|UFDC Home||myUFDC Home | Help ||
ALL VOLUMES CITATION SEARCH THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
auwi uw To
Lloyd Best makes powerful appeal at last Sunday's Special Assembly
"LET THE cocks stand up and
crow like bugles, ring the bell, call
the people we are not going to
have a second chance". That was
Tapia's Secretary, Lloyd Best, tell-
ing the group at Sunday's Special
Assembly that it was now time to
rally the people.
It had taken five years of community
work and political organisation, but
now Tapia was ready to move to the
centre of the stage and not a moment
For Best, in spelling out the need
for urgency in the crisis period, out-
lined two stark alternatives:
"If we don't fight this juggernaut
now, if we don't get the people of this
country to stand up and fight, if we
don't get this countrytocommit itself to
a new social order, then we are going to
be in a Latin American bag for the next
But why now? Why at "this particu-
lar juncture of history within a decade
"Because", Best said, "the country
is young beyond description, the coun-
try is young and it is ready to move, if
we don't move it now and it settles
down we are in real trouble.
"Already you can sense, you can
feel the disillusion, the disenchantment
ot the play-and-miss of three years ago.
How many people you could see in the
public square in 1970, now withdrawn,
their tails between their -legs. Why?
Because we played and missed", he
That, however, was not the end.
Things happened until the country had
reached the stage where it had to decide
whether it was going forward or back-
ward which was why Tapia had now
to call the people.
But, Best stressed that before we
THE February Revolution is draw-
ing to a climax. The signs -- that
darkest hour that precedes the
dawn is already here, Tapia
Secretary told a full Special As-
sembly on Sunday.
"Just before the country makes
the break, just before the revolu-
tion climaxes itself and reaches
consummation, the despair is
greater than ever.
"It is so precisely because the cul-
ture is ready to move in a different
direction, you can't see any representa-
could move the country forward we
had to understand that we had
inherited a culture of impotence, an
attitude that assumed that "all ah we is
dog," that our participation did not
count all of which made it difficult
for the country to see how by a simple
"act of faith" we could made the dif-
ference. And, therefore, we wail for
In a sense PNM was the culmination
of the strategy of education used by the
Africans to pull themselves from the
bottom of the social heap. Williams was
tives of the old politics. The country
cannot see any leaders precisely because
that kind of leadership is over.
"And when our friends in HATT
say there is no leader or the people who
are calling for Ashford Sinanan or for a
"Prophet of Peace", they are living in
an old world. Which is not to say any-
thing about their intentions; they are
expressing this view precisely because
they want a change.
"But they are so bound by the
culture of yesterday that they are look-
one of "the brightest sons" and the
people pinned their hopes on him as the
Messiah who had come at last.
And PNM has stood on the stage for
17 years. And what has been the re-
sult? Corruption, incompetence, incapa-
city, lack of judgement, lack of discre-
tioh,brutality of every kind,inhumanity,
And the people had to ask them-
selves the question: Why did we back
it? And the country cannot face the
answer which is what makes it so
difficult to move forward.
ing for a pheonmenon that will never
again appear at least not in that form".
Hunger, inflation, poverty, inequality,
plague, polio, gastro-interitis and bank-
ruptcy were the phenomena that usually
accompanied the end of an era and
coming into being of a new age, Best
He stressed that the government was
on the verge of bankruptcy, unable to
pay its bills, short of foreign exchange
- in fact it was living from hand to
All these are signs of the times, it is
nation against nation, it is wars and
rumours of wars ... "
...'MESSIAH".` DAY DONE
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
Ivan Laughlin, Community Relations Secretary Volney Pierre, Vice Chairman Syl Lowhar, Chairman
WHAT WE ARE DOING TO
BRING ABOUT THE CHANGE
Where has Tapia come from?
What is it doing? .
-Where is it going?
TAPIA's Community Relations Officer,
Ivan Laughlin, supplied answers to these
questions before an audience that had
come from as far as Fyzabad and which
included people from Arima, Point For-
tin, Corosal, Diego Martin, Laventille.
Ric Mentus, former editor of the
Guyana Graphic, dismissed by absentee
landlord, Thompson, for writing what
he thought, was also present.
Laughlin charted the beginning with
New World in 1960 and outlined how
during the years the group had set about
putting together plans and people on the
"political road to freedom".
Laughlin stressed that Tapia had
taken time to grow not because it was
not interested in power but because it
understood that power alone could not
What was required, Tapia realized
from its very beginning, was the moral
authority that could only come to men
who, through hard work and dedication,
had shown a capacity to lead the coun-
try in building a nation "for the first
time in our history".
A NEW WORLD
Tapia was about revolutionary poli-
tics, and that meant a life-time of com-
mitment. Tapia was not about simply
getting rid of Williams, but for struggling
against domination by that system, that
civilization really, that made us second
Tapia was against that political cul-
ture that continued to divide the society
in terms of race, colour, status and
religion, Laughlin said.
Tapia had found itself, Laughlin
pointed out, by growing organically. It
had not imported any ideology but had
attempted to chart its own vision.
So what was Tapia doing? It was
continuing to build a structure attract-
ing people committed to fundamental
change, people who were neither bribed
norpaid but who came dedicating their
lives to the struggle for a new Caribbean
The group was reaching outwards,
too. It had involved itself with taxi
drivers, teachers and other groups, but it
had done so in the Tapia way. That is.
it had encouraged those organizations
to resolve their problems with their
own resources, developing their own
Laughlin touched as well on the
Council of Representatives that meets
every fortnight, on the Thursday night
worksessions,on the community ground.
ings,on the contacts with other organi-
He singled out as one of the justifi-
cations for Tapia's hope for and faith in
the people, the Blackgold Co-operative
in Corosal where young men and women
were organising themselves out of the
scrunt that is the block, and were seek-
ing by their own efforts to revitalize
TAPIA Secretary Lloyd Best views as
reactionaries the pundits peddlingMarxist
theory in the Caribbean.
And what was revolutionary about
Tapia, he said, was that the group was
attempting to free itself from other
people's thought and was looking at the
Caribbean situation as it was.
"When you look at the political
behaviour of people, when you look at
the evidence, man, you cannot say that
people are going to do so and so because
they belong to this class or that class",
Best said that there existed in the
country problems of power, of people
who are prepared to hold on to the
reins of power and not give it up.
"And these people," he stressed,
"cannot be defined in terms of simple
Best said that they were in fact
drawn from every so-called class and
every race, and what had to be done
was to devise a philosophical and theore-
While, however, the movement de-
veloped in an,,organic way there was
now need for-greater urgency, Laughlin
said. He pointed out that the military
dimension of the struggle was escalating
and he emphasized that the only way to
deal with that was to seize the political
He urged Tapia people to commit
themselves even more firmly to the
group's activities. :Significant achieve-
ment had been made, but the crisis
nature of the situation demanded total
He said that the group had to under-
stand the demands of the political task
it had undertaken.
We were, he said, in a position of
tremendous responsibility, our hour is
at hand and the fight is to the finish.
tical statement of the position which
could rally all those people who wanted
to go in Tapia's direction and those
people were coming from all sections.
"What is holding up the political
mobilisation in the country is that the
left persists with all kinds of simplistic
formulations they are completely
colonised," he said.
What Tapia wasdoing, Best said, was
formulating theoretical systems that en-
able people to see how they relate to
the social order in some meaningful
"It is not that we don't see privilege
and we don't see the phenomenon that
Marx tried to see when he talked about
class, when he divided the world into
those people who were dispossessed and
disadvantaged and those people who had
power and were using it for their own
advantage we have to make that
same distinction, but we have to make it
in terms that get people to understand
how we relate to each other in the
WHATEVER Williams does is a mistake,
He reminded the audience of the
sequence of events that had led to this
point October '68 to February '70
was the tuning up, then the high season
of the Revolution in the weeks from
February to April, the reaction that
came after, then the counter-attack
against the Public Order Bill, and the
boycott of the elections that took away
legitimacy from the Parliament.
"And now", said Best, "we are in
the second-to-last phase where reaction
has re-doubled itself-police, etc.- and
the population has stood up .against it
in every way it knows, the guerrillas
being the last and most significant
expression of that because the political
culture puts a great emphasis on simr
The country was ready for a new
movement and Tapia was that move-
ment, he declared.
We must intensify our work and we
would become involved in politics and
agitation as a matter of course.
"Expand the scale, widen the scope
and let it grow we cannot miss".
IS WILLIAMS a dictator? Not, really.
He is, according to Best, a "liberal
Best was making the point that
Williams has not used the power at his
disposal to crush opposition in this
Williams, Best said, was a man
caught in a mass of contradictions. But
he did not have the nerve to be a dictator.
But, Best warned, the country had
to be turned away from this waiting for
a deliverer, a Moses.
Because, he said, if we get that
phenomenon again it is going to be a
Gomez or a Machado, and if we estab-
lished a dictatorship here under Inde-
pendence, it is not going to be Eric
But the people want change
All the more reason why they can-
not repeat the mistake of entrusting this
change to one man.
"We, each of us, have to take up
our beds and walk".
THE politics of gossip came under
attack from Tapia Secretary Lloyd Best
He focused on the DAC, disclosing
that they were going about the country
saying that Tapia was working for the
PNM and in the pay of advertisers.
It was not that Tapia was afraid of
or against opposition but opposition
should be based on what the facts about
Tapia, what we are saying and doing.
As Tapia had done with the DAC for
instance. We had listened to them,
watched them and come to the con-
clusion that they were not any force for
change in fact we had found that they
were to the right of the PNM from all
It betrayed a lack of intellectual
depth on the part of the DAC in that
they were seeking to tarnish Tapia by
inventing an alliance with the PNM.
We are certainly not working for
anybody. We are working for the people
in this country, Best pointed out.
WH FM -101.
PAGE 2 TAPIA
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
TAPIA PAGE 3
Column 1 "
Did you get Beverley
Jones' message, Sister ?
IT'S A GIRL!
The shock on the faces
of the soldiers and police-
men who had closed in on
the lone fighter that night
in Caura had been repro-
duced countless times by
Sthe next morning.
Things- had come to
-that: 10 days before-
her 18th birthday,
Beverley Jones, seventh
child of a family of eight
boys and girls, former
student of a Port of Spain
secondary school, whose
father is a retiring, princi-
pal of a government pri-
mary school, was shot dead
by government forces.
"She was felled by auto-
-a-mttieureaponn _fire,'_.- the
.Giuardian reported, while at-
tempting to reload a shotgun.
The weapon she carried, they
said, was one of those raided
from the Matelot Police Station
I enclose $ ........ as per ra
T&T ............. $
W. EUROPE ....... 1(
EAST AFRICA...... 15
FAR EAST......... 1
All overseas deliveries
Surface mail rates on
RETURN TO: Tapia House Pu
91 Tunapuna Rd., Tunapuna, I
Trinidad and To
on August 7.
From the accounts, the
personal effects of the slain
girl fitted the role attributed
to her ammunition belt;
haversack containing food,
medicines, explosives and other
supplies. She wore denims and
military type boots.
So described, her dying,,
violently at night in the bush,
some messages which put to-
gether define a new situation.
Or at least they call for us to
modify an accepted scheme of
What was a teenaged girl,
one year after GCE, a child of
Gonzales and Port of Spain
whose ordinary prospects would
lead her anywhere but to seek
a living in an .inhospitable,
unfamiliar environment, doing
in the Caura Hills?
"Hilly terrain ... a haunt
Sof wild beasts and reptiles" -
Ltes listed below
blishing Co Ltd..
so the Guardian described it.'
A "town people" perspective
in which bush suggests "snake",
the embodiment of all the un-
known perils of that part of
the country beyond the pale of
"Caura, Forgotten Valley
of the Noithern Range" was
the title of Jerry Pierre's article
(TAPIA August 19).Who can
forget Caura now? This is what
Jerry Pierre remembered about
hiking ip the valley:
"... As you descend into,
the valleyand your eyes feast'
on the natural vegetation, the
crystal clear waters of the
Caura River, you are unable to
resist the urge to sit and stare
in disbelief at the surrounding
i i' i a beauty which in
their long hours of solitude
and watchfulness Beverley aind
Jennifer Jones must have ob-
served and appreciated. In a
letter to their mother they had
noted that "we have a country
that is so rich in natural re-
sources and talent".
And they must have agreed
with Jerry Pierre on the "im-
mense potential" of the Caura
valley "forgotten in the trend
Natural beauty, a valley of
the Northern Range, a lonely
hideout being quietly encircled
by the forces of the state, a
shootout two dead, two
taken prisoner. Such are the
elements of the real, live drama
that is being played out) before
the nation these days.
And emerging in prominent
roles are two young women.
You might add a third, Andrea
Jacobs, charged for the biggest
.robbery ever an exploit
claimed b. a group of freedom
fighters. Until she was caught,
Andrea Jacobs had on herhead
the biggest reward ever offered
for the capture of a wanted
How many more young
women like these are writing
their names into the history of
these times? In the chapter
that is to be written on that
much-worked theme women
in the movement.
How many young women
will follow in the booted foot-
steps of Jennifer and Beverley
into the mountains? How many
will (embrace the travails of a
Sierra Maestra down here in
the undramatic flatness of
everyday living and working?
In other words, how much
change does the involvement
of Jennifer, Andrea and
At least we can say there
are women who have chosen to
handle bullets, not cyclostyled
bulletins written by their men.
And we can hope that there
are other women who will now
see the need for writers as well
as makers of history.
SWhen these writers take
Spend in hand to pass on the
message of violent youthful
death in the hills, will they
make it clear that their sisters
had stood up to be counted
as different women from the
ones who have been contented
with being hands that rocked
the cradle, flattered by the
notion that they ruled the
world in so doing?
Will they see to it that the
story of their sisters which
makes headlines today would
enjoy in history a higher place
than a citation in the foot-
notes the footnotes to the
annals of the doughty heroes
of our time?
The police and army cam-
in the bush where every other
type of game is protected until
the open season. Now ayoung
woman's blood has been shed
to show that the campaign has
been as misnamed as it':has
For there are women who
have, in the face of the un-,,
known dangers of snakes-and-'7-
the dangers of shootouts, not
flinched from a frontline role
in the struggle 'for which one -
has given her life and others
Put it down to the absence-
of an appropriately epic cou-
rage, or to a positive choice of
means and terrain. But most of
the rest of us may not consider
a shotgun and an amminunition
belt as indispensable equipment
for our part in the struggle.
But I doubt whether
Beverley expected every other
17-year old to exchange a,
handbag for a haversack and
platform shoes for military
boots. She too was once a
sister on the block, before that
block became as- inhospitable
as Caura for people like herself.
But every block can be a
barricade thrown up in defence
of the freedom and justice that
make life worth living.
Beverley found it was worth
dying for; that is the message
of her death, her last will and
Did you get that message,
sister? And you, brother?
Mrs Viola Jones,
SELL OUR PAPER EVERY WEEK-END
ARRANGE HOUSE MEETINGS
START TAPIA GROUPS IN YOUR AREA
ORGANISE COMMUNITY WORK
*COME TO THURSDAY WORK-SESSIONS
AT TAPIA HOUSE
82-84 ST VINCENT STREET TUNAPUNA 662-5126
17, ROYAL ROAD, SAN FERNANDO 652-4878
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
A pre-dawn raid :Whatto do
Advice to the Public with respect
to the police powers of search
and the police powers of arrest
1. No search of your premises is legal without
a valid search warrant.
2. The police must produce and read the
search warrant before any search of your
premises is carried out.
3. After the warrant is read you can demand
that it be shown to you so that you may
assure yourself of its validity.
4. A valid search warrant must contain the
(a) the name of the individual or indivi-
duals whose premises are to be searched
(b) the address of the premises
(c) the date the information was sworn to
before a Justice of Peace
(d) Purpose of the search.
5. Providing the search warrant is valid the
police are entitled to search your entire
6. You are entitled to call in a witness while
the search is carried out. This will be very
useful and advisable in the event of sub-
sequent legal action by oi against the po-
7. Unless under arrest you are entitled to
follow lhe police throughout your premises
while ihe search is conducted.
8. You are entitled to call in the press after-
wards to show the condition in which your
premises have been left.
9. You are not obliged to accompany the
police to any police station or place of
custody unless the police inform you that
you are under arrest. But it is advisable not
to resist if force is being used.
10. In the event of injuries sustained as a re-
sult of force used by the police you should
.see a doctor immediately.
11. If you are arrested (taken in police custody)
you are entitled to communicate with
your legal advisers and an immediate re-
quest should be made for this purpose
wherever you are held in custody.
Housewives Association of Trinidad &
IT IS ABOUT five o'clock in the morning.
You are suddenly awakened by a knocking
on your front door. Still drowsy and in pyja-
mas you stumble to the door wondering
who could be calling at this ungodly hour.
"Yes", you ask. "Who is it?"
And ihe answer comes swiftly, washing
the sleep from your eyes more quickly than
the cold pipe water: "Police! Open the door!"
You hesitate. You call for identification,
a search warrant perhaps. But the threat of
shooting down the door convinces you.
The key is barely turned in the lock
when two plainclothes men push past you
waving SLR's and SMG's. They dart through
to the kitchen door and any other exit in the
Wide awake now, you ob-
serve that your house is sur-
rounded by 20 or 30 men, also
ariiied. The apparent leader
tells you he has a warrant to
search for arms and ammuni-
tion, but does not allow you
to see the document.
You try to calm your wife
and children as they wake up
tq face grimn-faced men waving
them into corners with their
Your little son has played
"stick-em-up" and he under-
stands what the gestures mean.
Instinctively, he cries because
he knows that these are no
You follow the men as
they upturn furniture in a
total ransack of the house. The
warrant authorises a search for
arms and ammunition, yet the
men go through your book-
shelves, private papers and
copies of any political papers
Your protests go unheeded.
An hour or two after, you
can't remember, they leave.
You stand with your family
and look at the total disorder
into which your things have
been thrown and left.
Stunned, you look around
with your family, talking quiet-
ly. You try to reach your
lawyer, or a good friend on
the telephone, if it is working.
And it suddenly dawns on
you that the net is closing;
you have been victim of another
"search like any other search".
to quote the -official police
If this reads like the script
for a play or novel about a
police state, then we have one
here. This is the pattern which
TAPIA has been able to put
together from personal ac-
counts and from reports in the
newspapers, of the police
searches which are becoming a
way of life in this country.
The two most widely pub-
licised searches have been those
on the homes of two medical
doctors Michael Camps and
In both cases the search
began early in the morning.
The search left furniture in
disarray, while the police read
personal papers, confidential
medical dards of the patients,
and they asked about political
papers found in the houses.
Trade Unionist, Kathryn
Williams (formerly Beryl
Drakes) also reports that her
home at Saddle Road, San Juan
was searched last weekWednes-
One can expect that if
these three well known persons
with easier access to the media
were treated in this manner, the
treatment meted out those per-
sons in Laventille, Fyzabad or
Belmont whose I homes have
been searched must have been
TAPIA condemns this kind
of search and we call upon
individuals and groups to take
a public stand in this matter
where the rights of the
ordinary citizen are 'being
literally trampled upon.
The police must be aware
that this kind of conduct will
bring them little public sup-
port, and will eventually make
their jobs all the more difficult.
About that the regime doesn't
care two hoots; they are on the
way out but the police have
no where to go. So they better
Meanwhile protest has
come from the Housewives As-
At its recent General Meet-
ing HATT unanimously
affirmed its support of Helen
Camps wife of Dr. Camps -
in the face of allegations and
insinuations made publicly
HATT has issued advice
with respect to the police
power.of search and the power
of arrest. (See Box)
Phone rates tug-of-war
THE Telephone Users Group
(TUG) wants to raise $25,000
to mount a campaign against
the proposal by the Telephone
Company to increase its rates.
TUG's Chairman, Desmond
Allum explains that the money
will be used to hire a team of
experts to represent subscribers
at the hearing before the Public
The Telephone Company's
major proposals are to increase
toll call charges and to charge
seven cents for every call made
within the subscriber's own
On that basis, TUG esti-
mates,the subscriberwho makes
an average of ten local calls a
day will have to pay $21.70
more a month.
Allum has also replied to
queries about the $33,000
awarded to TUG by the Public
Utilities Commission following
its successful objection to the
first application by Telco for a
The sum was all spent "in
accordance with figures arrived
at in agreement with Telco to
meet the fees for professional
services of the team of experts
which TUG had engaged to
represent the public interest".
The Telephone Users'
Group had collected $5,000 in
voluntary contributions to-
wards its campaign. Of this
$1,540 was spent on adminis-
trative, clerical and advertising
TUG now has a bank ba-
lance of $3,295 which has been
earmarked for use in the new
battle against Telco's demands.
Contributions can be sent
to the Telephone Users' Group
Limited, 13A, Pembroke St.
Port of Spain.
THE BEST PLACE TO BUY BOOKS
ANY KIND OF
PORT OF SPAIN SAN FERNANDO
PAGE 4 TAPIA
THE PIECE of paper snaked out from nowhere
and caressed my chin. My eyes travelled the
length of the paper, along the arm and onto the
face that reeked of masculine charm.
I suppose I was expected to break into a
flattered smile. Instead I broke out in a rash of
anger and an explosion of un-ladylike language.
It was not the first time that 1 was
singled out (as hundreds of other females have
been) to receive the order of the funk-fete, Che
Che Stereo and all.
Sometimes it was unceremoniously stuffed into
my hand-bag; sometimes I tried to smile away the de-
tairring hand, accept the hand-outs and move on.
But sometimes I don't see why I must read about a
fete I'll never attend. And tl.at's when the disgusted
voice drawls, "Wha scene she on?"
"Wha scene dem on?" I want-to ask. By "dem" I
do not mean only this particular aspect of the Frederick
Street plague-upon- women.
sharks who cannot see a
They are at every
cornerand every support-
ing wall. Comments range
from the flattering to the
So whether we're the
topic or the passing in-
terest, women add spice
to the lime, sometimes at
our own expense.
"But you can't stop
that, man must lime. Is
on the blocks that fellas
meet to discuss current
I mean the whole school of
lone craft and steer clear.
Esther Le Gendre
affairs, politics, and if a
chick pass, all dat in it".
You recognize of course
the old argument.
I am not convinced
of the social,political and
therapeutic value of this
hallowed masculine right.
Like everyone else I see
limes gathering as early
as eight in the mornings.
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
empty football fields.
centres' and a growing
sense of frustration. One
brother described men
So no wonder we get a
hard time. The national
pastime is becoming a
So instead of burning
bras we cant a!l do with-
out, woniCii here should
be fighting shoe-heel and
nails lor the right to walk
the streets unmolested.
Freedom in the streets
means a whole lot more
to our liberation,
Then we'll hear the
real. reason why those
nice malel) bosses shake
their heads at female ap-
plicants for jobs which
entail working late hours.
Night jobs would no
TAPIA PAGE 5
* l-% -~
longer be restricted to
nurses on shift or to
I foresee a revolution
in the home itself. Think
of what will become of
that parental edict that
goes: "Girls in before
eight, boys use the back
You see it begins in-
nocently enough with the
notion that "real ladies"
do not walk the streets at
all hours of the night, and
it develops into the later
stranglehold that grips
women of the entire so-
ciety: what man could,
woman can't do.
And our society ac-
cepts that. Just as most
of us accept and even
condone male sexual
freedom as a right.
Where are the laws to
protect the women who
choose to be free? Some-
times a prowling squad
car is as annoying as the
private ones. And the
street lights? ...and the
Oh, yes, the women.
Where are they after dark?
Either at home trans-
fixed before a Mills and
Boon, or adorning the
elbow of some man as
they go out the safe way.
SCan't say I'm not
sometimes more than a
After all, he may be
more interesting com-
pany than the cold butter
knife that escorts me on
my nocturnal excursions
in the cause of liberation.
All of us, inmates of a prison of air
THE dramatic protest by
some prisoners a few weeks
ago, was at that time soon
overshadowed by the pub-
lication of the interim re-
port of the Commission of
Inquiry into Prison condi-
tions, and many of us, I
suppose, breathed a sigh of
relief that at least this
issue was rapidly defused.
Now the prisoners have
again forced themselves
into our consciousness with
their recent jailbreak and
one can only imagine that
the interim report has gone
the way of so many others
- read, tabled, and never
heard of again.
Actually, today the ques-
tion of Prison Reform is to-
tally academic. It would take a
degree of optimism bordering
on hypocrisy for one to hope
-for imagination, creativity and
farsightedness from the Go-
vernment in this sphere, when
absolutely none of these quali-
ties has ever been displayed
in any 'of their other endea-
The point is that television,
cigarettes and bedpans do no
humane conditions make. The
essential question is one of
SWhat do we define a pri-
soner to be? Any such defini-
tion can only be established
in the context of the social
and political environment.
And. an inhumane social
and political system cannot
possibly entertain or promote
any definition of a,prisoner
beyond that of an animal to be
There is no need to go so
far as to argue, as the black
Americans have done, that all
our prisoners/are political pri-
soners. It should be enough,
in our case, to point out that a
social system like ours which
preserves the wealth and luxury.
of the few at the price of the
misery and suffering of the
majority cannot but expect to
breed desperate men.
The interests of those who
profit from this iniquitous sys-
tem are not to be protected by
humane prison conditions or
genuine attempts at rehabili-
In any case the question
arises: rehabilitttic,' towards
what? What is the u e of a train-
ing scheme within the prison
walls if there is only a micro-
scopic chance of the released
men finding meaningful em-
pl oymnnt on the outside?
In a very real sense we are
all prisoners.: locked into a
cruel and unjust social system -
p,'rpetuated by a corrupt and
insensitive regime. And one
could' almost shed tears over
the tragic irony involved in the
desperate attempts of these
men to scale the walls looking
for freedom when you and I
know that there is none to be
It is not/that one doubts
for a moment that the condi-
tions within those prison walls
and the treatment meted out to
those men are atrocious and
inhuman. But rather that one
recognizes that apart from the
walls themselves there is little
difference between that prison
and the rest of our land.
The uniforms of the prison
wardens may change from
khaki to navy and grey, but pri-
son u.ide:i-r they remain and
their job is the same, to keep
us from bursting free. But
which walls do we scale in our
bid for freedom?
Is there, for example, any
difference between the des-
perate and bitter cry of the
prisoner. "O God, kill me nuh
boy; Ah cyar take the pressure
S ta i u. i I
They are, after all, both
prepared to face death rather
than continue existing in a
living hell. Hell, you see, is
So that Prison Reform too
becomes another part of the
total revolution that the people
of this country must be pre-
pared to make. When we do,
neither the invisible gates of
our hell, nor the large green
gates of the prisoners' hell,
They shall all come tumb-
I IIt 1 11 L. It I
I 1 W I I I
wanted her to
makes it easy -
and an ideal
HAVE A DEMONSTRATION TODAY
NATIONWIDE AGENTS AND STOCKISTS
;~=Z I =M;l =a I arfIo I MR
PAGE 6 TAPIA
THIS IS the second extract from Dr. Gocking's
booklet Democracy or Oligarchy, published
by Tapia Publishing Co. Ltd.
The booklet is now onssale for 25 cents at
bookstores throughout the island. It examines the
background to constitutional reform and poses
some choices open to the Wooding Commission
and th PNM Government.
THE constitution question is clearly much
more than one of mechanics; it is primarily
and basically political in nature. It is organic
to the society.
The issue is a simple one. Is the new
constitution, like the present one, to main-
tain highly centralised government, with
State power seemingly concentrated in the
hands of one man, but actually in the hands
of whatever party is in power?
Is it, like the present one, going to
continue to promote and foster oligarchy
whose constituent elements political
party, "organized" labour, industry and
commerce, and their adherents contend
Or is the new constitution going to
provide broader base and such decentralisa-
tion as would not unduly weaken govern-
ment, yet offer mechanisms to facilitate
more popular representation and participa-
tion in the day to day business of govern-
ment, and so promote a developing demo-
cracy in so far is a constitution and con-
stitutional forms can serve such purposes?
Continuing and growing oligarchy or
developing democracy that is the ques-
tion; and no body of men has seen this
dilemma more clearly or faced it riiore
squarely than the PNM.
Let me say at this point that if the Wooding
Commission produces any new constitution that
tends unduly towards the conservative,t if it be-
trays any underlying instinctive lack of faith and
trust in the capacity of what we nowadays call "the
little people" to deserve and find a place "in the
corridors of government", to use Tapia's vivid
imagery, then Eric Williams will hit Hugh Wooding
For any person with any semblance of a
political mind knows that recent trends have been
moving inexorably in the direction of greater
control and containment of the broad masses of
the people, towards neutralising and forestalling
popular expression for fear of spontaneous com-
Eric Williams, in my view, is no would-be
dictator and he must know that the way out, if
there is one, is more democracy not less. Youth
preponderates and youth can only live by faith in
the possibility of building towards a better state
of things. Youth will be heard; and the women
too. The media must be thrown open wide to all
shades of constructive opinion and expression.
There has grown up in recent years an
oligarchic structure, already described, whose parts
do not so much cohere as coalesce, each claiming
the right to go its own way as long as the structure
is not in danger of,disintegrating, and each strong
enough to exercise its right to do so.
The structure has become less Dr. Williams'
creation than his prison. From his earliest years he
has been recognized as possessing a brilliant,
analytical mind and he would have to be a man
born out of time, an anachronism, one who would
have been better fitted to challenge the old colonial
order than to create a new world of independence,
if he did not see that he must break out from the
constraints of that structure.
Brilliant as he is he would have to be dry,
without a rich emotional life, if there was nothing
in him that responded to the deeper yearnings -
transcending the economic of his people for
self-discovery, self-expression, spiritual emancipa-
That is what the African and the Asian, after
centuries of European domination, are struggling
for and towards. What shall a man, a people, for
that matter, give in exchange for its soul? This
provides another reason why he must break out
from the constraints, constrictions would perhaps
be the better word, of this materialistic structure.
There is a growing number of people not.
enemies who think he will not he cannot. I
must confess that I am not among that number.
He is no caudillo and Trinidad and Tobago should
be thankful that he is not. Much of the disillusion
and criticism is due to the fact that people expected
so much of him, perhaps too much.
LAW AND ORDER
However, Trinidad and Tobago is in crisis:
the country is at a point where change can come
only in one of two ways "the emergence of a
totalitarian society" or "within the framework of
of democratic structure and organization". (Pers-
pectives. page 7)
I shall allow the Perspectives to elaborate the
alternatives that face the country.
"We need not therefore be too haunted by
the spectre of revolutionary change. What is
involved is the way in which this change is to
"Will the change come through violence or
through peaceful and orderly methods?"
"Will the change involve the emergence of a
totalitarian society, or is it to take place
within the framework of the democratic
structure and organisation we are trying to
develop?" (p 7)
"Will the change ... lead to a more equitable
distribution of the national product, and
with enhanced employment for all?" (p 7)
These alternatives are clearly and unequivo-
cally stated. The Perspectives also speaks on page
16 of "the importance of leaders having confidence
in the people" as "central". On the other hand it
Stresses the need for discipline.
I think, however, it would be true to say that
over the last couple of years, that is since the
Perspectives for the New Society was first pub-
lished, that the oligarchy has endeavoured to
consolidate its position through the strengthening
of the forces of "law and order" and through the
the passing of Acts No. 36 of 1971 and No. 1 of
These Acts are respectively An Act to
amend the Sedition Qrdinance, Ch. 4, No. 6
and An Act to amend the Summary Offences
Ordinance, Ch. 4, No. 17.
They required a 3/5 majority because they
abrogated and infringed fundamental rights and
freedoms in times outside those of public emer-
gency. There is no doubt as to whose initiatives
they are calculated to curtail.
The Perspectives sees the challenge facing the
nation as "the task of re-construction". which,
simply stated is to allow the West Indian masses:
"to acquire economic as well as political
to make their own culture,
0 to participate fully in 6oth the political
and economic process, and
' Political strategy also requires,
especially in a country so sus-
ceptible to the Personality Cult, either that
the Commission be amenable to the in-
fluence of the party in power or, if the
the Commission is likely to take too
.much of an independent line, forithe party
in power, especially the Leader, to anti-
cipate and forestall the main recommenda-
tions of the Commission so that, even be-
fore it reports, much of what it will have to
say will be out-dated and obsolete.
M to become true men instead of what
Naipaul, in his savage criticism, calls
mimics". (p 9)
These objectives are all inter-related of any re-
construction programme and the success of one
cannot but minister to the others.'
Dr. Williams, following Nkrumah, was once
audacious enough to secularise the words of Christ
when he said "Seek ye first the political kingdom
and all these things shall be added unto you".
Fuller participation in the political
process is the greatest single means to the
realisation of these ends and that is what
constitution reform is about.
The subject has a certain dramatic interest,
which is both legitimate and intriguing, because of
four personalities involved: Lloyd Best, Ellis
Clarke, Hugh Wooding and Eric Williams, all
Lloyd Best is a generator of ideas. He believes
in patient building from below. He made the issue
of constitutional reform and has articulated arid
continues to articulate the ideas and aspirations
of the New World generation.
Ellis Clarke has always been a "fidus
Achates" to Eric Williams; he had much to do
with the framing of the present constitution; he
took time off from his ambassadorial duties to
plead the cause of the republic; he is on hand
The main protagonists, however, are Hugh
Wooding and Eric Williams. (Lloyd Best is in the
wings. Time is on his side; he is still under 40).
Htgh Wooding, like Eric Williams, is one of
the brilliant men of his generation. He was con-
ventional: he chose law. It has naturally influenced
his cast of mind'and the content of his experience.
He will almost certainly rely on the political
scientists on his Commission for their contribu-
tion but tl
over the .
chy which n
will end in g
for not on
of the imme:
least seem t,
thinks he h;
the one pro
a country s,
mission is 1
before it rej
will be out-c
rights and m
'effect. If on
cannot fail t
out to be ai
_I _1~1_ __
PTEMBER 30, 1973 TAPIA PAGE 7
re is a possibility that he will be
alistic on what is essentially a political
illiams was an unconventional island '..
as an audacious pioneer; he did not
medicine; he chose history, and this
, has influenced his cast of mind and
of his experience. He has political 6
a political mind.
illiams will'probably be carrying the 7 i,
ee things in his mind: .?\ / -
Jill naturally wish to preserve the
influence of the party he has built up
riMsid this will menr-that he must
Sas he can, the backing of the oligar-
Iw supports him.
thing stands still and growing oligarchy
owing repression, subtle or otherwise, i
iism. ph an eluse
nism.dgnslm sfts of glas
ARMED FORCE ai c depot
view is that.he will not want this: .
Sis he no would-be dictator but. P
Iill require the backing of armed C'4 Fancy polyester crepe
Ihe has been moderate in the exercise Now .9 5 per yd ':
tse personal power he wields. $4,95
60" Fancy Jersey Knits
how or other, he must arrest, or at 5 p
be trying to arrest the growing trend ,ji "
veloping oligarchy and materialism. 45" FancV Jarsy Knits>
,ds to break new ground. He must $1 .95 per yd
minds of the youth and no doubt he
s the political imagination to do so. )
iilliams must also preserve the image Plain.& Fancy Crimplene S
Settled; in other words they are 1>
5/S Sports & Dress S1i rt s I
strategy demands that his, not Now $3.95
ust be the initiative in recommending L/S Sports & Dress Shirt s,, I
g new mechanisms for greater popular
in the processes of government with Now 4,95
iso that they do not impair, unduly Doric S,neekers From $1.95L up
control. )IOUSE HOLD DEPT'
I1 strategy also requires, especially in Candy. Stripped b, d sheets i,
i susceptible to the Personality Cult, ow 99
he Commission be amenable to the $
the party in power or, if the Com- Cotton -owels Froni 99 up
kely to take too much of an inde-
for the party in power, especially the :Heavy F icy Blankets
anticipate and forestall the main 'ow a.i9r
tions of the Commission so that, even
rts, much of what it will have to say Nw avilae a wide range of boxed
ated and obsolete. .t so t .
g cannot be allowed to produce a N, "S
;harter, a Magna Carta, of popular 3' 3. CHARLOTYEfS
?chanisms to give them substance and
i reads the Perspectives carefully one +' "-N:,
recognizee how comprehensive it sets "'. '
.d how much political and economic
implied in so many of its statements.
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
at low prices
23" WESTINGHOUSE TELEVISION
24" FULLY AUTOMATIC
4 BURNER GAS COOKER
4 BURNER SERV-WEL STOVE
WITH LARGE OVEN
4 BURNER WESTINGHOUSE
GAS COOKER WITH LARGE
10 CU' FT DE LUXE
12 CU. FT DE LUXE WESTINGHOUSE
16.2 WESTINGHOUSE DOUBLE-DOOR
REFRIGERATOR, FROST FREE $2,080.00 $1,665.00
4.5 PHILLIPS UPRIGHT FREEZER
15 CU. FT WESTINGHOUSE
21 CU. FT WESTINGHOUSE
13 CU. FT WESTING-
10 CU FT WESTING-
HOUSE UPRIGHT DEEP
$1,050.00 $ 850.00
18 CU. FT FROST FREE
FREEZER AT THE BOTTOM'
SLIGHTLY DENTED $2,220.00
17 CU. FT DOUBLE
DOOR FROST FREE
TAPIA SUPPORTS THE S w am CAMPAIGN BY THE BLUE RIVER
TAP ave Our SwampACTION COMMITTEE
PAGE 8 TAPIA
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
Interview : the mother of Beverley Jones
I must support
WHEN SHE arrived at the tall-pillar house on
Jubilee Street last Friday morning, she hadn't
yet read the day's papers. Then she was shown
the BOMB with the "Open letter to Beverley
Borrowing'her husband's glasses, -mother
of Beverley Jones read the article aloud in
parts while conversation went on around her in
the porch. She hadn't yet read to the end when
she looked up and asked: "But why didn't
they publish the statement I had made so that
people could see what I said and what they are
Her statement was half a foolscap-page of type-
script which was handed out last week Monday at the
funeral of her daughter Beverley, and it had been read
out, interspersed with much comment, at the graveside
by Geddes Granger.
The BOMB's '"Open letter"exprssed sympathy
over the death of Beverley and the detention of Jenni-
Sfer, accused Mrs Jones of "trying to use it for political
reasons," and generally implicated the two girls and
their mother in the intrigues of "bandits and hate-
The mother who one week before had received'
in New York a telephone message that one of her
daughters had been killed and another arrested read
that: "The guns of the law are pointed at those
--who.-believe thatt ihei can.-do by force in.-i iplencp
regardless of law and order there are Ie\\ lawabid-
Sing citizens who do not appreciate what these men of
law are doing to protect us".
She folded the papers without further comment,
as her husband, Mr. Dunstan Jones brought but two
telegrams he had received and passed them around to
the group of us in the gallery. One was from the "Latin
American Group" "Total solidarity Freedom Figh-
ters Trinidad and Tobago. Right on in your just
The other: "Please inform by telegram or letter
so. as to give'basis for whatever further protest which
may be necessary. Love as ever, Nello".
Later I asked about other expressions of sym-
pathy and support from within Trinidad and Tobago. I
had seen the funeral a few days before with the
photographs of Beverley being held aloft,I had heard
the drumming and the chanting. The drummers ignored
the megaphoned instructions of a police officer that
they should stop beating as they entered the cemetery.
There had been a conspicuous section of young
men in green uniforms and boots, and what with the
dashikis and the movie camera, of Cliye Nunez, it
seemed to be a convention of the converted,.
Mr. Jones said they had received numerous
telephone calls from friends, some wreaths and a few
letters. One of the letters.had come that morning, and
Mrs. Jones hooked up the spectacles and opened it.
She read aloud: "At a time -like this when our
children are involved in a struggle that we as adults do
not really understand, we have to forget the past and
stand together. I felt very good yesterday to see you
and your husband standing up so bravely to such a
"The death of one child and the incarceration of
another may God give you both the strength to
carry on .. something must be wrong somewhere ...
It makes me wonder when are the authorities going to
put away their guns and consider the whole set up
"The children are for the most part in their teens
or early twenties, children who alongside their parents
joined and marched for PNM, putting up posters etc for
which they are shot down now.
"These children from middle class homes with
every comfort and good education leave their soft beds,
the comfort and protection of the family, and take to
the hills armed something must be wrong some-
where, but where? My deepest concern is how and when
HER.STATEMENT HANDED OUT AT
FUNERAL SEPTEMBER 17:
I AM the mother of Beverley Jones and ;Jennifer Jones.
Beverley was killed by the Regiment and Jennifer is in the
hands of the police.
The papers, radio and television say that this took place
on Thursday 13th September, and up to now Monday 17th
September, we, the parents, have not been officially informed
Beverley's death, nor have we been asked to identify her body.
We were sent on a dance since Thursday between police head-
quarters in town and Tunapuna police station. We were refused
permission to see Jennifer. She was even denied her rights,
under our constitution, of seeing a lawyer while in detention.
To-day, I ask myself why did Beverley and others like her
die? What is the meaning of all this suffering? As a mother I
wanted the best for my children. I worked hard, and like so
many of us in this country I f:iund T could not make my way
here, I went to .4 itrica.
I wrote to Jen andevan d begged them to come to
America. They asked m'e dne question: Mummy, why is it
that we have a country that is so rich in natural resources and
talent and we always have to go "away" to make a living or
develop our abilities as human beings? I could not answer
them and still cannot answer thnm.
Because they, above all, know that we were active
members of the PNM, we marched in the rain and in the sun,
we wanted freedom and Independence. The lives of my child-
ren were also closely involved in that movement. We used to
get them to go over the hills in Gonzales giving out notices for
party group meetings.
Our aspirations which we struggled to achieve at that
time are still not achieved. We wanted to be free, free to stay
in our own country, and built it without always having to go
away, free to have ajob without it being regarded as a privilege,
free for all the masses of people to live in decent homes
without fear of always being in debt. We wanted to be free
from the exploitation of our people by capitalists, foreign and
local. Most of all we wanted, not fust a change in the quantity
of things available to us, but a change in the quality of our
The presence of guns, pointing at our people, will not
solve the problem. Poor people all over the world are clamour-
ing for a change. The people of Trinidad and Tobago are also
part of that call for change. Shooting us, the people, will not
bring that change, only a serious look at the economic and
political structure of our country will bring it about.
this thing will end and how many more must die before
this comes about.
"You have your troubles today, tomorrow may
be mine of some other parent. But let us pray the end
will soom come without more trouble and anguish
Have no fear. Everybody have their porbtems in their
own way. Ydu are not alone. I do hope things will
work out well for Jennifer".
Mrs Jones folded the letter and looked up.
"You know why I am touched," she said, "this girl and
I grew up in Belmont together. She was not really my
friend, more my sister's friend. She is much younger
than I am, and I haven't seen this girl as she says for over
30 years. She's, a woman now. How she knew this con-
nection and she made it her business, this is what I
appreciate. This expression of concern I really haven't
But how did she really take the news? In New
York where she works as a hospital unit secretary she
got this telephone call from Trinidad which said that
Beverley had been killed and Jennifer arrested. It had
come over the Yadio in a news flash, and that was all
the notification the family got.
She. called the next morning to find out if the
report had been confirmed, and flew home by the first
reservation she could get on the Saturday night, two
days after the shooting.
She spoke slowly and deliberately. I had heard
that she had come to. the cemetery with her hair in
plaits. But last Friday she wdre a headtic and simply
brown flowered dress. Two or three items of silver
jewellery, a simple gold chain with a hibiscus pendant.
and a male wristwatch.
Only on two occasion in the hour or more that
we talked did water come to her eyes.'The first was
when she recalled what her last son, Phillip, 12, who
lives with her in New York, had said when he heard
about Beverley:. she had been like a mother to him
while Mrs Jones was away.
But the voice remained steady as she remained
unshaken in her conviction that she had brought up
her daughters in the right way. She had encouraged
independence of mind and action, determined to bring
up her children in a different way from how she was'
herself brought up.
Apart from Phillip they are all grown up now and
and on their own. Beverley and Jennifer lived with
their grandmother in Trinidad but the others were
One of the older girls, Althea, returned to
Trinidad last week from London where, in 1971, she
had been one of the defendants in the famous
Mangrove Nine trial.
About all this Mrs Viola Jones had no regrets.
She drew only strength from her daughters' evident
courage and determination, a strength which sustained
an admirable poise as she talked in the drawing room
of the house of mourning.
"As a mother with all, I suppose hopes and
aspirations for children, ;Beverley's cutting off would
have had a very deep effect. But when you view the
whole thing in context, I have to feel and gather
strength to know that she had a consciousness and an
awareness that within her society there were many
questions that were left without answers, and in her
small way she was trying to see to find out some of
those answers. And because she had that conviction and
courage, I think that I can do no more than give support
to that spirit".
From New York she returned once every year,
but she 'maintained contact with the two.girls in
Trinidad. Beverley, born September 23, 1955, had
taken GCE Ordinary Level examination last year after
four years at Providence Girls Intermediate. She
passed in English Language, and got a distinction in
Jennifer would be 20 in October. She had done
O' Levels at St. George's College and had moved to
Polytechnic to do Chemistry, Botany and Zoology,
at A' Level.
"'I was aware of their thinking," she said, noting
that her views about the upbringing of children and
herpoliticalactiviticshad helped to shape their attitudes.
The two girls were very close, she said, that
people thought they were twins. Mrs Jones is conscious
of a change that came over the girls while she was away,
a change that she could see from their letters (even
though "letters 'don't always tell everything"). I asked
"The new Beverley did give me a bit of surprise.
She was a girl full of life, you know, that I didn't think
she would take things so seriously and have'that con-
sciousness about her. But she was full of life, and also
quick to cry if you talked to her roughly.
But: "This part of her I didn't know: the teachers
told me that she asked a lot of questions, and she was
emotional. When she didn't get support or so she was
quick to cry. I know that part of her. When something
bothered her she would be quick to cry. On the other
hand, she would be laughing.
Continued on Pagel 1
TAPIA PAGE 9
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
Lloyd King's tributeto the late Chilean Marxist poet
THE death oif rhe first
lar \ist President Io fChile.
SalaIo1r A llenide has heen
1i 1lI11% ed b ilhat 01 I 'iie Of
[i ,! c K noet ll ( Chi lean
mWi A. K Aeia NH [jli Itpo e
NO, Nemda ~
%% c:an catch something of the
personality of the Neruda of
IIn. period. The poet who
.:..uld wear his heart on his
.l,:-cve and leave just that mar-
gin, more than a margin of
d.'ubt as to his seriousness.
A. has often happened in Latin
America, the publication of a
,.-..essful book of verse opened
IIj. way for ;i post in his
'..untry's diplomatic service.
lie was sent East, to a life of
Ihneliness and the start of a
riinmber of books of verse which
\'.. .uld establish his name in the
a .. n :i ,I .-.1 I rl ,,
i .,,l ,'l ,i l .' u l.. n ,:,
Ii.. d h I I, h ll i, .-m i I, l
anl p,,p i L I r, .i. .i l ,.,1 Ma r a
I 'l'I'h :nri -tiJ c..ii
i ..., i p .I. ln a l 1:. i :.
I p. .-. r N.. ruid b .s r..,l: ti:e
. ,I i i r ,.n r,,. 1n 1 li ,..: ii,. irl p .- l .
ii,.d l .I -., i l, I Ii e i 1
i rl ,, t i. il.. .-.il e i f .
.. .nlur L i -\[n rie-m a H .: ... .
". ':,. ..,- I unri JleJ : j3p
,:l I''" *: 'll dr.imiuinril p' inr
hi l .: Jiid ,i' h r n a his,
i'a-h 1,e,, palso seeme toe
jr, a l i llt p 'ir %% i _Il 1-i
p.-,m J.J J ....: rat,: S.'.ie
- i- nm t- h, p .. i i ,i l ...r.
aI i. l v r sr,.c : a ab e.,
^'i iu r; 1 1 r;'[ i. ," ,, 1 ,"
S ,h, ..tl i ,; r., ,, '. f h t'lt
,_[ J..i.. ,'.,r .k% ll
i h ,. ,' i ,' / l! "
.. ; r.. ,1 : .u r ,,t .I
tih ,;. _.r jr,, ^ i .;,l
Tl-h alliha wthl oJ ..'i i
,: ,l ,'iit; ,Irui. It.. Ni e stl
I loved her and at times,
she also seemed to
In verse such as the above,
[libleIo Ir, Span RF c ~ iL on
in leb'k peliri Neruda pro-
l:ichd tie inimage I aj mn -.'c dy,
"i'-mani ,i ; IiCur.:. p i. .h .:ally
unri:'.orrdinjiaed Ii\ihw in j sur-
eali:1 ljndicalp tl..Lil ed vith
[-n in3jer, 1 .rL. rili and
An \jimple,..I the .-i. of
ih e p '.r d in I rli ri.i s is
iht-, I.,_,ll., in. mr Irt .,n, "'l -.aely
ul (,,r u l ial '
} 'l tl.. ,, '.I .. ,.n l ..i.,.l
:r arn:. or, ,J .d.-lng
adlJ wiri..'i S t,,r l,... l._ g
*,dl.lirLL ini ._' Imnpal-.
tCo ti sii. '
'J'ie m e .' pr lLjit'
i S/ id s, ,,r1 ,,,
a ,. i .. h i rtL7 1 /litd/ a
ri N in 'n J "i '_..-,l;' l7'
aHrr". 'und lilt la. -
The afternoons of sedu-
cers and the nights of
cover me over like two
and the afterdinner hours
when young female
and young male students
and priests masturbate
and animals fornicate
and bees smell of blood
and flies buzz angrily
Long lists of images, phrased
to shock the prim and proper,
melodramatic in tone, blue in
mood, in which the poet's pain
and the poet's posturing are
In 1935, Neruda was trans-
ferred to Spain, during the
years when a whole brilliant
generall, n f Spanrll p>,,.1l
. I : It. .C i. ,i i i.
Lorca, Alberdi and so many
Neruda plunged into the
thick of things, had a bitter
dispute with Juan Ramon
Jimenez, famous older poet
and eventual Nobel Prize Win-
ner and what was more im-
portant, started getting involved
Those were the years when
Spain was coming to a boil in
a fury of political dissension
which would lead to the Span-
ish Civil War and the rise of
Neruda openly took part in
politics, disregarding the re-
quirements of diplomatic pro-
tocol and eventually was re-
called to Chile. But the Civil
War stripped him and his poetry
of the lone-wolf image and
converted him into a com-
mitted poet devoted to writing
verse as a propaganda medium.
He joined the Communist Par-
ty, wrote verse in praise of
Stalin and with his usual en-
thusiasm, turned himself into
the most partisan, crusading
argumentative Party poet of
If the dictatorship of the
proletariat was his line, the
poet after whom he imaged
himself was Walt Whitman,
because Neruda was also a
cultural nationalist. In the post-
War period, he was already
writing poem after poem of
what he would call General
Unity in this extended series
of poems is provided by the
tone which is denunciatory
and abusive when referring to
the ruling cliques and oligar-
quies which have dominated
Latin America from the days
of the Spanish Conquest, and
U.S. imperialism. The heroes
range from Las Casas to Lin-
coin, and a battery of Latin
Americans who cared for their
country and people.
The style, as a result of a
conscious effort by the poet
becomes simpler, the syntax
The poet will no longer be a
decadent bourgeois mystifier
of the people, he will write an
easier language to punch his
message through. It is at this
point in his career from the
-late forties onwards that his
stature as a poet starts being
The iwthle issue centers on
the status ofi protest verse, its
value and, in many cases,
wihilhe I r qualifies for the
.i I.. .:.C p e. tr''y at all.
One- critic of Neruda sug-
gested that one treatise of
Lenin made a sharper impact
than all of Neruda's versified
In assessing protest verse,
how far must one judge value
by the impact of the verse on
people who read it or hear it.
There is really no serious
evidence, of a sociological
nature, from Latin America
which helps us to gauge the
impact of this kind of writing.
In a later era, in the sixties,
after the success of the Cuban
Revolution, writing as a form
of activism would even be
denounced and the guerrilla
glorified as an "action-poet".
Neruda's revolutionary poet-
ry projected a Maniquean view
of reality. There were the bad
guys and the good guys and
when the Revolution succeeded,
all things would be well. The
vision was superficial, the verse
boring. The paradox is that it
is this kind of Nerudean writing
which would influence younger
Realising that he was up a
dead end, Neruda has tried a
variety of styles, writing very
simple verse on such subjects
as the tomato, the artichoke,
laziness, poverty, bread, and
also attempting a kind of mem-
oirs in verse. Neruda had an
extreme sensitivity to things,
to objects, things eroded by
time, worn down by water.
In his house on Isla Negra
in Chile, he kept his famous
collection of shells and drift-
wood and other odd objects.
And some of the best of his
later verse expresses this sense
of objects, their fragility and
their solidity in the face of
time and the wear and tear of
I said earlier on that Neruda
became a captive to the idea
of Revolution, to the erection
of a great socialist imperium
rising from the ashes of deca-
dent Capitalism. It is certain
that Neruda's career as a poet
was decisively affected by his
allegiance to his new creed. He
seems to have made a con-
scious decision to organize his
poetic personality so that it
would be totally.at the service
of the Party.
It is by no means clear what
changes took place in his more
general life style. For example,
his last- wife was reputedly a
millionairess. The truth is that
in his committed verse we do
not feel the raw edge of ex-
perience, or the tension of
The election of Allende and
the nationalization moves
would have seemed to him a
peculiarly fitting happening,
the military coup a cruel blow
to one who had given his
public career and his poetry to
the cause. Neruda was awarded
the Nobel Prize for Literature
THE Surinmese poet and
activist, Robin Dobru has pub-
lished a book of poems in
English, Surinamese and Dutch
entitled: Flowers Must Not
Copies of the book are
available at the Tapia House,
82-84 St. Vincent St. Tunapuna
at the price of $3.
Dobru who read from his
works at the Tapia House in
July was one of the major
participants in Guyana's Cari-
festa held last year.
IS IT A coincidence that her
telephone service was cut off
during a police search at the
Saddle Road, San Juan home
of Kathryn Williams (formerly
Beryl Drakes) on Wednesday,
Sister Williams has her
doubts, and she is demanding a
written explanation from the
General Manager of the Tele-
In her statement, Sister
Williams, President of the Con-
gress of Progressive Trade
Unions, complains that shortly
after the search began her tele-
phone went dead. Telephone
communication was restored
the following morning,
PAGIE 10 TAPIA
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 30, 1973
'Because she had such courageI
can do no more than support that spirit...
From Page 9
"It must be some heritage in the children. Most
of them have inquiring minds. Jennifer is the same way.
She is more analytical. When they wrote me those two
letters Beverley was brash and to the point, but
Jennifer wrote analysing the whole situation paragraph
after paragraph, and then she gave her reasons why
she thought that at this time they were not ready to
So the girls turned down the invitation to -join
their mother in the US. But was the mother worried?
"How you mean! When I got the letters I tossed
up and down for a whole week, working this thing out
in my mind. Because I saw where confrontation would
eventually take place. But then I had to settle back,
and I thought, you know, if this is what they want ...
but as mother I was very apprehensive. I questioned
why: I wrote back and I tried to make my point as a
mother, to point out what was involved, but they said
they took all those things into consideration. All of
them, they're deep thinkers. It must be something
handed down, I don't know".
Involvement could not be a new thing for the
Jones family. Mrs Jones said she had been once "very
politically active", a PNM worker who had gone "all
out". So much so that Althea reminded her daughters
were only following in the example she had given.
She surmises: "Now they have found, perhaps,
that there is something definitely hot in keeping with
the aims and aspirations of what was set out to be
EVERY DAY THINGS
Did Mrs. Jones also feel the party had failed its
"Well, look, at this point really I don't want ... I
have to remember Jennifer. There are things that you
would say that would have some effect on keeping her
in longer-". -
So we returned to the subject of the girls,
Beverley and Jennifer, to attempt to sketch a picture
of how young girls like themselves finally got involved
the way they have been. In what way were they
different? Didn't they likd clothes and parties, funk
"Yes, yes, yes. This was only the last stage of
their lives. I could remember coming here and making
dresses for them. They went to dances. They were
normal healthy children doing the same things like
every other 15 or 16 year old. Dates, boyfriends. I'm
not saying they were exceptional beyond anything. It
is only within this recent last part of their lives that I
suppose they became involved with other people".
She has no personal experience of the February
Revolution when young people in their thousands
poured into the streets. She got from the grandmother
complaints about the girls going out into the marches,
and now she suggests the 1970 experience must have
made "some impact" on the girls.
Whatever their inspiration she could not be one
to repress or curb her daughters' dispositions. "My
motto has always been," she explained, "to let them
make the decisions concerning their lives especially
where education is concerned". So she had not put her
foot down even when one of her daughters made what
she thought an "irrational" decision in changing from
one school to another.
And she is convinced that this kind of inde-
pendence has helped to shape the characters of her
four boys and four girls.
It was certainly traumatic to return to Trinidad
on the occasion of the death pf one daughter and the
locking up of another oncharges of shooting with intent
to murder and having firearms. And the treatment
the Jones parents suffered when they tried to get
information must have educated them at once about
the character of the situation in the country now.
So Mrs Jones prefers to be "guarded" in her
comments all for now. But she did describe her
several attempts to see Jennifer.
"They wouldn't allow it. It was at the court
(hearing at Tunapuna, Monday, September 17) through
counsel I made a special request to see her because
they said we weren't allowed to see her, but I was
leaving and I felt it should be my privilege at least to
see her for a few minutes. And I was able to see her for
a few minutes.
"The matron was there but we could have got
together. She seemed all right so far. Seeing us, she was
surprised to see me and her sister, Althea she was
glad to see the three of us together, and that helped to
boost up her morale even more".
The police had refused to make Jennifer available
to see members of her family before the court hearing
four days after her arrest.
When they visited the Tunapuna Police Station,
Mrs Jones said, the police gave no reason why they
wouldn't allow a visit. "The police didn't give any
reason. Sunday (Sept. 16) night when we went up to
Tunapuna and asked to see her, from what I could
gather the police were trying to contact somebody
higher up and that somebody whoever it was was no-
where around and therefore he couldn't do anything".
Earlier when the father had tried, he got a run-
around from Tunapuna to Port of Spain, as the police
wouldn't say where the girl was being kept. Not sur-
prising, as according to the Guardian of September 14,
Jennifer and the captured man Michael Peters had
been "taken to questioning at a building which is
known only to senior police officers".
So it had been a bitter homecoming for Mrs
Jones, a former dress-maker and proprietress of the
Little Marvel Dress Shop on Pembroke street, Port of
Spain. Speaking afterwards she enlarged to me on her
views about the role of women, marriage and family
life which she considered very important for the
upbringing of children.
She felt that she would have to return home be-
fore long for good. I asked: did she think she would
have been able to exercise greater influence on the
lives of her daughters if she had been at home? And
she answered simply "yes". [L.G]
PAGE I ITAPIA
,s. lndrea Talbutt, .-- --
study of .-lan
162, East 78th StreetlA
Ph. Leh-gh 5 8448
WHAT HAS become of the TFA's
plan to introduce a national pro-
fessional league? On June 11 this
year, the secretary of the TFA in
a statement to the press announced
that the problems which held up
plans for the NFL was that such a
league would lead to the demise of
Undoubtedly, the demand of the
times is for a national professional
league. It appears from the secretary's
remarks that the RFA is either unable
or unwilling to meet those demands. In
my view it can, if only it can abolish
its present conception of affiliation and
set national unity as its objective.
Football and national unity may
seem unrelated but that's only illusory.
Football and cricket are now national
institutions and as such the way in which
they are organised can further entrench
divisions in the society or pomote and
foster unity. They are not simply sport.
There are two distinct streams in our
That' pro league' talk
football, broadly speaking. On the one
hand, there is football as organised by
the TFA and its affiliatesthe major
leagues. On the other hand, there are
the community leagues or minor leagues.
Unfortunately, relations between
the two are unhealthy and unnecessarily
so. In October 1969 there was massive
demonstration in Port of Spain by the
minor leagues after the TFA had moved
to discipline some of its playerswho had
played in the, Tacarigua Eddie Hart
Since that time there has been a
steady decline in players' morale and
spectator interest. We have seen a short-
lived strike by national players in
1972, and this year some players have
refused to put country before club.
There has been a thawing out of the
cold war as well. This year Phil Douglin,
the vice president of the TFA, was a
judge in the march past at the opening
of the Eddie Hart league.
On the cricket scene a northern
association of minor leagues has been
formed. All these changes are steps in
the right direction, nevertheless they
fall short of the possibilities.
Furthermore, the present relation-
ships between the minor and major
leagues is completely irrational, another
characterisation of our colonial heritage.
The TFA should be actively engaged in
promoting minor leagues throughout
Is a first class player born big? Or
'does he start in his backyard, raising in
the road, juvenile league, Sunday morn-
ing league and so on?
Then, if he has any genuine ability,
he graduates to higher levels of the game.
Therefore, the minor leagues are vital
for nurturing talent in the first instance
and for feeding the first class league in
the second instance.
Finally, the minor leagues. In both
games the minor leagues are guilty of
the same attitudes for which they
condemn the major leagues. The minor
leagues are replete with petty dictator-
In a curious way there is unity in
the conception of organisation as it
obtains in both major and minor leagues.
The model for organisation is the colo-
But then it is not the unity the
citizenry wish to cherish otherwise, the
crises in our sport, as in other areas of
our national life, would not have per-
WE'VE GOT TO BRING BACK
CUBAN Prime Minister Fidel Cas-
tro has made a tremendous histo-
rical contribution, but in some-
ways he is a very confused man,
'Lloyd Best told Tapia's Special
Assembly on Sunday. And that
confusion, Best said, was evidenced
by the fact that Castro had posi-
tioned Cuba in his mind as a
Latin American country when it
was in fact Caribbean.
"Cuba failed to appreciate that at
the correct historical moment and the
other Caribbean countries failed, as
well, to appreciate that at the correct
"We have to understand that because
the time is going to come when we
have to start looking abroad for allies.
We are talking about power very seri-
ously and we know we are dealing with
two sets of forces. We are dealing with
forces in the country and its either
them or us and we are dealing with
their allies outside the country", Best
Best argued that we had to see that
Cuba was a Caribbean country with
"We failed to see it in 1960 and we
made the historical blunder of running
off to Washington to get the sugar
qouta when the Cubans were in trouble.
"We should have declared for Cuba.
Every Caribbean citizen would have
understood. Castro was talking sugar
just as the workers in Orange Grove
are talking sugar now", he said.
The possibilities inherent in mobilis-
ing in his own backyard escaped Castro.
-So he did not organise either in Jamaica
or Barbados or Trinidad to carry the
revolution where the ground was fertile.
Instead he devoted his energies to Latin
And, said Best, "he was still makir
the error that follows from that i.:,
that he regards the Soviet Union as a.
saviour for these countries. Nobody.is
going, save you you have to build
from where you are with what you are -
it is true for the individual, it is true
for the movement, it is true for the
He said further that it was up to us
to pull Castro out,since we have gotten
him in that bag in the first place. He
-reminded the Assembly that it was the
arch-reactionary Williams who, at the
height of the Ainerican Cuba confronta-
tion, made the statement positioning
Trinidad and Tobago "west of the Iron
No need to play on race
TAPIA IS a genuinely multi-racial
organisation but it has resisted
attempts both from within and
outside the movement to get it "to
make a play for particular races",
Best said on Sunday.
He said that Tapia was not making
any special effort to get Indians or
Europeans or any particular race for
that matter into the group.
We started where we were and we
are saying what we believe and people
have to come here because they make a
vital connection with us because they
believe what we believe", he added.
"You can't go in Barrackpore or
Felicity or some place like that and say
something to whip up Indians and hope
that Indians are so foolish that you go
win them on that basis because you
talking things that Indians want to hear
- they must see through that d
phony", he pointed out.
"People must come here because
they see people doing things that they
would like to do, achieving intentions
that are theirs, leaders will emerge in
that c6ntext it's the only way, he
He noted that Tapia did not have to
organise any youth league because the
whole organisation was a youth league.
He said that the group was responding
to the future in its ideas.
Best continued that he thought the
group had opened a "window to pro-
He denied that Tapia was a pressure
group. This implied that Tapia wanted
something from the Government and
that was certainly not the case.
What Tapia was was a serious poli-
tical organisation. It was living politics
every day. Men came with what they
had, without any particular qualifica-
tions and they grew inside the organisa-
tion, Best said.
of the Caribbeam
35 Charlotte Street, Port of Spain
Printed by Tapia House Printing Co. Ltd., for Tapia House Publishing Co. Ltd., 91 Tunapuna Rd. Phong: 662-5126