Jamaica: Triumph and Madness

Jamaicans have a lot to celebrate this month. In addition to this month being the 46th commemoration of the island gaining independence from England, this weekend Jamaicans got a well-deserved spotlight at the Beijing Olympics.

From San Francisco Chronicle:

Of the 42 medals Jamaica has won in its Olympic history, 41 are from track and field, with the sprints accounting for the vast majority. The history of sprinting in the Olympics would not be complete without mentioning such Jamaicans as Herb McKenley, George Rhoden, Don Quarrie, Merlene Ottey, Veronica Campbell-Brown and now Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser.

The fastest man and the fastest woman in the world come from a place thought to be laid-back. Tell that to the well-beaten Americans in the men's and women's 100 meters.

Unfortunately, leave it up to one bad apple to ruin the bunch.

So-called "journalist" Michael Dingwall wrote a column recently for the Jamaica Observer, giving his reasons for why slavery was a GOOD thing for black people.

From Jamaica Observer:

Slavery was our most important contact with modernity. It is through this "most heinous system ever created" that we blacks were able to understand some of the principles of global trade. Our ancestors were introduced to the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade between Europe, Africa and the West Indies. Black Africa's part in the trade was the importation of European technology and the export of slaves. The importation of European technology was important - even though the Africans did not appreciate this importance at first. The export of slaves was also very important, especially for us in the West.

As time went on, we blacks, both in Africa and especially in the Caribbean were, in many ways, being Europeanised and thus civilised. We adopted several aspects of their culture - their systems of government, their technologies, their sense of order and their languages. In doing this, we discarded those aspects of our culture that clearly placed us at a disadvantage - like our lack of sense of self, loyalty to the tribe and our non-participation in modern technology.

I just don't know where to begin with this. But putting aside the ridiculousness of this article, what were the Observer editors thinking to not have Dingwall cite evidence to his thought process. I am a believer in free speech, no matter how stupid the speech is, but no one can just get up and say anything without backing it up with proof.

While the Jamaica Observer has made good editorial judgment by allowing columnist John Maxwell to provide fine writing with progressive logic, it hasn't done the same in this case.

So if you care about journalistic integrity, put these people on blast:

Michael Dingwall: michael_a_dingwall@hotmail.com

Jamaica Observer Editorial: editorial@jamaicaobserver.com

Labels: , , ,


At Wednesday, August 20, 2008 9:22:00 PM, Blogger Chic Noir said...

I had a blk African argue with me about why colonailism was good for Africa once. Some of our people are so lost.

I am very happy about the Jamican success in the sprints. The Jamicans have always done well in the sprints just never geting a gold. They have numerous silver and bronze metals from previous Olympics.

BTW, I saw your comment on sterohype and had to stop over to check you out. I like and I will return.

At Thursday, August 21, 2008 9:06:00 AM, Blogger Global Wire said...

Thanks, and I hope you do return!


Post a Comment

<< Home