Spice treated unfairly

October 19, 2016


"Dr. Dis and Dat for outstanding contribution in the field of medicine. Clap! Clap! Dr. the honourable Here and Dere for contribution in the field of education. Clap! clap!

Mr. Rexton 'Shabba Ranks' Gordon for invaluable contribution to Jamaican music, locally and internationally - noise, loud cheering, chair tun ova, Kings House nuh good again #NationalHeroesAward".

The above is a Facebook post by teacher and entertainer Dalton Spence that had me bussing a good laugh on Monday.

Monday was National Heroes Day and Dalton was among several people using Facebook to share commentary on the National Honours and Awards Ceremony that was taking place on the lawns of Kings House. For many of of us with body inna foreign and mind deh a yard, these online reports are very welcome.


enduring love


For me, that little post was more than just humorously descriptive of the atmosphere at that moment. It was also a strident statement about the enduring love and appreciation that Jamaicans have for people who work in the field of arts and entertainment.

And it spoke to the large, loud and legitimate place that dancehall and its proponents hold in that space. And talking about dancehall, place and space; everybody and their granny busy shouting off about the recent gala event in honour of our Olympians, and arguing about whether the lyrics and/or presence of dancehall DJ Spice was out of place in that space.

What unnu think?

The discussion is even now ongoing online, on air, and on every corner. And I really want to get all of the facts before I say too much. But from what I've gathered so far, and speaking as a performing artiste, my heart aches in empathy with Spice.

It must be a painful experience for the artist to have her performance abruptly aborted because somebody suddenly deems it inappropriate that she's doing what she was employed to do - perform the lyrics that made her famous enough to be booked for the event.


social media platform


Whether her type of lyrics is your cup of tea or not, and even if yuh don't drink tea, dat nuh fair!

I'll be following this continuing convo on Facebook and elsewhere. Although that social media platform get to me sometimes. Between the people posting and reposting alarmist hoaxes and spreading misinformation, and the persistent ones that demand that you cut and paste their post to prove your friendship, I am inching to crazy city.

Then you have the people who're addicted to LOL and think everything is a joke. Dem one deh a do gymnastics pon mi last nerve! As I've said before, just because something stirs laughter (perhaps based on shock, embarrassment or nuff other things) that don't mean the something name comedy.

And even if some deity of jokes and levity declare dat it is comedy, me still nuh find some of it funny. Like the post I see going around with a page from what looks like the exercise book of a primary-age child - it has a picture of Sir Alexander Bustamante with what must be the child's handwriting saying 'Hero. Norman Manley'. Then there's the teacher's red ink 'ticky' at the bottom and the word 'seen' indicating it was seen and deemed correct.

And nuff people think it funny. I think it sad.

It's sad for me because I want to feel like the teacher must have probably been tired, stressed, overworked, teaching in a small hot room with over 60 pickney, and just made the genuine and understandable error of not looking carefully enough.

And it sad too, because we may be ridiculing a child who could see some of the comments and be scarred for life. And that's not such a big mistake after all. There is much resemblance between the names and likenesses of Norman Manley and Bustamante. If di pickney dis write 'Nanny of the Maroons' now... Mi gone!


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