Too much madness in dancehall

June 17, 2016
A Japanese contestant showing off her dancing skill at a recent edition of the annual International Dancehall Queen contest in 2006.

This week, I thought briefly about making this week's column about the nightclub massacre of 49 people in Orlando, Florida, and the resulting reactions, especially those from the political directorate and the people in general. But, to be honest, I am tired of repeating myself about the way in which we view gay people.

And frankly, I have come to the realisation that the bigotry will never end. With that in mind, why waste time going on about it? We have been so indoctrinated by religion, something that has beaten into us by our slave masters over hundreds of years, that it is now virtually impossible to change.

What can change, and I honestly hope it does soon, is the madness we now call dancing in dancehalls across this country.

There was a time when a man went to a dancehall with his girl, bought a Guinness and held his girl close and got into some slow wine all night long. Rub-a-dub we used to call it back then, and it was why I enjoyed attending dances. The music was about roots, culture and enjoyment.

I remember a time when one Guinness was all you needed, and a drink for your girl was maybe a soda, and by the time the dance ended, the sweat between your bodies would be almost like a film. When the dance ended you and your girl would be that much closer together, your troubles forgotten.


smashing blocks


These days, the dancehall has become nothing but a bloody joke. All men gather on one side high-stepping while the women are on the other side taking selfies and posting on social media. When they are not doing that, they are setting their crotches on fire or smashing blocks against the pelvises.

It has now evolved to a place where men put buckets over girls' heads and then proceed to pummel away. I have also seen videos of men jumping off speaker boxes, trees, and rooftops onto women lying on the floor.

All of this begs the question: What the heck has gone wrong in the dancehall?

Dancehall has gone from being fun to downright stupid. The craziest part about it is that the stupider it gets, the more popular it seems to become. But at what cost?

Today's generation of dancehall patrons and toasters have taken something that was sacred and turned it into a farce.

When did become unacceptable for people to dance like we used to not so long ago? What is wrong with a man and his girl 'renting a tile' and enjoying that kind of erotic closeness that expressed how they felt about each other?

When did sanity go out the window and stupidity take over?

Do people enjoy this madness? Can someone who attend these events really leave for home thinking they had a really enjoyable time?

If so, I am sorry, but what is happening now is like driving at full speed towards the edge of a steep cliff. Somewhere along the way though, somebody has got to wake up and start putting their foot on the brake and start turning the vehicle around.

It hurts my soul that we took a good thing, a great thing that had the ability to influence the world, and made into a joke and a bad one at that.

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