Thursday, October 14, 2010

Political Wuck-Up In Barbados: Leadership Struggles In The DLP And BLP

"As Prime Minister David Thompson confronts severe health challenges, both major parties are locked in fierce leadership struggles. Perhaps, out of respect for the PM`s condition, the struggle in his ruling Democratic Labor Party, (DLP), is somewhat muted. Not so in the opposition Barbados Labor Party, (BLP), where an open challenge to the position of Political and Parliamentary leader, Mia Mottley, is being mounted by a majority of the party`s parliamentary group. It is clear that this group has lost confidence in Mottley`s leadership. But did they ever accept her as the undisputed leader? ..."

Read more: - Global Caribbean Daily Newswire

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

More Proof Rihanna's Beating Last Year Was A Publicity Stunt

"It's hard to forget the haunting photo that leaked out early last year: Pop star Rihanna, her elegant face bruised and battered after a violent assault by her then-boyfriend, R&B singer Chris Brown.
Now, she's appearing in something else shocking, though thankfully fictional: Rapper Eminem's chart-topping Love the Way You Lie, a song (and now video) that graphically depicts a physically abusive relationship.

And the debate has begun: Is the song a treatise against (or apology for) domestic violence, or an irresponsible glorification of it? Or, is it something uncomfortably in between? And how exactly to explain the role of Rihanna, who has said she aims to help young people learn the lessons of her ordeal?

One thing is not in question: The song is a hit, sitting atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart. And well before the edgy video debuted last week, the lyrics were enough to get plenty of attention.

``Just gonna stand there and watch me burn,'' Rihanna sings repeatedly, to an undeniably catchy tune. ``But that's all right because I like the way it hurts.''

As for Eminem, who raps the verses, he makes it crystal clear what the fire imagery's about. ``If she ever tries to (expletive) leave me again,'' he says late in the song, ``I'ma tie her to the bed and set this house on fire.''

In between, there's talk of love being wonderful, until it isn't. Suddenly there's pushing, pulling hair, scratching, clawing, biting: ``Throw 'em down, pin 'em. So lost in the moments when you're in 'em.''

The girl, acted in the video by actress Megan Fox, tries to leave. The guy, played by Dominic Monaghan, promises it won't happen again. But then he admits he's lying: ``I apologize even though I know it's lies.''

Rihanna wasn't available for comment on the song, her publicist said in an e-mail message. But the 22-year-old singer, who last year won a Glamour Woman of the Year award, partly for her stand on domestic violence, has been quoted as saying the song ``was something that needed to be done and the way he (Eminem) did it was so clever. He pretty much just broke down the cycle of domestic violence.''


As for Eminem, known for his turbulent relationship with ex-wife Kim Mathers -- his song, Kim, graphically fantasized about murdering her -- he has said he enlisted Rihanna because she was the perfect person to pull the song off.

But can it be a teaching tool? That depends on the context in which young people see and hear it, says Marjorie Gilberg, executive director of Break the Cycle, a group that fights violence among teens.

``The danger is that pop culture defines our social norms,'' says Gilberg. ``We don't want the message of this song to be that this kind of relationship is acceptable. So this song has to be viewed in the context of real information from adults, like parents and teachers.''

Of course, that depends on whether listeners even focus on the lyrics. Allison Churchill, an Eminem fan in Palm Coast, Fla., says she has friends who never really hear the lyrics to songs they like -- ``they just like a good beat.'' She herself listened a number of times to Love the Way You Lie before she realized what it was saying.

``I thought, 'I can't sing along to THAT,''' says Churchill, 31.

But she thinks the song could have a positive impact, ``if it can hit a nerve with a teenager and prompt them to go talk to someone about it.'' Because, she says, ``The more we talk about a subject, the easier it is to fix.''

One problem, though, says Gilberg of Break the Cycle, is that the song reflects myths about domestic violence -- myths that lead to blaming the victim. One is that women enjoy being hurt.

``Do people WANT to be abused? No,'' says Gilberg. They may put up with abuse, but that's a different story. Another myth, she says: The concept of mutual violence. (Eminem sings: ``But your temper's just as bad as mine is. You're the same as me.'' And the video shows the actors hitting each other.)


``That's a classic line of an abusive man,'' says Terry O'Neill, president of the National Organization for Women. ``You're as bad as me, so it's OK. The fact is, it's only 2-year-olds and violent men who use violence to get what they want.''

O'Neill thinks Rihanna really is trying to make a contribution to fighting domestic violence -- it's just that in this song, she's unwittingly glorifying it.

``She's narrating the story, and she's not judging it,'' says O'Neill. ``And so she may not intend to be glorifying it, but she is.''

Diane Maxwell, though, has a different view. The Florida mother sees the song as empowering women who've experienced domestic abuse.

``I like the lyrics because they ring true,'' says Maxwell, 35. ``I've heard things like that in my life. This gives people a voice, and tells them, `You're not the only one out there.' It's pretty powerful to me.''

And so when Rihanna sings ``I like the way it hurts,'' Maxwell says she hears: ``That's OK -- I'm tougher than you. Kind of like when two men are boxing. . . . Come on, let's go, I can take whatever you throw at me.''

Some have interpreted Eminem's song as an apology for violent moments he may have had with his ex-wife, whom he married and divorced twice. Kel Hamik, an actress in Chicago, thinks the rapper has a much more obvious motivation.

``The sheer nature of his songs mean there's buzz around them all the time,'' says Hamik, 23. ``His music is catchy, it gets stuck in your head and whether you like it or not, you'll be singing the words.'' Bringing on Rihanna, she says, ``is another way to create buzz.''

But Rihanna, she and most others interviewed think, must have had a more lofty motive. The question is whether she's achieved it.

``She's a young woman who went through a very traumatic experience in a public way, and she's trying to establish a voice,'' says Gilberg. ``But it's very important that young people realize it wasn't her fault, what happened to her.''

Still, she says, ``While I don't agree with the message in the song, it's an important conversation piece.''"

Read more:

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Swim In The Right Direction

Teaching participants the proper form when attempting to swim freestyle
"About 100 Barbadians have registered to learn how to swim in the 2010 Operation SOS: Save Our Selves programme.

Most of them went to Browne’s Beach yesterday for the start of the programme, which is being hosted by the National Conservation Commission (NCC) in partnership with the Barbados Fire Service.

NCC general manager Keith Neblett said the aim was to teach people to be able to save themselves if they got into any difficulty in the water, as well as to create greater respect for the marine environment.

The programme, now in its second year, is geared towards people ten years of age and older and includes lectures on how to prevent drowning; water safety; understanding currents and understanding and interpreting flags, beach signage, wind and waves.

It takes place every Wednesday and Friday from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. and at 4 to 5 p.m., and runs until August 27"


Exactly a year ago this blogger posted here about The Disconnect Between Black Bajans And The Beach, so this is indeed a welcome development that these courses are now being offered on an ongoing basis and many Barbadians have been taking advantage of the opportunities to reconnect with the water which surrounds us.  Hopefully, they will also become more fully aware of the environmental, ecological and social issues associated with beach erosion and join the fight to rescue Barbados from the clutches of the greedy beachrow condo developers and their enablers in positions of authority.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Bajan-Canuck/Club Bimshire Member Gets Close To Queen

One of our Club Bimshire members in Toronto got close enough to the Queen who is currently touring North America to take the above and a couple other interesting photos.

Click here to join the discussion and see the other photos on our forum.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

St. Lucy project launched

"St. Lucy project launched


The Pickering Housing and Town Centre development project launched yesterday in Pickering, St. Lucy will generate US $800 million in revenue and stimulate the social and economic development of the entire northern section of Barbados.

Delivering the feature address at the groundbreaking ceremony of one section of the centre, Pickering Court, Prime Minister David Thompson said that this project, conducted under North Ridge Development Company Ltd., will bring “enormous benefits at a time when foreign investment is desperately needed”.

“This project will generate US$800 million of which US$500 million will be from sales to non-residents. The project will employ 600 persons at the peak of construction and provide sustainable employment opportunities to support residential and business aspects of the development,” said Prime Minister Thompson.

He said that this private sector investment by local and overseas investors is one of the largest residential projects to be undertaken on the island...

Read more - The Barbados Advocate - St. Lucy project launched

Monday, June 7, 2010

What's with Rihanna's hair ... again?

Photo courtesy

"After their performances at last night's Capital FM Summertime Ball it was a quick change of clothing for Rihanna and Pixie Lott before they headed off to Mahiki for a star-studded afterparty.
But Rihanna, who wore a futuristic-looking white top over a black leotard and fishnet tights on stage, was unusually coy about what she was wearing, covering up in a large black pashmina as she arrived at the London nightclub. 
Perhaps coming from Barbados, the singer was feeling the cold in London..."

Read more:

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Proud mom, Juls, shows off her Mother's Day frock next to her shiny car
"Sometimes the census man comes round to count the population,
And mother always says to him: "housewife's my occupation".
But housewife means a lot of things, at least it does to mother..."

Unfortunately, those are the only lines I can still remember from a poem I had to learn and recite for a Mother's Day Sunday School Program when I was a child of about 7 or 8 years old.  It went on to list several things that mothers do as housewives, some of them quite herculean in scope.  My own mother passed away several years ago but her presence is still enduring in a lot of ways.  So to mothers everywhere I say Happy Mother's Day - whatever that means to you.

Click here to join our forum's Mother's Day Celebration.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Picture Perfect Mullins Beach Barbados

Mullins Beach, Barbados May 6,2010 (click image to enlarge)
So, I was "liming" on the breakwater after eating my lunch at Mullins Beach yesterday and snapped the above photo of what still is for this blogger what is truly one of my favorite spots on the planet.  It probably has something to do with the fact that I was born just across the road from this location on a spot now occupied by a "LIME" (the main telecommunications company on the island) - no pun intended.  Back then the whole area was still called Bayfield after the sugar plantation which owned the lands.  But beyond being around where my navel string was buried it always brings a sense of pride when the tour buses and cabs slow down so others from all over the world can catch a glimpse of this magical location.  It remains one of the last locations on the west coast of Barbados where one can peek at the white coral sands and the world famous Barbados Blue Caribbean Sea from Route 1 which was the main "highway" on the island up to about twenty years ago.

Double murder shocks Grenadian district

"A double murder, one of the most gruesome killings in Grenada in recent history, on Monday evening sent shock waves through the Balthazar area and throughout the rest of the island.
The heads of former police officer and farmer/proprietor Clyde Greenidge of Birchgrove in St Andrew's and labourer Christopher Stafford of Byeland, also in St Andrew's, were brought into the Grenville Police Station by their alleged slayer at about 6:15 p.m.
Informed sources told Grenadian newspaper New Today that Steve Gorrie rolled out the heads of the two men, from a white bucket, onto the counter of the Grenville Police Station, sending officers into shock and disbelief. A policewoman was reported to have fainted..."

Click here for entire article.


Archbishop Holder: No ordaining gays

"ARCHBISHOP OF THE WEST INDIES Dr John Holder has ruled out ordaining any actively gay priest.

Archbishop Holder, who is also Bishop of Barbados, made it clear to the WEEKEND NATION that he wouldn't be breaking with church tradition in the Caribbean by participating in or sanctioning such.

"I accept [gays] as children of God, but I will not encourage them; and I will not engage, I say, in any ordination of persons whom I know are actively involved in [homosexual] relationships," Holder said in an interview in New York..."
Click here for entire article.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Killer Nuts

"i tawt i was gine dead wednesday foreday morning. i had a really bad allergic reaction to almonds tuesday nite so i took some benadryl and went to bed hoping it wear off during the nite. then bout 2.00am i woke up still swollen, now the hives looking more like warts and itching from head tuh toe, and now uh seeing all kinds uh spots and stars blurring my vision, de bedroom feel like it moving, body feeling real real weak and like i got red ants eating me up, tried to open my mouth but not a sound would come out..."

Click here to continue reading this story on our forum.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Billie Miller, former Deputy Prime Minister of Barbados, in Belize

Dame Billie Miller
 “I say to you this morning that you have a further and a larger duty to be tireless in guiding and mentoring younger girls and women who are coming after you.  What better cause to offer your passion and your commitment to than that of improving the quality of lives and building communities.”
Click link below for entire article:
Billie Miller, former Deputy Prime Minister of Barbados, in Belize |

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Why GDP Matters: Barbados vs. Jamaica

"On today's Planet Money:
That graph up there may look boring, but it's a big deal. It shows how the economies of Jamaica and Barbados -- two countries with very similar histories -- have grown far apart in the last several decades.
That difference in GDP shows up in all sorts of ways, Planet Money's Alex Blumberg found on a recent trip to both countries. Today, we get the first installment: What schools look like in each country. A principal in Jamaica keeps her school running with help from neighborhood volunteers, a donation from a Jamaican pop star and some funding from a U.S. aid program. A principal at a similar school in Barbados says government funding does a pretty good job of meeting the school's needs.
Alex will have more on the story of Jamaica and Barbados in future podcasts. If you can't wait that long, check out this paper by Peter Blair Henry, who was born in Jamaica and who now heads NYU's business school."

Click here for the podcast.
Click here for original NPR's Planet Money article.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Why I Believe The Live Man Locked In QEH Morgue Story

"Wunna remember all de hoopla last year wid de man dat claim he escape from de QEH morgue? Well, I have to say I did always give de man de benefit of de doubt but wunna know how de QEH come out and deny everyting de man say. But when shyte happening to yuh everytime yuh go to de QEH yuh cuh now see how dem cuh lock de man in de morgue fuh trute. Wunna remember de story I tell wunna bout de woman who tell me how duh lost she file and whuh I tell wunna bout de files in de rookety shopping carts..."

The Breadfruit Tree Lime • View topic - Why I Believe The Live Man Locked In QEH Morgue Story

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Free Health Care Barbados Style

"Oh dear, Sofa, give muh a break (no pun intended) cause you doan want to hear me start up wid dese people bout hey and de so-called free health care again. I did feel real sorry fuh all uh dem old people standing in line fuh blood tests yesterday when de nurse come out announce "if yuh private or paying step forward..."

Click here for entire conversation.