(JAMAICA STAR) – Dancehall diva D’Angel and rising star Shenseea have used their social media platforms to show their support for the oft-ostracised LGBT community with the Pride Month’s official hashtag, #loveislove.
Incorporating rainbow-themed outfits (the rainbow flag representing the diverse sexual identities and orientations), the recording artistes took to Instagram with messages of inclusion and reassurance.
“Love is love no matter who you are or your sexuality. I want my music to spread right across the world and make an impact in everyone’s lives,” D’Angel told THE STAR.
Last weekend, D’Angel performed at the Chicago Jerk Festival. She posted a series of photos and videos as she was styled in rainbow-coloured army boots paired with a similar multicoloured skirt.
In the first of the series, D’Angel utilised the hashtag.
“How I feel about my homosexual fans? The answer is I don’t judge because of one’s choice. I love and appreciate them just the same, because they support my music,” the Woman Power singer said.
Earlier this month, Shenseea made a post of her own, while sporting rainbow-coloured suspenders.
“A lot of my supporters [have] been messaging me in concern about how I feel for them being a #ShenYeng (a Shenseea fan) and having a certain preference. I just wanna represent and tell y’all that your sexuality doesn’t matter to me. I love all y’all. #loveislove,” she posted.
Nicolette Bryan, executive director of WE-Change, a women-led, community-based organisation, committed to increasing the participation of LGBT and ally women in social justice advocacy, is happy for the celebrity support, particularly from Shenseea.
“Women are typically change agents. To be an up-and-coming artiste, to not yet be a staple name dancehall has always been portrayed as hostile towards people of LGBT orientation. That would seem like a risky thing for Shenseea to do in her career,” Bryan told THE STAR.
Bryan found the comments on the young star’s post to be mostly positive, whereas typically posts of that nature would receive hostile reactions.
“There are people trying to grow and be accepting, and that is encouraging in itself,” she said. “But it’s not the first time that someone has said something positive publicly. Tanya Stephens had done a song [Do You Still Care?]. I’m sure we’re going to be seeing more, more thoughtful approaches to showing support.”
June was chosen for LGBTQ Pride Month to commemorate the Stonewall riots of the United States, which occurred at the end of June 1969.
The riots were a series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations by members of the LGBTQ community, at the Stonewall Inn in New York City.