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Religious leaders slam 'lewd, vulgar' Carnival


RELIGIOUS leaders have slammed the country's Carnival celebrations, saying that vulgarity and violence are transforming the nation. Baptist priest, Rev Hillary Clifford of the Calvary Baptist Church, yesterday said that Carnival 2006 showcased unprecedented nudity and drunkenness. "How can we bring our children on the streets on Carnival Monday and Tuesday, then witness the drunkenness, nakedness, lewd and suggestive dancing. It is a disgrace," Clifford said. Saying that children are living in a confused world, Clifford told Newsday: "On one hand we are kicking against AIDS, but on the other hand we are promoting nakedness and revelry on the streets of the nation - the actions are saying otherwise."

Pleading with citizens to put morality and family values in the festivities, Clifford added, "Long time mas everyone was fully clothed and there was a message for all - young and old. What has happened now. People ought to be God-fearing. There is too much vulgarity and violence." Pundit Khemraj Rampersad of the Latchoo's Road Hindu Temple, also took a jibe at the lewdness displayed on Monday and Tuesday. "Carnival from the days of slavery to now, has lost its identity and true perspective," he said.

What is the message, the pundit asked, when vulgarity abound in the songs and nakedness is substituted for art. Rampersad said he is uncomfortable seeing scantily-dressed women parading as Mas. "The excessive consumption of alcohol, low level of consciousness of individuals, desire for what belongs to other individuals, is the cause of the rape, unwanted pregnancies and even sexually transmitted diseases."

Trinidad and Tobago News

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