Sunday, February 25, 2018

Machel, go talk to high-risk youth

Kudos are in order to our icon, role model and Soca Monarch, Machel Montano, for taking the time from his "busy schedule" to finally condescend to apologise. "Finally freed from the burden of competition, Montano was last able to take his mind away from the stage and Carnival 2013." (Sunday Express, February 17)

What about the burden of sorrow and shame someone feels when he/she has seriously injured another human being?

The incident took place in April 2007. How is it that Machel never apologised before? Was he too busy travelling to all those different continents to record and perform?

To those who supported Machel during the "unfortunate five-year court case" we must be careful of making monsters out of our young people. Thousands of young impressionable fans are looking on at our "superheroes". If someone has erred we have to let that person know. If one of my students from Laventille or Enterprise beats another to a pulp, he is arrested, often-times beaten by the police and incarcerated. In our society, the common perception is that there are different strokes for different folks. In the US icons are cooling their heels in jail.

Nothing and no one should have the power "to fog up the place" to the extent that our values, vision or principles become impaired by the fog of self-importance, oversized ego or downright arrogance.

Machel, you should ask for forgiveness. Don't be distracted by the "high fallutin" PR jargon. Visit the schools, especially the "so-called" high risk schools.

Don't perform, just engage the youth in discussions on the horror of violence in our society. They would love you more for your honesty and simplicity.

Janice Frederick-Sealy