It is refreshing to see the Caribbean community leaders finally coming together on an issue. However the issue chosen leaves mush to be desired.The Heads of Government may believe, and sincerely so, that they have the upper hand and will follow the footsteps of the Mau Mau case gaining an apology for their people and maybe a few dollars to go with it, but the further damage that will be done to the Caribbean will take years to repair.
The Pan-African Reparations Coalition in a letter to the heads of government of the Caribbean countries was adamant, that a top down approach should not be taken and that there should dialogue with the citizens of the Caribbean on this matter. As usual the politicians and government have done as governments do and seek to further empower themselves while disempowering the people.
In the address by the Chairman of CARICOM Reparations Commission to the British House of Commons we appear to be begging the British Government to recolonize the Caribbean. I Quote Professor Sir Hilary Beckles when he said, “This Parliament has to return to the scene of its crimes, and participate as a legitimate parliament, as a legal parliament, in the healing and rehabilitation of the Caribbean. We cannot, and should not, be asked to do this by ourselves. We have done our part. This Parliament must now return, and do its part, within the context of reparatory justice, and within the framework of development cooperation.”
I may have been wrong, but I remember the entire Caribbean people fighting for independence from being a British colony. As a matter of fact, my country St. Lucia was seven times British and seven times French. After we have decided that we have failed, do we call in the Calvary who we claimed destroyed us?
The address also pointed out the many “woes” of the Caribbean. He pointed out that Jamaica was left with 80% illiteracy when slavery was abolished in 1962. Well it would be hard to become literate in cotton and sugar fields. Fortunately, Jamaica is on its way to 100% literacy in 2015 among all its other great achievement in this century.
It was a shock to read that beautiful Barbados, for all my life known as “BIM the Gem of the Caribbean” is now called “the amputation capitol of the world” due to the diabetes and hypertension epidemic which has spread all over the Caribbean. The truth of the matter is that these diseases are caused by lack of exercise, poor diet and abuse of alcohol, not by being a descendent of slavery. In addition, every disease, every single disease is first created in the mind and then it manifests in the body. It would be better to heal the minds of the Caribbean people than to enslave it by dredging up past history and uncovering old wounds in the hope of making an extra buck. It would also be wise to be aware of the power of words and not call catastrophe to a people or a nation.
Instead of asking for an apology from the British and other European Governments, we should apologise to ourselves and to our people for allowing ourselves to be enslaved. We should apologise for the part that we played in the slave trade. Countries such as Ghana and Senegal and many west African nations have acknowledged the supressed history that we are as much to blame for the slave trade as any European. European did not start the slave trade in Africa, they took advantage of it and just like our ancestors and enriched themselves. We should apologise that after the abolition of slavery so many years ago most of us are still mentally enslaved. We should apologise that the only thing that is able to bring us together is to have a common enemy. News flash, we are our own worst enemy, and until we can acknowledge this, no matter how many apologies and repatriation funds we receive we will still be enslaved.
Slavery is not a physical thing it is a mental thing and it is plague the black race all over the world even today. It is propagated upon us by ourselves. We hate our skin colour and seek to change it no matter the health risk. We hate our hair and seek to replace it irrespective of the cost. We are racist to those of a lighter skin and those of a darker skin not to speak of all the jealousy, hatred and criticism we express to anyone who thinks and acts differently from us. Then we cry racism in all corners of the universe. We do unto ourselves what we would have other do unto us. If you don’t love yourself how can you expect another to love you?
We may believe the illusion that this is a feather on our hats, but it is all part of a systematic effort to discredit the Black race and make us feel inferior. It all links hand in hand with the systematic destruction of African countries through biological and psychological weapons, the racial tension now resurfacing in America, and the terrorism claims all over the world.
But “FEAR IS NOT A FACTOR FOR US“. The foundations are being laid and the ground work is being done. Africa is waking up and will be a united nation. The people of the Caribbean are waking from their slumber, the reading and listening, their are realising that unless we come together as a people, all people, we will be destroyed separately. We are remembering that we are decedents of kings and queens, that without slavery there would be no Caribbean to be governed. We are remembering that slavery happened, but the important thing is what happens in light of that. We are remembering that we are all one, and that for there to be a master, there must be a slave. Bless our fore parents for choosing on this occasion not to be the master, for the master suffers as much if not more than the slave. We are remembering that until we face the truth about a situation and take responsibility we disempower ourselves to do anything about it. We are remembering that we are all pieces of God and that there is nothing else.
written by Joyce Louison
Author Phenomenal Women