(JAMAICA GLEANER) — Jamaican males have been urged to reject subcultural norms that define manhood by promiscuity, mass paternity, and crudeness.
State minister in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Alando Terrelonge, says locals should condemn notions that men must be victims of societal pressures such as beliefs that “you must deh pon di corner a burn your weed and drink your rum and Boom because a suh di thing set, dawg”.
Terrelonge was one of three presenters at a public forum on Tuesday at The University of the West Indies, Mona, organised by the Institute of Gender and Development Studies Guild Committee and the Commuting Students Guild Committee. The forum’s theme was ‘Men Leading by Example: Making a Difference for Men and Boys’.
Tuesday was International Men’s Day.
“What it takes to be a man is to empower yourself with an education firstly. You can relate to a time in your childhood when to speak English properly, they called you names. To be seated at the front of the class, to be respectful to your teachers and to female colleagues, you are going to be called names”
“(Although people) a go tell you seh you a fish (homosexual) and you are not man enough,” Terrelonge encouraged young men to respect their parents and take an interest in personal hygiene and deportment.
“No boy should be teased by how he speaks and because he displays or evidences good manners at school. We start by bullying our boys, and some parents are also guilty,” he added.