Repost from The Jamaica Gleaner
This newspaper commends the leader of the People’s National Party (PNP), Portia Simpson Miller, for her mature stand on whether gays could serve in a government she leads and, more broadly, the rights of homosexuals.
Mrs Simpson Miller argued, rightly, that people’s sexual orientation is their business. She doesn’t want to be a voyeur. The pertinent consideration in appointing a Cabinet, therefore, is competence.
By contrast, Prime Minister Andrew Holness waffled, arguing that his “sentiment must be the sentiment of Jamaica”. That, essentially, is homophobic.
But the responsibility of leaders is to lead, not merely to reflect popular sentiment.
In that regard, we welcome the pledge of a PNP administration to review the buggery law and allow a conscience vote on the matter. We urge Mrs Simpson Miller to go further, making the repeal of a law that has no place in the 21st century a platform promise.