Posts tagged ‘sentenced’

February 24, 2011

On the Buju Banton verdict

I was aware of the conviction of Buju Banton shortly after it happened, but given my feelings on that particular individual I decided to give it 24 hours. I gather that bloggers around the region have been lamenting the verdict with various reasons ranging from him being framed to some nebulous conspiracy that involves him being Caribbean  and the ever popular gay agenda. Global Voices Online is even reporting that Jamaica is in mourning.

The fact is there is video of  Buju Banton chatting with federal agents and tasting the cocaine ( presumably that requires some experience) and he is now convicted.  What is the problem?  It seems that Caribbean people expect to have a different standard of justice and/or they are too stupid to recognize that their idols have clay feet. Now to the gay agenda conspiracy. Mark Anthony Myrie ( his real name) is probably most famous for his song  “Boom Bye Bye”  that celebrated the killing of gay people.  Under the threat of boycotts and several cancellations Myrie claimed he would change his ways but he subsequently reversed that decision.  The lyrics of the song are in Jamaican English but here are a few of them with a translation by :

Boom bye bye
[Boom (as in gun sound) goodbye, goodbye]
(as in we won’t be seeing you again, you’re dead)

Inna batty bwoy head
[In a queer’s head]

Rude bwoy no promote no nasty man
[Rude boys don’t promote no queer men]
(Rude boys: dancehall singers)

Dem haffi dead
[They have to die]

Send fi di matic an
[Send for the automatic [gun] and]

Di Uzi instead
[The Uzi instead]

Shoot dem no come if we shot dem
[Shoot them, don’t come if we shoot them]
(as in don’t come to help them)

Guy come near we
[If a man comes near me]

Then his skin must peel
[Then his skin must peel] (as in pour acid over him)

Burn him up bad like an old tire wheel
[Burn him up badly, like you would burn an old tire wheel]

I am not sure how that can be interpreted as anything other than inciting killing but it seems that doesn’t concern regional bloggers. He has other songs, of course, but I am sure that even the KKK has statements that concern things other than lynching black people.

So here is my brief measured statement with simultaneous translation of real feelings.:

Buju is a major figure in Caribbean culture but his achievements should not be viewed in isolation.

TRANSLATION: He is a dangerous person who hates gay people and putting lipstick on a pig doesn’t make it fine.

While his conviction on federal drug dealing charges is the verdict of the US courts there is a strong view among people in the wider Caribbean that all is not as it seems.

TRANSLATION:  Many people in the Caribbean are shocked that he isn’t treated as a saint  because he is from  Jamaica and the legacy of colonialism should excuse him from drug crimes. Never mind he wants gay people dead – he is Jamaican!

It is unfortunate that he finds himself in this situation but given the sensitivity of Caribbean culture it is to be hoped that this is considered in his sentencing.

TRANSLATION: He tried to deal drugs, he is beyond contempt and I truly hope the reprehensible slime rots in jail.

In conclusion, I can only quote a female friend from Trinidad whose Facebook status said : “boom bye bye homophobe.”

Read the conviction story on CBC News here.

If you want real Caribbean culture try these on for size.