Prof Bain's dismissal will threaten freedom of thought

Wednesday, May 21, 2014    

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Dear Editor,

I find the issues surrounding Professor Bain's dismissal as the leader of CHART to be most disturbing for several reasons. Firstly, Professor Bain has given his life to caring for and conducting research in the area of HIV/AIDS. In fact, in a recent statement, the Medical Association of Jamaica has publicly recognised that Professor Bain's "pioneering work in Jamaica and the region on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of HIV/AIDS since 1983 has been to the benefit of many doctors, thousands of patients and their families, irrespective of their affiliation and status". Who then is more qualified to give a scientific opinion on the matter? Instead of name-calling and indignation, can the LGBT lobby present scientific evidence contrary to the professor's opinion?

Secondly, it is outrageous that the LGBT lobby should act in the capacity of 'thought-police' by trying to enforce sanctions for a man's opinions rather than his actions and the quality of his work. This is truly terrifying.

Finally, the involvement of JFLAG in such an effort is very peculiar and highly controversial. How can they be calling for the professor's dismissal while party to a claim currently before the Supreme Court of Jamaica addressing the same issues? Isn't this severe intimidation?

The university's decision has serious implications for our freedom of thought, conscience and speech. Professor Bain gave his opinion as a result of scientific fact, not his religious faith. Either way, I am sure all well-thinking Jamaicans would agree that he should be free to express both and retain his job as long as he carries out his professional duties.

Anna-Lisa Walcott

Liguanea PO

Kingston 6





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