Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Republic or Monarchy of Jamaica?

A friend of mine recently sold his house packed up his family and furniture bought a new house in a different country and moved to that country/house, now he did not move because he hated his neighbors he did it because he wanted a bigger house, new life and better opportunities. He loved his old neighbors and will miss them dearly but sometimes “A man's got to do what a man's got to do, what he thinks his right”.

I am beginning to get the impression that some people believe, that Jamaicans desire to become a republic is being done out of hate or spite for Britain or the Royal Family. Some in the media and various individuals seem more concern with creating controversy where none exist. The desire to become a republic has nothing to do with disliking the Monarch, The Queen or The United Kingdom but sometimes “A Jamaican's got to do what a Jamaican's got to do”, Jamaicans have a right to decide their own destiny.

Jamaicans on a whole do have a love affair with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and the Royal Family, both will always hold a special place in our hearts. The Commonwealth represents a special community, a family with a unique shared history and the United Kingdom of Great Britain is a central part of that history and a major part of the Jamaica’s History. Britain is partly responsible for who we are as a people, our failures and our success. The British culture runs deep, its influence can be seen in every aspect of Jamaican life and will always be a part of who we are.

The Results of one Poll, an island wide survey among 1,008 people:
60 per cent of Jamaicans held the view the country would be better off under British rule.
44 per cent of the people surveyed said the current Westminster system should be retained
35 per cent said it should be replaced with a republican system.
21 per cent answered 'don't know' to the question.

*Updated Poll: March 12 2012, CVM/Don Anderson polls for 2012, which sampled 1,000
  • JAMAICANS are nearly evenly split on the issue of whether or not to cut ties with the British monarchy, with 44 per cent for and 40 per cent against.

Over the past couple decades it has become clearer and clearer that this love affair with Great Britain was in fact a one sided love affair as successive British Governments(especially "Nu Labour", they had a special dislike for Jamaica and the commonwealth) tried their very best to distance Britain from Jamaica. Our relationship became purely symbolic and added nothing to the lives of Jamaicans and the British people. It was as if we were locked in a loveless marriage and has been for some time. Over the past couple decades Jamaicans have become increasingly disillusioned with the commonwealth of which we had such great expectations of growing and evolving together into something more meaningful, something greater but that was not to be.

The Commonwealth of Nations represents one of Great Britain’s biggest failures since losing its empire, the failure to evolve from Slavery, Colonialism, from Commonwealth into something more meaningful and beneficial. The Commonwealth exists with no sense of direction, no sense of purpose and made up of so many failed and failing states that exist in limbo. It demands nothing, builds nothing, adds nothing and reminds me of a dying star that never really achieved its true potentials but soon will cease to exist. To say I am disappointed would be an understatement, we are 54 countries strong, 15 of which make up the Commonwealth Realm, a third of the world’s population, a mixture of Developed and Developing countries and yet we are not a part of a dynamic economic bloc and add nothing to the lives of the members.

There are 15 Commonwealth Realms in addition to the UK: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Papua New Guinea, St Christopher and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Tuvalu, Barbados, Grenada, Solomon Islands, St Lucia and The Bahamas.

These are the countries Britain cared to keep, this is the extent of the British Empire with a Combine Population of about 226,560:

Overseas territories of the UK:
  • Anguilla - 14,766
  • Bermuda -68,265
  • British Virgin Islands- 24,939
  • Cayman Islands - 50,209
  • Falkland Islands (Malvinas) - 3,140
  • Montserrat - 5,118
  • St. Helena - 7,670
  • Turks and Caicos Islands - 23,528
  • Gibraltar - 28,877
  • Pitcairn – 48
The Rise and fall of The British Empire

While the Jamaican education system created by the British was teaching Jamaicans, beating into Jamaicans, pushing and promoting “Britishness” and our shared history and values. The British education system was doing no such thing in the UK. Britain went out of its way to omit the importance of  colonies to the development of Britain. They failed to teach British Citizens the fact that without countries like Jamaica to drive their sugar empire with free slave labour, that the Great Britain we know today would never have existed and would never have been so rich and so powerful.

The British failed to teach their population the importance of the colonies, that Britain’s development was achieved at the expense of the colonies and that there was never any mutual development plans, except for the members of the 2 or 3 white commonwealth CANZUK countries. They the British were educated in terms of the White man’s burden, they reluctantly took on the Job of colonial masters to save the savages from themselves. The average British person on the street is totally ignorant when it comes to British History with regards to the Empire, the former colonies and slavery and that is by design.  For the most part the British history that they know exist in the land of fairy tales with Dragons.

Most do not know that Jamaica's Head of State is the Queen and also Head of State for the other members of the Realm, or even what it means to be the head of State and under such condition, such ignorance, how then could we expect this Commonwealth to survive and evolve. I suspect the powers that be did not want it to survive much less evolve.

The few British Citizens who seem upset about Jamaica’s decision to become a (or pay lip service to become a) republic are only upset because they feel embarrassed for the British Monarchy. Upset that the queen will lose one of her symbolic Head of State status as the Commonwealth Realms gets smaller and smaller, it represents diminishing power. The Royalist in the UK wants Jamaica to retain the Queen as Head of State thus keeping the symbolic Commonwealth together but really wants nothing more to do with countries like Jamaica or its people. There is no special love for Jamaica or Jamaicans so what they want is  not about us, it is only about preserving the status of The Queen and Britain to the world. This relationship makes us feel like a girl whose male friend only uses her for sex then discards her until nature calls again. When the Queen needs to do one of her symbolic world tours with signature Royal wave so the media can have something to go crazy over. Each time the Queens visits Jamaica it cost Jamaica, yes we are happy for her visit and we welcome her but it does nothing for the development of the country.

These loyalists are the same people who complain, day in day out that there are too many foreigners living in Britain, that their cities are infested with non-white people and that Britain is for white British and should close its borders. These are the people who lobbied their Government and bombard the media to restrict Jamaicans from entering Britain. It seems we are not good enough to come to England but we should have the English Queen as our Head of State and if we dare use the word Republic then they are the first to say we should be charged with Treason.

An excerpt from the "madmonarchist" blog website states: “Would they prefer Jamaica to be more like the impoverished republic of Haiti or perhaps the Communist dictatorship of Cuba? With the Crown and the Jamaican monarchy the island has had security, independence, freedom and a proven system of government to respond to the needs of society”. The blog went on to say "Former PM Bruce Golding had made the same sort of treasonous statement"

Here the white man’s burden is alive and well, over stating British involvement in Jamaica as a reason for our security, independence, freedom and a proven system of government” where was Britain during the Invasion of Grenada and why are they not doing more in Zimbabwe and countless others, as a matter of fact the only time Britain defended its interest was during the Falklands War or when America commands them to. These loyalist have gone so far as to say that if Jamaica becomes a republic then the UK should cut of all aid to Jamaica without even quantifying this so called mystery aid.
The Commonwealth

It is not the Commonwealth who is abandoning the British Monarchy, it is Britain who is abandoning Commonwealth and have been for sometime now. As far as most Brits are concern the Commonwealth includes Canada, Australia and New Zealand since that is the only part of the commonwealth they can and want to relate to, right down racial lines.

As per the Brits: During Colonial Times Jamaicans were all Educated and Prosperous!
I am sick and tired of the British Media (especially the BBC) stating that during colonial times Jamaica was prosperous without providing the necessary economic and social indicators/data/facts to support that statement and not just the cherry picked data but the entire truth, provide me with a detail explanation of the Standard of living of most Jamaicans and how it was better.  I understand it was a different time, a simpler time with simpler people but knowing the British concept/”one sided view” of a colony being “Prosperous” I doubt that the standard of living of most Jamaicans was better or even close to what it is today. The top 1%, the colonial class, the ones who benefited from the existing status quo, who owned the means of production and reap all the wealth will always see those times as the glory days. Us Jamaicans are not fools we have mastered the fine art of “If you find a donkey, ride him to pasture”, we would never have turned our backs on a good thing but it was not a good thing. The actual statistics show a completely different life for normal Jamaicans, Only 30% were literate, most had no light, most had no running water, most had no roads. They lived on hillsides and valleys in shacks and wear no shoes. The statistic show how hard life was for ordinary Jamaicans and how great life was for our colonial masters and the people they allow close to them.  

As citizens of the Commonwealth we get no special treatment from the United Kingdom, no special protection, enjoy no elevated status. In the years before 2003 the British Government and media launched a media campaign to demonize Jamaicans for the sole purpose of implementing visa restrictions against the Jamaican people, at a time when more Europeans from the EU was flooding into the UK, Black Jamaicans had to go. Headlines after headlines reported that Jamaican “Yardies” were destroying her Majesty’s perfect society and they needed to be stopped. Yes there is such a thing as one sided over reporting used to shape people's perception, to make them think what you want them to think, this is a standard practice employed for centuries to get your people to do what you want them to do and support your actions, first you demonized then you strike.

In months leading up to the visa restrictions the British media set their sights on Jamaica like attack dogs, reporting each and every crime committed by a Jamaicans and descendants of Jamaicans some of whom had never set foot in Jamaica. Every black person who committed a crime in the UK was somehow linked to Jamaica thus turning the tide of public opinion against us. Something had to be done about the Jamaican menace,it was media persecution at its very best.(Read: Removing The Jamaican Menace)

The British deputy high commissioner in Jamaica, Phil Sinkinson, had said one in 10 passengers leaving for Britain was a drug mule. Both the Jamaican national carrier, Air Jamaica, and British customs and excise officers disputed the numbers and the national anti-crack strategy published by the Home Office at the time made clear that most of the 40 to 50 tonnes of cocaine shipped into Britain each year came in bulk by sea to Spain and then overland to the Netherlands but once Jamaica’s name was associated with this, the damage had already been done, mission accomplish. Even the recent riots in England did not pass without Jamaica being blamed for the uprising.(Read: Whites have become black)

I remember in my A’Level history class reading a paragraph from the manuscript Debate in Parliament where a British MP, after slavery had ended, complaining that Jamaica was now costing Britain 10 thousand shillings a year. It was then that I realized that we were no longer a pearl in the British crown but a drain on her resources. Deep in my subconscious I believe that Independence was a British concept planted in the minds of the educated middle and upper class and I would not be surprise also if becoming a Republic was also a British concept.

Westminster has been trying to set us adrift for some time now, chipping away at the relationship, trying to break the bonds between us. Britain at one time had a preferential Import agreement for Bananas from Jamaica and the Commonwealth using a favorable trading agreement, in short the United States of America took Britain and the EU to WTO court and the Trade Agreement was canceled thus killing the Banana industry in most of the Caribbean and bankrupting small farmers, (I would not be surprise if Britain/Nu Labour asked America to take them to court to end this subsidies and preferential treatment). All this happened at a time when America was creating preferential trading blocs of their own such as the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA and Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI), The United Kingdom of Great Britain failed to create any such trading bloc with the Commonwealth Realm we were left high and dry in a cold dark place without a candle, told to get on with it.

The British have never defined their relationship with the Commonwealth Realms or Nation as a “Special Relationship”, that title is reserved for the United States of America. Jamaica stopped being a “Pearl in the Caribbean” and a “Jewel in the British crown” simply because we no longer serve any purpose to Britain. We no longer enrich her but instead add to her cost, constantly being treated like a begging dysfunctional child who is genetically predisposed to crime with a parent who is trying to abandon that child in the car park of the shopping mall.

Even though, I will be the first to tell you that any system, either the Westminster model or a Republican System is only as good as the people running it and if we cannot get this current Westminster system to work for us then I do not see how the hell we will get the Republican System to work also. Becoming a republic should but will not do anything to the mindset of the Jamaican people they were never engineered to value Jamaica, this rock of mine and most see it as an unfortunate birthplace, a barren wasteland from which to escape. I do not have faith in the Jamaican people to get this system or any system working. Our political class does not fill me with confidence and while the body of the people is trapped in Jamaica, their minds wonder the landscape of North America, London and Paris, anywhere else but here, I do not get Nation Building from them.

However I do support Jamaica becoming a Republic and finally turn our backs on the old ways once and for all. It is sink or swim time now boys, will you be man enough to shoulder the responsibility to engage the nation building process and create a nation state future generation and the world will be proud of or sink into the Caribbean, forever begging for a handout, continue to behave like unwanted dogs hanging around the dinner table waiting to be noticed but instead being kicked?

Total independence is not a solution in itself but could be part of the re-branding process, a core part in the ideology of Jamaica. Jamaica needs an ideology, the people need something to believe in, something to rally around, something everybody can get on board with, the ideology of nationalism, the ideology of patriotism, the ideology of self reliance and the ideology of Jamaica first. Before we can sell the brand Jamaica to anyone else we must first have a brand we Jamaicans believe in. We need to redefine what it means to be a Jamaican, what it means to be a Jamaican worker, what it means to be a Jamaican farmer , what it means to be a Jamaican producer and we need to redefine what it means to consume Goods and services made in Jamaica. It is about time we take on our own burden, it is about time we bring home the reality of what it means to be a Jamaican, what it means to have your own country, no one is going to save us, not the United Kingdom of Great Britain and certainly not the United States of America this we must do for ourselves.

FACT: Becoming a Republic is NOT the most important issue facing Jamaica today, personally I am happy either way, we have far bigger fish to fry but we will always have bigger fish to fry, so we must make time for the not so big but very important fish in our lives, this is not a life or death situation. The majority of people who oppose full independence say to me that they like the arrangement we have today, that Government have power but not Total Power, that we have the British Monarch as an ace in the hole and that they do not trust their fellow Jamaicans with full control fearing things may get kind of “Mugabe like” and if our backs are against the wall and all hell is breaking lose then Britain can send troops to restore order. They also said to me that they do not want to lose the English Privy Council as it is outside of local control and influence, not prone to local corruption.

Queen ELIZABETH II the Head of State of the tiny spice island of Grenada, The Monarch of Grenada, a member of the Commonwealth Realm and yet the United States of America without her knowledge or permission invaded her domain, so it seems Britain is truly a nation without “street cred”. Grenada was Britain’s responsibility to fix, not America’s. If a member of the Commonwealth Realm needed sorting out, needed to be invaded, then I expect The United Kingdom of Great Britain, The Mother Country, Protector of the Realm and the other members of the Realm to do the invading and set wrong, right. I was embarrassed for Britain and the Commonwealth... Jesus! .. Give me something to rally around I beg you... Nothing would please me more than to scream to the world that our union, our commonwealth, our Realm is both beneficial and progressive but it is NOT!.

Montserrat is a British overseas territory, a British colony, in July 1995 a volcanic eruptions devastated two-thirds of that island, it looked like a barren lunar landscape as per the BBC. The people had to be evacuated and yet in the UK there was opposition from the general public to the people of Montserrat being evacuated to Britain as some members of the British public declared, why Britain, why not to the other Caribbean islands, somewhere else, anywhere else except Britain. In the end 4,000 of the 11,500 people living on the island was relocated to Great Britain. As a Direct British overseas territory, a British colony there should not even be the question, why Britain, it should be automatic, British responsibility, British Solution, end of, even if you have to get rid of some people from the EU. As far as I am concern your circle of importance and responsibility should be United Kingdom, then Commonwealth Realm, then Commonwealth of Nations then whomever.

So the very idea that Britain have the ways or the means or even care enough to run to our rescue is laughable and provides a false sense of security to anyone who believes otherwise, just look at the state of the commonwealth, Britain care about a hand full of non-white commonwealth countries with small population sizes as vacation and offshore banking paradise, she no longer cares about Jamaica and most of the Commonwealth.

I do believe that becoming a Republic is such a fundamental change that we should have a referendum, the people must decide, and if they choose not to become a Republic, then a referendum should be held every 10 years.

I have read one report in the Gleaner stating the cost of becoming a Republic, What did you think it was going to be free? That is like saying I would like to own my own house but I do not want to pay for it. I did not think you needed a report to figure this out, yes it will cost us, when have we gotten something for nothing, making your way through life will cost you, owning and managing your own country will cost you.

I have a love affair with the United Kingdom of Great Britain, I really do, I am an Anglophile and a Gooner, the older members of my family were all loyalists and the majority of my family now call Britain home and themselves British but Jamaica is my life, my birthright, the very essence of my being and I will support her regardless of direction, Republic or Constitutional Monarchy. Currently Queen Elizabeth II is "The Queen of Jamaica","the Head of State", she is my Queen and Jamaica is the "Monarchy of Jamaica", and a Commonwealth Realm, that is a constitutional Fact and I respect that and will continue to respect it, so long as this Constitutional Monarchy remains BUT it is time for a change, it is time for The Republic Of Jamaica.

"What is missing from this debate is a comprehensive list of Pros and Cons reasons by all concern about why Jamaica should become a Republic or not become a Republic, a list of Pros and Cons on keeping The Queen as our Head of State and mutual benefits that it may or may not will bring. It cannot be only for sentimental reasons whatever decision we make must be a working decision."

God Save the Queen and God Bless Jamaica Land I love.

Towards Independence - Part 1 & 2


  1. But some of these facts are a little blown out of proportion and I am not going to start giving my side. Let it be. I do believe this person has a very sharp axe to grind though.

  2. Replies
    1. An island country turned 52 years old declared independence from England in 1962 proposed nation to become a republic/parliamentary democracy/constitutional republic amending the constitution all the bill of rights and legal system of the government of Jamaica headed by Dr Portia S Miller took office since 2012 to form a coalition government in the Caribbean island nation achieved its goal of the British Commonwealth and its allies and the United States and the free world. Thanks for the information.From:Wayne

  3. Some of the facts I'm not too sure about, but overall a very good insight as to what the Monarchy represents: Not much. Will us being a republic change anything. I don't personally think so. With us remaining a part of the Monarchy change anything. It hasn't. Things will either get better in Jamaica because Jamaica changes or it will just remain as is. A borderline disaster.