Just last week, the US Ambassador to Belize, Vinai Thumallapaly, handed over checks to eight organizations who work in some capacity with HIV and AIDS related issues. As we’ve reported, at least two of those organizations are actively promoting the homosexual agenda in Belize and one of them, UNIBAM, is presently challenging the constitutionality of Belize’s sodomy laws. Well, today, was a significant victory for those promoting the homosexual agenda in Belize. That is because the Mayor of Orange Walk Town made a proclamation on behalf of the citizens of that Town that today Tuesday, October 11th, is officially declared Peace and Equality Day. PICS This happened at the unveiling of a mural painted on the wall of the Orange Walk Town Hall. That mural was designed and painted by a youth group called EquALL Belize. The group was founded by a Peace Corp volunteer, Zachary Pullin, for the main purpose of getting young people to advocate for the homosexual agenda in Belize. The US Ambassador was also present at today’s unveiling of that mural. That mural displays a rainbow and as you probably know, the rainbow of multi colors is the symbol used by the LGBT and Gay Pride organizations. Prior to the unveiling, Mayor Philip de la Fuente made a proclamation saying that “Orange Walk Town has long fostered and supported diversity and acceptance; and WHEREAS, peace, tolerance, acceptance and equality benefit the families and youth in Orange Walk; and WHEREAS, on this day, a Peace and Equality Day is planned in Orange Walk, featuring the unveiling of a colorful and exciting mural that promotes peace, tolerance, acceptance and equality at the Town Hall for our entire community to enjoy and support”. We spoke to the Mayor this afternoon about his proclamation.
Phillip de la Fuente, Mayor of Orange Walk Town Peace and equality, that is something I think all leaders should be working towards. If we would have peace and equality, this world would be a better place to live in, because peace and equality is when everyone is considered equal.
Louis Wade Jr. Are there people in your town who are less equal than others at this time and who are those people?
Phillip de la Fuente, Mayor of Orange Walk Town Actually I wouldn’t say less equal, but they are less privileged. Let’s be real, the bulk of Belizeans I would say are less fortunate; some of them have a hard time getting their kids to school and paying school fees and things like that and that’s when the ones who are more fortunate should assist. Equality is when we try to make everyone equal; just because I have more does not mean that I am more important than you.
Louis Wade Jr. Those people who you consider to be less equal in Orange Walk include the homosexual community? Phillip de la Fuente, Mayor of Orange Walk Town I would say definitely say so because they are a smaller group, but again the tolerance is there, because people put up with it, but that is their belief, that is not mine. Orange Walk on a whole is a very religious community and would not tolerate the other group, the smaller group, trying to impose.
According to the Mayor, he was unaware that EquALL and its founder are advocates of the homosexual agenda even though Pullin’s objectives and agendas are clearly stated on his internet site.
Phillip de la Fuente, Mayor of Orange Walk Town I would proudly like to have an open meeting after I discuss the issues with my Town Council so that we can decide what we will do. Anything that would assist my municipality to move forward, we would be more than happy to embrace.
Louis Wade Jr. Even if it includes the homosexual agenda?
Phillip de la Fuente, Mayor of Orange Walk Town As long as we know exactly what we are dealing with, yes. I am speaking for myself. I have some friends who are from the other side, but they do not impose their beliefs on me, and I am speaking for myself. If the group would come out and say that they are specifically targeting those groups, I would not be able to stop; I would not want to stop them, but I would then have to re-think the way I am working, but now I am working openly with everything.
Orange Walk pastor Antonette Young says that there are many things that a society should never tolerate. She says that too many people still don’t understand that intolerance of sin does not mean inequality in any way as God loves all equally, even though he does not tolerate sin.
Antonette Young, Orange Walk Pastor The logo on the wall, which is the rainbow, is the international symbol for the homosexuals which signifies to them, gay rights. According to the Word of God, homosexuality is an abomination to the Lord and us as Christians cannot pretty it up; we cannot compromise, we cannot say that it is not wrong, because if we say that, as spiritual leaders, we will also be in the same category of the ones who are denying what the Word of God says. The logo on the wall, to me, is an insult because Orange Walk is declaring a day that represents homosexuality or equality that would allow men and women in the gay community to marry. It is an abomination to the Lord and it is very sad to see that our nation is coming to this point. There is no way we need to publicly have this as an awareness to our young people. If we are saying that our youth are the future of the nation then we must steer them in the right way, and the right way is God’s way.
According to a press release, the Peace and Equality initiative has been spearheaded by DAVCO (District Association of Village Councils), Peace Corps Volunteer Zachary Pullin and the Orange Walk Town Council
A mural depicting peace and equality is causing a stir in Orange Walk .The painting was the brainchild of peace corp volunteer, Zachary Pullin, and Equal Belize, a local youth group. With the permission of Orange Walk Mayor, Philip de la Fuente, the group painted the mural on the fence wall of the Orange Walk Town Council. When it was unveiled yesterday, it caused certain segments of this community to call for its removal. Zachary Pullin describes the mural.
Zachary Pullin – Artist “It’s a two part thing it’s on two tablets of the wall and the first part is a man, I would say interpretation would be that he is kind of just proclaiming, just yelling and shouting out in a very positive way, love, peace, quality, acceptance and tolerance and that is signified by a multi colored rainbow which is a creation of God. Unfortunately people want to interpret that one way but it’s important that they understand the intention behind it which is that a rainbow with as many colors as it has is symbolic of the fact that its exactly what our culture is here in Belize.”
Since the 1970's , the rainbow has been used on the gay pride flags as a symbol of lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender pride or rights and it is the rainbow on the mural that is causing the contention.
Pastor Antonette Young “The painting on the wall it’s clearly sending the wrong message. The rainbow is the logo for homosexuality internationally, we have to teach our young people and the right way is God’s way. Do you know what the word of God tells us, in Leviticus 20:13, it tell us “If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination to the Lord and they shall surely be put to death, their blood shall be upon them”. It tells in Deuteronomy 22:5, “A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman’s garment, for all who do so are an abomination to the Lord, your God.” God does not make a mistake in gender, a woman is a woman, a man is a man.”
Pullin says this is all just a misinterpretation.
Zachary Pullin – Artist “Nobody ever asked me what the interpretation was, so I appreciate their being enthusiastic about it. I am so thankful you’re coming to ask about the interpretation, the intention behind it but for me a rainbow is God’s creation, it’s not something that we own, it is something God owns I think and to see someone project their interpretation on it and that be the final word, I don’t think it is fair to the work we have been doing and the incredible progress Orange Walk has made in peace and equality and love and acceptance and tolerance.”
Manuela Ayuso Cantun Does this mural have anything to do with promoting gay rights in Orange Walk?
Zachary Pullin – Artist “It absolutely did not.”
Orange Walk Mayor has come under criticism for allowing the painting on the wall.
Phillip de la Fuente – Mayor, Orange Walk Town “He showed us a rough sketch of it, and that was when I spoke to the Deputy Mayor and we decided to give him the permission to go ahead. As to the allegations, I wasn’t aware of anything like that. Now I am getting a lot of negative feedback about that painting so to give everybody a fair chance I will approach the gentleman and ask him if he is pushing any specific agenda and then I will have to make a decision after that.”
Gay pride mural removed from Orange Walk Town Hall
Just over two weeks ago, we reported on the gay pride logo that was painted on the Orange Walk town Hall wall. The mural was designed and painted by a youth group called Equal Belize. The group was founded by a Peace Corp volunteer, Zachary Pullin, for the main purpose of getting young people to advocate for the homosexual agenda in Belize. But after concerns from church leaders and concerned Orange Walk citizens, that mural has now been repainted. NEW PIC It now depicts an arch with faces of Belize’s varied ethnic groups. One pastor who was very vocal about the original mural is Pastor Antoinette Young.
Pastor Antonette Young The gay logo on the wall has been replaced with a white background and colorful images of children on it, which is portraying a different image. I can see that as an expression of harmony and I am so thankful that our voice made a difference in our community. As a reminder, we know that sodomy is against the law here in Belize and it will remain that way.
The mural was redone last week and Pastor Young says that she is very pleased with the quick response of the Orange Walk Mayor after complaints were lodged with the Town Hall. She further said that more Christians need to be vocal in taking a stand against what is wrong.
Pastor Antonette Young Actually, I believe he did his own investigation and I haven’t spoken to him yet, but his quick response to the covering or the repainting of the wall signifies that he is aware of what that message was all about. Frankly speaking, I haven’t seen it, but I have heard of it. Everyone is in their own holes and comfort zone, and I am not taking any credit for what happened; all I know is that I stood up as a woman of God and as a pastor and it’s exactly what I was commissioned to do, which is to preach the gospel and the word of God. I would pray and hope that pastors would come together so we can make a difference, beyond the pulpit in our community.
According to Orange Walk Mayor, Philip de la Fuente, after investigations and consultations with the Town council, they decided to quickly change the mural.
Philip de la Fuente, Mayor, Orange Walk I passed around the pictures to the council and we didn’t think it had anything to do with homosexuality. Yes, the man pulled a fast one on us, but as someone brought it to our attention, we made the necessary changes. I had a meeting with some of my councilors and we came up with a suggestion. We are not thinking about promoting homosexuality.
Mayor de la Fuente says that the mural was repainted last week and he thinks it is a fitting portrayal.
Philip de la Fuente, Mayor, Orange Walk It is a mural. The offensive rainbow has been replaced with some nice pictures of the different cultural groups and to show peace and equality which is still the theme. We put in an old lady and a young person, a male Mennonite and a female to show that everyone is equal. That was done about a week ago at least.
While the mural has been repainted, the name “UNIBAM” is still painted on the wall as one of the sponsors of the mural.
An offensive rainbow ??? I haven't ever seen one either Katie ! It's just a shame that fear and/or ignorance has motivated this OVER reaction. Perhaps some further reading in the big black book (written by men seeking to preserve their own power) would serve to enlighten a bit:
Judge not lest ye be judged Let he (or she) who is without sin cast the first stone
I could continue on and on ad nauseum...
This is just more of the same "cherry picking" from scripture that the so-called "RIGHTEOUS" have used for centuries as a form of control and repression. God is Love and God Loves Everyone. no matter whether a preacher or anyone else agrees with or approves of their lifestyle. The government and, most especially the church have absolutely NO BUSINESS trying to legislate or control what happens in private between two consenting adults. The artist clearly stated that a homosexual agenda had NOTHING to do with what he painted. Rainbows are one of Gods most beautiful creations and they are not for exclusive use by homosexuals... I guarantee you that this preacher would gladly take money from a homosexual (especially a gringo one) without any hesitation, spend it joyfully, and then preach hell fire and eternal damnation about the evils of homosexuality... Hypocrites hide behind God everywhere and in every religion. And if you've never seen a "fire rainbow", Google it ! They're even more beautiful and amazing !
Most Belizeans who complained about the rainbow mural have probably never personally met an openly gay person, though I'm sure they have gay or lesbian friends and family members and don't know it. The comments they expressed over this matter remind me of the same narrow attitudes expressed by Americans in the 1970s, before they came to know the gay people in their lives. Those attitudes were based on fear and ignorance of the unknown. Those attitudes changed as they gave more thought to how seriously discrimination impacts gays and lesbians. Regardless of one's personal religious beliefs, if Belize is to call itself a true democracy, it must ensure that all its citizens are treated equally before the law. Criminalizing one group for who they love is shameful. And as for the rainbow itself, whether you believe it's created by God or Nature, you can't have a proper rainbow without the violet hue.