Friday, February 16, 2007

SASOD Members call on Digicel to apologise for TOK performance

Dear Editor
The T.O.K. performance at the Digicel Experience
concert held on Wednesday 14 February, 2007 at the
National Park left much to be desired.
Most of the lyrics by the Jamaican group were riddled
with references glorifying crime and violence. Phrases
such as 'trigger finger', 'gun finger', 'shotta' and
'gangsta', among others, were used in ways which only
seemed to promote violence as a means of settling
conflicts. Although the T.O.K performance ended with
two songs with calls for "peace and love", this
message was lost and was inconsistent in their
performance in which there was a constant bombardment
of language which gleefully promoted violent
behaviour, especially gun crimes.
In the same vein, T.O.K also had no problems using the
Digicel event to express their homophobia. There were
at least two detectable homophobic references in heavy
Jamaican patois 'no fassie cyan dis Guyana crew' and
in their performance of 'keep it blazin' in which
homosexual men come in as targets for 'fi a'(fire).
The performance reached its lowest point when one of
the T.O.K. group members had no problem making
sexually inappropriate remarks to a girl who was
visibly underage, and then proceeded to dance in the
most sexually provocative manner with her. It was also
shocking that the mass crowd did not seem to find this
unacceptable. Even DJ Benny D, who accompanied Akon,
commented that unlike some other men there (obviously
alluding to the T.O.K band member) , he does not want
any eleven year old girl to 'feel him up'.
Digicel's Experience has been demeaned by the negative
aspects of popular culture which seem to promote
violence, homophobia and pedophilia. We call on
Digicel to issue a public apology for this regrettable

Yours faithfully

Alana Thorne
Devon Ambrose
and other members of SASOD

Saturday, February 10, 2007

My Funny Valentine Sat 17th Feb

Tickets Available from Oasis Cafe in Carmichael Street, Sidewalk Cafe in Middle Street
Sea Breeze Hotel, Oasis Too in South Road and Rayons House of Fashion in Robb Street

Friday, February 09, 2007

Digicel and Homophobia in Guyana

he Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination
calls on Digicel to ensure that the homophobia of
Jamaican group T.O.K is not part of the Digicel
Experience concert in Guyana scheduled for Wednesday
14 Feb, 2007.

T.O.K is one of the set of dancehall singers who have
explicitly called for the killing of gay and lesbian
people and whose performances have been cancelled
worldwide after protests by Human Rights groups. The
Human Rights Watch Report Homophobia, Violence, and
Jamaica’s HIV/AIDS Epidemic" available at
( ) details
the impact of homophobia in Jamaican society, and the
relation between the violence of the music of T.O.K.
and the continued persecution of gay and lesbian
people in Jamaica. In July of 2006, LifeBeat, the US
Industry music arm's HIV fundraiser cancelled a
concert involving T.O.K after the protests at the
homophobia of these artistes.

The participation of T.O.K. in any marketing or
promotion event undermines the efforts of
those Guyanese who are trying to build a socially
cohesive society in which violence is not used to
resolve conflicts or express any differences.

SASOD calls on the Government of Guyana and the
Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport specifically to
ensure that entertainment events such as concerts in
Guyana are free from homophobia and any calls to
violence against any section of Guyanese society,
including the homosexual population.

SASOD further calls on Digicel and T.O.K to publicly
reject homophobia. Digicel should set a responsible
standard for their participation in Guyana's economy
by not condoning calls for the murder of any persons.