Photo Project Focuses On Same Sex Marriage

January 21, 2019 | 69 Comments

A recent documentary style photography project by Sam Sutton dubbed Hail To Bermuda aims to “explore Bermuda’s change in same sex marriage laws.”

The project includes a number of photographs, along with statements from the people who were depicted, allowing each to speak their mind.

Sutton said, “Bermuda is the only country in the world to have legalised same sex marriage, only to later reverse the decision. The project depicts those who are key in the fight to once again legalise same sex marriage, alongside those that the decision most directly affects.

“The final series of work is a series of 15 portraits, interspersed with statements from those depicted, and screenshots that allude to the state of LGBT rights in Bermuda.”

Some of the project’s portraits, along with their associated statements, follow below.

Greg Godwin-DeRoche, pictured with his husband, Winston Godwin-DeRoche:

Greg and Winston Bermuda January 2019

“It’s literally just a law, but it means so much more then just being a law.”

Kevin Dallas:

Kevin Dallas Bermuda January 2019

“Bermuda today is not the Bermuda I grew up in. It may not have been a place I wanted to live.”

Tony Brannon:

Tony Branon Bermuda January 2019

“A petition, a non- binding referendum, 3 court cases later and we are still fighting for Marriage Equality in Bermuda. I have no doubt that LOVE will win.”

Maryellen Jackson:

Maryellen Jackson Bermuda January 2019

“My decision to become a part of the Same Sex Marriage Supreme Court battle was born of a realization that if I wanted to have the right to marry, it was up to someone to fight the fight, and why not me? Since the first court case many have expressed admiration for my courage and yes, while courage was necessary to stand up for my rights and the rights of others for me is was more than that. You see I’ve learned that if you want something bad enough, you must be prepared to stand up for it, so I did.”

Chai T:

Chai T Bermuda January 2019

“In choosing the journey of strength…I look to reverse the power of social consciousness with one kindness at a time…walk in harmony always.”

Mike Hind:

Mike Hind Bermuda January 2019

“Marriage creates a family. This means that we bring someone from outside our family INTO our family, to share the rights and privileges being a family member enjoys. It means we choose to share our lives with someone in a very real way, a very legal way.

“To say we should deny people equal access to these rights needs to have a very good reason. We, as society DO deny people equal access to rights, but we always do it with a reason behind it. There is simply no reason to deny people this access. At all.

“Just please let people be a family. It may not look like yours, but that’s OK. I’m sure there are lots of families that don’t look like yours. Just love them. Just support them. They’re people.”

Hannah Collins:

Hannah Collins Bermuda January 2019

“Bermuda has a huge opportunity for leadership, especially in the Caribbean region, with the case for marriage equality. We are just a tiny island, but our influence ripples out much further than our pink shores.

“I have gay and lesbian friends who have gotten married. Do you know what happened afterward? Society didn’t crumble. Family structure didn’t disintegrate. Not at all. Let’s let love win.”

Felix Todd:

Felix Todd Bermuda January 2019

“A world in which people are allowed to love and care and form bonds with each other is only going to lift all of our lives . So much great music I play and people dance to has been made by gay artists . It’s important to me that I honour that contribution and try to support the cause.”

Adrian Hartnett-Beasley, pictured with his husband Shane Hartnett-Beasley, and his son Greyson Hartnett-Beasley:

Beasleys Bermuda January 2019

“Wesley Methodist Church was where our overseas marriage was blessed and where our son Grayson was baptised. Shane and I are both Christian and we are both gay and we do not believe those two things to be mutually exclusive; it is important to have Wesley as a part of our lives as well as for Grayson to experience the love and support that comes from a congregation that respects and affirms us as a family.”

Chris Matvey, pictured with his husband Michael O’Connor:

Chris and Michael Bermuda January 2019

“In the most unlikely of places to find each other, we did. We fell in love at first sight and seven years later we are still just as in love. No matter the political climate in Bermuda, we will always be in love. No one will convince us otherwise. As we look into the future, we hope for understanding and acceptance, but in the present we will just carry on loving each other. Love is Love and it will always be that way.”

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  1. Chris Nelson says:

    Wonderful!

    • On one hand we are not associated with the Caribbean and on the other hand you want us to be an example, make up your mind.
      Even if we choose to normalize this lifestyle, the Caribbean will not except it because they are more intuned with their African Roots and not influenced by this Eurocentric ideology.

      • Mike Hind says:

        Don’t you ever get sick of being wrong about this subject?
        No matter how many times we prove you wrong, you keep pushing this false, bigoted, hateful narrative, while hiding like a coward behind the hood of anonymity.
        Why do you keep doing that?
        How does this affect you in any way, other than not being able to oppress other people?

      • Chris Nelson says:

        It’s not a lifestyle. ‘Eurocentric ideology’. What on earth are you talking about? You know we all came from Africa, right?

  2. Anna says:

    This is such an uplifting and positive project. Well done to all involved. I hope it goes some way to revealing to those vitriolically opposed to SSM the human side of this argument.

  3. Cow polly says:

    It makes you wonder what all the fuss is about, homosexuality doesn’t define these people, a drive for equality does.

  4. Ryan says:

    Love is love? Just be careful with that statement.
    Would we say that is acceptable and just let it be, based on the premise that “love is love”?
    What if I said, I love another man’s wife, I should have the right to marry her because “love is love”? Say I go and propose and she or the courts says no you cannot marry this woman? Should I file for discrimination because you have denied my (lustful) desire to wed someone else’s wife?
    See there are dividing lines, and often times it fringes on lust (our strong sexual desire for someone), which often gets confused with love. Been there, done that. Don’t get me wrong, this is also the case with many heterosexual relationships as well.
    Lets be honest, how many times have we heard someone say “I love him/her”, then 9 months later, after the baby comes, they can’t stand the sight of each other? Would we define that as love or was it simply lust – all caught up on the moment?
    But back to the point at hand – in other jurisdictions, there are links of problems or even polygamous marriages with SSM/LGBTQ+ advocates.
    Just be careful what you wish for…do you want to look back 20-30-40 years down the road and say, “I wish I had done more to stop this”? This isn’t just about today – it is about the future. What we allow today paves the way for what our children/grandchildren/great-grands to come will be subject to in the future. Better to stop something in its infancy, than when it is already established; isn’t that simple Biology?
    Just be careful little eyes what you see.

    • Me says:

      What kind of ignorance did I just read.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Nothing in your post is even a little bit relevant.

      It is a screed against polygamy – and this an already debunked “slippery slope” argument… nobody has asked for polygamy on any sort of major level – and has nothing to do with Marriage Equality.

      Your claim of “there are links of problems or even polygamous marriages with SSM/LGBTQ+ advocates” is presented without any evidence and is basically gibberish.

      Your analogy of “I love another man’s wife…” is also ridiculous – and very telling of your position, as you ignore the other man’s – and, in fact, his wife’s – desires and wishes. It’s all about what YOU want.
      So, no… you can’t marry another man’s wife while she’s still married and nothing in this topic of Marriage Equality would allow for that, now, or down the road. Your entire premise is wrong, both factually and morally, due to its insane level of dishonesty.

      • rumsoak says:

        Mike, have you not learned by now that you are not going to change the minds of people who have been taught as a child what to believe ? Why argue with these people ?

        • Mike Hind says:

          Couple reasons:

          To set the record straight. I refuse to let misinformation stand.

          For those that may be reading that aren’t sure what’s right or not.

          For the folks in the lgbt community that may be thinking that they’re alone and that no one stands with them.

          I post to show that I stand with my brothers and sisters who are being discriminated against for absolutely no reason.

          • Fact says:

            Aww that’s so decent of you Mike and I hope you appreciate that I stand with my brothers and sisters who follow Christ and we are against this abomination of the natural and proper order of things! Amen!

            • Mike Hind says:

              “Fact”, isn’t honesty part of your religion? Isn’t integrity part of it?

              How can you hold a position that demands that you lie and be a hypocrite in order to defend it and still think that you’re following Christ?

              And do you think it’s ok to demand that our country, as a society, follow the rules of your religion, even if they don’t believe the same thing you do?
              Would you be ok with that happening to you? Would you think it’s right and good to be forced to follow the rules of someone else’s religion? Would you accept being denied equality because someone from a different religion said you were less worthy than everyone else?

              I know you won’t answer this with any sore of sane response, because of course you wouldn’t be ok with any of that. You just don’t mind it when it happens to other people… when it’s you doing the oppressing.

              That’s really sad, and so bad for our island.

    • Its about time says:

      We are NOT talking about Polygamy. We are talking about two people who want a partnership based on love, respect of the law and equal rights.. just as other couples are entitled to.

      “I am a woman and I love him, we want a family and protection through the law and church.”
      How is this different than “I am a woman and I love her and we want a family unit protected through the law and support of the church.”
      ???

      Think through the hateful things done to others because they are different: Jews, Blacks, African tribes, Women…lets just recognise we all have the same/EQUAL desire for love, and this Marriage act follows to support our recognition that we are equal in this way.

    • inna says:

      You should ask yourself why you want to get married in the first place?

    • Chris Nelson says:

      So looking back in 20-30-40 years, what possible problems do you think allowing SSM may have caused? Not that it has anything to do with this article, but what, in your opinion, is wrong with polygamy, if it is between consenting adults?

    • Johnny B says:

      You sure do put a lot of effort into nothing. Don’t you have work you should be doing?

    • Mike Hind says:

      I missed this little gem the first time through…
      “ Say I go and propose and SHE or the courts says no you cannot marry this woman? “ emphasis mine…

      You ask if you should sue for discrimination if SHE says no…

      You really don’t understand what consent is, do you?

      This is the best example of everything that is wrong with the anti-equality side. Pure, unadulterated arrogance, demanding that everyone do things that and how THEY want.

      It’s so bad for our country.

    • Mike Hind says:

      And, as usual, a whole lot of nonsense but off they run, refusing to back it up.

      If your position is so strong, why can’t you stand up and defend it?

  5. Stop says:

    This is insane and the Devil at work! It is not of nature for men to bed down with men and women with women! Stop the insanity and this constant media coverage of gays celebrating love! Try celebrating Christ!

    • Mike Hind says:

      You want to stop the media coverage? Leave them alone and they’ll shut up. Let them be equal and they’ll stop speaking against inequality.
      As for your religious arguments? They’re irrelevant and illegal. We are protected against people’s religion being forced on us as laws.

      • Poor says:

        We will see how you repent to God when your judgement day comes Mr Hind! And he will meet your punishment at that time! Be blessed

        • Come Correct says:

          I’m going to ask him why he gives bone cancer to children.

          • Keepin' Real!...4Real! says:

            He does not…you and anyone else that thinks like that has absolutely no knowledge of the creator or his creations…that is why your life is in turmoil with the trials and tribulation you face everyday…everything happening today has been prophecised yet people cannot see or do not want to accept reality…for it frightens them…We are ALL created equal…but only the STRONG shall survive…This is earth… not a utopia.

            • Mike Hind says:

              All of this is irrelevant.

              Government isn’t allowed to make laws based on one group’s religious rules.

              That’s in the Constitution and it protects ALL of us.

              You are absolutely allowed to believe whatever you want.

              You just aren’t allowed to demand that we hurt people based on those beliefs.

            • Chris Nelson says:

              Surely if your god is all powerful he should be able to prevent bone cancer in children. Either he isn’t able to, in which case he is not all powerful, he is able to but doesn’t, in which case he is evil or maybe he just doesn’t exist. I know which possibility my money’s on. It disgusts me that you and your like can worship a god that is able to stand idly by and watch the untold suffering taking place every minute of every day. ‘Religion Poisons Everything’ Hitchens.

            • Come Correct says:

              My life is going great actually and it’s my doing, not your sky pilot.

        • Mike Hind says:

          Probably not. I came pretty close to dying last year.
          Didn’t “repent” or “face punishment”.

          However, I support your right to believe whatever you want.
          Just as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone.

        • Chris Nelson says:

          Mike Hind, you must be quaking in your boots!

      • Touche says:

        And likewise we are protected from gays imparting their beliefs on us! Touché!

        • Mike Hind says:

          Marriage equality is about ALL our beliefs.
          You may not believe in gay marriage, and you’re welcome to do that, but we, as a society have agreed that imposing someone’s religious beliefs to the detriment of others through laws isn’t allowed. It’s the Constitution.
          We wouldn’t want it done to us, thus we don’t do it to others.

          Equality isn’t a “gay belief”.

        • Chris Nelson says:

          What ‘beliefs’ would they be? The belief that everyone should be treated equally?

    • LaV says:

      Stop, it’s not natural or healthy to believe in the sky fairy. Please seek help for your mental and emotional disease.

    • Chris Nelson says:

      Why don’t you pray for them to stop?

  6. Connected Community says:

    Thank you for this project. It is through our own pictures, stories and narratives that we can hear and see each other for who we really are in Bermuda.

    These are special Bermudians standing in the face of discrimination and exclusion where some of us support the ranking of diversity and reject inclusion.

    We have many people on island who have an open mind and a willingness to be kind.

  7. Goodbye says:

    Bermuda today is not the Bermuda I grew up in. It may not have been a place I wanted to live.” Well if you don’t want to be here then go away Mr Dallas and take your friends with you!

    • Mike Hind says:

      So… now you’re telling Bermudians to leave the island because of YOUR problem with them?

      Shame on you!

      • Poor says:

        Shame on me? If someone states this is not a country they would want to live in then LEAVE and I will pay for the taxi to take you and your gay friends to the airport!

  8. Dread says:

    Just smoke a splif and chill people!!

  9. …sickening…
    The win in court should be suffice for these individuals. No blessing here for them!!

  10. Joe Bloggs says:

    How dare people defy the Government!

    We all know that the Government of Bermuda knows best and the Courts are trying to subvert the will of the people!

    • Question says:

      No, the courts are applying the law equally to everyone. That’s how it works.

  11. kevin says:

    Ryan
    Please don’t try to justify your comment , it best be left as words from one who doesn’t understand love and that’s ok . But please don’t try to make any objection to this simple human right a righteous path. There are too many individuals out there that have no idea why they are saying no but just because someone else has spoken louder or longer and convinced them it is so. Many have died for our right to be free and to venture down paths that would be strictly forbidden so we need to embrace all of our brothers and sisters white- black – Asian – indian male- female – gay – lesbian.
    Remember Ryan no matter who you are you in a better place today because we live in a democracy that protects all

  12. Bruce says:

    All this divisive and often painful talk of how terrible all this is by so-called followers of Jesus Christ. Really? WOW!! Ask yourself one very simple question before uttering further remarks either way – WWJD? What would Jesus Do? As a devout Christian who lives life attempting, in human frailty and weakness, to follow our Lord, we would all do well to remember who it was that stood up for the downtrodden and marginalized in society. Back then, at the time that our Lord walked the earth, it was women, children, lepers, tax collectors, the blind, the lame, the deaf, the outcast. It cost him his life in a most horrific way. (Yes, he did have the last word, however – and still does!) Now bring it all forward 2,000 years. Have Christ show up today in some obscure, tiny, far-out-of-the-way place and watch what would happen. Back then He made use of what was available to Him within that time and place in history to make His message of love known. And look how well it worked! Imagine what would happen today with the modern media and communication systems that we now have in place. And, on top of that, there a LOT more of us. The message content? It would be EXACTLY the same. The ones He would stand up for would be EXACTLY the same – the downtrodden, the marginalized, etc. I would absolutely love (in my ever-so-frail, human weakness!!) to watch an interaction between Christ walking and talking in the flesh and people who say some of the things they choose to say (not just here in this forum and on this topic but all over the world in different places on various subjects) that call to question His message of love and peace and unity and support for ALL of us, regardless of the MANY differences between us. And we know there are LOTS of differences. This particular topic being only but one. There are countless more! No, we are not all going to get along with each other. I totally understand that and accept it as the norm. We all should. However, I bet that conversation, to say the very least, would be very interesting indeed. We all have our own individual thoughts and feelings and opinions when it comes to this particular, highly sensitive subject, a topic that, very sadly, can often divide the very best of us. I ask again – WWJD? Regardless of my own personal thoughts and feelings, I’m certain I know the answer.

    • Poor says:

      Jesus would try to help you see the error in your ways and the natural way of things! Read the Bible and repent your sins as that is the only path to Heaven! Jesus tried to teach us to be worthy of forgiveness. These gay people are trying to go against all that is natural! I hope the highest court sees the validity of the legislation that allows rights to gays but stops at this insane argument that gay marriage is natural and conducive to nature!

      • Joe Bloggs says:

        How does your argument apply to me?

        I am not a Christian. Jesus does not exist for me.

        • Fact says:

          That’s too bad! Good luck when you have to finally face him! Amen!

          • LaV says:

            “That’s too bad! Good luck when you have to finally face him! Amen!”

            LOL, this is the problem with religion, it requires its followers to suspend all logical thought. LOL

      • Bruce says:

        So sad – totally and completely missed all I said.

      • Mike Hind says:

        The “natural” argument has been debunked many, many times.
        Why do you lot keep bringing it up?

        Nothing in the argument is valid in any way. Please stop spreading lies.

      • Chris Nelson says:

        “insane argument that gay marriage is natural and conducive to nature!”. What on earth are you talking about? Why do you think that laws should be based on the rules of your particular imaginary friend?

      • PBanks says:

        When has marriage been natural? What species in nature gets married?

        The only argument seen about marriage being ‘natural’ goes to the old procreation argument that is too easily debunked. After all, you don’t need to get married to have babies. Nature ‘knows’ this :)

        • Under Siege says:

          Yes….but you do have to let nature take it’s natural course for life to be reproduced.
          There are so many vocal champions being extra vocal for all things gay. So much, that it seems to be touted more than the original nuclear family structure.

          Why doesn’t everyone do what they do without all the fanfare? Why is there so much loving hype to promote an alien lifestyle?

          Why doesn’t Mike Hind speak as if everything he says is fact and debunked by men? Men who clearly haven’t a clue to the wisdom of the world?

          This issue is getting old.

          • PBanks says:

            I think there’s less of a need to tout “original nuclear family structure” because it’s known that it can be a solid environment for child-rearing already.

            However people are quick to suggest that a gay couple in the same situation would lead to disorder and chaos, hence people being vocal that it can be of an equal quality.

            Some would rather an orphaned child, for example, to bounce around in the ‘system’ rather than be raised by a couple who happen to be of the same gender.

            On the ‘natural course’ for reproduction, we see examples of in vitro and surrogacy that have allowed for people to birth and raise children that they may not have ordinarily been able to do.

          • Mike Hind says:

            Because “the wisdom of the Word” is a religious argument and, as such, is not allowed to be the basis of discriminatory laws.

            And if you want “all the fanfare” to stop, just leave these people be. Stop trying to hurt them and they’ll fade away.
            Until y’all stop trying to hurt them for no good reason, we’ll keep blowing the trumpets.

          • Mike Hind says:

            And “life being reproduced” isn’t a requirement or stipulation for marriage.

            Another invalid argument…

        • Fact says:

          Two men can’t have a baby neither can two women! Thanks for making the whole point around un-natural circumstances!

          • fact? says:

            fact thinks that marriage is for reproduction. fact doesn’t have the mental capacity to see how stupid this idea is.

          • Chris Nelson says:

            So heterosexual couples were one or both are infertile, should not be able to marry? What about people who are too old to have offspring? Your ‘un-natural’ argument carries no weight whatsoever.

          • Mike Hind says:

            So, are you saying that the ability to have children together is a stipulation for marriage?

            Because you’d be wrong.

            If not… what are you saying?

          • PBanks says:

            You don’t need to be married to reproduce, that’s the point.
            Marriage is a man-made legal construct.
            Marriage is not found in nature.

    • Keepin' Real!...4Real! says:

      I believe he already told you what will happen…that’s what this debate is about right.??

      • Mike Hind says:

        Debate would entail both sides having a valid position.

        Sadly, the anti-equality side has been shown, over and over, that their position is based on nothing but lies, misinformation and hypocrisy.

  13. Ain’t Happening says:

    Great photos. Great project. It’s looking highly likely that the Privy Council will uphold the decisions of Bermuda’s courts. Thankfully.

  14. Scott says:

    To all those that say being gay is learned and not natural and is an abomination, what do you say about hermaphroditism? It happens naturally. There are even cases in Bermuda. So if a human is born with the physical attributes of both male and female genders would you also deny them the right to marry whom they choose? And is it so far fetched to think that a human can have the physical attributes of one sex and yet the emotional attributes/desires of the other? Not all differences in biology are physically manifested. Isn’t nature wonderful! You can’t descriminate against people based on their sexual orientation any more than you can against someone who is physically or mentally challenged. They are a product of the natural world like everyone else.. If they are not harming anyone or demanding that you also be physically or mentally handicapped then they deserve the same rights as a “normal “ human.
    Finally, for all the Christian commenters in opposition to affording the same human right for all, judge not, lest ye also be judged. Love thy neighbor as thyself.

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