11 Jul 2003

well it looks like the locals are actually starting to question current leadership policies. just recently the leader announced that gay foreigners would be 'welcome ' to come and work on this little island. thats very nice of him i thought. is he saying that they were not welcome last week? they may however have to declare their sexuality, which if implimented appears to reafirm suspicions of discrimination based on sexuality on this tiny island.

this little island has for a long time lagged behind in terms of human rights, and civil rights. the papers are peppered with debates on 'bar-top' dancing, 'extended opening hours' and now the 'gay issue'. all of which appear to be avoiding the large plank embedded in the human rights 'eye'. namely... the thorny issue of freedom of speech and an open democracy that has free elections. gerrymandering is a large issue during elections, with the ruling party redrawing electoral boundaries as they see fit.

also, the media (tv. newspapers, radio)is all state owned and so opposition parties are not given the same air time in the run up to elections. those who do place themselves in opposition are often dragged through the courts on charges of slander or defimation of character. all of these cases so far have been in favour of the slandered MP. christopher lingles work may account for these court rulings. this is an authoriative government that is relaxing its strangle hold, but not quickly enough and only in areas that they see fit. areas that do not jeopardize their strangle hold on power, economic and ideological.

the fear of the leaders appears to be a backlash of some sort from the electorate, possibly with regard to 'how they came to power' and the human rights violations that were carried out during the transition period. the past will haunt...

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