Sunday, December 23, 2012

Awakening!! ... Breakboy Nrg

I hope y’all had the good fortune to enjoy the beautiful starry sky last night.

Today finds me in a reflective mood.

Yesterday morning my grandfather died.

He was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2005 and spent the past 7 years living the kind of life that comes with that diagnosis; an operation, numerous doctors’ visits, prescription medications by the bucketful, tests upon tests, pain, and discomfort. Through it all he maintained lucidity, humour and an inner strength that was representative of his character. I hold him up as one of the most influential male figures in my life, my role model for kindness, compassion, integrity, masculinity and responsibility. The memory of his fine example will play on in my mind’s eye for the rest of my life. He will be missed.

Now my view on death may seem a little different or it may not. However, my spiritual understanding sees death as another beginning, a birth, if you will, in another reality. Without getting too deeply into this, I choose to view this experience similarly to a loved one getting an opportunity to explore a new life, new adventures elsewhere. While I may be deeply touched that they are leaving, and I won’t have the opportunity to share physical experiences with them anymore, I celebrate their opportunity for development..The initial part of closure is accepting the reality and letting go. My belief system allows me almost immediate closure. I have but one hesitation about his life, and that is, I know that he could have had more peace, understanding and acceptance at the end of his life.

This perspective is fitting at this time, this season.

The Awakening
A season that represents growth and change, Christmas being a metaphor for the change of era from darkness to light and New Years, the opportunity for beginning anew. Some say Christmas is for the kids, some say for charity, some say food, some might say parties, others, the change in their daily routine. This is a time where if we are sensitive enough we can feel the change of energy in the air, a feeling of togetherness, of gratitude, of exuberance. Modern consumerism however, has turned this energy into frantic confusion.

This is exactly how we focus the energy of our lives, we have an opportunity to pour our energies into becoming spiritually evolved, emotionally developed, creative, and healthy individuals but instead we focus our precious energy into maintaining the artificial construct of modern society that we call REAL life. A life driven by the many self imposed obligations that restrict our time from advancing our health and seeking peace and solace within our hearts and minds.

Rent and mortgage payments, car payments, utility bills, politics, clothes, TV, doctors, hospitals, medication. We start at kindergarten, then primary school, high school, university, professional life, retirement, driven by fear of inadequacy, we rush around until we can’t anymore, never really realizing until the very end how painfully short it all really is…and how much we are so invested in this fleeting time.

Our schedule of distractions have been set up for us from before birth, a pattern which we follow so blindly even if our life is falling apart. A paradigm that instills anxiety, dissatisfaction, sadness, disconnection, anger, resentment and fear in each of us. Have you ever asked yourself, what’s the purpose of this life? And then struggled to really find the answer. Some call it navel gazing, usually a negative connotation to support apathy but I call it seeking self knowledge, seeking reality, trying to improve…

So why is it so stylish, to live an “unconscious” life, an existence where you go with the flow of a structure that leaves the majority of people on the planet unhappy. A life where you leave OTHERS to be responsible for the answers of YOUR reality. The roadblocks preventing us from achieving true happiness are all around us supporting the negative impressions of our unconscious mind. This yuletide season brings with it the opportunity to reflect, Christmas represents the birth of Christ, the birth of the Sun, the light within us.Our higher self identifies with the spirit of Christ, and will move in the direction if allowed, but cannot if it is continuously stifled by the day to day negative distractions of this relative and short life.

Naturally, there are those who believe that there is nothing after this life, but that too is ok. My view is, always, if it works use it. Your experience of life should call you to your belief system, it should never be copied or imposed, like buying an insurance policy you have no use for, because your friend bought one or because the agent was a good salesperson. But remember if you are lazy, closed minded or reject ideas to remain in your comfort zone, you will always be at the same level.

Be mindful..

The Christ acts as a beacon, his story shows what is inherent in you, what is waiting to be expressed. This light, this potential in us all, needs to be awakened, and as more and more reject the fear and chaos that now drives us, we will be healthier in every way, we will be able to see more clearly, and we will be in harmony with our environment and our neighbors.

The awakening to the power of universal love in our hearts awaits us; you just need to choose it right now and begin to walk in that direction.

Only if we truly do the work of seeking inner harmony can there truly be Peace on Earth and Good Will between all beings.

May true happiness reign in your life

Love to you all

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year

Breakboy Nrg

Monday, December 17, 2012

American Love Affair with Guns and Illegal Weapons Export

Mass Shootings are as American as Apple Pie!
I have absolutely no faith in America to change its guns laws, every time something like this happens Americans run around saying the things people want to hear, however what they are doing is to wait for time to pass until they can go back to same old, same old, more guns and more money. They may put in place some retarded stop gap measures like the temporary band on assault weapons that expired in 2004 and now they are calling for the same ban again. Americans love their guns it is a part of their popular culture and will not let any one take it away from them. I will be shocked if anything substantial comes from this, I hope to be wrong, I see the pro-gun people just waiting for emotions to drop so they can renew their fight. The fire arm business generates $31 billion in 2011 and no amount of elementary school kid’s life will be allowed to affect the profit margin….

Misery loves company… Fox news have been interviewing the pro-gun-nuts who seems to take pleasure trying to convince people that shootings like the one in Connecticut take place all the time in other countries. Failing to see that no one is denying that mass shootings and murder can take place almost anywhere, none is immune, what we are trying to point out is the big difference between the frequencies of such shootings in the United States compared to other developed countries or even developing countries, in America mass shootings are certain to happen, it is not if but when.

Over the next couple weeks and months the American debate on gun control will shift into high gear but it will only be foreplay which will not result in any meaningful intercourse. If the population of America wants real change then they must do more than sign petitions, they must take to the streets, in cities and towns, they must occupy these places and demonstrate their desire for real change, once and for all.

And So…

Dear Americans…

It is very clear that you have a deep love affair with your guns and no amount of tragedy will come between you and your need to produce and own massive amount of these weapons of death and that is OK with me, as far as I am concern, that is your business not mine, If you feel the solution to crime is to arm everyone with multiple high powered firearms then knock yourself out.

However I would like to ask you please, I beg of you, to try and get your Government to do more to prevent the illegal export of your guns, your precious weapons of death to lesser developed, poorer countries. I cannot understand why it is so easy for illegal shipments of guns to leave your Technological Advance Ports and end up in the ports of lesser developed countries, barrels upon barrels of your guns seems to turn up on our wharves and some find its way into our ghettos causing hundreds of thousands of deaths, unless you are really not trying to prevent the illegal export of Guns but are instead enjoying the profits from them, living high off the death and destruction of others. America makes so many weapons, that they are practically giving them away, I remember seeing a news report where a bank in the south of the United States was offering a free gun to anyone who opens a bank account, a car dealer in Michigan offering a rifle to anyone who buys a car.

Britain and Europe may not have the same rate of gun violence in their territory as the Americans but they are also the world’s leading weapons producers, they also produce so much of the stuff that they are practically giving it away for free in every war torn country and ghettos. Britain and Europe may not have constant running gun battles in their streets but they have just as much blood on their hands like the Americans because their guns are also flooding the streets of the third world and causing more death and destruction but sooner or later your weapons of death will go back to source and wreak havoc on your streets and your population.

It is Amazing that if one stick of weed ever leave my country and end up in America, Britain or Europe then it’s hell to pay, deals are called off, planes impounded and we are dragged through the mud, we are blamed for exporting our weed to your country and endangering your people however you blame us for importing your cheap guns into our country, as you tell us more and more that we must do something about it and you tell us that your guns only get into our countries because we are a corrupt third world. So you blame us for exporting drugs, you blame us for importing your guns but you Mr. Gun producers and exporters of death are free from any blame, how you actually sleep at night is beyond me.

Who makes the world's guns?

25 Statistics That Reveal Everything You Need To Know About The U.S. Firearms Industry

****Mass Killings Between 1999 to present ***

  1. April 1999 - two teenage schoolboys shot and killed 12 schoolmates and a teacher at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, before killing themselves. 
  2. July 1999 - a stock exchange trader in Atlanta, Georgia, killed 12 people including his wife and two children before taking his own life. 
  3. September 1999 - a gunman opened fire at a prayer service in Fort Worth, Texas, killing six people before committing suicide. 
  4. October 2002 - a series of sniper-style shootings occurred in Washington DC, leaving 10 dead. 
  5. August 2003 - in Chicago, a laid-off worker shot and killed six of his former workmates. 
  6. November 2004 - in Birchwood, Wisconsin, a hunter killed six other hunters and wounded two others after an argument with them. 
  7. May 2014 - Elliot Rodger opens fire in the campus town of Isla Vista, California from inside a black BMW, killing seven people. Rodgers acted alone and written and video evidence suggest the attack is premeditated.
  8. March 2005 - a man opened fire at a church service in Brookfield, Wisconsin, killing seven people. 
  9. October 2006 - a truck driver killed five schoolgirls and seriously wounded six others in a school in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania before taking his own life. 
  10. April 2007 - student Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 people and wounded 15 others at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia, before shooting himself, making it the deadliest mass shooting in the United States after 2000. 
  11. August 2007 - Three Delaware State University students were shot and killed in “execution style” by a 28-year-old and two 15-year-old boys. A fourth student was shot and stabbed. 
  12. September 2007 - A freshman student at Delaware State University shot and wounded two other students at a campus dining hall. 
  13. December 2007 - a 20-year-old man killed nine people and injured five others in a shopping center in Omaha, Nebraska. 
  14. December 2007 - a woman and her boyfriend shot dead six members of her family on Christmas Eve in Carnation, Washington. 
  15. February 2008 - a shooter who is still at large tied up and shot six women at a suburban clothing store in Chicago, leaving five of them dead and the remaining one injured. 
  16. February 2008 - a man opened fire in a lecture hall at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois, killing five students and wounding 16 others before laying down his weapon and surrendering. 
  17. July 2008 – A former student shot three people in a computer lab at South Mountain Community College, Phoenix, Arizona. 
  18. September 2008 - a mentally ill man who was released from jail one month earlier shot eight people in Alger, Washington, leaving six of them dead and the rest two wounded. 
  19. October 2008 - Several men in a car drove up to a dormitory at the University of Central Arkansas and opened fire, killing two students and injuring a third person. 
  20. December 2008 - a man dressed in a Santa Claus suit opened fire at a family Christmas party in Covina, California, then set fire on the house and killed himself. Police later found nine people dead in the debris of the house. 
  21. March 2009 - a 28-year-old laid-off worker opened fire while driving a car through several towns in Alabama, killing 10 people. 
  22. March 2009 - a heavily-armed gunman shot dead eight people, many of them elderly and sick people, in a private-owned nursing home in North Carolina. 
  23. March 2009 - six people were shot dead in a high-grade apartment building in Santa Clara, California. 
  24. April 2009 – An 18-year-old former student followed a pizza deliveryman into his old dormitory, and shot the deliveryman, a dorm monitor, and himself at Hampton University, Virginia. 
  25. April 2009 - a man shot dead 13 people at a civic center in Binghamton, New York. 
  26. July 2009 - Six people, including one student, were shot in a drive-by shooting at a community rally on the campus of Texas Southern University, Houston. 
  27. November 2009 - U.S. army psychologist Major Nidal Hasan opened fire at a military base in Fort Hood, Texas, leaving 13 dead and 42 others wounded. 
  28. February 2010 – A professor opened fire 50 minutes into at a Biological Sciences Department faculty meeting at the University of Alabama, killing three colleagues and wounding three others 
  29. January 2011 - a gunman opened fire at a public gathering outside a grocery in Tuscon, Arizona, killing six people including a nine-year-old girl and wounding at least 12 others. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was severely injured with a gunshot to the head. 
  30. April 2 - A gunman kills seven people and wounds three in a shooting rampage at a Christian college in Oakland.
  31. July 2012 - Masked gunman opens fire at midnight cinema screen of new Batman film The Dark Knight Rises, killing 12 and injuring 58. Suspect James Holmes is arrested by oplice and awaiting trial. 
  32. August 2012 - Gunman kills six people at SIkh temple in Wisconsin before being shot dead by police. Suspect is named as white supremacists Wade Michael Page. 
  33. Aug. 5 - A gunman kills six people during Sunday services at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, before he is shot dead by a police officer.
  34. Aug. 24 - Two people are killed and eight wounded in a shooting outside the landmark Empire State Building in New York City at the height of the tourist season.
  35. Aug. 21 Ex-Marine With AK-47 Kills Two and Self in New Jersey Supermarket been fired.
  36. Sept. 27 - A disgruntled former employee kills five people and takes his own life in a shooting rampage at a Minneapolis sign company from which he had been fired.
  37. Oct. 21 - Three people are killed in a Milwaukee area spa including the estranged wife of the suspected gunman, who then killed himself.
  38. Dec. 14 - A shooter opens fire at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, killing several people including children.
  39. June 2015 - White supremacist, Dylann Roof, begins shooting in a historic black church in an attempt to start a race-war. He kills nine people.
  40. 50 people killed in the Orlando Gay Club by Omar Mateen who did it in the name of ISIS and Islam.
  41. October 2017 - Las Vegas 64-year-old Stephen Paddock  Killed 59 killed, injured 527 in concert shooting
  42. November 2017 Sutherland Springs shooting, 27 people dead, 20 injured

The Children
Charlotte Bacon, age 6.
Daniel Barden, 7.
Olivia Engel, 6.
Josephine Gay, 7.
Dylan Hockley, 6.
Madeline F. Hsu, 6.
Catherine Hubbard, 6.
Chase Kowalski, 7.
Jesse Lewis, 6.
Ana Marquez-Green, 6.
James Mattioli, 5.
Grace McDonnell, 6.
Emilie Parker, 6.
Jack Pinto, 6.
Noah Pozner, 5.
Caroline Previdi, 6.
Jessica Rekos, 6.
Avielle Richman, 6.
Benjamin Wheeler, 6.
Allison Wyatt, 6.

Teachers and Staff
Rachel Davino, 29, teacher.
Dawn Hochspring, 47, the principal who died trying to fight the shooter.
Anne Marie Murphy, 52, teacher.
Lauren Rousseau, 30, teacher.
Mary Sherlach, 56, the school psychologist who died trying to fight the shooter.
Victoria Soto, 27, the teacher who died shielding her students from bullets as she locked them safely in a closet.

Updated: 10/02/2015

 The fact is the USA makes lots of Guns:

The United States of America produces over 10 million firearms per year and with that many fire arms coming off the assembly lines then distribution is the key. The Gun producers and dealers cannot sell guns fast enough to keep up with supply, they must find different ways to move merchandise and as such the lines between legal and illegal gun sales are almost non-existent.

The guns that are in the hands of criminals and lunatics came from Legal gun producers and Legal gun dealers and legal gun owners who is moving merchandise for a profit. These sellers do not care where these guns go, whose hands they end up in and what they do with it so long as they can sell them and make a profit.  And when the local American markets are not buying Guns fast enough they turn to the global market of which the poor third world is a source of revenue, they will turn the streets of the third world into killing fields.

The pro-Gun people are saying the problem is not guns but lunatics which is half the problem as the problem is lunatics with guns, who the gun lobbyist declared have a legal right to own guns. Here is where it gets even crazier, every time there is a mass shootings or some ghetto shootings the Gun companies use that carnage as an excuse/advert as to why people need more guns. If the church people had guns, if the people in schools had guns, if the people in a dark movie theatre had guns then they could protect themselves.

When compared to the Developed First Word, America is the uncivilised Third world of the civilised Developed first world. The American murder rate is 6.9 times that of the other first world countries and larger than some third world countries and second world countries. America’s murder rate is higher than Indian murder rate and India have 1.2 billion people...According to FBI Data U.S. murder rate higher than nearly all other developed countries put together. The USA has a 5th of the world’s population and 25% of the world prisoners... You do not see this level of carnage on the street of Civilised, developed First world counties… 

10 dead; 7 injured: Roseburg, Oregon.
9 dead: Charleston, S.C.
7 dead, 7 wounded: Isla Vista, Calif.
3 killed; 16 injured: Ft. Hood, Texas
13 killed, 3 injured: Washington, D.C.
5 killed: Santa Monica
27 killed, one injured: Newtown, Conn.
3 dead, 4 injured: Brookfield, Wis.
6 killed, 2 injured: Minneapolis, Minn.
6 killed, 3 injured: Oak Creek, Wis.
12 killed, 58 injured: Aurora, Colo.
7 killed, 3 injured: Oakland 
8 killed, 1 injured: Seal Beach, Calif.
6 killed, 11 injured: Tucson, Ariz.
8 killed, 2 injured: Manchester, Conn.
3 killed, 3 wounded: Huntsville, Ala.
13 killed, 32 injured: Ft. Hood, Texas
13 killed, 4 injured: Binghamton, N.Y.
5 killed, 16 injured: Dekalb, Ill.
8 killed, 4 injured: Omaha
32 killed, 17 injured: Blacksburg, Va.
5 killed, 4 injured: Salt Lake City
5 killed, 5 injured: Nickel Mines, Pa.
9 killed, 7 injured: Red Lake Indian Reservation, Minn. 
5 killed, 9 injured: Meridian, Miss. 

Bah Humbug!!… I really Hate Holidays... Repetitive, Ritualistic and Mundane

I hate most holidays, since as far as I am concern the only purpose they serve, are days from work where you still get paid. I do love the leisure concept of a Holiday but as far as I am concern we should rename them all to something like Holiday-1 through Holiday-n, instead of adding significance to them. It is the ceremonial aspect of most holidays that I do not like.


The British came very close to this when they invented Bank Holidays. People just walk around saying they have a bank holiday with most not knowing why they have a bank holiday. No one really cared about the reason for the holiday, so long as they are getting paid not to work. One of the main problems I find with these named Holidays is that they are repetitive, mundane and ritualistic. It is the grand performance that everyone goes through that annoys me and the expectation that I should also partake in this grand ritualistic performance and jump through hoops simply because it is that time of the year.

Well after the first 10 years of my life I have had enough of the lame tired songs, same tired smelly tree, same bun and cheese, same old Easter eggs, I do not even like chocolate, same decorations and even the same foods only eaten at that time of the year.

I really dislike Easter, ever since I was little I hated it. Here we have a holiday where every day of that holiday feels like a boring Sunday and growing up in Jamaica a Sunday had a completely different feel to it. A typical Jamaican Sunday when I was growing up started out with you waking up knowing that the next day was a Monday and you will have to go to school. So you got out of bed with an instant depression and a deep dislike for Sundays. Oh heck it was just Friday, how in heavens name did we get to Sunday already? The next thing I dislike about Sundays is that a Jamaican Sunday is a very quiet boring day, the radio played back to back church services, people singing nearer my God to thee, nothing but christian and classical music. There was nothing on the television but back to back church services, after which various Philharmonic Orchestras and symphonies with some big chested women bellowing out Opera. Followed by various ballet performances from some of the world’s finest ballet companies, the nutcracker was a special favorite of theirs. My father loved them all and played them very loud, he also played his church music for the entire neighborhood to hear while he sings along.

Growing up we were never allowed to play on a Sunday, any attempt to run around and make noise was met with shouts of “today is Sunday, it’s the Lord’s Day, come inside and sit yu butt down, find a book to read or something to do”.  We were forced to sit and watch people go lazily to and from church dressed in their special Sunday cloths, women in their Church Frock, and hat, clutching their handbags and bibles with men in their suits and hat while the kids dressed as miniature versions of the grownups. We were also forced to wear this Sunday uniform even though we were not going anywhere, when I was growing up Sunday was dress up day. To me Sunday was the longest most boring day as it dragged on and on with nothing to follow it but Monday. This now takes me back to Easter where every day between and including Good Friday to Easter Monday was a Boring Sunday, so now you understand why I hate Easter because it was multiple Sundays in a row!

I was also not a fan of some Easter bun, especially the ones with the red and green things embedded in them. I hated those things and spent lots of time picking them out of the bun and by the time I was finished there was hardly any bun left. Not to mention I found that some years I could not finish a single slice of bun because they became cloying after a while and so I preferred hard dough bread and cheese. Before you start saying things like Easter nice because of carnival, let me make it clear that I hate with all my heart and soul, really dislike calypso, soca, bacchanal music. In my days we played that rubbish when we wanted to end the party and get the people out of the house.

I remember I was about 5 or so, crying My eyes out as my father carried me towards the scary jonkonnu
I cannot begin to tell you just how much I really hate Christmas, after so many years of Christmas I am now sick and tired of it and refused from the age of around 10 to jump around like a circus clown when it comes around… “Merry Christmas … oh please! bite me!”. My family love Christmas which added to my yearly torture. I think the more I grew to hate Christmas, is the more they grow to love it, so it is safe to say that their love for Christmas is, grew Proportional to my hate for Christmas.

My father loved his Christmas carols and he played them very loud and often, he especially loved Nat King Cole Christmas Song, Chestnuts Roasting on an open fire. He not only played it loud but sang along with it very loud. It is a good thing my father have a golden voice, trust me when I say that man can sing. However the song would make more sense to me if Nat had sing about Breadfruit Roasting on an open fire. As such singers like Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding and many more played all day and all night on the TV, Radio and on my home stereo. It was like a CIA noise torture, kind of what they did to Panama strong man and USA puppet-muppet Manuel Noriega who took refuge in the Vatican embassy while the CIA played deafening music and used other psychological warfare trying to convince him to exit and surrender himself.

I never liked pine Christmas trees, they smell terrible and mess up my sinuses. We had a willow tree in the front yard that I preferred as it did not smell that bad and was outside. My father and sisters took pleasure decorating the trees and the various edges, plus the grill work around the windows. I hate stupid blinking Christmas lights, there only purpose was to disorientate and drive me crazy… blinkblink blinky blink blinkblinky… blink… blink… Who plug out di light?!!!!!!!

The Politics, Preparation and Presentation of the famous Grand Christmas Feast, The Christmas Dinner. The selection of which family members will host this Grand Christmas Feast was sometimes done after the previous year’s Christmas dinner. It could be as simple as calling first dibs or having one family member nominate the other. Most times the selection process is a lot more complex when multiple members want the honour of hosting the next feast at their house at which point the entire family now finds themselves caught up in a Hatfield and McCoy type quagmire family feud. Which if not solved quickly would find the family split into warring factions and as a result will see some going to one house and not the other house and some having to go to both houses, which means saving room to eat more and driving like a bat out of hell to get there on time.

It has gotten to the point where my family now has 3 Grand Christmas Feast on Christmas day with equal importance now giving to the Christmas Breakfast and Christmas Lunch and these events are kept at three different location. You wake up get dress jump in the car and head to the Grand Breakfast, eat your belly full and before you know it… it is time to jump back in the car and head to the next family for the Grand Christmas Lunch where you must stuff yourself once again. After the lunch you have to go home and purge for the main event that night. It is a good thing my family do not know how to tell time because while other people are having their Christmas dinner at 3pm, my sisters would give a 5 o’clock start time which translates to 9 PM normal time and because most other normal people finish eating early, they end up at our place. It has become a tradition for the Christmas dinner to turn into a Christmas party, music fired up and furniture move out of the way…. And where am I through all this, for the most part locked away in my room, just opening my door wide enough to take my plate of dinner or chilling with my friends drinking beer and having a chat during the party phase. My sisters started soaking the fruits for the Christmas fruitcake in rum just after the previous years Christmas and I must say their potato salad is to die for.

This Child would not be crying if his parents did not lie to him
I take great pleasure telling the young kids of my family that Santa Claus does not exist, that he is not real and all those presents they got, came from their parents and family members who love them and through hard work and sacrifice were able to buy them presents. Some responded by crying their eyes out, others look at me like I was a mad man and some of the parents would get upset, asking me why do I have to tell their child that Santa Claus does not exist and I would ask them, why do they continue to lie to their poor kids.

Everyone I know gave up on me when it comes to gift giving, I cannot understand the need to run around like a crazy person trying to find presents for people at that particular time of the year. On a normal basis I hate shopping, I totally dislike it. When I am going to buy something, I know before I leave my house what I want, what size and colour it should be and where in the store it is located, so I am in and out without even trying it on, if it is a piece of clothing. I made a mistake once going shopping with my sisters and cousins, one bunch a woman and me alone. For some crazy reason I jumped in the car with them. Listen people I have never been so bored and frustrated in my entire life, what should have been an hour of shopping turned into several hours for them, because after 3 hours I left the store/plazas and walked all the way home, into my room and into bed…. swearing never ever again.

These people don't know about the Internet yet
The very idea of walking around looking for items for someone else is not in my nature. At Christmas and Birthdays my sisters would walk into my room and say... sign this and this and this…. Families and girlfriends would get gifts and cards on my behalf, even though I have a massive dislike for Greetings cards, ...what a waste, spending money to buy a piece of paper knowing that after the event it will find its way into the trash bin. The same for Christmas trees… if you decorate a rooted tree that is alive and growing then OK but to chop up a tree moving a piece of dead branch into your house… decorating it and watching it slowly wither and die, dry out, turn brown and mess up the living room floor… what a waste.

It is the ritualistic nature of some holidays I do not like and it is the ritualistic nature of events like weddings I hate. The last time I was invited to a wedding I sat in the church watching the grand performance, people dressing a certain way, acting a certain way and walking a certain way, the wedding march belongs in the hall of Funny walks as it is very amusing to watch.

The entire wedding party looked like a bunch of umpa lumpas marching up the aisle.

There are some holidays I liked as a child, the Jamaican Labour Day was a favorite of mine and use to be a pleasure. I remember heading down to the Primary school with my father, we had paint, brush and brooms, meeting up with other members of our community and planning the day’s work. We swept the school yard, planted trees and flowers, paint the class rooms and when we were finished we stood up and look at what we had done and I was pleased with myself and proud of my father and members of my community. It was a day when all of Jamaica worked together and give freely to their society and community, in the interest of humanity…

A FESTIVUS for the rest of US!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

"By Eloquence, Inc." ...The Advantages of being Jamaican

Eloquence, Inc. is a regular reader of “Jamaican Till I Die” and makes some of the best comments on various issues. I especially love her comment on the blog "You Ungrateful Wretch! "  and think it should be a separate blog post for all to see and I would like to thank "Eloquence, Inc." for all the comments since I started this:

In response to: "You Ungrateful Wretch!"

EXCELLENT POST and PERFECT timing as we come to the end of Jamaica's 50th anniversary!

Add the Issa's and the Simonitsch's (founder of Half Moon and the all inclusive resort concept) to that list of big names!

No matter how long I have been away, I know if I could sort out a decent career opportunity down there, I would love to move back home. I am not one of the ones that ever thought anything as a child but that the sun rises and sets on Jamaica... Didn't even want to leave, parents made me. But I realize as I run into Jamaicans from other walks of life, that most think "likkle Jamaica caan do nutten fi mi" and in some cases it's true, because of the social standing they were born into and the lack of the right connections (mostly from not going to the right schools), they are achieving things in America that were not happening for them back home. BUT in some cases they apply themselves to their books and to their job opportunities in America in a way they were not doing when in Jamaica!

I met a great woman in Jamaica who yeah she mixed and red with long hair and lives in big house on Jacks Hill now, but she told her story of how she came from country bush where she use to walk with river water in bucket on her head when young, to now an entrepreneur that moved up in life!

And is not just the light and white doing it anymore. It does take links to get around the red tape but as a minority you have a better chance of respect and making the links in the first place in a place like Jamaica than somewhere like America where as you said, the same things that make you special in Jamaica make you exactly nobody here compared to the 300 million other people that might fit your racial or economic description.

My ability to get put 2 years ahead in US schools is directly due to the Jamaican education system that produced me. I thank Jamaica's culture and education all the time for making me the person that can adapt and survive and have admirable qualities as a person and make me distinctive to folks here, not just another black face. Without being Jamaican that would not be possible. And people don't realize down there that there is a GREAT power and influence on having your child grow up seeing black people in successful positions of every corner of society, in your bank, in your schools...not just out on the streets. America might be the land of opportunity but as a professional most of the black faces you see are at the bottom of the totem pole or out on the streets loafting, especially the men. In Jamaica positive black achievement is everywhere, in the classroom, bankroom, sports field... we don't grow up feeling less than everybody else or with the minority complex.

The culture and education and focus on relationships/links and not just paper contracts and money and the love of children in the society (read how many professional Americans complain of the terrible fight to live up to corporate demands which do not care about family obligations even when they say they do)...these all help people to have opportunities in Jamaica or at least a mentality that allows them to get ahead elsewhere. But I don't think even the poorest among us realize the pride and values and strength instilled in us AS JAMAICANS is what helps them no matter where they are when they get their opportunities.

Some of course are exceptions but for the most part the overall Jamaican culture produces very smart people who value relationships (part of why links end up so important to get anything done!) and family (even if the downside is people might have too many kids at times, but most of the people having them whether rich or poor genuinely love kids and having that family life!).

.... Eloquence, Inc.
Eloquence, Inc. Career Services

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

You Ungrateful Wretch!

Some time ago I watched a program where various American millionaires and billionaires were being interviewed about how they came to be so rich and during the program I noticed a certain trend. They all at some point, made the point of asking God to Bless America, while declaring that only in America could they have achieved so much and if it was not for America, they would not be who they are today. I am sure loads of Americans watched the program and felt good about being from the Land of Opportunity… Real or Imaginary.....

6 of the Richest Men in America
Things like this ripples through a society and contributes to the feel good factor, as young people can grow up with something to believe in, they may not achieve all their goals in life but their minds are imprinted with that "Only in America Concept", spouted from role models in business and industry who made it in life. One guy declared that anyone can make it in America if they just apply themselves.

Highlighting the good things in life is even more important than highlighting the bad things. I believe that by promoting what is good about your society, will create a chain reaction of good vibes, causing good things to happen, as it leaves a positive impression on people’s outlook on life and making them more productive. I remember my economics teacher coming to the conclusion that Optimism and Pessimism are two of the most important things in an Economy, here we have a science that means nothing without people’s feelings. I also believe that promoting negative things will cause a negative chain reaction, causing people to seek out all the negative things around them.

The speed of Bad, Negative, disgusting things happening in a society like Jamaica travels 500 times faster than the speed of Good, Positives things and as such people are more likely to tell you about the bad things that happened, not the good. In Jamaica’s case this negative, Pessimism transcends space and time as our people take it with them even after migrating and disseminate this misery the first chance they get.

Some Real Wealthy Families of Jamaica
Mafood, McConnell, Matalon, DeLisser, Henriques, Beckford, Clark, Azan, Marzouca, Kerr-Jarrett, Watson, Hart, Sangster, Ashenheim, Zacca, Younis, Gore, Messado, Melhado, Bromfield, Rousseau

Jamaica has its fair share of rich families, who have been and still are movers and shakers of our society, whose fore parents came to Jamaica with nothing but their lighter complexion. Europeans, Chinese, Arabs, Jews, Indians all descended on Jamaica, some with only their two long hands and because they were not black, the doors of opportunity automatically opened for them, they did not have to kick it open because colonial Jamaica was perfect for them, the ideal climate and attitude from a population that equates anyone not black to be of up standing character and welcome them with open arms while declaring "Anything too black, No too Good". They were more likely to be giving the benefit of the doubt and they took advantage of that. Jamaica also have many rich colonial and post-colonial families who are black, some had to kick open doors and demand that they be given equal access to our resources, it was an uphill struggle but they made it against the odds. Others aligned themselves with various political factions in order to gain political favours, wealth and power.

Some will say that Jamaica is a “Out of Many One People” country I have heard various stories about these wealthy families going to great lengths to import their significant others when local options are limited, one not only must ensure the family wealth remains intact but also the family colour and heritage.

God Bless Jamaica?
Regardless of who these wealthy/rich people are and how they came by their money, one thing is common… I have never heard the rich and well to do in Jamaica asking God to "Bless Jamaica" in a thankful way or declare that if it was not for Jamaica they would not have achieved such wealth and comfort. Jamaica’s rich, it seems, believe that Jamaica is not in any way shape or form responsible for their good fortunes. It is as if these people believe that, is they who made Jamaica and not the other way around. They do not see their relationship with Jamaica as symbiotic and if they did, they will never say so.

Where would Butch Stewart be without Jamaica, who would he be? In a country like America or in Europe, he would be just another white face in the crowd, nothing special, he would be seen as equal to the people around him and as such his rise to power, wealth and glory might have been much harder. However in Jamaica he was special, a member of a unique small group of people and who he is today, is because of the unique set of circumstances that existed in Pre and Post colonial Jamaica.

I am not saying that these men and women do not have the spirit of entrepreneurship, what I am saying is that Jamaica was the right place, at the right time for them and if they were in any other place or time they might not have been so fortunate, so where is the big ..."Thank You Jamaica"! In all my years going up in Jamaica I have never heard it. Some of these people driving around Jamaica like their shit was used to make Tastee Patties would still be in the middle east throwing rocks during Arab Spring, trying to fight oppression.

These now rich Middle Eastern colonial immigrants should wake up every morning, go out onto the Balconies of their mansions, breath Jamaica's fresh air and shout to all of Jamaica, Thank You Jamaica, for accepting us and making us who we are today and God Bless Jamaica…
As I said in a previous blog, by the time a Jamaican child reaches the age of 10 he is well versed in all that is negative and disgusting about Jamaica and Jamaicans. This child is already thinking that there is no hope for him in Jamaica and like a caged animal he is already looking to escape, why waste education and innovation on a country one believes is not going anywhere and there is no hope. This is what we tell our children, the future generation of Jamaica, we brainwashed them into believing that they will never amount to anything, that they will never be all they can be in Jamaica.

Most of our well-to-do Jamaicans live in Jamaica but not in Jamaica, they exist in a bubble, taking great care not to share themselves or promote good values to the less fortunate, things like giving back, offering a helping hand, paying respect to their country and its people are a lost concepts… Philanthropy what’s that?

Most of the Philanthropy organization that exist, exist to pay lip service to helping people, the real reason for their existence is not to better other people’s lives but to make their members feel better about themselves, feeling like they are important, these are ego stroking groups, the place to be and to be seen, networking clubs, many associate themselves with these so called charitable organization because of the prestige it gives them. 

Our Rich, Wealthy families would never stand up and declare that they owe everything to Jamaica, there power, their wealth and if it was not for Jamaica and all Jamaicans they would never be the successful mover and shakers that they are today, living a life of luxury, in style and comfort for generations. The last statistic I saw on income distribution showed that 51.61 % of total income is earned by the richest 20% of the population and the richest 10% earned 35.90 % of total income. I think the rich in Jamaica thinks that they did not become rich because of Jamaica but in spite of Jamaica and as such they owe Jamaica nothing but I wonder where they would be if their ancestors did not find this goldmine of an island that made them possible.

The Arrival Of:

UPDATE 2016/05/05
The article outlines the historical rise to wealth and power of the none-black Jamaicans after they migrated to Jamaica. It would be unfair to superimpose the problems we face today with the issues that existed in the 1950’s and 1960’s because that was a different Jamaica with different problems. I am saying that Colonial Jamaica was engineered so that some people could prosper and some people could not and the people who could not were told to be content with their lot in life.

It is based on this background that our imported none-black class could prosper and when there was an attempt to re-balance the scale, promote social justice and create a more egalitarian society most of them rejected it and a lot of them ran with their wealth.

If you look at the statistics back in Pre and Post-Independence Jamaica one would find that Jamaica was a society divided right down race and class. The literacy rate back then was about 38%, that is only 38% of the population could read or write. The vast majority of the country was without electricity and running water with inadequate housing and Unemployment was 45%.  Back then places like the Liguanea Club and many other places was mainly whites only and upper class only.

So the door of opportunities was opened based on who was trying to get it. That did not mean there was no successful black people who crossed the racial divide but when you talk to rich black people back then they tell you that they made it against the odds back then in Jamaica. That was the historical context and today we have a different issue.

Today we have an 89% literacy rate with a lot of black Jamaicans having advance degrees and attend the best schools around the world and yet they are less of a Nation Builder than uneducated Jamaicans in the 1930’s. This current generation is selfish, greedy and corrupt with an overabundance sense of entitlement and self-importance but that is today’s problem, colonial Jamaicans had different issues to content with.