A Letter from Bermuda
Image Courtesy of Chris Seward
Faithful Readers—We received this interesting and informative email from a Bermuda native about the state of gay life in his island nation, please enjoy.
Dear Ed Salvato,
I don't write letters very often, but after reading the article in one of today's local papers, The Mid-Ocean News, I thought it could provide some insight from someone on this side of the water. I am a young, gay male living here in Bermuda. I was born here, thought before most talk to me, assume i am an expatriate. I have to say that for many reasons, Bermuda could be a perfect destination for all visitors, including the gay and lesbian community. There are many positives, yet as you well know, the few negatives seem to set the mood of Bermuda being a less than ideal destination for gays and lesbians.
Bermuda has a fairly large gay and lesbian population, yet it really is not very apparent. It tends to be kept quiet, with many people not revealing themselves to the general public, family and friends, myself included. As a whole, Bermudians would be okay and fairly respectful of the no-hetero portions of society, but it is the general views and attitudes or certain groups of the community that keep things the way it is. I perfectly understand the reasons of the cancellation of Rosie's stop here [ed. note: this refers to the R Family Vacations removing Bermuda as a destination from their cruise itinerary]. Their main concern was the thought of the children having to witness displays of opposition when it was supposed to be a happy time, not to mention the fact to them, it was just a normal family vacation. I don't believe all of the churches here have the same views, but the ones that do oppose have the most pull.
As of yet, the government hasn't done any studies or discussions with members of the gay and lesbian community to gather input from our views and thought, to my knowledge at least. Government still hasn't amended the human rights act to completely protect gays and lesbians from discrimination, even when an amendment was proposed by a member of their own party. Not to say it will never happen, but it is going to be a long process.
Overall, I would say in the future, Bermuda could be a popular destination of gay and lesbian travelers, but it likely will not happen soon. Hopefully you will get this email. Just thought as a member of the Bermudian community I could provide insight from one persons view of the matter.
R.M. (Initials changed at the request of the writer)