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A lesson in geography for Mr Griffith

 Speaking the truth is not as popular in Trinidad and Tobago. Politicians prefer to use satire, innuendo, half-truths and outright lies. Their use of mamaguy and grandcharge must not be underestimated either. Gary Griffith’s grandcharge about fighting the so-called war in Laventille and other violent places (hostile territory) in the country will eventually boil down like fresh bhajee. 

On Sunday night a soldier was shot and killed. The war did not start then with this ominous incident. There was always a war between the lumpenproletariat and the bourgeoisie in Trinidad and Tobago. Whether Mr Griffith, in his rage, wants to accept it, there was always a cultural, political, social and, most of all, an economic war among the peoples of Trinidad and Tobago.

In the first place, the war started with the exploration and rapacious exploitation orchestrated by colonial forces in the Caribbean. Generation after generation continues to inbreed their sophistries of hate and anger.

The odium of slavery, oppression and repression is alive and well in our country, Mr Griffith, and its art is being portrayed in Laventille, Morvant, John John, Patna, Cocorite, Sea Lots and Beetham. Freedom and independence are hailed as the everlasting aspirations of any developing nation. What about cooperation and interdependence?

Some of us sit in our ivory towers and gesticulate to investigate what is happening in the State. We all know distribution of resources in Trinidad and Tobago is skewed. Every creed and race does not have an equal place. Mr Griffith should understand charity begins at home and ends abroad. There is stuff going on in Parliament, Mr Griffith, that does not bode well for good governance.

Many of us hope what transpires in Parliament will just blow over. At present, there is a cauldron boiling over with unanswered questions. Kettle should not be calling pot bottom black.

So what do you want to do now, Mr Griffith? Have you solved the murder of Dana Seetahal? When will you get to the bottom of this one? Is Kamla Persad-Bissessar readying her guns to replace you? Are you going to shoot up everywhere in Laventille? Yes, strike in the dead of night and create mayhem so that the rats will run helter-skelter so you could kill them?

If you want to get rid of the rats, you must use a good piper—no pun intended. Remember well that he who pays the piper calls the tune. As the good book says, the wheat and the tares grow together. Not everyone in Laventille is a gangster. I am sure there are many noble people in Laventille. If you want to get rid of the cobwebs, kill the spider, Mr Griffith. 

This spider is a big one, a very big one; with very long legs, crawling and creeping over everything and everyone in Trinidad and Tobago, you included. This spider is the one that brings the guns, drugs and contraband to our shores. This spider knows about cleaning money so that it looks good, Mr Griffith.

Do you know this spider or who is responsible for entertaining the spider? Wake up, Mr Griffith! Where are your olfactory lobes, Mr Griffith? Smell the coffee, Mr Griffith! I am of the opinion that the intelligentsia in Trinidad and Tobago has knowledge of this spider but are too afraid to attack and kill it; too many repercussions will ensue, plain and simple.

I respect your position as the Minister of National Security, but you have to employ some serious and honest people to do a professional audit of your protective services. If you plan to fight the people in Laventille, you will be opening up the real Pandora’s box, my good sir. You may just destroy one of the legs of the spider.

Are you planning to shut down the country? Are you in process of employing the Green Berets or Delta Force? Revenge is not the answer. What I want you to realise is there are “ghosts” in Laventille; now you see me, now you don’t. ANR Robinson once said: “Attack with full force.”

I am really sorry for the loss of a good soldier; more so his wife and offspring, but I implore that you really think this one out. Have you given serious thought on the physical, cultural, political, social, historical, behavioural and economic geographies of Trinidad and Tobago? If you did, then you could go start your little war. 

Johnny Coomansingh,

geographer

via e-mail

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