25 C
Belize City
Wednesday, October 5, 2022

SIB reports 13.5% GDP growth, tripling of rum production

The Statistical Institute of Belize reported that...

Older Persons Week 2022 is observed

by Khaila Gentle BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Sept. 29,...

Tom Greenwood’s “Canal Fever” story shouldn’t be ignored

FeaturesTom Greenwood’s “Canal Fever” story shouldn’t be ignored

by Colin Hyde

Tom Greenwood, our former army general turned tour operator and defender of our environment, said at the Waterloo consultation on Thursday night that the massive dredging the company will do if the NEAC gives them the yes, could bring the deadly yellow fever upon us, as what followed in a century past when a canal was dug up in Belize. Whoa there, I believe Greenwood got his diseases crossed. I believe the “fever” that was about when the canal was dug, it must have been cholera.

In my search for epidemics in our country, I came across this bit at Ambergriscaye.com: “in 1884, Governor Roger T. Goldsworthy endorsed the dredging of the canals in Belize City. The inadequately completed job left sewage piled on the banks of the South Canal, causing a yellow fever epidemic. In 1891, Governor Cornelius A. Moloney lost his wife, Constance, to yellow fever just two weeks after her arrival in Belize. As he was warned to leave her in London, the Governor blamed himself for her death and secluded himself for two weeks.”

The experts would have to tell me what yellow fever has to do with dredging mud, because that is a disease transmitted by mosquitoes, the deadly Aedes Aegypti breed that transmits Dengue, Chikungunya, and Zika. That yellow fever is nothing to play with. It was havoc in our part of the world for sure.

Yap, Greenwood said yellow fever, but the name of this canal fever he was talking about must be cholera; I believe that’s the disease that was on his mind. There was a big outbreak of cholera in the 1860s in our country, and there have been other notable outbreaks here. There’s more than one “cholera” cemetery in our country.

The medical people say cholera is caused by a bacterium called Vibrio cholerae, and unlucky individuals who catch it come down with the worst kaagalayra (cagalera). The main spreader of cholera is contaminated water and food, and the disease is most prevalent in crowded areas that have poor sanitation. Over the centuries, millions the world over have been killed by cholera, but fortunately it isn’t the scourge it once was. There are treatments with antibiotics, and salts. There are a couple other serious Vibrios, and they’re a big reason why our marine products for export have to be lab-certified before they are put on a plane or ship.

Ah, I believe the veteran king of the press conference just got his wires crossed. It happens when we get older. But his crossing up wires after he got his emeritus doesn’t compare with Price’s foul ups after he went into retirement. Price signed a lot of documents that were different from positions he held when he was in his prime. Men change with time, but complete about turns are unheard of; it only happens when you stay around too long, or have ambitious friends.

It is a serious matter Tom Greenwood brought up, and our experts must go the extra mile to prevent any serious disease outbreaks if the project gets over all the hurdles. Without Waterloo, the water around Belize City is already not too healthy. If I recall correctly, the EIA on Stake Bank’s Port Coral has restrictions on people bathing around the island certain times of the year.

This story I found, “How to avoid flesh-eating bacteria at the beach this summer”, by Britni R. McAshan—you can check it out at TMC News (Texas Medical Center) at the website tmc.edu/news—is right up the canal Mr. Greenwood was warning us about. McAshan said the experts say there are several bacteria that cause serious flesh diseases, and one of these terrible flesh-eating bacteria, Vibrio vulnificus, causes “roughly 80,000 illnesses each year and results in 100 deaths” in the United States. The infections are found where river and salt water meet, and it is common in beach areas.

Those prophets in Israel smoked weed

Those of us who know we come short of the glory of God because we can’t carry the shoes of Jesus the Christ, also know that He, quite likely, and many of the Bible prophets, most definitely, smoked weed. That marijuana thing is native to Asia, and those Three Wise Men would have used it to make their journey from the Orient more bearable. Those guys didn’t get into cars or jet planes. They made the trip by foot and camel back. Their feet and backsides, you bet they were sore, and they didn’t have Tylenol.

Ben Yakas, in a story in Gothamist, “Menorah bongs and Talmudic toking: The secret history of Judaism and cannabis”, says Jewish historian Eddy Portnoy has found strong evidence about the use of weed in the Jewish world. Portnoy reported that “the intertwined history of Judaism and marijuana dates back to the Bible” with references “in Exodus, Song of Songs, the Talmud and other traditional Jewish texts to a plant known as KaNeh-Bosem (phonetically related to the word cannabis), which is translated as ‘fragrant reed’ or ‘aromatic cane.‘“

The story says “an archeological dig in Israel a few years ago found two altars in the ruins of a third-century BCE synagogue [and] on top of these altars were burned substances: one had the burned residue of frankincense, and the other had the burned residue of cannabis.” The Jews not only used weed as incense, it was also anointing oil for the high priests.

Yakas said that Jews follow the laws of the country they’re in, hence they didn’t use weed when in Western nations, but when in countries where it was accepted, such as Morocco, “it was a tradition for Moroccan Jews to sprinkle hashish in the couscous for wedding parties.”

These Evangelical “Jews” in our midst, it is proper that they should follow the laws of the land, but their insistence on trying to influence the laws on weed is a case of them reaching beyond their terms of reference.

Three anti-monarchs in semi-retirement

I saw a pic of the Mighty JC Arzu on the sea front in Peini, and I got to thinking, wow, that’s the life, but before I could get jealous, I realized that his fun in the sun is good for us too, because in that ambiente, politics must be far from his mind. JC is young enough to make a big comeback to the airwaves, and hopefully by then we’ll have roundly defeated this ambition he shares with other semi-retirees, Bill Lindo and Patrick Rogers, that we remove the Queen as titular head of our country.

You know that Patrick scuttled a promising political career with this obsession of his, of blaming the Queen for the excesses of these little people we elect into government. Rogers is from the belly of the Blue, so it was an easy jump for him to the House. But when he came of age, the party had already gone full-blown capitalist, and he has a very socialist philosophy, which is a good thing about him. As they say, nobody’s all bad.

Lindo, he’s originally from the Red camp, but he switched over to the Blue, been on that side for over 40 years. He’s been on again/off again in their inner circle, because he too has some Roots philosophy. Hmm, ever since Ralph Fonseca took the PUP on a capitalist path, Lindo has been on shaky ground with the power brokers in the party.

JC’s a free thinker, clearly not aligned with either of the big camps. I suspect he’s got roots in the PUP, but I won’t rain on his holiday. Most every dark cloud has its silver lining, and there’s my wee bit of joy on the retirement of an icon: one less voice on the airwaves clamoring to interfere with our beautiful friendship, one less voice pushing to replace the Queen on our money.

Check out our other content

August inflation rate was 7.4%—SIB

Job-seeking teen killed by group of men

Wayne Alyson Sampson (1960-2022)

Check out other tags:

International