Gyration in a simulation of the sex act is not dance, which is a highly disciplined art form. Such gyration in public cannot be considered “talent,” unless one is visualizing the gyration as a commodity in the sex industry. It is still a well-kept secret in Belize that a thriving sex industry contributes to the financial success of a modern tourist industry.
Carnival in Belize is now almost four decades old. It is an established showpiece of our September celebrations, which are built around the Tenth of September (1798) Battle of St. George’s Caye and our September 21st (1981) Independence Day. A couple decades or so ago, some complaints began amongst the general Belizean citizenry with respect to the public gyrations of girl children in the Carnival, but negative comment about the behavior of Carnival’s young ladies and adult women is so muted these days as to be practically non-existent.
This is under the umbrella of our expressed Belizean Christianity. Such pagan displays as occur in Carnival are not allowed in Muslim countries. In fact, one of the charges against Islam by the Christian West is that women are repressed under Islam. The Christian West parades the fact that women are free in the Christian West, “liberated” being the buzz word. So, Carnival represents freedom. Supposedly.
There is a lot of financing involved with Carnival, and it would be interesting to examine from where that financing is derived. It is not our business at this newspaper so to examine, mind you, because we are not auditors. It is only that we have seen several instances over the last couple years where Belize’s national football selection experiences hardship and victimization because of a lack of financing. On Carnival’s macro level, financing never appears to be a Carnival problem.
It appears that many of the participants in Carnival, where the gyrations in skimpy pieces of cloth are involved, are young girls and young ladies from Belize City’s Southside, which has been experiencing civil war levels of murder violence amongst its young, black males for the last two decades and more. Two grenades were discovered by Belize City police in separate investigations in the days leading up to Carnival. While some skeptics said the grenade discoveries only represented grandstanding on the part of the police, it is a known fact that Carnival is a magnet which draws out the gangs’ young, black males, and they gather in groups for protection, which, simultaneously and ironically, makes them a compact target for grenades.
This editorial is not about ordnance. The editorial is about young, black males. It is incredible the care that is being taken in Belize of animals, reptiles, birds and other wildlife, as contrasted with the repeated and savage attacks against young, black males on the Southside by American-trained urban combat units. Just a few days ago we saw on national television two huge Ambergris Caye crocodiles being treated with loving care as they were being transported, for their own welfare it was said, to a sanctuary in Ladyville. The sanctuary for young, black males is actually located not too far away, near Hattieville. It is called Kolbe Prison.
There is no more endangered species in Belize than the young, black male, and every Carnival Saturday there is a huge irony which escapes most of the Carnival spectators. The female of the Southside species engages in reckless, unrestrained reveling, while the male of the Southside species has to dodge the police and their gang rivals in order to get a peek at them. The female of the Southside species is not really gyrating for the male of the species: there is a bigger game in which she is participating. That game may be called tourism. It may also be seen as contributing to the further psychic marginalization of the young, black male.
A few years ago two of the major gang leaders on the Southside spent an extended period of time in the same jail cell at Kolbe. Their parent gangs were the Crips and the Bloods from the United States, so they were traditional and murderous rivals. Our sources say, however, that time spent together led to discussion and reasoning. One of these gang leaders was Sheldon “Pinkie” Tillett, then the maximum George Street boss. As it turned out, from a gang standpoint the problem with the aforementioned jail cell discussions was that the legendary Arthur Young, the don of Pregnant Alley, was not involved in them.
In a sense, the authorities in Belize and their foreign handlers are in a race against time. They are trying to destroy the gangs before there is a fusion of the gangs. The problem is, destruction of the gangs involves destruction of the community matrix which gave birth to the separate gangs. During the Vietnam War, one U.S. general made the famous statement that he had to destroy a Vietnamese village by bombing “in order to save it.” How are you going to destroy the gangs without destroying their matrix neighborhoods, which just happen to be fundamentally component parts of the Southside?
The duly elected president of Mexico, Francisco I. Madero, was murdered in 1913 in Mexico City by a Mexican army general, Victoriano Huerta, with the suspected connivance of the U.S. ambassador in Mexico City. The Mexican Revolution of 1910 then became totally violent. Two great Mexican roots leaders emerged – Pancho Villa and Emiliano Zapata. It is possible to describe the pre-Revolution Villa as a gangster. But inside the Revolution, because he proved, over and over, what an incredible warrior he was, Pancho Villa became a genuine and eternal Mexican national hero.
There is a lesson here for some of you educated Belizeans of the successful bourgeoisie. There is something going on in Belize, and you don’t really know what it is. You should open your eyes. Behind the dancing, there is death. Beneath the dancers, there is blood. Take it or leave it.
Power to the people.