Our politics , like Race and Religion help to shape who we are, how we view the world, how we relate to each other. There is no one way which is right , no one way which is absolute. As such when I take the liberty to be a social commentator, I am very mindful that I am limited in what I know, as such I am particularly careful in understanding and appreciating the views of others. I am not offended by opposing views I look to learn from those who disagree with me, taking into consideration that I have never walked in their shoes. Though we are shaped by our experiences, we are not precluded from un-shackling ourselves from the mores of traditional or parochial thought. Essentially we have the ability to learn something new always. I too have been guilty of being a party to the confining tentacles of Jamaican political labeling, I have sought over time to extricate myself from those mental chains which has since allowed me to be a Jamaican, and not a PNP or a JLP, I am Jamaican. People asked me what “P” was I during the heights of political fervor years ago, I responded ,”Police” ! To this day I couldn’t care less about either political party, I refused to allow myself to be defined by those labels. Today as we look back at what happened in Tivoli Gardens, we must look back to ensuring that what Tivoli Gardens metastasized into, is never again allowed to happen. I have written at length about this, no community should ever be off-limits to law enforcement. No Politician should ask “what was Adams doing in Tivoli”? As Edward Seaga did. The inference being that law-enforcement is precluded from entering his personal enclave. The other party is no better they argue Jamaica is PNP country.
Jamaica is not PNP country, but they have used taxpayers money to create these zones of political exclusions, which allows them to have the temerity to say so publicly. In fact they have eleven times the Garrisons the JLP does. They have bragged that they are guaranteed to keep winning as a result of this type of gerrymandering. As reprehensible as this practice is both political parties in the United States indulge in this un-democratic practice when they control the majority, absolute power corrupts absolutely. The University of the West Indies have been a huge contributor to this kind of mentality, for decades it has propagated and promulgated a far left ideology not just through its Curriculum but the Professors it hired. The Communist party owed it’s genesis to that Institution. Years ago as a young officer assigned to the Ranger Squad out of the Mobile Reserve, I infamously Graced the cover of the then (WP[J)Communist Party Newspaper the “Struggle”, branded a terrorist cop. My crime was that I stood my ground, did my job. We were sent to make sure that a band of WPJ demonstrators did not get to invade the grounds of Jamaica House the Offices of the Prime Minister who was in office at the time. Edward Seaga was the then Prime Minister, what irony. Years later I went to a Restaurant on Dunrobin Avenue to have lunch, with me was Detective Sargent Gerald Wallace, the lady who owned the establishment was very cordial , she knew mister Wallace who did the introductions. I was surprised that she knew my family, as well as to learn she was friends with my dad while they were in school. She went on to tell me about her father, famed Lawyer Huntley Monroe and her brother Trevor Monroe, President of the WPJ. The story had come full circle, I told her of the incident in which I was labeled a Terrorist cop, she was livid and shocked, she promised me she would fix it. Sometime later she called to tell me that she had gone ahead and arranged a meeting between her brother Dr, Trevor Monroe and myself,we were to meet for lunch at her place, I agreed. As usual it was Seargant Wallace and I. That day we had lunch with Dr. Monroe and her, he was very engaging, we had a very good conversation culminating in him giving me a full-throat-ed apology for the “Struggle’s” headline, we made up and went our seaperate ways.
… Oh by the way we paid for our lunch.
I understood the Paper’s need for sensationalism, after all they needed traction and who better to give them traction than the evil police[sic]. They never bothered to think of what could have happened if we had allowed people to invade the Prime Minister’s office and do him harm( irrespective of who is in that office). The story of that day historically would have been much different going into posterity. The beauty of our meeting was that people with diametrically different objectives were able to sit, break bread and discuss those objectives,it was wonderful and enlightening.
Thanks to Mrs White, a wonderful woman.