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Ah dozen smoke and ah dozen drink

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Last week ah read in all de papers dat de daughter of ah former Ambassador was arrested and charged $100. 00 foh possession of ah portion ah miss Marie-warn-her. I was pleasantly surprised dat de police were able to carry out dey duties on dis one wid-out any inter-fear-ants or interrupt-shun. It’s ah good sign, at least we could say in SVG “de Law rains pon de just as well as de unjust”. But having said dat, ah will go to de grave wid my conviction dat society will one day have to apologize to all dem young people foh de way we locking dem up, charging dem fines, sometimes jailing dem foh smoking or being in possession ah miss Marie-warn-her.{{more}}

It confuses me dat ah fellar could walk de street or into any public function wid ah Guinness or ah glass ah strong rum and coke in one hand and ah cigarette in de other, and every body will say he is cool, and if by chance his police friend is there, de police might even grab his Guinness and tek ah sip, providing nobody watching. But if he and de cop ain’t no friend and dat cop suspect dat he got ah piece ah miss Marie-warn-her in his pocket, dat is it, Court House foh he next morning, not foh de rum or cigarette yuh know, de spliff!

De cricketer, Sonny Ramadhin, when he went to de Cocktail in England and de waitress asked him: “Cigarette? ah Drink maybe?” Politely Sonny told her in Trinny: “ah dozen smoke and ah dozen drink”, He was shocked when she returned wid twelve cigarettes and twelve glasses ah rum, he turn to de person next to him and said: “like she dozen hear right”. Well I like Sonny, ah dozen do dem things either, so ah can’t write from experience except to say dat Cigarette smoking has been proven as one ah de chief agent foh giving yuh lung cancer, de smoke so bad dat dey even warning yuh ‘gainst inhaling second hand smoke. Ah think ah got to big-up Doc Slater foh introducing legislation, some heavy restrictions pon cigarette smoking in public here in SVG. And de alcohol is just as bad as de cigarette. Cigarette attacks de lung and Rum burns-up de liver and de brain too. And ah believe dat Marie-warn-her, cigarette and rum are like peas in ah pod, no better de beef no better de barrel, it is double standard to have law foh Marie-warn-her smoking in public, but none foh cigarette and rum dat just as deathrimental.

An adult, man or woman should have de right of choice to drink rum, smoke cigarette or weed in de privacy ah dey home. In public it should be ah straight NO in capital letters. Children under-age should not be seen anywhere, public or private, drinking alcohol, smoking weed or cigarette. And if dey are caught in de act in public den dey should be taken in foh counseling, but not dragged into Courts foh sentencing. Sentencing should be ah last resort.

Yuh notice ah ain’t mention ah thing bout cook-cane, dat washing ashore in Union Island like fish; cook-cane should be classified as weedicide or weed-aside, poisonous. We need to get serious and hunt down de big fish in de cook-cane business, but de lickle pushers should be sent to wuk on ah state farm or skills training camp. Put dem on Rehab dat involves wuking to feed dem-selves, dat also teaches dem to be productive is de way to go. But no Jail!

DE FIRST CHAPTER OF LUKE

De name Luke Browne is now synonymous wid scholarship; from Common Entrance, to Island Schol and now he creams it off wid one of de most pretigious, most coveted, most sought after award, de Rhodes Scholarship, offered at Oxford University in England. Ninety Rhodes schols are given each year to candidates all over the world: Canada gets 11, Australia 9, thirty-two go to de USA way former US President, Bill Clinton was ah recipient; so too is our own Dr Rex Nettleford of Jamaica. Dis year Luke gets de one school dat is awarded to de Commonwealth Caribbean. And he is de first Vincentian recipient since de inception ah de program in 1902, dats 105 years, quite an achievement foh de youngster.

Yuh don’t just apply foh ah Rhodes Schol and say thank yuh. Your Literary and scholastic attainment got to be right up; yuh got to have talent and fondness for and success in sports, Luke is ah good cricketer. Is ah good thing his parents didn’t name him Luke foh style, dey brought him up in de fear of de Lord because Rhodes looking foh truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection for de weak. Kindness, unselfishness and fellowship. Ah have always been hearing of Luke, good things actually, and ah would read his occasional pieces in de papers, his pen-is wicked when he ready, he nearly kill Utter-Some wid his pen-silly exchanges in de press. But one of Luke’s former teacher tells me dat he has all ah de above qualities dat Rhodes asking foh.

Lie-Za knows Luke’s parents, she was telling me dat his Mom is no easy scholar she-self, incidentally his Dad Theo and I share de same birth date, same year, never mind Theo always giving ah discount when ah ask him how old he is now. Ah was telling Lie-Za dat wid dis school Luke will be entitled to de best of accommodation and extra cash, she say dis is ah good time foh his pen-friend Utter-Some, who still waiting foh his Left Behind Schol money to come forth, to room-mate wid Luke. And now we wish Luke all de best and say congrats to him and his parents, he has made us all proud.

All right, over to Utter-Some who seems to be in ah quandary in England. I want to register support foh Utter-Some in his struggle to get ah Schol dat some one had forfeited. It is like ah moral sin to let dat school go ah begging and Otto ah pat-riot catching his A double S to mek ends meet in de UK.

And wid dat, is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy.

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