TODAY IS JAMAICA DAY

TODAY IS JAMAICA DAY

Today is Jamaica Day . Today we give thanks to the shapers of our uniqueness, those that spilled their blood for what we have today, the forefathers that fought for our independence, the national heroes that defied the odds, the entertainers that remind us of our uniqueness, the teachers that teach us of our uniqueness, every worker, every athlete, every greatness we have shown in our unique Jamaican Hood and we give thanks for all the errors we have made and continue to make.

We hope that we learn and we press on, realizing that greatness does not come easy and a nation as small as ours will only be as great as our smallest citizen. So teach us Father that every man and woman count, I pray we respect our individual uniqueness so that together we can make Jamaica truly HOME.

POLITICS, TOURISM & BACKWARDNESS

130517141050-china-tourists-hong-kong-camera-story-top

POLITICS, TOURISM & BACKWARDNESS

There is a great piece on Jamaica’s tourism initiative in China. Read the link and be entertained.

Wow..Jamaica, Jamaica. Sometimes i wonder if the country has ever heard of technology and the benefits of it. I am not surprised. Jamaica has not changed in the last 30 years. The only thing that’s changed is  Banks now have television in their hallways so that customers don’t die waiting on service. They can now watch TV. Watch an entire episode of your favorite sitcom while waiting on the next teller.

We are as backward as they come. Asking the Chinese to trek thousands of miles is the same stupid way of governing Jamaica in 2014 where you ask people to go to Kingston for the simplest of item.  We are a small island with a small island mentality in a big industrialized world. We are pawns when it comes to technology and tourism. And to think the millions of dollars we are losing because we now allow the Chinese to come to Jamaica without a visa.WoW. Let them buy their Visa at the port of entry. Charge US$10 per person. Its revenue. Charge every nationality including the Americans. Nothing is free anymore in this world, why should our shores be free? As for Nigeria they are trying to keep the ‘scammers’ out of the country so they must have a Visa….HA…that in itself is another topic of discussion.

Houston we have a problem. Jamaica is in dire need of common sense governance. HELP, let’s get the knife out of their hands before they chop their heads off.

SEX SELLS.

brazil-t-shirts-main-3183941-1

BRAZIL

There is a storm brewing in the South American continent. The organizers and government of Brazil are fighting what they call the “bad image” to Brazil as it relates to sex tourism. They have managed to successfully ask the owners of a suggestive T-shirt, seen above, promoting sex tourism to remove it from the market. Adidas, the owners of this tee have complied. But has the government won this battle?

The 2014 World Cup is scheduled to be opened in the most sensual city and a country that features the most erotic carnival in the history of carnivals, Rio Brazil. Achieving the status of host country is no mean feat. Brazil had to produce, offer and guarantee more than what they could have imagined, half of which were not factored in or presented in their official presentation to the governing FIFA body. How could they? Its’ impossible. Brazil cannot realize or imagine the size of the social hospitality  that will suddenly balloon as a result of the event in their country. They may think they have estimates on how many people will attend the games but they will never know the real impact on the economy by way of direct and indirect forces of a social kind that always go with events of this size and scope , and that is SEX.

If 3 people out of every 10 go to Brazil for sun, sea and sand, the other 7 go there for sex, period. The country has become synonymous with the word and it is no one’s fault. Where there are beautiful people , a liberal lifestyle, large-scale poverty and endless entertainment sex happens. Sex Sells.

The government actions in trying to stomp out this natural proclivity to sex by the people of Brazil is in 2 words , absolute nonsense. The pot is boiling , take off the cover and let the steam out. You cannot control people’s desires. Seems like sponsorship dollars are speaking here or at least trying to cover the mouth of what I call “Brazilian flavourism”. Here it is , a country that sells the biggest open sex party in the world , Rio Carnival, and suddenly the country is trying to clean up their reputation and not associate sex with the country? That is like saying Germans don’t sell BMW, they only drive it. Enough already. Be true to self.

BRAZIL, google the word and you see  the statue of Christ, how ironic, Copacabana beach, beautiful people in skimpy beachwear and SEX. If the government thinks that thousands of people are only coming there for football only they had better start taking their  meds. As a matter of fact SEX drives more people to the country ; Sex and football, what an intoxicating mix.

Try all they want the government’s move has just made that T-shirt the hottest item for buyers of controversial items and they will be hard pressed to sell as many official FIFA tee  prior to the World Cup games as what will sell by the “official” sex tee.. People will buy the tee and arrive in Brazil waving their flags proudly going about their business and looking forward to what Rio will offer and there is nothing the government can do about it.

Gone are the days of trying to drown out the local Mom & Pop business. Big money has little control over people ‘s desires and wishes. Sure they can try to promote Brazil for what they want it to be, but in the mind of the millions of people travelling there today and for the upcoming games it is what it is…a sexual paradise hosting the world’s most popular game. What an orgy it will be.

AFRICA IS WEEPING, AFRICA IS BLEEDING.

????????????????????

AFRICA IS WEEPING, AFRICA IS BLEEDING.

It is ironic that a country in Africa, bred out of oppression, racism, segregation and discrimination should now inflict the same disease on its own people. It is ironic that a country from Africa should embrace social strife and trepidation and use cultural beliefs as the basis for implementation. Africa has not been free from homosexuality. History has shown that a former Ugandan tribal King, Kabaka (King) Mwanga II Basammula Ekkere was bisexual.Why is this information important, simple, its nothing new.

The basis of Uganda’s  present belief is that this ‘disease’ is a Western import, affecting their cultural and religious lifestyle and perverting their kids. Interesting thought. Uganda, like all countries in Africa has been affected by various Western influences including Religion and other lifestyles they now enjoy. Why cherry pick this disease and leave the other bad ones out of the equation? The West introduced  their brand of alcohol, urban dress, urban music, television, the internet to name a few , are all Western “diseases” that have done some harm and good depending on what glass you are looking through.

Except for cultural African customs, all activities in Uganda are all derived and driven by outside and Western influences. This is a lame excuse for an immoral law. If it looks like discrimination it is discrimination.. Blaming God for executing this law is riding Christianity like how the Pharisees rode King Herod. Uganda is saying don’t blame us, blame Religion. God is tried of taking the blame.

The people of Africa, like all people all over the world are all different, some are straight, some are  gay. Period. No law can stop it. I do not call this signing of the law human ignorance. I call it the Black holocaust. Like the Nazi treatment of the Jews, the color of the actors in this scenario has changed . It is Black on Black, brother against brother, sister against sister, a continent still on the plantation.

How ironic that a continent that fought racism and discrimination should now celebrate its emancipation with a single signature on a Law of Death that puts it right back to where it all started….the dark dark world of singular degradation of a few that led to blood shed. The soil of Africa is wet with the blood of its people. It seems that the people are still shedding blood, but this time its their own blood from their own people and they cannot blame anyone except themselves. Africa is weeping. Africa is bleeding.

You can read the WSJ on the law just passed in Uganda on the link..  AFRICA IS WEEPING, AFRICA IS BLEEDING.

Part 5- CINDY & BOB, ONE LOVE.

Part 5- CINDY & BOB, ONE LOVE.

The final installment of the Bob and Cindy , the inside story of an affair between 2 mature and consenting adults,. The series gives an insight on 3 people’s perspective on love and relationship , Cindy, Bob and Rita.

I am surprised at how the ladies that read this series are reacting. Seems to me most if not all of them are fairly understanding. One reader even went as far to say that Bob lives by his own rules and not society’s rules. That is true but in reality how many women could be a Rita or a Cindy in a similar situation? How many are going through a similar scenario presently and are affected positively or negatively ? Are we seeing how times have changed including relationships?

To say that only Bob does this is furthest from the truth . Most people do this. So what does it say about relationships? What is says to me is nothing is perfect. Life is messy. Outcomes are uncertain. People are irrational. A relationship is like a job, you have to work hard at it to make is successful. So to be distracted by crisis is allowing the crisis to win. People are not perfect and that is why those words “For Better for Worse” mean just that,.. for better or worse. Here is the final installment . Enjoy.

Janet Silvera, Senior Gleaner Writer

When Cindy Breakspeare spoke at the Annual Bob Marley Lecture at the University of the West Indies, Mona, two Thursday ago, a number of women in the audience cried openly.

Breakspeare herself cried during the hour-long lecture organised by the Institute of Caribbean Studies and the Reggae Studies Unit.

“Several times she had me in tears. She herself broke down at one time but recovered her composure with grace and wit! It was truly a wonderful love story which I believe warrants a book,” stated Donna Haynes, who was in the audience.

Since The Gleaner’s first publication of ‘Cindy Tells All’, women and men worldwide have taken to social media, commenting on what they have described as the love story of the century.

Breakspeare, in her presentation, spoke of how she found out about Marley’s marriage to Rita, how all the women in his life joined hands while he struggled with cancer, and how she sat at the back of the church during his funeral.

Bob’s funeral

“During Bob’s funeral at the National Arena, I sat in the back with Cat and Donna Coore. There was no seat in the front row for us. I was definitely the other woman,” she admitted, as those in the audience wiped tears from their eyes.

For Facebooker Tracy Russell, Marley’s affair with Breakspeare was conscious behaviour on his part. “Same way him smoke his weed in public. Bob never live by society’s rules. A man like him cannot be judged by anybody else’s rules.”

For Tilsa Wright, a Jamaican who resides in New York, Marley was a typical man with feelings. “Cindy’s free spirit met Bob’s freed soul and they connected on levels beyond sex, is what I get from the articles written so far.”

Breakspeare said during her lecture that after Marley collapsed while jogging days after his last recorded show in Pittsburg on the 23rd of September, 1981. She and Rita travelled with him to Sloan Kettering in New York.

“It was absolutely the best place for cancer treatment.”

The cancer which they thought was in remission had returned. This time, it wasn’t his toe alone, but his lungs and brain.

“Looking back now, I think we were all numb with fear, unable to even assess what was happening. He was angry, naturally at this cruel twist of fate. To be cut down in his prime, confronted with his mortality.”

According to Breakspeare, Sloan Kettering began a very aggressive treatment of massive doses of chemo.

On Marley’s release from hospital, Breakspeare and Rita shared an apartment, along with Bob, where they could cook, take care of him and have the children around. “So things could feel as normal as possible,” she said.

Recounting that period in her life, she said this was no time for petty jealousy and bruised egos, “It was a time for One Love in the broadest sense of the phrase”.

Marley’s two main women comforted and cared for him until his last days when he died in 1981.

Tom Tavares-Finson

Today, Breakspeare pays tribute to the man she married after Marley’s death for taking such good care of her and Damian. “Thank you Tom (Tavares-Finson),” she said publicly during the lecture.

“The records must show that it was Damian’s stepfather and I who supported and educated him. Till then, no one else. All sorts of claim were being made.”

It been 33 years since Bob said goodbye, she said, but his light burns brighter than ever through his music and through his children.

One of her greatest joys, she said, “is to watch Damian take the stage while Donovan keeps the flag flying tireless overhead”.

She says she knows beyond a shadow of a doubt she will never have to hold her head in shame when Damian steps on the stage. “He is his father’s son. Not perfect, but perfectly conscious of the awesome responsibility handed down not only to him but all his siblings.”

Natural mystic

For Cindy Breakspeare, Bob Marley was indeed a natural mystic right up there with Mahatma Ghandi, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela. This, she says, is evidenced by the fact that his legacy continues to grow.

“It has never diminished. His music remains on the charts, unstoppable and untouchable. To have to your credit, in 1999, album of the century for Exudos; song of the millennium for One Love from the BBC, speaks to not only his lyrical brilliance, but his commitment to mankind, to being a humanitarian, a champion of the poor and oppressed from one corner of the earth to the other.”

janet.silvera@gleanerjm.com

PART 4 -CINDY IS NOW PREGNANT

PART 4 -CINDY IS NOW PREGNANT

Janet Silvera, Senior Gleaner Writer

WESTERN BUREAU:

As if entering the Miss World contest hadn’t already made Cindy Breakspeare an outsider, the beauty queen became pregnant with Bob Marley’s child, Damian, in 1977.

She revealed during the annual Bob Marley Lecture organised by the Institute of Caribbean Studies and the Reggae Studies Unit, at the University of the West Indies, Mona, Thursday, February 13, that when she returned to Jamaica after a whirlwind trip, she was approached by Marley’s mother, who told her he was actually married to Rita Marley.

This was something Marley denied to her, she said. However, already with child, she resigned herself to her fate.

Six months later, during her pregnancy, she was among the audience with Marley’s mother Cedella, witnessing the joining of hands between political rivals, Michael Manley and Edward Seaga.

Marley had succeeded in effecting peace at the famous One Love Peace Concert of 1978.

Breakspeare, who carried the pregnancy up to nine months, said when her son was born, his father was away on tour and it was a month later that he met his offspring.

According to her, Rita and Sister Minnie came to visit the newest addition to the Marley clan, probably to see if he resembled his father.

“However, it was fine Damian’s resemblance to his father was obvious from the day he was born.”

Both herself and Rita, she said would go on to spend Christmas together at Marley’s mother’s home in Pine Crest, Florida.

Baby Damian was only two years old when his father died of cancer.

During an interview with The Gleaner in 2001, the former beauty queen said her relationship with Marley had been through some changes right before he fell ill and she had Damian.

“I sort of wanted to restructure my life a little bit. So we were dealing with all of that, but I mean, by then Bob was now a superstar, he really was, and he didn’t really have the time to devote to that side of his life very much. So when he fell ill I just set that aside, Rita set her grievances aside, and we all rallied around him. It was all about him at that point, caring for somebody who was going through this terrible thing. None of us wanted to lose him, whether or not we were romantically involved with him.”

Both women never had any confrontations, Breakspeare told The Gleaner then.

Two years ago while being interviewed on Bob Marley Day, Breakspeare said Marley’s inspiration was now manifested through her son.

Breakspeare started her own business, Ital Craft in 1979, with friend Donna Coore, when her son Damian was about six months old. The business grew from strength to strength.

“We started from nothing, virtually. We went to Hellshire beach and dug up cactus, we bought clay pots and wrapped them in sisal string that we dyed and it was just whatever we could imagine to do or make.”

She told The Gleaner back then that Marley used to visit and sit in the workshop.

“I started it at my home at the foot of Russell Heights because I had a self-contained cottage that was empty, so it was the perfect spot for a little workshop. So that was where we started. Bob would come up, man, and pull up a table to the bench and say, ‘alright wha yuh wha mi fi do fi yuh now? Mi is a tradesman yuh nuh’.

“He used to bring me a lot of material whenever he would travel, things to make jewellery, lovely beads and bindings, quartz and stuff like that from London, one trip from Australia he brought shells ! Oh, you couldn’t imagine. We were just flabbergasted when we saw them; they were the most amazing shells.”

The relationship remained strong and in April of 1980 Marley was invited to Zimbabwe to perform for the Independence celebrations.

“They couldn’t afford to pay him. The band and the cost of the equipment and stage light and sound for an event of that magnitude. So he spent his own money and shipped everything from London to make it happen,” she said.

The stadium, she said, was packed to capacity but there were actually more people outside than inside. And those outside, dissatisfied with the fact that they were unable to see the man they revered, stormed the venue.

Media reports at the time showed police teargassing the arena, contributing to the total chaos.

“Such was the love and admiration for Bob in Africa. To understand the true significance of this occasion, one must watch the footage of the performance. See the looks on the faces of the people and feel the energy generated by the crowds. I think there was very nice footage on it in the documentary, Marley. Their hero was in the house.”

janet.silvera@gleanerjm.com