Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth Stephen Lashley has come out strongly against gay marriage, while saying the topic should be fully discussed in Barbados.
Though making it clear he was “not condemning gay people”, the Government spokesman said he realized that the international media was impacting on the behaviour of Barbadians.
“I think we have gone soft on a lot of issues. I am one who has come out publicly and have said that I don’t embrace gay marriages. I have said that and I remain fully of that particular persuasion,” said the married father of two.
“I am aware that internationally a lot of things are happening. There are international discussions and courts are passing various rulings on these issues and in Barbados we are apparently open to anything and we are not prepared to take a position on certain matters. Our morality is under question because we are not firm on who we are,” he said.
He said a part of the problem was the example that adults were setting for their children.
Adding that at times it was difficult to tell the difference between a man and a woman, Lashley said, “Apparently we are not supposed to talk about it”.
“And if we have somebody who says we are not going to tolerate gay marriages, apparently you are not being as liberal as you should.
“Well, sorry, I have taken a different approach and I am prepared to say what I don’t tolerate and I am not going to act in breach of any law and I do not think that our law should be changed to accommodate immoral behaviour or tell our young people a story that is not based on how they should behave.
“How do we tell our young people that it is ok to be gay and to aspire to be in a [gay] marriage . . . and how do you then tell them how you should behave?” asked Lashley.
“I am sure somebody will come and condemn the minister for saying that, but you know what, I am prepared, and I think that we live in a democracy. I am not intolerant of other views, but I think that leaders have to be able to take a position based on the roles that they have,” the Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth said.