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Reparations, ehm, ignorance

FeaturesReparations, ehm, ignorance

by Colin Hyde

I didn’t think it was possible for the Plus TV crew to remain fixed in their position that we are out of line to call on the British to make reparations for their past misdeeds, but some people, they are like the proverbial ox. Bah, it is clear that our Evangelicals are still operating under the “eye for an eye, tooth for tooth” prescription of Moses, that they only call themselves “Christians”. An “eye for an eye” endorses the might of weapons, while Christian teaching is based on the might of TRUTH.

Since HRH Queen Elizabeth II moved on to the next realm, there have been calls from far-off places for the Royal House to return some choice pieces of jewelry that adorn the crown and famous necklaces. These calls are symbolic. The British can never pay for all they gained through the barrel of a gun. Calls for reparations, for the return of jewelry, are being made to get the British and all European people to look within themselves, on the horrible things they did in their past, and the farce they perpetuate.

Some people point out that slavery existed before the Europeans enslaved Africans, and it exists to this day in various forms. They are equating a couple missed meals with a famine. Maybe that’s because it is hard to wrap the mind around what happened. The Europeans uprooted over 12 million people from the African continent, our ancestors, transported them in the bilges of ships across the ocean, sold them like cattle, and kept them and their children in bondage for 300 years.

Those who expose themselves to the history of the world before the Europeans used their military might and savagery to gain control know of the many contributions of people of color. A super wealthy Europe, after raiding the wealth of Africa and the Americas, had the funds to invest in research, hence the rapid advances in medicine and other fields thereafter.

It is not that the British didn’t pay anything for their gains. Over a million British young men died in WWI and II. British sons endured great hardship and risk for them to become the land on which the sun never set. They fought and defeated Spain and France on the high seas. They fought and defeated the Zulu nation in South Africa. They could have whipped the Americans, even though those upstarts were aided by the French, the Spanish, and the Dutch. The simple reason for the British losing the US is because they were spread too thin, and they preferred India.

If we follow the line of MIGHT, we should all hail the military prowess of our ally, the British. And following that line we should also salute the Russians for using their mighty military to bombard Ukraine. By the way, those Russians also have nuclear bombs. Aha, all’s fair in war, so if they use their bombs to obliterate the Ukrainians and take over their land, why, they must be blessed.

Whoa there, in the civilized world it is the might of TRUTH that holds sway. And if the might of truth says you did wrong, you are to make atonement, make reparations for your wrong. I am surprised that people who read the Bible have trouble grasping that.

It’s the ultimate naivety on the specific matter to say, “I know no person that is a slave or anyone that has directly benefited from slavery that is currently alive.” The Europeans are where they are today because of the plundering of Africa and the Americas. I submit that anyone who holds the position that the Europeans are guilty of no wrong has not exposed their minds to the stories of other peoples in the world. Civilization did not begin with the Europeans!

How is it that King Charles III “geh di sense” and some of our own do not? BBC News, in a piece titled, “Prince Charles tells Commonwealth of sorrow over slavery”, said Prince Charles, in an address to leaders of African and Caribbean nations, spoke of his personal journey of discovery, and that he was continuing to “deepen my own understanding of slavery’s enduring impact”.

The BBC News report further stated that Charles also remarked that he “was aware the roots of the Commonwealth organisation ‘run deep into the most painful period of our history’ and said acknowledging the wrongs of the past was a ‘conversation whose time has come…I cannot describe the depths of my personal sorrow at the suffering of so many.’”

Ah, this conversation’s time has not come for some Belizeans. If this conversation’s time had come for Russia, it would not have invaded Ukraine. If this conversation’s time had come for Guatemala, they would not have messed with our flags.

Mr. Sedi Elrington came out swinging for Vulcan in his last presentation in the Reporter. He is also a big fan of Waterloo. The former minister has a successful firm that employs several people, and all that, added to his Gales Point credentials (the Elringtons have strong roots in the village), gives him special license to speak on Vulcan. It’s not impossible that he is on a retainer from the company.

In his article Sedi said aggregates are huge business. Bully, but did he consider the negatives? Taking away the hills will destroy the incredible landscape. The scientists say ground water is a big concern. We are told the hills have a massive cave system. An elder in the village said the hills help to break up hurricanes. Certainly that’s a concern for Melinda and Hope Creek. Mining those hills will result in serious noise and dust pollution. The entertainment value of Gales Point will go down big time, for all time.

Vulcan would create some jobs, but mainly it’s a big machines thing. Vulcan makes a lot of claims about progress it brought to the area in Mexico where it had its mines. One of its big claims is the creation of artificial lakes. They would have to dredge and construct a landing area for the ships. Would that dent the ambitions of Commerce Bight? How would they prevent the silt from landing on the reef?

It appears that had the UDP won the last general election, Vulcan would just have bought White Ridge and moved its machinery down here, without any inputs from the people. Yap, the UDP would have been about a big rollover job. Aren’t we tired of being had? Did the UDP thoroughly investigate the grievance Mexico had with the company?

Vulcan says there are regions in the US, the Gulf Coast, that are desperate for these materials, so their persistence is understandable. Sedi says there’s no stopping Vulcan, that if this government doesn’t give the company the permission to mine, another government will. My, did the present leader of the opposition speak out against colonialism in his speech to the nation on Independence Day? Hasn’t anybody told him that the definition of colonialism is natives running with their eyes closed and their arms wide, into the embrace of huge multinational companies?

An avid fan of the Krem Morning Stew – I check out that show regularly – told me that on his most recent visit, Lord Rhaburn explained that no dough comes his way via the YouTube platform. Now I’m feeling guilty again. Since I was gifted a Samsung phone, I have downloaded a lot of music, and I can’t measure the joy that has brought me. I have my songs and I have my fun.

I was told that YouTube pays royalty if you get popular, but I have wondered how that works. I’m hearing that imposters can put an artist’s music on the platform, and the pay goes to the wrong person. I think we need to learn more about this.

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