There’s a mother on Kraal Road who has lost four sons to gun violence in the last decade or so. For many years, I’ve thought of visiting her. I wanted to see how a human being could be so strong as to survive that kind of trauma and pain.
I used to live on Waight Street, which is next to Kraal Road. This was for a few months in 1970 when my life was in uproar. I was on bail for two different Supreme Court charges at the same time.
There was a Muslim poet named Marvin X (Jackmon) who stayed at my little house for a few weeks. He had refused to accept the American draft and fight in Vietnam. The Belize government grabbed him one day while he was visiting Gales Point Manatee and deported him. Marvin went to jail for several years in California.
A couple months ago, a young man was killed on Kraal Road who was my compadre’s nephew. A couple called the Moores were my landlords on Waight Street in 1970. Their daughter, Jeanie, asked me to stand as godfather for one of her daughters, which I did.
One day, maybe eight or so years later, Jeanie chopped up her mother, Wilhemina, in the street in broad daylight. Jeanie was in jail, raving mad, until she died a couple years ago.
Some months ago, another of Jeanie’s daughters, who had married and made a family life for herself, contacted me by e-mail to find out what I knew of her mother and her mother’s family. I think it is possible that the murdered Miss Mina was Jeanie’s stepmother, not her biological mother.
The daughter of Jeanie for whom I stood as godfather died young, because of AIDS, I believe. She was a nice-looking young lady. I was so happy to find out that Jeanie’s other daughter has been able to make a life for herself. She has a good husband.
Our African ancestors were brought here in chains by the British to work in the forests of Belize. When the economy began to move from forestry to agriculture, our people, for whatever the reason(s), were reluctant to go to the land, and preferred going to the United States. Because Belize changed economically, beginning in the 1960s, let’s say, Belize has changed demographically. Our labor base has become heavily Central American migrant in nature.
With all that said, what is happening to our black youth in Belize, and what they are doing to each other, has not been addressed in any systematic manner. My beef is with the United Democratic Party, which has had five terms in office since 1984, and has always tried to give the impression, from the original National Independence Party (NIP) days, that they are more interested in the welfare of black Belizeans than the People’s United Party (PUP) was under Mr. Price. I don’t buy this simplistic model. The UDP is for the black middle class, not for the black masses.
I believe the UDP took the Opposition into neoliberalism in 1973, and I believe that Goldson was betrayed. I believed in Goldson, because my mother believed in him.
I’ve stopped talking about UBAD for many years, because no one else wants to talk about it, and so old wounds used to be opened. The fact of the matter is that black people have a massive, bloody crisis on their hands in Belize City, and no one seems to know what to do.
I hereby indict the black leadership of the UDP, because they have been exposed as bogus and absolutely self-aggrandizing. All the UDP leaders are rich and building new homes while the community disintegrates.
There is genocide going on in the population center. It’s been going on for three decades. I declare that what’s been going on for these three decades could not have occurred when UBAD existed. When the UDP split UBAD, only the rich merchants benefited. That is my thesis, and that is my challenge to Barrow and Finnegan.
Power to the people.