that same sex marriage should be legal in this country.

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    • Sorry Sir says:

      This is good news. Nobody brought up same-sex marriage, but since you did I'm perplexed as to why you suggest not. There's no harm in it. Let it be.

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  4. Bermudian says:

    Choice......What you think is going to happen next. Listening to the Sherry J talk show......England just approved same sex marraige!!!

    Don't do it!!!

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    • Clive Spate says:

      For you, and all others who are concerned about gay marriages there is a simple solution.
      Don't marry someone who is the same sex as you!

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  5. e says:

    @ choice - how can you have a name like 'choice' and then still advocate the denial of equal rights? You can't say one thing and then immediately negate the other. Equal rights are equal rights - and that should include the right to marry the one you love, regardless of sexual orientation.

    It's a big step for Bermuda to finally join with the rest of the world - but we can't be antiquaited in all things forever.

    We all need to move forward, together and support each other - regardless of sexual orientation.

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    • Choice says:

      I can have my name and believe what I choose - - it's my Human right, as you have suggested in your post.

      Having basic human rights and being discriminated again based on your sexual orientation is one issue - I view it separate from the marriage issue.

      As Portia stated above, the "marriage" issue is vast and has major implications. I believe that the definition of marriage - "a union between a man and a woman" should not be changed - period. Having some form of civil union which may have legal binding implications for gay couples is something that can be looked at.

      The institution of marriage should remain connected to the concept of religion, thus the gay aspect should be dealt in a different arena.

      And that is my choice.

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      • unclebob says:

        As the word marriage is not mentioned in the bible it is ironic that you want to 'keep' that institution connected to religion... Can you point me to where you get your religous-based idea that marriage is only for man and woman?

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        • Jus' Askin' says:

          Are you married?

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        • Hell in a handbasket says:

          Sure. Jesus said:
          4 He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, 5 and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

          Matt. 19:4-6

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          • Hell in a handbasket says:

            Also, for the record, the word "marriage" appears 33 times in the ESV translation of the Bible.

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            • Biased says:

              @Hell in a handbasket. The bible predates the word 'marriage'. The idea of marriage existed, the practice of being wed, you could, existed, but marriage such as it stands today isn't as closely related to the process that existed during biblical times as so many people like to say.

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      • Familiar says:

        "The institution of marriage should remain connected to the concept of religion, thus the gay aspect should be dealt in a different arena."

        While I understand what you're saying, I find myself wondering why you believe this.

        Many, many marriages in this day and age are not remotely connected to the church or religion, and yet are still referred to as marriage. Heck, my marriage was held in a church and officiated over by a minister and yet neither my husband nor I am religious people.

        The suggestion that the term marriage is still connected to a religious rite is deeply misguided.

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  6. Bermudian says:

    Now is the time to get out of the dark ages and join modern civilization. There should be zero tolerance for discrimination of any kind. We sent a clear message that we wanted change on December 17th and we got it. Lets not stop now...OBA please make this a reality. I don't condone same sex relationships, but I don't believe in denying someone of their rights. Whomever doesn't like what they see or hear should simply ignore it. STOP THE HATE....ONE LOVE BERMUDA!!!

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  7. Shame on the One Bermuda Alliance… as sexual orientation and gender identity are individually separate and distinct entities that need to be regarded and legislated as such the omission of gender identity/gender presentation from the throne speech sadly indicates that the OBA has no intention of protecting known gender-variant folk—cross-dressers, transgenders, transsexuals, and intersexuals—from discrimination with impunity on Bermuda…

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    • .am says:

      WTF. Gender variant? They're either male or female (depending on the day) and/or straight or gay (depending on their chosen gender and who they find attractive at that point). No need to take the piss.

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  8. Pastor Syl Hayward says:

    @ choice: "The institution of marriage should remain connected to the concept of religion," - so those who get married by the Registrar General are not married?

    Actually, when it comes right down to it, marriage is actually a business construct, which is why 'gay marriage' becomes so complicated. A spouse is is entitled to certain rights or benefits that include inheritance, insurance coverage, etc., etc. As I posted on another blog, discrimination against gay unions is alive and well here. Denying life partners hospital visitation, funeral attendance or the roof over one's head in a house that one has lived in for 50 years and helped pay for, are all abuses that have taken place right here.

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    • Choice says:

      Mrs. Hayward:

      I can admit that the legal definition of marriage will include those civil unions which are not performed in a religious ceremony or place of worship, which do not include religion or religious intent or concepts.

      Be that as it may, gay unions should not be defined as marriage - - I am not going to move from this position.

      And your example in your post above rings hollow to me as a gay issue - - I had an ex who became extremely ill - - I was not allowed to see them when in the hospital (as the family did not want me there) and I was not allowed to the funeral - - so that form of discrimination is universal - not just a "gay" thing - - so why should be make special allowances for one specific group?

      Choice is exactly that - a choice.

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      • tRaY says:

        When did you choose not to like those of your own sex? How old were you?

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        • Choice says:

          @tray:

          we are not going to have a healthy discussion on the "choice" versus "born" agrument. There is excess data to support both positions, thus it is a mute point. You will have our opinion, as do I.

          Let it go and focus on the topic of discussion.

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          • tRay says:

            There is no reputible scientific proof that says we choose our sexual orientation. You never made that choice and you know it. I bet you were still very young when you first noticed the girl in your class who you thought to be cute. You didn't weigh your options and decide against liking the boy in the corner. You were born this way and you know it.

            (if you are a girl then reverse the sexes in my example above)

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            • Choice says:

              Tray:

              I believe that humans are born with the ability to love whoever they choose - - as a child, I can say that I was attracted to both girls and boys - - people in general are beautiful. However, through my environment and my upbringing, I chose to ACT upon my attraction to the opposite sex.

              That's why I can say that I believe in choice - - note I didn't say that people can't believe that they are born a particular way - - I said that I don't believe it as my reality proved otherwise.

              Your right to believe what you want versus another person's belief system - - your human right.

              My choice was my choice - - what's yours?

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        • Choice says:

          @Tray:

          we are not going to have a discussion on the "choice" versus "born" argument. We both have our positions so it would be a mute point to discuss.

          If you stick to the topic at hand and read what I posted, you would see my direct line of thought and what I said.

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      • Will says:

        how does two people marrying have any effect on you? if you don't support gay marriage then don't marry someone of the same sex..simple.

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    • Judge Dredd says:

      Incest marriage is discriminated against here too.

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      • haha says:

        man... shut up. its because screwing a family member is wrong and think of the psychological effects of a child born of an incestuous couple.

        the kid will go to school and while everyone has different aunts, nieces, grandmas etc, that poor kid is gonna have his mom and grandma in one, or his sister and aunt in one.

        thats just f***** bro.

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        • Judge Dredd says:

          Isn't that the same as going to school with two mothers or two fathers bigot scum? Any psychological effects are due to society's intolerance and discrimination which you are displaying here. What moral framework informs you that incest is wrong? According to what? Who? You? Is that your religious belief you're trying to shove down incest couples' throat? Stop discriminating you bigot. You have no love in your heart. You know you are just secretly hiding your own desires for your parents and siblings. Joy to the world!

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  9. Jus' Askin' says:

    Meet with church leaders and support gays WOW

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  10. Hell in a handbasket says:

    So I have a question.

    Since now the law states that you cannot discriminate according to sexual orientation this must include all sexual orientations like pedophilia. Wow! Good stuff! Think I'm being silly? Sarah Goode, a senior lecturer at the University of Winchester and author of two major 2009 and 2011 sociological studies on paedophilia in society, says the best current estimate … is that ‘one in five of all men are, to some degree, capable of being sexually aroused by children. … There is a growing conviction, notably in Canada, that paedophilia should probably be classified as a distinct sexual orientation, like heterosexuality or homosexuality.

    Also, two eminent researchers testified to that effect to a Canadian parliamentary commission last year, and the Harvard Mental Health Letter of July 2010 stated baldly that paedophilia ‘is a sexual orientation.’

    Also, here is an "academic" mentioning:
    “Some academics do not dispute the view of Tom O’Carroll, a former chairman of PIE [Paedophile Information Exchange] … that society’s outrage at paedophilic relationships is essentially emotional, irrational, and not justified by science. ‘It is the quality of the relationship that matters,’ O’Carroll insists.”

    The nation is now open for everything out there. You do not want God, so now enjoy your desires.

    Isa 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!

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    • Industria says:

      ok, wow what?
      Comparing Homosexuality to Pedophilia is just retarded. Using a slippy slope argument is usually always invalid. Allowing same sex marriages will never allow for Pedophilia. Remember that time when blacks and whites couldn't marry? Im sure just like you they thought all hell would break lose. Has it? No.

      We are talking about a loving relationship between two CONSENTING ADULTS. Children cannot consent and thus Pedophilia will NEVER be accepted. Its a mental disease not a sexual orientation. This is the same for Beastiality and any other outlandish and more importantly, illegal sexual behaviour out there.

      Get off your religious high horse and let others live their lives. You don't have to love them but they've been around since the beginning of time and the world hasn't exploded yet.

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      • Hell in a handbasket says:

        Hold on! It's now considered a sexual orientation...haven't you read those scholars and scientists? You see, you're not being consistent. So children are not consenting...I agree, but what age? In Roman times it was considered OK to have sex with young children since it will teach them valuable skills. Give it time, it will happen. Also for the record, scholars and scientists are now even saying that bestiality is now a sexual orientation called zoophilia.

        Plus I did not mention anything about same sex marriages in the convo above; that is your own spin and a red herring.

        Think about it...you said that "Pedophilia will NEVER be accepted." Half a century ago they said the same thing about homosexuality.

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        • Zombie Apocalypse says:

          No, it's not a 'sexual orientation'.

          here is anothe rexample. You are an absolute idiot. That is not an orientation either. It's just a fact.

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        • Judge Dredd says:

          Incest between consenting adults, not pedophilia.

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    • Truth Seeker says:

      Leviticus 20:10
      “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death."
      The bible is clear. Adulterers should die. Adultery and adulterers are a big win for Satan! We need to restore morality in Bermuda. Who will join me in outlawing adultery so that we can all live in the path of righteousness?

      What? No-one? Not even the churches when they KNOW that adultery is an 'abomination' and is speficially metioned in the Ten Commandments!

      Surely there is something wrong with this picture. Oh wait. Adultery is perfectly legal in Bermuda (as is homosexuality) and no-one would ever be foolish enough to blame our immorality on adulterers even though they vastly outnumber those in our community who happen to be gay.

      Some might call this hypocritical, but hey, we have an awful lot of hypocrites here in Bermuda.

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      • Portia says:

        Actually, no, adultery is NOT legal in Bermuda. I worked in the courts and handled divorce cases for a while. You can be named as a co-respondent in a divorce case and sued for breaking up someone's marriage.

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        • Zombie Apocalypse says:

          Portia, adultery is not illegal.

          You might have worked in a court but I guarantee you are no lawyer.

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        • Chen Foley says:

          Hi Portia - While adultery is a ground for divorce that does not however make the act illegal. You cannot be sent to prison, fined or otherwise sanctioned by a criminal court for engaging in adultery.

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      • Hell in a handbasket says:

        You accuse us of putting everything in one basket and being hypocritical and yet you are doing the same. Plus your knowledge of Bible hermeneutics is lacking.

        There are many churches who talk about adultery being sin and harmful and preach it from the pulpit. We do condemn sexual immorality since that is what God mentions.

        However, there is one thing we do agree on. The solution is not legislation...it is a changed heart that is need. Which is what Jesus talked about, And He provided freedom through being the One to die in our stead on the Cross of Calvary.

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    • Pastor Syl Hayward says:

      I don't care whether you are gay or straight, IMHO the only sex you should be having is consensual sex - in other words where both parties consent freely and without coercion (a forced or manipulated "yes" is not a yes).
      That automatically excludes all pedophiles, since the law does not consider one able to give consent until the age of 16. That also automatically excludes all bestiality, since animals cannot give consent.

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    • Judge Dredd says:

      Incest between two consenting adults is included in the amendment. Not paedophilia which is abuse against a child.

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  11. In Mark's Opinion says:

    We are all Human Beings, but same sex marriage is a Big win for Satan, who is teaching that Bad is Good, Wrong is Right, Hell is Heaven and God is Satan.

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  12. cba says:

    The irony is that plp claims to be a party that represents equality yet the oba had to change the law

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  13. The OBA will not make the changes that they promise. Look at how much they have lied already. That said, Im happy for all of the homosexuals who will now get to enjoy the basic human rights as every other human being. I also dont think that bermuda is ready for same sex marriage as many bermudains are still "brainwashed" (for lack of a better word) by religeon. Once logic prevails most people will accept the fact that everyone deserves to love who they like, and be in a civil RECOGNISED union.

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    • Jus' Askin' says:

      Brainwashed by religion WOW
      Yet marriage is the union of man and woman, religious base idea.
      But homo's want to get married.
      So these people choose to ignore other religious teaching, but they want to marry.
      That is a mockery of religions and that is unacceptable.
      You can not choose to conduct yourself in any manor you wish and expect to reap the benefits of others that choose to do right.

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      • Sorry Sir says:

        Marriage is not a religious concept. If it were, it would be confined to a specific religion, yet marriage is something that is practiced all over the world in many different cultures and religions. In fact, historically, it is thought by many historians that marriage could have started by men wanting exclusive sexual access to one or more women.

        If marriage was a religious concept, wouldn't it be the church that decides whether same-sex marriages are allowed within that religion?

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      • Truth Seeker says:

        Please read my post about the utter hypocrisy of some religious folk who rant on about "homo's" wanting to get married, while saying nothing about adulteres who are married but are constantly committing what is clearly prohibited in the bible and is spefically including in the Ten Commandments. To quote Jus' Askin' "That is a mockery of religions and that is unacceptable"!!

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      • Extraordinary1 says:

        HAHAHA!!! it is sooo funny you religious fanatics are not right about much nowadays. Religion as we can see from any country's history and present can have disastrous effects on the people in their communities. I hate when religious people think they are the best cause they believe in invisible crap that has not be ever proven to be real!!! GET A LIFE!! I would never ever ever rent to them!!! TAKE THAT!! see how angry you are now that someone doesn't like you!!!!!!!!

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        • Hell in a handbasket says:

          Actually I am not angry. Jesus commands use to love and pray for those who hates us. So I just want you to know that I love you even though you hate me and I pray that God blesses you. Take care.

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      • whatever says:

        Religion has no place in law, politics or human rights.

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        • whatever says:

          And by that it should not be basis to determining any of those. Obviously I am assuming freedom of religion as a given.

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        • Hell in a handbasket says:

          And yet for the most part in the West it was a Judeo-Christian framework i.e. worldview which gave most of your laws.

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    • Truth Seeker says:

      Will "Keep it Real" keep it real and make a formal apology when Government makes the necessary amendment to the Human Rights Act to include"sexual orientation".

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  14. ohyea! says:

    now thats Government !

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  15. ohbill says:

    I have too been discriminated against, for smoking pot(once in a while)and lost my job.I never smoked on job, only in the so called privacy of my home.I was a good worker and never missed time except a couple of sick days.I worked for them for 9 years,they started drug testing 2 years ago and now I'm unemployed with children and a mortgage.WHERE ARE MY HUMAN RIGHTS?!!!

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    • Truth Seeker says:

      Sadly, what you did was to break the law. Being gay is not against the law in Bermuda. I agree with you that we need to review and amend our law relating to drugs and decriminalizing drug use, butthat's another battle to be waged.

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    • Sorry Sir says:

      You are absolutely right. An employer should not be able to fire a person because they failed a drug test. Other options should be sought out first. This should be a new law.

      And it is my belief that marijuana should be legal. It's ridiculous that one can get drunk every night and "That's ok because you'll still keep your job." but not ok to have the occasional smoke and pig out on some munchies for the night while watching a movie.

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      • Edmund Wells says:

        Sorry Sir-

        Right now, possessing or using marijuana is against the law. Ohbill made a choice (!) to break the law. Ohbill has to deal with the consequences. Why should an employer NOT have the right to fire an employee who breaks the law? If YOU were the business owner, with your money and time invested in the business, would you want to be unable to fire someone who broke the law?

        Whether or not it is a good law is a completely separate question. Maybe it should be changed. But right now, it's the law. If you want it to be changed, or stricken- work with your representative to get it changed.

        But until then, it's still the law. Ohbill chose to break the law. Why is that so difficult to see?

        EW

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  16. The Devils Isle says:

    The World as we know it will never be the same and I say that to say this: This Gay and Lesbian trend is all the Devils doing and interfering with people starting a real family. Look at how various different countries are supporting Gays and Gay rights, marriage etc.. They are chopping and changing the laws to justify their Evil wickedness as though is right.. In other words they are changing the laws around to make sure you can get incarcerated or prosecuted for speaking your mind or beating the living crap out of someone who is gay. Its amazing what people with $$$$ can do. Dear Lord if there’s ever a time we have needed you most now is the time there are too many people being taken away from us too soon and the Devil is spreading his wickedness we need peace and love worldwide…

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    • .am says:

      Starting a real family? LOLOLOL.

      So um. How many children are born out of wedlock? And how many single mothers are raising children? And how many men have more than three children with three different women?

      When 'God' next acts out and does his next little firey brimstone stunt, I pray you're the first to go.

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    • Familiar says:

      You know, this was said by many people when laws were changed after the abolition of slavery.

      Those people were as misguided as you are now.

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  17. pabear says:

    well ohbill all i can say is you and i will be smoking pen%^ long before we will smoke a joint

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  18. Familiar says:

    You know what gets me is that no one is saying they want to force churches to perform marriages for gays, lesbians, etc. Yeah, there'll be some extremists who'll propose this, but most people won't.

    If a church doesn't want to perform a marriage, any marriage, it shouldn't have to, straight marriages included. The Catholic church certainly has it's restrictions.

    What is wanted is the right to have a marriage period. In a church that accepts such things. On the beach. In a garden. Wherever the heck, and that the two people involved, have all the rights, benefits and obligations as opposite sex couples.

    And if you really want to stop and think about it, gay people have been getting married in churches for years, just not to a same sex partner. In the past there were many gays or lesbians who followed societies expectations and had marriages, children, etc.

    I'd love to know which is a worse sin. Lying your entire life to conform, or loving someone of the same sex.

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  19. Juice says:

    Why so much scorn towards homosexuality in particular?? I know that there are passages in the bible that condemn homosexuality, but there are many others that condemnations in there as well. The bible teaches that no sin is greater than another. Why dont we have as much scorn towards all the other "sinners" around us? Would you refuse work or accommodation to an adulterer or someone who bears false witness? Or maybe someone who doesnt keep the sabbath? Lord knows, most bermudians "sin" in some way on a regular basis. Why dont we have as much scorn towards them all?

    Its really unfortunate that people would use the bible to deny certain basic rights to another human. This was done long ago during slavery. White christian slave masters used the bible to justify why slavery was "okay". And hey, they had good argument, the bible does very much justify slavery.

    Food for thought. :)

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  20. Michael says:

    You can debate this till the cows come home. The lgbt community put their faith in the PLP to pass the appropriate legislation to address this issue. No results. I have little faith that the OBA will pass anything either.

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