The sewer in front of the Stonewall Inn is set to flow with Red Stripe beer and Myers’s Rum tonight when gay rights advocates hold a “rum dump” as part of their “Boycott Jamaica” campaign against the island nation that gave the world rastas, reggae, and dance hall lyrics that encourage the burning and killing of “Mister Fagoty.”
Though the homophobic lyric controversy has died down since many of the offending artists signed a “reggae compassionate act” two years ago,
violence against gays and lesbians on the island is still widespread and J-FLAG, the local gay rights organization, continues to report attacks and murders.
The owners of the Stonewall Inn said in a statement that they see the boycott of products and tourism to the island as a sign of solidarity with their Jamaican brothers and sisters:
“We ask all people of all walks of life to send a clear message to the Jamaican people and their government, that as long as they continue to allow and condone violence and hatred toward the gay community, we will neither buy their products or support their tourist trade.”
The response from Jamaica doesn’t look promising. J-FLAG has come out against the boycott, and last month, Prime Minister Bruce Golding called gay advocates the “perhaps the most organized lobby in the world” and said he wouldn’t give in to any kind of pressure to liberalize the country’s “buggery” law, which carries a maximum sentence of seven years.
The “rum dump” is scheduled to begin in front of the bar at 53 Christopher Street at 6:30 p.m.