Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Dominican Republic: Gossip show host is gay one moment, ex-gay the next

Back in May Jari Ramirez, the host of a popular gossip television show in the Dominican Republic didn't necessarily stun too many people when he admitted he was gay (I mean, here's a YouTube vid of Jari speaking of the "glamour" of "El feeling de Cristal Marie" - a promotional packet for a singer - months before coming out).

Anyway, back to May, in a televised interview described here, Ramirez said that he knew he was gay from a young age and that part of his comfortability with being gay stemmed from his parents' acceptance. He also said that he had never been with a woman and would never be with one "because he did not consider himself to be a hypocritical person like many who are married with kids but have a man as a lover."

He also said that he had a partner but said that it wasn't as if they went out holding hands in public: "Even though I don't care what people think, I believe it would be too much to go out holding my partner's arm, I also believe [one has to be] respectful."

He admitted that he had his heart broken a few times by partners who had left him for other women but said that he had never experienced rejection when asking men out because he was beautiful, famous and rich, which made him a catch for just about anyone.

Jump ahead four months and Ramirez is singing a different tune.

Earlier this week Dominican gossip web portal Mas VIP ran an exclusive interview under the following eye-grabbing headline: "Jari Ramirez says he is sorry, gets tired of men and accepts God"

In the interview Ramirez now says that he recently came to a very difficult moment in his life in which he had to chose between God and witchcraft (hm, witchcraft?!). He admits that he was dating a married man which put him in a moral bind:

"I knew that to continue going out with him would have meant to commit a double sin, because I understood it was living a double life, he was a married man, such a disrespectful thing before God, and now I want to do things well."

Ramirez, who says he now attends a Methodist church in Ensanche Quisqueya three times a week, said that he would be baptized as a Christian this week in a ceremony and that he will abandon the homosexual life he has led.

He also tells Mas VIP that he threw away his "mundane" music collection and replaced it with Christian music CDs and that he now spends his free time either at church or at his apartment watering his plants, cooking healthy food and hosting "respectable" people.

Still, when asked to discuss the change in his sexual orientation, the popular host of "Noti-Espectaculos" on ColorVision 9 did not expand on the topic and said, instead, "God does not divide people into categories, specially when it comes to love."



jbrotherlove said...

I wish Jari Ramirez luck in sorting it all out. Experience tells me this isn't the end of his journey.

John K said...

Andrés, thanks for the update on Jari Ramírez. Jbrotherlove's right, this isn't the end of his journey. Interesting, though, that he chose what sounds like an evangelical church rather than the Catholic church, whose primate Cardinal in Santo Domingo has repeatedly gone on tirades against gay folks.

Luis Jerez said...

jbrotherlove couldn't have been more right. As a dominican man I can understand up to a great extent what must be going through that guy's head to shift so abruptly, and it also points out the measure of the mentality of the live of many gay men living in the island. I only hope he gets to see that there are many ways to accept who he is without having to go to such extremes but THAT is his doing to see to his well-being.