Letters & Opinion

Whilst Blood Spills… And Men Lay Dying

By Peter Josie
By Peter Josie

AFTER the Lenten lull and the heart-warming feelings of the rising, this island has returned to its blood-letting (and lawlessness), and young men lay dying. Reckless living, and dying, have become a new almost cultural phenomenon since the advent of ‘the white lady’ on our shores and in particular, since its enforced scarcity.

No one ever promised Saint Lucia a rose garden. True, politicians have promised much including helping to ‘watch your bread;’ ‘jobs, jobs, jobs’ and even ‘better days.’ A rose garden was left to the peoples’ creation; to develop and to nurture. Alas, the once clean, tranquil and idyllic Castries has become a scented public urinal and a garbage collection point that are pre-disposing factors to crime. Who is there so bold and resolute to rescue this once proud little town?

Christians are familiar with the story of the great Satan who appeared to the Lord Jesus when the latter had fasted forty days and was at his hungriest and weakest. It was then Satan chose to offer Jesus the whole world, if only Jesus would agree to obey him. Satan’s offer spoke of ‘better days’ in abundance! Thankfully, a more powerful and spirit-lead leader did not fall for Satan’s grand promises. The moral of Jesus’ resistance is that there is a pathway to a richer reward than petty greed, jealousy and indiscipline. Resistance is not an easy road, and its cup of suffering is real.

This is written to remind those who need it that temptation is always knocking at our doors – sometimes even on the doors of our vehicles. No one promised a rose garden but, in a civilized society one expects the State to educate its citizens, to establish a climate for investments (by both local and foreign), and to see that the criminal justice system works efficiently. In addition, one expects exemplary leadership from religion, business, the public service and politicians.

Experience teaches that no society works exactly the way its leaders plan or, wish it to. Extenuating circumstances can intervene to disrupt ‘the best laid plans of mice and men.’ It is at such times that true leaders emerge. Some run away; others hide and make excuses, while others throw up their hands in defeat. The few, the brave, and the patriotic are left to build a better country. The return to blood-letting in Castries has been adequately reported, including the non-functioning of CCTV cameras, a mere street-width away from one such killing.

Some citizens are so traumatized by these killings they can hardly communicate their emotions, with clarity. No one will ever know for certain what goes on in the minds of those who have been victimized, or, in the minds of those who carried out the heinous acts. Their true feelings seemed destined to travel to the grave with both sides of these murderous equations.

Despite these senseless killings a third and larger constituency goes about its life (and work), in the midst of the blood-letting. These are Saint Lucians who work hard each day to feed their families and to create a better inheritance for their children. To this end we ought to recognize the many sports leaders and coaches who have been preparing the youth to participate in regional netball, swimming and cricket competitions. The excellent performances of these youngsters and their coaches must not go unheralded. The under-fifteen youth cricketers have just retained the Windward Islands Youth trophy which they won last year. The young netballers have started very well and our young swimmers continue to make us proud. In fine, Saint Lucia sports administrators and coaches continue to work to secure a better future for their young charges – and for Saint Lucia.

One does not have to be a cricket enthusiast to appreciate the young batting sensation from Saint Lucia, Kimani Melius. One prays that such young talent will be monitored and encouraged until it gains selection on the West Indies senior cricket team.
I recall how six or seven years ago the newspapers in Trinidad followed the progress of a young wicket keeper/batsman named Stephen Ketwaoo from East Trinidad, who now plays for the Trinidad senior cricket team. It is to be hoped that coaches of the caliber of John Eugene and Alton Crafton who both live and breathe cricket, will continue their good work with the island’s young cricketers. One also prays for same in netball, swimming and other sporting disciplines.

Brief profiles of the island’s young netballers have recently been highlighted on DBS television sports. The youth need such exposure rather than the pointless ‘liming on the block’ which blocks sporting talent. We wish our young ladies well in the Caribbean youth netball competition being played in Saint Lucia. Ditto our young swimmers! Coaches must continue to monitor these young talents perchance to determine who (and what), motivates them to excel.

For my part young people who are taught the basics of sports ought to also be coached on how (and when), to speak, to sit properly (both boys and girls) and generally how to conduct themselves on and off the field of play. Youth must be made aware that the game does not need them. There will always be others anxious to take their places. On the other hand, they need the sport to bring out their God given talent which better allows them to express positive traits and reach heights which they did not think possible, surprising family and peers alike.

The need for strict discipline, regular practice, respect for coaches and team mates, learning to bond and play for each other, should become second nature to every serious young sportsman or woman. They will one day discover that the best trained and disciplined sports personalities often make the best leaders in business and in public life, leading exemplary lives.

Amidst the blood-letting therefore, it is heartening to observe the island going about its business even as men lay dying. Violent crime remains a very small, but important distraction, of the island’s overall personality. It ought to be kept at bay! Early identification and development of sporting talent is one avenue open to planners and developers to mold a crime-free society. Violent crime ought not to be allowed to dictate the pace of our lives even as we continue to demand the justice system work more efficiently. Fearless and patriotic leaders will emerge in sports and elsewhere even whilst blood spills and men lay dying.

7 Comments

  1. Taking a turn at Political Campaign Speech writer.
    Smart seque from your “political pot shot” menu.
    You are still sailling a lumbering barnacle encrusted galleon freighter in swirling seas better suited for corsairs.
    Your nemesis’ frigates will tack zig zags -even nautical figure 8’s to shred your convoy “armada” 🙂

  2. I had a Ghanaian lady professor, who proclaimed that by the end of her Eng Comp101 class we would be able to say nothing in 500 words but with near perfect syntax and semantics.
    It is obvious that you passed a similar class in flying colors.

    Let me underscore yours: A classic sound bite fit for the election campaign trails = ( Amidst the blood-letting therefore, it is heartening to observe the island going about its business even as men lay dying.)
    – The incidents were zoned in hot bed zones of Castries BUT you diluted it to All 238 Sq miles of St.Lucia. Too bad you and the Witch (former Union rep now hoed in senator) do not use this dilution strategy when it comes to shouldering or spreading the burden of fiscal restraints in budget negotiations.
    -Your topic sentence is a nice take on Live and Let Die by just burying your head -Ostrich like-in the sand!
    You offer NO specifics -harsh-cruel or benign- to punish or deter said crimes. Like the Roman emperor Caligula, you commit only -to thy own advances or pleasures!
    Was it the Godfather Of Soul who Crooned “Talking Loud And Saying Nothing” and ” Pass the Peas”
    Well, ole boy, may I suggest you “Get On The Good Foot” a la James Brown.

  3. Josie,

    Did you imply the fake fasting of Lent – not eating beef on Fridays, but everything else is Halaal/permissible, was the reason for the temporary halt to the fratricide in Castries?? You persistence in proselytizing this worship of the Naked Caucasian has convinced me that you are psychotic and in need of some kind of chemical adjustments to the underlying problem with specific brain circuits and the balance of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters.

    So, Satan showed God, the Owner of the Universe, a little city, while God was hungry and weak, telling God if he obeyed Satan he God could have New York ? How comical is this bogus tale? Yet you submit such nonsense given you by the slave masters as some fortress of wisdom. How much is Satan paying you for “Talking Loud And Saying Nothing” ?

    Look Saint Peter, these Caucasian Christians will NEVER respect Negroes like yourself, Rick John Wayne, and the Fedees who kneel and beg his naked image for favors, while claiming the so-called white man nailed to a crossed electric post is God of the Creation.

    Caucasians plundered and pillaged Africa of her natural and human resources, using it to build their homes in Europe and North America. Today we are seeking redress by way of reparations from the Pirate Queen Elizabeth II and the David Camerons.

    While this process acquires velocity, Africans are dying because of the kayos left in the wake of these colonial pirates. The so-called white European has made a conscious decision to not assist Africans trying to escape the wars and devastation caused by England and France in Africa and the Middle East. They have reduced the number of ships in the Mediterranean Sea, so the people attempting to escape the wars will DROWN at sea – yes this is your white Christian answer to you black Christians who pray to a Naked Caucasian as your God.

    See, according to this bogus story, when the Romans and Jews killed God, they stripped him naked, with his God-sized penis and testicles exposed for the world to see, hanging him on the electric-posts, and the soldiers cast lots/gwen deux to take possession of his clothing; his ‘calson’ and all.

    King James Bible
    And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.

  4. Surah Az-Zumar
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

    The revelation of the Scripture is from Allah, the Mighty, the Wise. (1) Lo! We have revealed the Scripture unto thee (Muhammad) with truth; so worship Allah, making religion pure for Him (only). (2)
    Surely pure religion is for Allah only. And those who choose protecting friends beside Him (say): We worship them only that they may bring us near unto Allah. Lo! Allah will judge between them concerning that wherein they differ. Lo! Allah guideth not him who is a liar, an ingrate. (3)
    If Allah had willed to choose a son, He could have chosen what He would of that which He hath created. Be He glorified! He is Allah, the One, the Absolute. (4)
    He hath created the heavens and the earth with truth. He maketh night to succeed day, and He maketh day to succeed night, and He constraineth the sun and the moon to give service, each running on for an appointed term. Is not He the Mighty, the Forgiver? (5)
    He created you from one being, then from that (being) He made its mate; and He hath provided for you of cattle eight kinds. He created you in the wombs of your mothers, creation after creation, in a threefold gloom. Such is Allah, your Lord. His is the Sovereignty. There is no God save Him. How then are ye turned away? (6)
    If ye are thankless, yet Allah is Independent of you, though He is not pleased with thanklessness for His bondmen; and if ye are thankful He is pleased therewith for you. No laden soul will bear another’s load. Then unto your Lord is your return; and He will tell you what ye used to do. Lo! He knoweth what is in the breasts (of men). (7)
    And when some hurt toucheth man, he crieth unto his Lord, turning unto Him (repentant). Then, when He granteth him a boon from Him he forgetteth that for which he cried unto Him before, and setteth up rivals to Allah that he may beguile (men) from His way. Say (O Muhammad, unto such an one): Take pleasure in thy disbelief a while. Lo! thou art of the owners of the Fire. (8)
    Is he who payeth adoration in the watches of the night, prostrate and standing, bewaring of the Hereafter and hoping for the mercy of his Lord, (to be accounted equal with a disbeliever)? Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Are those who know equal with those who know not? But only men of understanding will pay heed. (9)
    Say: O My bondmen who believe! Observe your duty to your Lord. For those who do good in this world there is good, and Allah’s earth is spacious. Verily the steadfast will be paid their wages without stint. (10)
    Say (O Muhammad): Lo! I am commanded to worship Allah, making religion pure for Him (only). (11)
    And I am commanded to be the first of those who surrender (unto Him). (12)
    Say: Lo! if I should disobey my Lord, I fear the doom of a tremendous Day. (13) Say: Allah I worship, making my religion pure for Him (only). (14) Then worship what ye will beside Him. Say: The losers will be those who lose themselves and their housefolk on the Day of Resurrection. Ah, that will be the manifest loss! (15) They have an awning of fire above them and beneath them a dais (of fire). With this doth Allah appal His bondmen. O My bondmen, therefor fear Me! (16)
    And those who put away false gods lest they should worship them and turn to Allah in repentance, for them there are glad tidings. Therefore give good tidings (O Muhammad) to My bondmen (17)
    Who hear advice and follow the best thereof. Such are those whom Allah guideth, and such are men of understanding. (18)
    Is he on whom the word of doom is fulfilled (to be helped), and canst thou (O Muhammad) rescue him who is in the Fire? (19) But those who keep their duty to their Lord, for them are lofty halls with lofty halls above them, built (for them), beneath which rivers flow. (It is) a promise of Allah. Allah faileth not His promise. (20)
    Hast thou not seen how Allah hath sent down water from the sky and hath caused it to penetrate the earth as watersprings, and afterward thereby produceth crops of divers hues; and afterward they wither and thou seest them turn yellow; then He maketh them chaff. Lo! herein verily is a reminder for men of understanding. (21)
    Is he whose bosom Allah hath expanded for the surrender (unto Him), so that he followeth a light from his Lord, (as he who disbelieveth)? Then woe unto those whose hearts are hardened against remembrance of Allah. Such are in plain error. (22) Allah hath (now) revealed the fairest of statements, a Scripture consistent, (wherein promises of reward are) paired (with threats of punishment), whereat doth creep the flesh of those who fear their Lord, so that their flesh and their hearts soften to Allah’s reminder. Such is Allah’s guidance, wherewith He guideth whom He will. And him whom Allah sendeth astray, for him there is no guide. (23)
    Is he then, who will strike his face against the awful doom upon the Day of Resurrection (as he who doeth right)? And it will be said unto the wrong-doers: Taste what ye used to earn. (24)
    Those before them denied, and so the doom came on them whence they knew not. (25)
    Thus Allah made them taste humiliation in the life of the world, and verily the doom of the Hereafter will be greater if they did but know. (26)
    And verily We have coined for mankind in this Qur’an all kinds of similitude, that haply they may reflect; (27)
    A Lecture in Arabic, containing no crookedness, that haply they may ward off (evil). (28)
    Allah coineth a similitude: A man in relation to whom are several part-owners, quarrelling, and a man belonging wholly to one man. Are the two equal in similitude? Praise be to Allah! But most of them know not. (29)
    Lo! thou wilt die, and lo! they will die; (30)
    Then lo! on the Day of Resurrection, before your Lord ye will dispute. (31)
    And who doth greater wrong than he who telleth a lie against Allah, and denieth the truth when it reacheth him? Will not the home of disbelievers be in hell? (32)
    And whoso bringeth the truth and believeth therein – Such are the dutiful. (33)
    They shall have what they will of their Lord’s bounty. That is the reward of the good: (34)
    That Allah will remit from them the worst of what they did, and will pay them for reward the best they used to do. (35)
    Will not Allah defend His slave? Yet they would frighten thee with those beside Him. He whom Allah sendeth astray, for him there is no guide. (36)
    And he whom Allah guideth, for him there can be no misleader. Is not Allah Mighty, Able to Requite (the wrong)? (37)
    And verily, if thou shouldst ask them: Who created the heavens and the earth? they will say: Allah. Say: Bethink you then of those ye worship beside Allah, if Allah willed some hurt for me, could they remove from me His hurt; or if He willed some mercy for me, could they restrain His mercy? Say: Allah is my all. In Him do (all) the trusting put their trust. (38) Say: O my people! Act in your manner. Lo! I (too) am acting. Thus ye will come to know (39)
    Who it is unto whom cometh a doom that will abase him, and on whom there falleth everlasting doom. (40)

  5. Surah Az-Zumar
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

    Lo! We have revealed unto thee (Muhammad) the Scripture for mankind with truth. Then whosoever goeth right it is for his soul, and whosoever strayeth, strayeth only to its hurt. And thou art not a warder over them. (41)
    Allah receiveth (men’s) souls at the time of their death, and that (soul) which dieth not (yet) in its sleep. He keepeth that (soul) for which He hath ordained death and dismisseth the rest till an appointed term. Lo! herein verily are portents for people who take thought. (42)
    Or choose they intercessors other than Allah? Say: What! Even though they have power over nothing and have no intelligence? (43)
    Say: Unto Allah belongeth all intercession. His is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth. And afterward unto Him ye will be brought back. (44)
    And when Allah alone is mentioned, the hearts of those who believe not in the Hereafter are repelled, and when those (whom they worship) beside Him are mentioned, behold! they are glad. (45)
    Say: O Allah! Creator of the heavens and the earth! Knower of the Invisible and the Visible! Thou wilt judge between Thy slaves concerning that wherein they used to differ. (46)
    And though those who do wrong possess all that is in the earth, and therewith as much again, they verily will seek to ransom themselves therewith on the Day of Resurrection from the awful doom; and there will appear unto them, from their Lord, that wherewith they never reckoned. (47)
    And the evils that they earned will appear unto them, and that whereat they used to scoff will surround them. (48)
    Now when hurt toucheth a man he crieth unto Us, and afterward when We have granted him a boon from Us, he saith: Only by force of knowledge I obtained it. Nay, but it is a test. But most of them know not. (49)
    Those before them said it, yet (all) that they had earned availed them not; (50)
    But the evils that they earned smote them; and such of these as do wrong, the evils that they earn will smite them; they cannot escape. (51)
    Know they not that Allah enlargeth providence for whom He will, and straiteneth it (for whom He will). Lo! herein verily are portents for people who believe. (52)
    Say: O My slaves who have been prodigal to their own hurt! Despair not of the mercy of Allah, Who forgiveth all sins. Lo! He is the Forgiving, the Merciful. (53)
    Turn unto your Lord repentant, and surrender unto Him, before there come unto you the doom, when ye cannot be helped. (54)
    And follow the better (guidance) of that which is revealed unto you from your Lord, before the doom cometh on you suddenly when ye know not, (55)
    Lest any soul should say: Alas, my grief that I was unmindful of Allah, and I was indeed among the scoffers! (56)
    Or should say: If Allah had but guided me I should have been among the dutiful! (57)
    Or should say, when it seeth the doom: Oh, that I had but a second chance that I might be among the righteous! (58)
    (But now the answer will be): Nay, for My revelations came unto thee, but thou didst deny them and wast scornful and wast among the disbelievers. (59)
    And on the Day of Resurrection thou (Muhammad) seest those who lied concerning Allah with their faces blackened. Is not the home of the scorners in hell? (60)
    And Allah delivereth those who ward off (evil) because of their deserts. Evil toucheth them not, nor do they grieve. (61)
    Allah is Creator of all things, and He is Guardian over all things. (62)
    His are the keys of the heavens and the earth, and they who disbelieve the revelations of Allah – such are they who are the losers. (63)
    Say (O Muhammad, to the disbelievers): Do ye bid me serve other than Allah? O ye fools! (64) And verily it hath been revealed unto thee as unto those before thee (saying): If thou ascribe a partner to Allah thy work will fail and thou indeed wilt be among the losers. (65)
    Nay, but Allah must thou serve, and be among the thankful! (66)
    And they esteem not Allah as He hath the right to be esteemed, when the whole earth is His handful on the Day of Resurrection, and the heavens are rolled in His right hand. Glorified is He and High Exalted from all that they ascribe as partner (unto Him). (67)
    And the trumpet is blown, and all who are in the heavens and all who are in the earth swoon away, save him whom Allah willeth. Then it is blown a second time, and behold them standing waiting! (68)
    And the earth shineth with the light of her Lord, and the Book is set up, and the prophets and the witnesses are brought, and it is judged between them with truth, and they are not wronged. (69)
    And each soul is paid in full for what it did. And He is best aware of what they do. (70)
    And those who disbelieve are driven unto hell in troops till, when they reach it and the gates thereof are opened, and the warders thereof say unto them: Came there not unto you messengers of your own, reciting unto you the revelations of your Lord and warning you of the meeting of this your Day? They say: Yea, verily. But the word of doom of disbelievers is fulfilled. (71)
    It is said (unto them): Enter ye the gates of hell to dwell therein. Thus hapless is the journey’s end of the scorners. (72)
    And those who keep their duty to their Lord are driven unto the Garden in troops till, when they reach it, and the gates thereof are opened, and the warders thereof say unto them: Peace be unto you! Ye are good, so enter ye (the Garden of delight), to dwell therein; (73)
    They say: Praise be to Allah, Who hath fulfilled His promise unto us and hath made us inherit the land, sojourning in the Garden where we will! So bounteous is the wage of workers. (74)
    And thou (O Muhammad) seest the angels thronging round the Throne, hymning the praises of their Lord. And they are judged aright. And it is said: Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds! (75)

  6. Oh he’s back to spill his bile everywhere. Why don’t you go and help if you’re that concerned? On one hand you want them interfering and on the other they are still colonists. Why is it they are always migrating north to the rich countries? There’s a whole continent to go to.

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