Monday, May 24, 2010

My Account of the Dudus and Tivoli history

My account of this Dudus affair, with the siege of Tivoli

A situation that I have paid much attention to since the extradition was signed and warrant issued for the arrest of Dudus.

I have been monitoring the international media through my iGoogle page via Google news gadget, customised to display news on Dudus.

When this thing started, I recognised the danger that it posed. I was one of those that wanted the delay in the extradition matter, and even secretly desiring the lobbying attempts by Mannatt and Phelps. I foreknew that if this issue was dealt with, that it would be a great crisis for Jamaica. It is the type of crisis that no leader of Jamaica, regardless of whichever party wants to have to deal with.

Tivoli has long been labeled the "mother of all garrisons". It is known that in this commuity there are weapons stock piled, and that the residents are not afraid to confront the police with these weapons. Historically, Jamaica police have encountered violent resistance from this community in the past, while attempting to go in and retrieve guns.

It was not an easy extradition request that the US made to our leaders last year. Frankly, I wanted it to be worked out in secret. Or perhaps, that the Jamaican authorities would not sacrifice our own lawmen, but give US permission to use their CIA to enter the community and take the strong man themselves.

Nevertheless, it came to this. I know not how much Jamaican blood will be shed. Yet, it is necessary for many to die, in order to rid oursevles once and forever of the conditions that continue to feed our crime and violence.

There shall be martyrdom, both on the side of Tivoli residents and already on the side of our Security forces. Everyone who dies in this fiasco are the ones who made this historical turning point possible. Their blood will not go in vain. Instead, their blood will speak to future generations of the price Jamaica paid to separate itself from a history of political violence.

Too many times nations have to change history with violence. This is one such ocasion for Jamaica. We need violence to re-establish paradise.

In the past Jamaica would have been a Spanish speaking nation, if not for violence. In the past, Jamaica could have become a French speaking nation, but for violence. Today, the blood spilled in Tivoli and over Tivoli, will indicate what Jamaica will speak in the future. What language will be uttered in the streets? What will our dancehall artistes sing about after this? Hopefully, no more will we speak/sing the language of violence, but as a people have changed consciousness and speak of peace for many years to come.

From my monitoring of the international media's reporting on this matter, I realise that Jamaica has introduced 2 new words to the global vocabulary - "garrison community" and "don". Tomorrow, I hope that the new words that Jamaica will introduce to the globe's vocabulary will not be ones that drip with blood and violence, but will be inspiring as Usain Bolt is "to di wurl" (to the world).

G-d bless Jamaica. G-d bless Tivoli. Let out of this situation, arise a new and fresh beginning for our nation. May Tivoli and Jamaica be cleansed and experience new birth, a renaissance and reconstruction.

Let Jamaica increase in beauty, fellowship and prosperity...and play her part in advancing the welfare of the whole human race.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Leaving back Food for the Poor

The Passage of Meditation:

Leviticus 23:22

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the LORD your God. King James Version (KJV)

"When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God." New International Version (NIV)

Leviticus 19:9

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest. King James Version (KJV)

There has been a young man who I have been assisting financially since 2007. I was not pleased that everytime the fellow found himself in financial quagmire, that he called me or visited me at my office.

I believed that I have spent over JMD 100,000 helping this young man. I helped with groceries, gave him capital contributions for small self-start business ventures such as rearing poultry and the sale of mobile phone cards. I gave money to assist with getting necessary documentation to get jobs overseas and for skill training.

Yet, the young man has had calamity after calamity. He has been robbed by gunmen and his relatives, have been homeless a couple times, lost employment and have not been able to prosper at his business ventures.

I reached break point last week, feeling that it is almost 3 years, and the young man still did not reach anywhere to the point where he was self-reliant. He was still where he started, despite the financial assistance that I have given for self-employment, skill training certification and towards gaining employment.

This week, I attempted to meditate on the Word for the season of Pentecost, awaiting some fresh insight into ministry and purpose.

This text of scripture came out to me, showing me an underlying principle of the kingdom of G-d.

I have come to point where I have learnt that 100% of what we earn is G-d's, who expects us to use that 100% in the following ways:

  • give a tenth to his workers (10%) (Malachi 3:8-10)
  • give an offering when we feel greatful to do so (2 Corinthians 9:7)
  • spend on family, wife and children (man who does not do so is worse than an infidel -see 1 Timothy 5:8)
  • spend on parents (honouring parents actually mean spending on them - Mark 7:11-12)
  • spend a percentage to sustain ourselves as well as pay people who we owe (as the ox must not be muzzled - 1 Timothy 5:18)
  • Pay our taxes (give what is due to Caesar and other rulers -  Luke 20:25)

Well the scripture text also supports the fact that we must not spend all our remaining (90%) on ourselves, but to leave back some money for others. Even after we have spent our money in the ways I have mentioned, we must still attempt to hold back some to distribute to the poor and people we are unfamiliar with.

The underlying principle is that we should not spend all that we earn, but are to leave a portion to be spent in giving alms. In this sense, we must plan and have an intention to give from the time we collect the pay check. Hence provision must be made from collecting the pay check to set aside a portion to give away to persons or a person in need. This portion however is not to be given to friends (who are not poor) and family, but to those who you either know as being poor or those who you are unfamiliar with.

In this case, the alms giving usually take the form of food provision. As such, I have come back to the persuasion that I need to put a side food when I go to the supermarket or market for others who are less fortunate.

While the passage speaks to food, I also wondered if it speaks the same for time? Should I never give 100% commitment to any activity, but always leave a portion of uncommitted energy for others?

For further reading of scriptures on the subject of how G-d wants us to treat the poor please view: