Thursday, June 05, 2008

Listening and Dying

I wasn't quite sure whether to laugh or cry when I saw this brilliant item by MadPriest.

But then, reading the blog of a long-lost friend who would probably hate me for returning to the church … there was no doubt. Tears are the appropriate response. I have her to thank for highlighting this news story.

Two lesbians in India commit suicide together.

Here is the text of the story:

A lesbian couple who committed suicide by setting themselves on fire have been put to rest in a joint cremation this week.
Christy Jayanthi Malar (38) and Rukmani (40) set themselves ablaze after their families took objection to their "unnatural relationship."
It has been reported that the two women had suffered years of torment from their families who objected to the closeness of the couple.
Although being in a relationship since their school days the women both had husbands.
This is common in India where there huge social and legal pressures to live a heterosexual lifestyle.
The alarm was raised when smoke was seen coming from Mrs Malar's home. When neighbours went in they found the bodies of the two women held in an embrace.
It is thought that the women committed suicide after an argument that Rukmani had with her relatives.
Police told reporters that the two doused themselves in kerosene before setting themselves alight.
In an ironic twist, the families who tried to separate them agreed for the bodies to be laid to rest in a joint cremation.
A senior police told The Times of India newspaper:
"We can't say the relatives pushed the women into suicide.
"They might have verbally abused them, but that was to bring them back to normal life."
Homosexual relations are legally still a crime in India under an old British era statute dating from 1860 called Section 377, though the government no longer seeks to prosecute adults engaging in private consensual homosexual acts.
In recent years, the campaign to decriminalise homosexuality has strengthened.
My long-last friend adds this: "According to a letter drafted by several Delhi-based activist groups, which would be circulated among progressive and like-minded people across Tamil Nadu, eight lesbian suicides have taken place in the state from the beginning of 2008 alone. In Kerala, in the past ten years, more then 35 lesbian couples are said to have killed themselves."

We in America are excited about the California Supreme Court decision. We have the freedom to seek greater civil rights.

Reading stories like this, I grow ill.

Meanwhile, certain "Global South" primates say they have no gay or lesbian people. And the Lambeth "listening process" goes on and on and on and on. While people die.

My heart breaks.


Blogger Tandaina- said...

And so, I firmly believe, does God's.

Thank you for sharing this, Lisa, too often we in the US are protected from such ugly realities but what we do here will reverberate around the globe. We must speak for justice, and love.

6/06/2008 6:03 PM  
Blogger calicutgay said...

I feel ashamed that the land which taught tolerance and brother hood to the whole world, is today fast turning into a land of self righteous haunters and hapless victims.
Gandhiji proclaimed "VASUDAIVA KUDUMBAKAM", meaning "whole world is my family".And modern India is full of prejudices and preconceived notions of fear and hatred for alternate life styles.

6/10/2008 1:21 AM  

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