Group Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Title: Caribbean today
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Caribbean today
Uniform Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 38 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Caribbean Pub. Services
Place of Publication: Miami Fl
Miami Fl
Publication Date: August 2009
Copyright Date: 2010
Frequency: monthly
Subject: Economic conditions -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Additional Physical Form: Also available by subscription via the World Wide Web.
Dates or Sequential Designation: Began in 1989.
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 10, no. 3, published in 1999; title from cover.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099285
Volume ID: VID00041
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 40985415


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% o r I d



Tel: (305) 238-2868
Vol. 20 No. 9 Jamaica: 655-1479

drug dealer
Emmanuel 133.000.000
Ganpot could
have been a T S
free man by
now. But six
years ago he
jumped bond
and fled the
United States. Now the
Grenadian faces 115 years in / /
prison when he re-appears in a
Florida court for sentencing -
this month, page 4.
m i I I

United States President Barack
Obama has signaled that there
will be no immediate change
to policies regarding Cuba and
Haiti, two of Washington's
closest Caribbean neighbors, 2I
page 6.

Stacyann Chin
found that her
liberation was
not so easily
accepted back
home. Her
memoir reveals
her trials, pit-
falls and triumphs, exposing
some of the hidden 'rituals' and
guises the gay and lesbian
community go through to sur-
vive in a Jamaica she sees as
homophobic, page 17. i1 . .

N ew s ...................................................2...
Arts/Entertainm ent ...........................7...
View point ...........................................9...

T&T Focus......................................... 11 Back To School ................................18
FYI ........................................................16 Classified ..........................................23


W e c o v e r y o u r

- usw^caribbeantody..c.I


n e WS

No plans to scrap Cuba's communism President Castro

President Raul Castro has
declared that he is open to
discuss all issues with the
United States, but emphasized
that there are no plans to
change Cuba's communist sys-
tem of government.
Addressing the Cuban
National Assembly on Aug. 1,
Castro expressed ire over
repeated comments by United
States Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton that Washington
expected Havana to scrap com-
munism in order to imnronv

Fidel Castro led the communist
revolution in Cuba.

it," he added. "We are ready
to talk about everything,
but... not to negotiate our
political and social system."

Castro, who formally took
over the presidency from his
ailing brother Fidel last year,
also scoffed at critics who
have predicted that the
Spanish-speaking Caribbean
country's political system will
crumble after "the death of
Fidel and all of us.
"If that's how thev think

Raul Castro is determined to keep
Cuba's communist system alive.

and anti-Cuban rhetoric on
the part of the administra-
tion," Castro said.
He repeated Cuba's will-
ingness "to sustain a respect-
ful dialogue with the U.S.,
between equals." But he
noted that while Obama said
he wants to r,.xIi relations
with Cuba and has eased the
47-year-old embargo by allow-
ing Cuban Americans to trav-
el and send money freely to
the island, overall, the embar-
go remained intact.
No riush to channp ef .

relations between the two restore capitalism in Cuba, they are doomed to failure." predecessor George W Bush policy on Cuba and Haiti,
neighbors. nor to hand over the revolu- However, Cuba's presi- with regards to Cuba. says Obama. Story on page 6.
"I have to say with all due tion," Castro said. dent conceded that U.S. "It's true there has been a
respect to Mrs. Clinton...they "I was elected to defend, President Barack Obama has diminution of the _,rLion% W
didn't elect me president to maintain and continue per- been less .-.,rL ""INL" than his
fecting socialism, not destroy U.S. cops raid office of Michael

Guyanese wins $133M lotto jackpot in New York Jackson's Caribbean-born doctor

NEW YORK A 49-year-old
Guyanese man is America's
latest millionaire.
Aubrey Boyce, a
Metropolitan Transportation
Authority employee from
Queens, New York, is the
winner of the $133 million
Mega Millions jackpot.
He bought his ticket at a
Jamaica, Queens store on July
7, quick pick style.
"Shocked and still a little
nervous about the whole
thing; that's how I feel," said
the eight-year MTA veteran.
"It's still very much a dream, a
dream come true."
Boyce also revealed he
and his wife have not slept
much since the morning he
discovered his numbers, 25, 27,

35, 38, 39, and (Mega Ball) 28,
was the sole winning ticket.
Late last month he
received his giant check on a
balcony inside the Grand

Aubrey Boyce, right, talks about his luck.
Central Terminal in Manhattan.
He said he is still in shock over
his change of fortunes and now
plans to go fishing somewhere

After signing the ticket,
Boyce said he immediately
locked it up in a safe deposit
box. It was weeks later that
Boyce and his wife of 15 years,
Francis, said they were finally
ready to come forward about
their news.
His after tax total is a bit
above $54.6 million.
Shiv Convenience, the
Jamaica grocery store where
Boyce purchased the winning
ticket, received a $10,000
bonus from the New York
Lottery Commission for selling
the winning Mega Millions
Jackpot ticket.

- CaribWorldNews

LOS ANGELES, California -
United States federal law
enforcement officials last
month raided the office of the
Grenadian-born personal doc-
tor of the late
pop singer
Chernoff, the
lawyer for Dr.
Murray, who Murray
grew up in Murray
Trinidad and
Tobago, said authorities were
looking for evidence to sup-
port manslaughter charges.
"The search warrant
authorized law enforcement to
search for and seize items,
including documents, they
believed constituted evidence
of the offense of manslaugh-
ter," he said.
Chernoff said U.S. Drug
Enforcement Administration
(DEA) agents and Los
Angeles police left the
Armstrong Medical Clinic
with "a forensic imagL of a
computer hard drive and 21
documents. The raid came a
day after Chernoff said

Seven Trinidadians, including
a former member of the
Trinidad and Tobago Defence
Force elite Special Forces
Unit, face the possibility of
life imprisonment without
parole after they were found
guilty of murdering a United
States war veteran while he
was on holiday in Trinidad
four years ago.
Former soldier Ricardo
De Four, along with Zion
Clarke, Kevon Demerieux,

authorities also wanted to
interview the doctor again.
"The coroner wants to
clear up the cause of death.
We share that goal," he said.

Chernoff said Murray
returned to his home in Las
Vegas, Nevada, and walks
around with a full-time body-
guard because he is "harassed
no matter where he goes."
Jackson, 50, died June 25
after Murray reportedly found
him unconscious in bed with
only a faint pulse. Murray said
he performed CPR on the
superstar during a chaotic 20
or 30 minutes that preceded a
911 call from Jackson's rented
Police later recovered
prescription drugs and a stash
of the powerful anaesthetic
propofol, used only in hospital
settings. Chernoff said Murray
should not be a target of crim-
inal charges.
"Dr. Murray was the last
doctor standing when Michael
Jackson died, and it seems all
the fury is directed toward
him," Chernoff said.

Anderson Straker, Wayne
Pierre, Christopher Sealey
and Kevin Nixon had been
extradited to face charges of
murdering Balram Maharaj,
62, who was kidnapped out-
side a bar on April 6, 2005.
The prosecution's case
was that Maharaj was held
hostage under very harsh con-
ditions, including depriving
him of essential medications,
while his abductors demanded


August 2009

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donations on the web. Your tax-deductible gift helps us to:
* Provide toys, beds and sweaters for cold weather and more!
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Donating online is secure, convenient and a great way to lend a
helping hand.
To donate online, go to or call 3-1-1
for information on other ways to help.

Trinis face life imprisonment

for murder of U.S. war veteran




n e WS

W w w~cri..anoda.s c *


With a push to have a
Caribbean category added to
the United States Census, the
Caribbean American commu-
nity is showing its numbers,
strength and proud identity.
South Florida's growing
Caribbean community, partic-
ularly in Broward County, is
especially vocal and active.
But, this immigrant group is
not always represented and
sometimes sidelined in main-
stream media, government
agencies and halls of justice.
The recently published
"Caribbean American
Immigrant Resource Guide to
South Florida" offers this bur-
geoning group valuable infor-
mation that promises to help
bridge the gap, particularly for
Florida residents. Written by

U.S. thanks

Bermuda over

detainee issue

Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton has sent a letter to
Premier Ewart Brown thank-
ing him for agreeing to resettle
four Chinese Muslim Uighurs
who were recently released
from a United States deten-
tion center in Cuba after seven
"I hope that your coura-
geous action will inspire others
to step forward and join us in
the ongoing effort to close
Guantanamo Bay..
Indeed, Bermuda's leadership
advanced that
effort", Clinton
Brown has
had to wade off
criticism over
his decision,
after it was dis- Brown
covered that
neither the British government
nor his Cabinet had been con-
sulted priorth the arrival of
the Muslims. The premier'sur-
vived a motion of no confi-
dence filed by the internatiOpposition
United Bermuda Party (UBP)
and London announced that it
was reviewing the general
entrustment agreement it has
had with the Overseas
Territory since 1968, when
internal self-government was
introduced here.
But the premier's decision
has been praised by many oth-
ers, the international human
rights organizations Amnesty
International and Human
Rights Watch.

d scholars launch Caribbean American resource guide
three Caribbean American for this new publication, for our children, the best city,
leaders, the guide offers "This 37-page guide needs county, state and national
advice on becoming politically to be digested, one page at a parks, how to spend money in
savvy, what it takes to be a time," Magnus said. "This short-term versus investing in
wise consumer, children's edu- guide really constitutes a call the long-term all call for our
cation and mental health. for values clarification. It asks attention."

"These are the topics
which traditionally receive
minimal emphasis in the main-
stream and Caribbean print
and electronic media," Dr.
Marcia Magnus, the brainchild
behind the guide and one of
the contributors, explained to
Caribbean Today.
"But it turns out that how
we spend our money, the qual-
ity of our children's education,
how we participate in the
American political process,
and how we transcend life's
challenges are the long-term
quality of life issues."

Magnus, a tenured associ-
ate professor of dietetics
and nutrition at Florida
International University,
decided to create this guide

after years of searching for
answers and "bucking up" on
some that had no documenta-
tion. This is not the first
such guide produced by the
Magnus. In 2000 she authored
several voters' guides for
Caribbean Americans offering
critical information about
candidates endorsed by
Caribbean American
Politically Active Citizens, an
action group she founded.
Those guides proved invalu-
able to many, as is the hope

us to decide on the tough
questions about the difference
between wants and needs. It
asks us to question and dis-
card useless beliefs which no
longer serve us in this commu-
nity, especially about mental
health services.
"I certainly hope this
guide will be just as indispen-
sable to the South Florida
Caribbean American commu-
nity as the voters' guides. Our
numbers are increasing, most
obviously in Broward County
where Caribbean Americans
constitute 50 percent of the
black community. But if the
quality of life of our children
does not exceed that of their
parents, then we have really
lost the battle. The unmet
information needs about
how to get the best education


In these harsh economic
times, the section on being a
"Consumer Savvy" citizen is
timely. Magnus warns about
living on credit and counsels
consumers to be aware of the
daily barrage of advertise-
ments that bombard us
through telemarketing, televi-
sion, newspapers, magazines,
etc. Be a comparison shopper,
she urges, and learn the differ-
ence between "needs" and
"Caribbean people have a
long history of sacrifice but
the daily barrage of 3,000
American advertisements
makes it difficult to separate
needs from wants," she said.
"Caribbean American



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August 2009

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U.S. fugitive sparks AG's resignation, political tension in Grenada


Grenada Convicted drug
dealer Emmanuel Ganpot
could have been a free man
on Aug. 4. Six years ago, he
promised Florida circuit Judge
Dee Anna Farnell that he
would appear in her court for
sentencing on drug related
Instead, he jumped bond
and fled to Europe, changed
his name and lived the high life
in France, England, and Spain.
Now Ganpot, 36, faces a
maximum prison term of 115
years when he re-appears in
court for sentencing on Aug. 13.
But his actions may have
a lasting effect on politics in
Grenada, where his step-
father, Jimmy Bristol, was
forced to submit his resigna-
tion from the 13-month old
Tillman Thomas government.
Bristol acknowledged that
he had used stationery from his
office to write a letter to U.S.
authorities appealing for a
lighter sentence for Ganpot. In
his letter, Bristol wrote "we all
err from time to time and
should not have our lives com-
pletely destroyed by one slip up.
"Emmanuel was befriend-
ed by the wrong people and
has found himself in his pres-
ent predicament", he added.

But the government said
he had transgressed and
Bristol, a former president of
the Grenada Bar Association
(GBA), initially accepted full
responsibility for what he

described as an error of judg-
ment and apologized to the
prime minister.
"That was an error of
judgment...for which I accept
full responsibility for the
fall out. It has nothing to do
with the government and
indeed.. .in a meeting with the
prime minister I accepted that
responsibility and apologize
for the fall out that it has
caused," said Bristol.
Government's Press
Secretary Richard Simon said
that raging debate that has
resulted from
Bristol's resig-
nation under-
scores the
of Prime
Thomas to
lead a trans-
parent admin- Ganpot
istration in a
country where allegations of
corruption in government are
never far from the surface.
"What this shows is the
commitment of Prime
Minister Thomas to keep his
promise to the Grenadian
people in the context of pro-
tecting the institutions of the
land and ensuring there is
respect for those institutions,"
Simon said as he justified the
prime minister's request for
Bristol to step down.
"I think this is the first
real test of that and the prime
minister has certainly fulfilled
that obligation."
The ruling National
Democratic Congress (NDC)
had campaigned on a platform

of transparency and good gov-
ernance and, according to
Anslem Francis, a lecturer in
international relations at the
St. George's University here,
"the prime minister has raised
the bar very high, maybe high-
er than it has
ever been.
"Now of
course, in the
interest of
good gover-
nance one
wants to know
that high
moral and eth- Bristol
ical standards
are being maintained in public
affairs. However, if we are not
very careful we may very well
be without a government in the
sense that probably every
Monday morning, somebody
may have to resign."
Even though he had indi-
cated that he would have
accepted the consequences of
his error, Bristol was critical of
the request for him to hand in
his resignation.
"The request was prema-
ture," he noted. "It was done
without the consultation of
the full Cabinet and without
due consideration of all rele-
vant matters. I was not writing
as attorney general but as step
father to identify myself. You
must identify who you are".

But Elvin Nimrod, former
attorney general and minister
of legal affairs, is not con-
vinced by Bristol's argument.
"I am sure this (his letter
to U.S. authorities) was done

intentionally to give weight to
his statement. This is not only
a conflict of interest, it is a
very terrible thing," said
Nimrod, who last month was
elected deputy political leader
of the main Opposition New
National Party (NNP).
"To plead now that is an
error in judgment that cannot
be accepted at all. He has
implicated a whole govern-
ment and has brought disre-

and a whole
But Bristol
has his sup-
porters, includ-
ing Chiir r
Humphrey, a
legislator and Nimrod
trade unionist.
"The resignation is a tem-
pest in a tea cup," Humphrey
said. "It's very unfortunate
that the attorney general
resigned. Had I been the
prime minister I would not
accept the resignation of the
attorney general on the basis
of what has happened."
Humphrey, who cam-
paigned for the NDC in the last
elections, said that the former
attorney general was not seek-
ing to bribe the U.S. judge.
"He was not engaged in
a dishonest act," Humphrey
added. "He was not even pre-
tending that the appeal was

made by the government of
Francis said there is need
now to "clearly define the cir-
cumstances in which we think
members of government should
resign if a member of govern-
ment has acted improperly.
"I don't think it should be
because there is any error of
judgment. I don't think this is
going to take us too far. What
we have to guard against is
the misapplication of a very
good principle."

But supporters of the
NNP are not convinced and
are delighted at the problems
confronting Bristol, who they
say had been at the forefront
of efforts to disgrace their
leader Dr. Keith Mitchell.
Last year, Bristol told a
news conference that he had in
his possession a letter from the
U.S. Department of Justice
confirming that then Prime
Minister Mitchell was still an
American citizen, contrary to
the laws of Grenada on persons
holding high political office.
But in an immediate
response, U.S. Charge d'Affaires
in Grenada Karen Jo Mclsaac,
refuted the statement saying that
Mitchell's U.S. citizenship ended
when he first became prime min-
ister on June 20, 1995.


a TT$3 million ($500,000)
ransom from his family. The
money was never paid, but his
dismembered body was locat-
ed by Federal Bureau of
Investigations (FBI) agents
and local law enforcement
officers on Jan. 8, 2006, in a
forest in Trinidad.

The men were expected
to know their fates at their
sentencing, scheduled for
early this month. But media
reports in Trinidad quote law
enforcement officials there as
saying that an agreement
entered between the U.S. and
the office of the attorney gen-
eral could see the convicted
men facing mandatory sen-
tences of life without the pos-
sibility of parole.
Late last month T&T's
acting Deputy Police
Commissioner Gilbert Reyes
confirmed the life sentences
against the accused and com-
mended local officers for
their role in the investiga-
"I must say that they did

extremely well in assisting in
the successful prosecution of
the accused and they must be
highly commended for the
professionalism displayed
throughout the inquiry," he
The trial, which started on
May 26, took place at the U.S.
District Court in Washington
D.C. before Judge John D
Bates. The men had all plead-
ed not guilty to the charges.
Initially, 12 persons had
been charged with the kidnap-
ping and murder of Balram.
However, David Suchit, who
was extradited in 2007, was
found not guilty by a 12-mem-
ber jury in the U.S. Four others
entered plea bargains and testi-
fied against the accused men.
However, two others,
including Balram's former
common-law wife Doreen
Alexander Durity and another
member of the Special Forces
Unit, Ricardo Stevenson, are
awaiting trial for murder in
Trinidad after Chief Magistrate
Sherman McNicolls ruled that
a prima facie case was estab-
lished against them.


August 2009

Trinis face life imprisonment for

murder of U.S. war veteran


n e WS

MIAMI The death toll from
a boating accident off the
Turks and Caicos Islands
climbed to 16 after rescue
officials found another body
late last month.
Up to press time United
States Coast Guard officials
said at least 70 Haitian
migrants were still missing.
"The main point is that
we continue to search with the
hope we will
find sur-
vivors," said
Petty Officer
adding "how-
ever as time
continues to
pass, the Bastien
chance to find
survivors is dwindling."
So far 119 passengers have
been rescued after the boat,
with nearly 200 persons sank
as it tried to evade a police
vessel and hit a reef. The
authorities said that one sur-
vivor had also been found on
July 29 on the nearby island of
West Caicos

In their desperate attempt
to reach the U.S., Haitians
often use rickety, overcrowded
boats to make the dangerous
journey. In May 2007, an over-

crowded boat carrying over
160 Haitians capsized off the
Turks and Caicos Islands,
killing many, and last year a
boat carrying 30 Haitians sank
off the
coast, killing -
nine people.
based Haitian
Bastien said Hastings
the tragedy
the need for the Haitian gov-
ernment to do a better job at
monitoring its borders.
Democratic Congressman
Alcee Hastings, a Haitian
advocate, called the incident a
"sad reminder of the hopeless-
ness and desperation facing
the Haitian people," renewing
his call for temporary protect-
ed status (TPS) for Haitian
migrants. He said it was
"immoral and irresponsible"
to continue to deny TPS to
the estimated 30,000 Haitians
living illegally in the U.S., not-
ing that hurricanes and an
economic crisis have "practi-
cally dried up the remittances
on which so many Haitian
families rely."

Obama's victory a symbol of emancipation

from slavery Montserrat's chief minister

BRADES, Montserrat, CMC
- Montserrat's Chief Minister
Dr. Lowell Lewis says the
election of Barack Obama as
the 44th president of the
United States has completed
the journey from the humilia-
tion of slavery to the "very
top of our civilization."
In a message marking
Emancipation Day recently,
Dr. Lewis said that Obama
and members of his family
"are the symbol of emancipa-
tion in today's world.
"From their example our
children and grandchildren
will know, that they can and
must try to become all that
they can be and not worry


about those people who say
that they cannot or will not."
He said while in
Montserrat and many places
around the world many races

live together in harmony,
"there is still much work
to be done to make the
Emancipation that took place
"The cost of transforming
the Caribbean economies
from the sugar estates which
contributed to the industrial
development of Europe and
North America, to the mod-
ern diversified economies we
have today, is yet to be repaid.
The write off of national
debts, as reparation for gener-
ations of suffering and lost
lives, is still a justifiable

U.S. citizenship costs Jamaica's

ruling party another election seat

KINGSTON, Jamaica, CMC -
The ruling Jamaica Labour
Party (JLP) has suffered
another setback after the
Supreme Court ruled late last
month that the seat held by its
Member of Parliament for
North West Clarendon,
Michael Stern, should be
declared null and void.
The motion to declare the
seat vacant had been brought
by the Opposition People's
National Party's (PNP) Richard
During submissions on
July 27, Azan's attorney Abe
Dabdoub urged the court to
declare the seat vacant based
on Stern's admission that he
was a United States citizen on
Aug. 7, 2007, when he was
nominated to contest the gen-
eral election of that year.
Dabdoub told the court
that Stern has admitted that
he was the holder of a U.S
passport and that he travelled
on the passport everywhere,
except in the Caribbean. He
told the court that the seat
should be turned over to
However, Stern's attorney,
while admitting that his client

was not properly elected, sug-
gested that a by-election be
held instead of the seat being
turned over to the Opposition

So far, the PNP has
brought two successful court
actions over dual citizenship
against JLP legislators, but the
party has lost the subsequent
by-elections, effectively ensur-
ing that the ruling party main-
tains its slim four-seat majority
in the 60-member Parliament.
The PNP has filed anoth-
er petition against the JLP's
Shahine Robinson, the
Member of Parliament for
North East St Ann.
Meanwhile, JLP General
Secretary Karl Samuda said
his party could make a deci-
sion on the outcome of talks
with the PNP regarding the
matter of dual citizenship.
Both major political parties
have been in discussions to
find a solution that would put
an end to the spate of by-elec-

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August 2009

Haitian death toll rises

from boating accident



- usw^caribbeantody..c.I


n e WS

No rush to change policies regarding Cuba, Haiti ~ Obama

United States President
Barack Obama has signaled
that there will be no immediate
change to policies regarding
Cuba and Haiti, two of
Washington's closest
Caribbean neighbors.
Regarding Cuba, Obama
said while he is open to more
overtures to the Spanish-
speaking nation, it must first
show signs of changing its
communist policies.
"We're not there yet," he
said about the possibility of fur-
ther advances toward Cuba,
such as lifting additional restric-
tions on travel to the island.
"We think it's important
to see progress on issues of
political liberalization, free-
dom of the press, freedom of
assembly, release of political
prisoners in order for there to
be the full possibility of nor-
malization between our two
countries," Obama told
reporters, while discussing
efforts to overhaul the U.S.
healthcare system.

Several members of
Congress and Cuban advocate
groups, including the leading
association that promotes stu-
dent travel to and from the
U.S., have urged Obama to
remove what they said are
restrictive regulations on aca-
demic and other "purposeful"
travel to Cuba imposed by
former US President George
W. Bush in 2004.
In April, Obama lifted
travel and gift restrictions for
those with relatives in Cuba

and eased restrictions on U.S.
telecommunications firms to
do business there. Last month,
the U.S. administration also
resumed talks with Cuban
officials on what Obama
called a "narrow set of issues,"
chiefly migration. But the U.S.
president said further steps
may take time.
Obama, however, said if
his administration sees
progress on those "govern-
ment-to-government conver-
sations," then they can be
"We're taking it step by
step, seeing if, as we change
some of the old approaches
that we've been taking, we are
seeing some movement on the
Cuban government side," he
"I don't think it's going to
be happening overnight," he
added. "I think it's going to be
a work in progress."

At the same time, the U.S.
president said he remained
undecided about granting tem-
porary protected status (TPS)
to tens of thousands of
Haitians living illegally in his
Obama said while he is
"very sympathetic" to the
immigration issue, it could be
part of a large effort to over-
haul the nation's immigration
laws. He said his administra-
tion is still reviewing U.S. poli-
cy on deporting the estimated
30,000 undocumented Haitians
and would not commit to
whether he supports allowing
undocumented Haitian

migrants to stay and work in
the United States temporarily.
Haitian advocates and a
host of congressional repre-
sentatives have called on the
U.S. administration to add
Haiti to the list of nations
whose citizens in the United
States receive the TPS desig-
Obama said the review is
yet to be completed, adding:
"So I'm not prepared to make
news here today."
He, however, said he was
"very sympathetic to the fact
that Haiti has gone through
very difficult times (and) that


a sudden influx of people
from Florida back into Haiti
would be a potential humani-
tarian problem."
The U.S. president noted
that many Haitians have "put
down roots" in the U.S., sug-
gesting that a resolution to the
situation in Haiti was "going
to be part of a broader con-
versation about immigration."
In June, Obama invited
U.S. House of Representatives
and Senate leaders to the

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White House to kick off efforts
to overhaul the immigration
laws. Currently, Homeland
Security Secretary Janet
Napolitano is working with
lawmakers on the issue, and

women spend hundreds of
dollars on nail care, hair care
without assessing whether
these are needs or wants.
These same women have cho-
sen to devote zero dollars on
the educational enrichment of
their children books, check-
ing out library books, visits to
local museums. Which will
have the greatest long-term
The chapter on education
serves up critical advice for
parents. Written by Dr. Lloyd
Cohen, a community activist
with a career that began at
Mico Teachers' College in
Jamaica, the Barry University
educator urges parents to take
active part in their children's
education. Critical to a child's
learning process, Cohen gives
practical tips and a checklist
to help parents get more
deeply involved. The N1u112-L
tions are hands-on and simple,
from providing a quiet place
for a child to study, to asking
the right questions and
rewarding to help maintain
The addition of important
websites and telephone num-
bers to resources that support
pre-K all the way up to col-
lege level programs proves
indispensable. The educator
also stresses the importance of
strong social and development
skills in a child's education.

The guide's holistic
approach also takes into con-
sideration the family's mental
health. Dr. Joan Muir, a
Broward County-based psy-
chiatrist who specializes in

White House officials said they
would like to see legislation
pass this fall or early next year.

family therapy and relation-
ships, provides advice for
immigrants who traditionally
frown upon psychological
"Well, it is really a ques-
tion of what's working,"
Magnus quips. "A typical
response to psychological ill-
health in friends and family
members is denial. Sometimes
we have to try different
options until we get the results
that we want. You might even
need to try multiple therapists
until resolution and forgive-
ness come. In any case,
haven't we all experimented
with some 'mad behaviors'?"
To help alleviate fears Dr.
Muir outlines the dilIL rL n L
between the various categories
of mental health practitioners
and gives advice on how to
choose the right professional
for particular issues. She even
,u,'L,' ,Is seeking out a thera-
pist that matches one's racial
or ethnic group to help estab-
lish a trusting relationship.
Indeed, the "Caribbean
American Immigrant
Resource Guide to South
Florida" is all about building
strong family and community
bonds. It acknowledges the
Caribbean American immi-
grant culture, yet also urges
stepping outside the walls of
tradition to embrace the
resources available in an
adopted country like the U.S.
The guide is available in
libraries across Dade and
Broward counties in Caribbean
American communities.

Dawn A. Davis is a freelance
writer for Caribbean Today.

August 2009

U.S.-based scholars launch Caribbean

American resource guide

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9 a.m. to noon

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Bahamas fashion show to feature Miss Universe contestants

Some of the world's most
beautiful women will
prowl the cat-
walk as models dur-
ing a fashion show
in The Bahamas
this month. k
The "Fashion
Show of the Miss
Universe Pageant" is
scheduled for Aug. 12
at the Sheraton
Nassau Beach Resort.
Show promoters
promise a unique
feature: 88 contest-
ants from the 58th
Miss Universe Reigning Mis
Pageant, from coun- Dayana Menc
tries ranging from
Albania to Zambia, will be
outfitted by three Bahamian
designers utilizing locally-manu-


;s Univ

factured fabrics of Androsia
and Bahama hand prints for
their creations.
"Not only is
.! this significant as the
First time that The
Bahamas is hosting
the Miss Universe
Pageant, but also
because the fashion
show will feature
another aspect of the
islands' creativity
and culture as dis-
played in fashion,"
Owen Bethel, chair-
man of the host
verse planning committee
and pageant coordi-
nator, was quoted as

saying in a recent press release.
"This will certainly have
the potential of catapulting the

'Rootz Extravaganza' to celebrate

Marcus Garvey in Fort Lauderdale

Cultural mix of live
musical and dance
performances, drama
productions, food and exhibi-
tions celebrating the life of a
Jamaican national hero will
be featured at the "2009
Marcus Garvey Rootz
Extravaganza" this month in
South Florida.
The two-day event, focus-
ing on the achievements of
Marcus Garvey, begins Aug.
15 at the Joseph C. Carter
Park, 1450 West Sunrise

Boulevard in
The first
day's program
of activities
starts at 2
p.m. on the
outside stage. Garvey
The special
highlight of the extravaganza
will be an appearance by
Garvey impersonator Ron

local fashion industry into the
international spotlight. It is
important for other designers
and novices to take advantage
of this and continue to build on
the opportunity."
The three designers chosen
after an open call are: Rachel
Turnquest-Garcia, of Rachel's
Boutique; Basheva Eve of La
Maison de Besh; and Sabrina
Francis of SE'B Fashions.

Bahamian designer Brynda
Knowles, whose mission is to
design the evening's outfits for
the reigning Miss Universe
Dayana Mendoza, will also be
contributing. Mendoza will
share the stage as co-host of
the event with Cl'harl Sealey.
The newly-crowned Miss
Universe will receive an outfit
created by Bahamian designer
Jeff St. John, of the House of

St. John, which she will wear at
her press briefing on the morn-
ing after her crowning. She will
also receive a bag from Harl
Taylor BAG.
The fashion show is being
organized and produced by
Mode Iles Ltd., producers of
"Islands of the World Fashion

Dispose of your

household waste the

RIGHT way!

Illegal dumping is a serious environmental crime. Piles
of illegally-dumped hazardous materials, auto parts,
construction debris and old furniture are often found in
neighborhoods and remote areas of the community.
Residents can do their part by disposing of trash the
proper way using one of these options.

All County residents can:

* Visit a Home Chemical Center for the legal and
safe disposal of household chemicals like paints,
pesticides, solvents, fluorescent bulbs and used
electronic waste.

Miami-Dade County Solid Waste customers can:
* Schedule a bulky waste pickup. Call 3-1-1 or go online

* Visit a Neighborhood Trash & Recycling Center for
disposal of household trash and yard debris.

If you live in a city, contact your municipal solid waste or
public works department for disposal options.
For more information, visit
To report illegal dumping, call 3-1-1.

Music Br D-J Iasslino
Clurcnl of Ile Ascension
Founder's Hall
11201 SW 160th Street, Miami, Florida, 33157
S FaiDaY RuasU Iq, 2009
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August 2009


- usw^caribbeantody..c.I

Bermuda denies U.S. rapper Rick Ross work permit

- A Bermudian promoter says
he has lost a significant amount
of money after he was forced
to cancel a concert on July 31.
The cancellation followed
a last-minute refusal by
Immigration Minster David
Burch to allow American rap-
per Rick Ross into the island.
Promoter Kendricks Zuill
said he was shocked by the
minister's decision and that
the application for a work per-
mit for the performer had
been turned down because
there were concerns about his
I iir, i Lr and conduct".
"The fans are disappoint-
ed, and out of everything, the
total loss for us is US$10,000
to $15,000," said Zuill.
The 33-year-old rapper
had been scheduled to be the
headline act at a Cup Match
holiday show planned for the

island's west end. Zuill said he
first thought the department
had mistaken the rapper,


whose real name is William
Roberts II, for I r~ \\, '
Ricky Ross, now in a
California prison for trying to
purchase 100 kilograms of
cocaine from a federal agent.
"I was assuming that they

may have had the wrong per-
son," he said, adding that he
tried to convince the
Immigration Ministry that it
had made an error in judg-
"I've been trying to con-
vince them that he is a man of
good conduct," said Zuill. "I
was providing them with
information, but all they told
me was that the minister was
not satisfied. It"s something
Before becoming a rap-
per, Roberts worked as a cor-
rections officer in Florida.
According to Zuill, the enter-
tainer has never been impris-
oned or convicted of a crime,
but was arrested in Jan. 2008
in Florida, United States on
gun and drug charges. The
charges were later dropped.

Lady Saw's goes on 'Extra Raw' career romp


No listener needs to drill
through the full 13 years of
Lady Saw's career to hit the
true, hard
core of her ,
music. But it ." -
can be fun. So *r
why not?
The style of
this Jamaican
dancehall dee-
jay, whose
real name is
Marion Hall,
is not for
everyone. But
her signature
raunchy Extra Raw
anthems will
find a note many can appreci-
ate...and maybe learn a few
tricks along the way.
Lady Saw brings the bed-
room to the public in a fash-
ion that sometimes brutally,
but skillfully, cuts straight
through the initial blushes and
emerges the other side with a
bucket of entertainment in
Now VP Records,
through its release of "Extra
Raw.. .The Best of Lady Saw"
CD, is offering the dancehall
diva's best romp, bundled up
in a power package of 18 cuts.
No secrets here. Saw unveils
how, when, why, where and
how often she wants it. Up
front, she'll let you know what
not to try too.
Saw's hit after uncompro-
mising hit flow from this CD,
beginning with the opening
salvo when the deejay asks for
a higher power to simply
"Find A Good Man" for her.
She wants "Good Wuk" and,
as in the duet with Shabba
Ranks, she "Want it Tonight".
Other collaborations feature

Beenie Man on "Healing" and
"L, ,, r with Ce'cile.
But Lady Saw doesn't
need much help in spelling
out the terms of her sexual
Size, stami-
na, skill all
01- types, how-
ever, like
pretty boys
and crimi-
nals, do not.
She cautions
females to
look after

instead of
solely on a man, and even
throws scorn on some by
boasting "I've Got Your
But while Saw is willing
to grant her bedroom partner
all the sustained pleasures
with "Hice It Up", she draws
the line in several areas. In
"Sycamore Tree" she shoos
away the lover who wants her
to Iait to certain favors.

But "Extra Raw" is not just
about raunchy behavior. Lady
Saw's often passionate lyrics
and delivery dip into several
controversial topics, including
safe sex, infidelity and infertility.
So if the Grammy-win-
ning artiste (Saw won for a
duet with No Doubt in 2003)
can get past the usual stereo-
type certain snobs have
branded her with, so can they.
It'll probably be worth it.
For Saw's true fans,
"Extra Raw" is a personal tro-
phy for sticking with the
"First Lady of Dancehall" for

over a dozen years. A bonus
DVD featuring Saw in her
prime during a 1997 perform-
ance in New York and some
of her best music videos, spice
up the package. Producers
Dave Kelly, Tony Kelly,
Richie D and John John are
Saw and VP have since
parted company, and she vows
to take a more mature path,
but this compilation CD is
what her fans first liked the
best of an artiste telling the
stories others are too sheepish
to attempt. It's probably what
they always will.

Gordon Williams is Caribbean
Today's managing editor.

Red Plastic Bag claims

record ninth calypso title

CMC Stedson "Red Plastic
Bag" Wiltshire sang his way to
a record-setting ninth Pic-O-

Red Plastic Bag

De-Crop calypso title last
month as the annual Crop
Over celebrations neared a
climax here.
Wiltshire outclassed nine
other competitors with his
renditions of "Home Drums"
and "Something's
Happening", beating former
winner John King into second
place and Anderson "Blood"
Armstrong, formerly of the
band Square One, into third
"Bag" or "RPB", as he is
more affectionately known to
his fans, was literally on cloud
nine after recapturing the title
that he lost to Adrian Clarke
in last year's competition,
especially with the response to
"Something's Happening"
which he performed in the
second round, sending the
packed Kensington Oval into
a frenzy.
"It is a wonderful feeling
to see how people responded

'Rootz Extravaganza' to celebrate

Marcus Garvey in Fort Lauderdale

Bobb-Semple, who also
worked as the voice of Marcus
Garvey in the award-winning
PBS documentary film,
"Marcus Garvey: Look For
Me In The Whirlwind".
The Guyanese-born actor
was the host of Caribbean
Forum, a weekly television
program that he produced on
WNYE-TV in New York.

The schedule will also
include live reggae music fea-
turing artistes Screwdriver,
Marcia Ball, Standpipe, Natty
Remo, Shanty Plus and Highah
Seekah. There will also be tra-
ditional African dancing by the
hometown Tribeholistic Dance
Troupe, plus the Black Empire
Dancers from Orlando. A mul-

timedia Marcus Garvey video,
photograph and art exhibition
will be open for viewing inside
the adjacent Recreation Room
The extravaganza will
continue on Aug. 17, the
122nd anniversary of Garvey's
birth. The celebration will take
place inside the Carter Park
Recreation Room from 7 p.m.
to 10 p.m. The schedule
includes audio-visual presenta-
tions and community service
awards. The keynote speaker
will be former Jamaican
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Dudley Thompson, who will
be among the award recipi-
ents. The patron of the Garvey
birthday anniversary will be
Jamaica's Consul General
Sandra Grant-Griffiths.

to the song. When the level of
expectation is as it was, it was
tough to come here and pro-
duce. It is amazing how peo-
ple have taken to the song,"
he said.

The veteran calypsonian
took home BDS$10,500
($5,250) and a fully-loaded
2009 Toyota Corolla.
2008 Junior Calypso
Monarch, Sir Ruel, finished
fourth in his first outing in the
Pic-O-De-Crop finals.
Clarke, who failed to
impress the judges, finished
down the field in sixth posi-
tion, while Terencia "TC"
Coward, who won both the
Sweet Soca and Party
Monarch crowns last month,
finished ninth, failing to land
the historic triple. Also com-
peting were Sheldon Hope
(fifth), Bumba (seventh),
HeeHaw (eighth) and Colin
Spencer (10th).

Street Address:
9020 SW 152nd Street, Miami, FL 33157
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 6010
Miami, FL 33116-6010.
Telephone: (305) 238-2868
(305) 253-6029 Fax: (305) 252-7843
Toll-Free Fax: 1-866-290-4550
1-800-605-7516 Jamaica: 654-7282
Send ads to:
Vol. 20, Number 9 AUGUST 2009

Managing Editor
Graphic Artist

Account Executive

Account Executive
Account Executive
Accounting Manager
Caribbean Media Source
Media Representatives
Opinions expressed by editors and writers
are not necessarily those of thepublisher.
Caribbean Today, an independent
news magazine, is published every month
by Caribbean Publishing & Services, Inc.
Caribbean Today is not responsible
for unsolicited manuscripts or photos. To
guarantee return, please include a self-
addressed stamped envelope.
Articles appearing in Caribbean
Today may not be reproduced without
written permission of the editor.

August 2009

Mop"- ........ ...... "Il""Ill""Ill!"","""""!Illllm
In RTS enTIE RTn i n m oEnT


How should we think
about racism in the
age of President
Barack Obama? In his first
speech as president to the
nation's oldest and largest civil
rights organization, Obama's
answer to that question was a
rich mixture of his presidential
agenda, Bill Cosby's self-help
spiel, the Reverend Jesse
Jackson's political push and
rapper Jay-Z's oratorical flow.
Yet, as a historical turning
point, what he said was less
than who was
saying it.
first president
of African
descent takes
office in the
same year as
the 100th
anniversary CLARENCE
of a group PAGE
that helped
make it possi-
ble, the National Association
for the Advancement of
Colored People (NAACP).
The irony of that happy
coincidence is how much it
haunted conversations at the
convention with a niinii
question: As civil rights-era
protests have declined and
blacks participate at all levels
of politics, is the NAACP still
Obama chose to answer
that question by reframing it.
Regardless of how relevant it
may or may not be at the end
of its first century, he offered
ways for it to become more
relevant in the next.

After his obligatory salute
to the debt that he and other
successful African Americans
owe to the NAACP's past
leaders, he left no doubt that
he believes "the pain" of prej-
udice and discrimination
against blacks, Latinos, gays,
lesbians, Muslims and others
is real and "still felt."
Nevertheless, he pointed
out, they are not "even the
steepest barriers to opportuni-
ty today."
More difficult, he said, are
the often-neglected "structural
inequalities that our nation's
legacy of discrimination has
left behind." This led into a
list of Obama policies and
programs that, while color-
blind in their application, have
particular importance to black
Americans who have dispro-
portionately been left behind.
Yet, the most notable por-
tion of the speech came with
his self-help message, the same
message that last year Rev.
Jackson was caught by an open

TV. network microphone bit-
terly deriding as "talking down
to black people." At the
NAACP gathering, Obama
received rousing ,.I n11 as
he said, "Government pro-
grams alone won't get our chil-
dren to the Promised Land."
He called for "a new
mindset, a new set of atti-
Itud against an internalized
sense of limitation in which
"so many in our community
have come to expect so little
of ourselves."
His Cosbyesque message
to put away the Xbox and put
your kids to bed at a reason-
able hour, like so many of his
other messages, transcends
racial lines. Yet it has special
meaning to African Americans
who, polls show, vote liberal
but hold conservative moral
values. It is also a message that
would be hard to imagine
coming with much moral cred-
ibility from any president
except one who grew up as
Obama did, as a mixed-race
son of a father who aban-
doned him in his early child-

The speech was classic
Obama. He found ways to
address issues related to race
in terms and values that are
not limited to any one racial
or ethnic community. It
fleshed out in many ways the
issues raised in his only other
major address on race, his
Philadelphia campaign speech
to explain his relationship
with the Rev. Jeremiah
Ironically the victory of
America's first black president
came partly because he chose
to avoid the subject of race,
no matter how much he was
taunted to address it by the
likes of Rush Limbaugh on
the right or Ralph Nader on
the left. It is politically safer
for him to show us models of
racial harmony than to tell us
about them. Like the
Huxtables on "The Cosby
Show", Obama and family vis-
ibly redeem the old 1950s
American middle-class family
ideal from the clutches of
irony and dare the chattering
classes to make fun of it.
Watching his NAACP
speech, I was reminded of a
lingering question among his
skeptics: How could he have
spent 20 years in the church of
a racial firebrand like Rev.
Wright. One reason, I have
long theorized, is that along
with his religious lessons he
was learning the depths of
America's racial divide so that



Ow *

The burden of excess baggage

President Obama's

new racial doctrine

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hey say that still waters
run deep, and all that
glitters is not gold.
Apart from being deep, those
still waters may hold many
dangers and denizens of the
deep, monsters that lurk
there, hidden perils just wait-
ing for a chance to jump out
on any unsuspecting victim.
So many things are not
what they seem, and so many
people also have hidden dan-
gers and perils lurking
beneath their otherwise inno-
cent exterior. Just read those
advice columns and you'll see
what hidden secrets exist
beneath the skin of seemingly
ordinary folks. This woman
wrote that she slept with 80
men in four years, and that
she can't even remember
some of their names. Now she
seeks advice.
Talk about excess bag-
I'm sure if we could see
pictures of those persons who
write those letters, we'd be in
shock, as never in your wildest
dreams would you imagine
that So and So Can't Mash
Ants Innocent Holier Than
Thou person was weighed
down by so much baggage.

Like it or not, everyone
has a past, but some have
more skeletons in their closets
than what's out at the ceme-
tery. As a result, many try to
hide it, and under pain of
death, will not divulge their
baggage to anyone.
But here's the rub, it
always comes to the fore, as
the weight of the baggage is of
such, that it bears down on
their soul, shapes it, arrests its
growth, stunting it, and then
unleashes its fury on the per-
son nearest and dearest, the
poor spouse.
Elsewhere our baggage is
usually made up of emotional
detritus, the flotsam and jet-
sam of our emotional history
that lies in wait, dormant but
not extinct and therefore
prone to erupt at any time. So
you target that nice young
man who has all the attributes

and even those who do not
manifest it in a physical way,
still inflict immense harm on
their spouses in different
ways. Their baggage is so rid-
dled with issues that they are
impossible to live with.
Women do not escape,
although they tend to hide
their baggage and keep their
suitcases tightly shut for a
very long time. So many
women are carrying around
burdens that almost cripple
their emotional wellbeing.
Just the other day I heard
about these ladies, foxes, pret-
ty like money, but who were
counterfeit, as they had per-
haps the ultimate baggage of
all and had luggage that they
dare not open. They both had
sex change operations, were
once men, but are now living
as women and their partners
do not know. Now if those
partners ever find out, how do
you think they're going to

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that you
desire, and
you rush
headlong into
a relationship
without doing
a background
move. TONY
months down
the line, both
of you are having a heated
discussion and suddenly you
hear the resounding noise of a
slap across your face and you
see stars. The man shat yu a
box and you never saw it com-
ing. All those years the man
had been carrying the emo-
tional baggage of being
abused as a child, so as a
result, he in turn becomes a
physical abuser and has
assaulted his past four women.

So many men are weighed
down by emotional baggage

August 2009


- usw^caribbeantody..c.I

VIE W P 0 I n T

Jamaicans abroad have equally been beacons of The burden of e)

achievement ~ consul general (CONTINUED FROM PAGE 9)

I am privi-
leged to
warmest greet-
ings to the
Jamaican com- '.
munity, and t '
indeed the
many well Li&
wishers and SANDRA
friends of GRANT-
Jamaica, who GRIFFITHS
have come
together to
commemorate the 47th
anniversary of our nation's
Independence, which includes
for us the celebration of
Emancipation Day on Aug. 1.
We celebrate our national
festival from July 31 to Aug. 6
this year under the theme: "I
Believe in Jamaica", and here in
Florida, we have amplified it in
the theme of our annual thanks-
giving service to specify the cel-
ebration of "Our Nation, our
Family, Our Home".
We celebrate with great
pride, and as we mark this
august occasion with a variety
of community experiences, we
do not refute the fact that chal-

lenges at many junctures have
accompanied our journey. But,
equally, none can deny that
over these 47 years we have
earned through the determined
efforts of our scholars and
political thinkers, our entrepre-
neurs, our athletes, the expo-
nents of our creative arts a
multiplicity of triumphs that
any nation would indeed be
proud to claim, all on the merit
of our inspired talents.

Jamaicans abroad have
equally been beacons of
achievement in as many fields
as they have dared to conquer.
Individually and collectively
our people contribute positive-
ly to world society, here in the
United States as elsewhere,
and embellish from day to day
the luster of our nation's
A sense of self, and a
blessed and unique ingenuity
of spirit and deeds have been
traditional hallmarks of our
We are thankful to our
ancestors, our pantheon of

national heroes, the ordinary
heroes amongst us in our fami-
lies, who have all shaped our
society to the good.
We thank the Almighty
for the forbearance and forti-
tude that has sustained our
nation thus far. We move for-
ward with certitude that if we
hold fast to our worthy tradi-
tions, that spirit that we foster
in our homeland and share
boldly with the world, will lead
us to reap just rewards.
Let us celebrate together
therefore fully confident that
with the strength and maturity
of a great nation we will contin-
ue to achieve. In this spirit, we
join hands and hearts whether
at home or from more distant
shores, and at the same time
renew our faith in our home-
land Jamaica land we love.

The above "Message of
Emancipation and
Independence 2009" was
delivered by Sandra Grant-
Griffiths, consul general,
Consulate of Jamaica.

Obama's new racial doctrine

someday he could bridge it.
His sermon to the NAACP -
he preached too much to call
it a "speech" reveals how
well he learned his lessons.
It remains to be seen how
the NAACP uses those les-
sons. Other organizations like

the National Urban League or
100 Black Men already
emphasize economic develop-
ment and family-mentoring
programs that build the
black community's internal
strengths. Today's NAACP
sees their goal as "social jus-
tice", not "social service," as

Chairman Julian Bond has
put it. But the families left
behind by the civil rights rev-
olution need both.

2009 Clarence Page.
Distributed by Tribune Media
Services, Inc.



AUGUST 22, 2009

The Florida Chapters of the KC and Calabar Old Boys' Associations
jointly present:

The hiaugural David "Wagg" Hunt Memorial Classic
Saturday, August 22d
Even begins at 12:00 pam.
Miramar Regional Park
16801Miraar Pkwy
Miramar, forida 33027
Food, Fun and Music (DJ SiddyBee)
with two games scheduled:

I Match: Cornwall vs. Munro
David Hunt Tropy Mach: KC VS. Calabar

lMmcal fnm hacs i 'it oloani lw lishinp swhKaiWCtip aW('W inllA. ir, toWmml th
inmI 4fonf JmalinuLJx u NJI lia1r. Imj K(Cmal a (arljtuMiminag ouih.kii -Wji VIluL

August 2009

react? Now that's the ultimate
baggage, as all the crosses
known to mankind will be

Still, those are extreme
cases. The more common ones
are like marrying someone
and finding out that she was a
low life in a past life.
Oh yes, it has caught
many an unsuspecting man
who didn't take the time to do
the necessary background
check. As soon as the honey-
moon is over and they move
into the house, the suitcase is
opened. Along come her
mother, uncle, two brothers
and a cousin, to take up resi-
dence as the tenement yard is
visited upon you, much like
the plagues of Egypt. And so
the demons are released. The
quarrels and cantankerousness
are beyond belief, plus the
words that fly out of her
mouth, combined with her
attitude are mind-baelinei-
Then to make it worse,
you find out that her n ipli-\i."'
is really her child from a previ-
ous relationship. All the trou-
bles of the world, unleashed on
your universe.
It happens to women too,
as men bring home outside
children that they somehow
e1 >rg, li" to mention. For peo-
ple who have never experi-

excess baggage

enced such horror, it may
seem a bit far-fetched or even
impossible, but these things
do happen, so just give thanks
that they don't happen to you.
But victims do tell their
tales of woe. Have you ever
heard the term Warrior
Woman? Well they do exist,
and like the Vikings, Huns
and Vandals of old, they are
not happy unless they are war-
ring, as it's all they know.
Naturally they would
never attract a man if they dis-
played such tendencies, so
they act docile, like they can't
mash ants, almost playing pos-
sum, until it's too late, then
they unleash their fury on you
like a Banshee on crack.
So how do you avoid this?
Well, be careful who you pick
up, do a background check
like what those stores do on
you when you're buying stuff
on hire purchase.
Ask plenty questions
about the person, seek out
their friends or even past
lovers if possible, test the
waters, and most importantly,
don't be hasty.
If perchance your lover
has neither baggage nor big
luggage, then give thanks, but
then again, you may be the
one who's afflicted and
weighed down.

seidol@hotmail. com


oc us


T & T ......bentda" *.. m0

~ A Caribbean Today special feature

Economic slowdown, but no recession in T&T ~ government

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC The Trinidad and
Tobago government has
denied suggestions that the
economy of the oil-rich twin
island republic has gone into
recession, although admitting
"there has been a slowing
"What we are saying, and
there is no question about it,
that there is a slow down,
(but) does that make a reces-
sion...we are simply saying
that has not
said Finance
Karen Nunez
Latest fig-
ures released
by the Central
bank of Tesheira
Trinidad and
Tobago (CBTT) show that the
local economy had contracted
by 3.3 percent in the first
quarter of 2009, compared
with growth of 2.4 percent in
the first quarter of 2008. It
said that activity in the energy
sector fell by two percent in
the first quarter of 2009 and
that the non-energy sector
declined by 5.4 per cent on a
year-on-year basis to Mar.
Within the non-energy
sector, the manufacturing, dis-
tribution and construction sec-
tors declined by 11.7 percent,
3.7 percent and 2.7 percent,

But the CBTT said that
on a year-on-year basis to
May 2009, headline inflation
declined to 10.3 percent, down
from a high of 15.4 percent in
October 2008 and 11.9 percent
in April 2009.
It said core inflation,
which excludes food prices,
measured 5.8 percent on a
year-on-year basis to May

The CBTT said that
unemployment rate rose to
five percent for the quarter
ending Mar. 2009 from 3.9
percent in quarter ending
Dec. 2008. It said that the
labor force participation rate
increased in the first quarter
of 2009 to 63.6 percent com-
pared with 63.1 percent for
the same period in 2008.
"On a year-on-year basis
to March 2009, employment in
the construction, manufactur-
ing and services sectors fell by
0.9 per cent, 3.3 percent and
2.5 percent, respectively;
Employment in the agricultur-
al sector increased by 30.7 per
cent in the quarter ending
March 2009, to reach 21,300."
The finance minister said
the figures were not enough to
indicate a recession.
"You are going to see
things, significant unemploy-
ment rates which you are not
(now) seeing in Trinidad and
Tobago (including) closure of
businesses," she explained. "I
am not saying that there is not

slowing down, closure of busi-
nesses, income levels dropping
dramatically, those are some
of the factors that you

will see."
The finance minister said
that consumer credit fell from
May last year, but business

credit and real estate mort-
gage lending grew 6.5 and 13.6
per cent for the same period.

Political leaders differ on

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC Citizens of Trinidad
and Tobago observed
Emancipation Day on Aug. 1
even as political leaders of the
oil-rich twin-island republic
used the occasion to send dif-
ferent messages regarding the
significance of the event.
Prime Minister Patrick
Manning said Emancipation
Day marks the end of one of
the most inhumane activities
in the history of mankind, but
Opposition Leader Basdeo
Panday used the occasion to
call for an end to what he said
was discrimination in Trinidad
and Tobago.
In his message, Manning
said "as we engage in our
annual commemoration, let us
remember, without bitterness,
but with uttermost solemnity
and profoundest reflection,
that irremovable blot in the
history of humanity, so that
we strengthen our resolve
against enslavement wherever
it rears its ugly head.
"At this time, let us reded-
icate ourselves to a country

where justice and equality
reign for all people in our
diverse society. Let us also con-
tinue our nation's support of


all global efforts against
oppression wherever it exists in
our world."
He said that whilst
Emancipation Day must recall
the horrors of the past, it is
equally a time for great cele-
"The intrinsic strength and
beauty of the human spirit did
eventually triumph. Slavery
eventually came to an end. But

significance of
most importantly, in the years
and eras lth rL,,ihr, every-
where in the Americas and the
Caribbean, notwithstanding
the legacy of economic and
social limitations, descendants
of slaves rose to the heights of
attainment in all fields.
"It is an extraordinary
achievement and speaks of a
heroism that must be held up
as inspiration for all genera-
tions of all origins. Also, and
perhaps even more important
than individual and celebrated
success, is the contribution of
the African diaspora as a
whole to strengthening the
fabric of society in so many
countries of the New World
through constructive activity
and building of families and
"On this occasion, we
must again record the enor-
mous contribution of our citi-
zens of African origin to the
development of our country.
From the time they first set
foot on these shores to the
present day, this group toiled,
along with others, first for the

T&T's Emancipation Day
foundations of our society, tion."

and then later, to build the
independent Trinidad and


Panday hailed the end of
slavery in 1834 as "a step
towards the acknowledgment
of all men as members of the
family of humanity; a condem-
nation of the oppression,
abuse and exploitation of all
people; and triumph in a
struggle against racism and
other forms of discrimina-

However, the former
prime minister said to achieve
the ideal that all men are
equal has not been an easy
fight in the practical, real
"While there have been
landmark successes in the
recognition of certain funda-
mental rights through the per-
severance of great activists,
the struggle is still not over
175 years after the emancipa-
tion of slaves in the colonial
He said Emancipation
Day should also provide an
opportunity for the country to
reflect on the current state of
"Across the national land-
scape, and indeed across the
various ethnic groups in
Trinidad and Tobago, there
are persons who are not rising
to their fullest potential. They
are the victims of social injus-
tice, political neglect and
some form of discrimination."


Photograph by Government Information Service
Dexnell Peters, left, winner of the Inaugural Eric Williams "School Bags" Essay Competition, can hardly contain his joy after meet-
ing Trinidad and Tobago's President George Maxwell Richards at President's House on July 30.

August 2009



August 2009


Nov"YA MiamilFt. Lauderdale

us$22 us$1f
'rinidad & Tobago
Ion w av on Caribbeafl AIrlineal





0 c u s

o n

T P.& T ......i" ean'" ayxm.

~ A Caribbean Today special feature

T&T's ethnic issues surface during health care debate

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC Don't expect to see
pictures of mass graves scat-
tered across the oil rich twin
island republic, or for that
matter, a special court as in
the case in Rwanda to try
those accused of trying to
have one race dominate the
other through mass killings.
But allegations of ethnic
cleansing in a country where
the two main races are almost
equal have now engrossed the
Parliament in Trinidad and
At the heart of the allega-
tion is a claim by gynaecolo-
gist and Opposition legislator
Dr. Tim Goopeesingh last
month that many Indo-
Trinidadian doctors were
being forced out of the Port of
Spain General Hospital in
favour of Afro Trinidadian
medical practitioners.
"There has been an issue
of ethnic cleansing at Port-of-
Spain General Hospital as far
as the doctors are concerned.
I understand that most of the
East Indian doctors have had
to leave Port-of-Spain
Hospital. I understand the
Port-of-Spain Hospital is a
virtual African hospital now,"
Gopeesingh said.

The 2000 census figures
released by the Central
Statistical Office (CSO) show
that out a population of 1.26
million, 37.5 percent are of
Afro Trinidadian descent,

while the Indo-Trinidadian
community accounts for
40 percent. The category
"mixed" account for 20 per-
cent, the third highest accord-
ing to the CSO figures.
Race has always been an
issue in Trinidad and Tobago,
but thankfully as many social
scientists and politicians say, it
has not spilled over into
killings on the scale as wit-
nessed in places like Rwanda
and Bosnia.
The term "ethnic cleans-

ing" first came to public
prominence in Yugoslavia, to
describe the scale of the geno-
cide and forced migrations
that ensued in the Serbian-
Croat conflicts of the 1990s.

The Trinidad Guardian
newspaper, in an editorial,
said that such a description is
not just an inaccurate way of
describing the situation that
Gopeesingh believes exist at
the Port-of-Spain General
"It is also adamantly sen-
sationalist", noted the news-
paper, adding "it's virulently
The allegation by
Gopeesingh is not the first to
be made in Trinidad, even as
political commentators
acknowledged that it might
just be the first time that the
term "ethnic cleansing" has
made it way into the
Parliament. One newspaper
stated that Gopeesingh's accu-
sation "is normally described
as discrimination, a reprehen-
sible enough term for the
practice of preferential treat-
ment of employees on the
basis of race".
During the 1995-2001

Coat of Arms
period when the Indo-domi-
nated United National
Congress (UNC) held power
in this Caribbean country, sup-
porters of the Afro-dominated
People's National Movement
(PNM) claimed that they were


Map of Trinidad and Tobago

being sidelined to the point
that the name of the state-
owned oil company, Petrotrin
was changed to P1 iro i-Singh".
Recent court rulings have
added fuel to the debate, par-
ticularly where Indo-
Trinidadians have been suc-
cessful in accusing the govern-
ment of discrimination in its
hiring practices.
The Indo-Trinbago
Equality Council (ITEC),
which has lodged complaints
with the Equal Opportunity
Commission (EOC) following
the court rulings, last month,
has since written Prime
Minister Patrick Manning urg-
ing that a Commission of
Enquiry be established "to
investigate the serious allega-
tions of racial discrimination
against Indian workers in the
public sector.
"Indeed the minuscule
number of Indian Permanent
Secretaries reflects this per-
ceived State bias", the group

Leader of the Opposition
Business in the Senate Wade
Mark accused the Manning

a CLI]ture so rich 'youLI can taste it


S Carnival in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is a dazzling display of both native and multicultural
influences- Known worldwide for its distinctive take on an international festival, some consider this island
nation the unofficial "birthplace" of the Caribbean's most spectacular celebration of art and history.
Happy Independence Day, Trinidad and Tobago. 8 31 (P9

pubhx cor 02009 Publix Asset Manaqerement Company

Our lovely Carnival ladies are made from Aloe Vera, Pineapple, Pineapple Leaves, Raspberries,
Strawberries, Kiwi, White Cherries, Grapes, CrIantro, Jalepeno Peppers, Vanilla Beans, Brown
Rice, Kidney Beans, Coffee Beans, Wild Rice, Lemons, Oranges, Limes and Bok Choy.




August 2009

Nj7pp- e


- usw^caribeantoda..o I

I rocus


~ A Caribbean Today special feature

Women's group wants T&T HEAD OF

public national gender policy

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC The Network of NGO
of Trinidad and Tobago for
the Advancement of Women
has called on the Patrick
Manning government to make
public the latest version of a
National Draft Gender Policy
for the country.
The NGO said that the
draft policy was supposed to
have been laid in Parliament a
month ago as a Green Paper,
and that "although it was listed
on the Parliament website in
the Supplemental Order Paper
of Friday July 17th, it was in
fact not laid then or since.
"To add insult to injury
the Parliament has gone in to
recess until September. We
cannot understand why, four
years after the arbitrary with-
drawal by the prime minister
of the last draft, the govern-
ment is playing hide and seek
with their sanitised version,"
said group coordinator Hazel
Brown last month.
"This gender policy has
been in the making for over 20
years and millions of taxpayers
dollars and people's time and
energy has been invested in it. It
cannot therefore be hidden
from the public view any more."

She said that the 2005 ver-
sion, which was withdrawn,

was produced following
extensive consultations with
different communities and
organizations all over Trinidad
and Tobago. The consultations
dealt with a wide range of
issues and made recommenda-
tions regarding family, educa-
tion, health, labor, employ-
ment, violence, and economics
among other areas.
"No one knows what
was removed or added in the
secret non transparent
process since the withdrawal.
Now that we are told that
Cabinet has approved their
version. We want to see it.
Why are they hiding it?" she
She said that the NGO
was therefore advocating that
the ministry publish in the
newspapers a user friendly
version of their revised draft
policy and work plan for pub-
lic comment, which should be
reviewed by a small working
group with a mandate to have
a document ready for adop-
tion by Nov. 2009.
"The process of develop-
ing a national gender policy
has been going on for more
than 20 years. We cannot
afford to delay any longer,"
Brown said.

Photograph by Dennis Gordon
Yvonne Gittens-Joseph, Trinidad and Tobago's high commissioner to Jamaica, presents an award to Yanique Amoy Henry, left, a
student at Hampton School in Jamaica, for winning the inaugural Eric Williams CAPE Prize in History recently. Henry also received,
on behalf of The Eric Williams Memorial Collection at The University of the West Indies (T&T), a laptop computer and book prize.

T&T becomes latest Caribbean country to join IOM

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC- Trinidad and Tobago has
joined four other Caribbean
community (CARICOM) coun-
tries in becoming full members of
the Geneva-based International
Organization for Migration
A statement issued
recently by T&T's Ministry of
Foreign Affairs noted that the
country was admitted as a full
member late last month and
joins The Bahamas, Belize,
Haiti and Jamaica.

The Dominican Republic
also has full membership sta-
tus, while Cuba and Guyana
enjoy observer status.
The statement said that as
a result of being a full mem-
ber, T&T can now seek to
benefit from additional train-
ing and programs in areas
such as best practices in
migration management; assis-
tance with voluntary returns
of displaced and trafficked
persons; assistance with count-
er-trafficking in humans and

migration data collection and
related research activities to
ensure greater appreciation
for migration trends in the
The Ministry of Foreign
Affairs said that the country
has already benefitted from a
number of IOM programs and
has participated in several
IOM activities as a non-mem-
ber state since April 2005.

T&T's ethnic issues surface during health care debate

administration of "pursuing a
practice of selective discrimi-
nation particularly as it relates
to employment in the public
Gopeesingh said there
were more than 150 senior
doctors in Trinidad and Tobago
of East Indian descent and that
"they have been forced out of
the ,wr\u L .
Incensed by the state-
ment, Prime Minister
Manning immediately called
for its retraction adding that
such comments were the kind
to be expected from "gutter
MIipL and not from a parlia-
"I don't want you to bring
it. I'm not interested in it. You
see, Mr Speaker, it would have
been enough if the member
had come and said 'on the
basis of this evidence I make
this I jILt_ inlI', I would have
objected also, I would have
objected also, Mr. Speaker,
because evidence or no evi-
dence, that kind of talk in a
Parliament like this does us no
good," Manning said.
The prime minister said
while he had respect for

Gopeesingh as a doctor and a
senior parliamentarian, he was
"very much taken aback when
on the basis on what the
Honourable Member said he
was told, he sought to come to
the Parliament to raise an
issue of race and to raise it in
such a manner that could be
the source of tremendous dis-
"It is not the kind of talk
that I would ascribe to a
Member of Parliament. It
sounded like the kind of talk
that you will expect from a
gutter snipe...that is how it
sounded to me. Most inappro-
priate," Manning added.
The Leader of
Government Business in
Parliament Colm Imbert, for
his part, described the state-
ments as irresponsible in the
extreme and accused the
Opposition legislator of utter-
ing the "racist statements that
could provoke racial hatred.
"Mr. Speaker, without a
shred of evidence...irresponsi-
ble in the extreme," Imbert
said, noting that the vast
majority of medical practition-
ers in the public service were
of East Indian descent.
"It is a fact that the

majority of doctors in this
country are of East Indian
descent. I can say without any
fear of contradiction that the
majority of doctors in every
hospital in the public health
service, with the possible
exception of Tobago, are of
East Indian descent."

But the criticisms did not
deter Gopeesingh, who told a
news conference afterwards
that he "felt compelled" to
bring the matter into the
Parliament raiL r than hiding
it because I would have been
doing an injustice to the socie-

ty, particularly when people's
lives are at risk.
"We cannot sweep it
under the carpet because to
sweep it under the carpet
would be doing a massive dis-
service to the national com-
munity and it must be brought
out and Parliament is the
place that it has to be dis-
"We cannot discuss this
outside. We are elected by the
people and the people expect
us to discuss this," he said,
producing a list of names of
senior doctors of Indian
descent who had been forced
out of the system.
The Opposition legislator
said his information about the
"ethnic cleansing" at the hos-
pital had been provided to
him by former junior Health
Minister Fuad Khan, who in a
radio interview went even fur-
ther indicating that the East
Indian doctors were being
replaced by doctors from
Africa. Khan, who said he had
been by-passed for a consul-
tancy position at the hospital
in favor of a doctor with less
qualification and experience
from Africa, said he would not
have mind had the job gone to

a Afro Trinidadian.
But the Trinidad and
Tobago Medical Association
(TTMA) said it was distancing
itself from Gopeesingh's alle-
gation, adding that it felt
embarrassed by the whole
"He has brought the whole
profession into disrepute,
because he made it sound as
though Indian doctors treat
African patients differently
and this is not true," said Dr.
Frank Ramlackhansingh,
TfMA's public relations
"As professionals, we
treat all of our patients the
same, there is no racial bias.
We look after all patients in
the same way regardless of
their race or their background.
It doesn't matter if they are
from Laventille or any other
part of the country, we look at
the whole person," said the
TTMA official, adding that
some of the names on
Gopeesingh's list are people
who left the service voluntari-
ly or had reached retirement


August 2009


us on

~ A Caribbean Today special feature

Tobago offers bliss on the beaches

~ Hotels help couples celebrate with romantic Caribbean honeymoon getaways

Newlyweds looking to
begin a life of bliss can
relax and enjoy a
romantic honeymoon together
on the island of Tobago.
With more than 200 miles
of coastline filled with half-
moon shaped bays and seclud-
ed coves, rich eco-adventure
activities and a delightful
blend of traditional and fine-
dining restaurants, lovebirds
can enjoy a memorable
Caribbean getaway for the
first time as husband and wife.
Accessible by direct flight
service from major North
American gateways including
Atlanta and New York, cou-
ples can spend less time trav-
eling to Tobago and more
time fanning the flames of
love and romance with the fol-
lowing honeymoon getaways:

Bacolet Beach Club
The cascading hillside
resort is a small elegant bou-
tique hotel located minutes
away from Tobago's Crown
Point Airport. Lovebirds
looking for a mix of warmth
and elegance can stay at the
Bacolet Beach Club and take
advantage of the Honeymoon

Crescent special which
includes six night/seven day
accommodations, complimen-
tary bottle of champagne, fruit
platter and bouquet of flowers
upon arrival, in-room cham-
pagne breakfast on the first
day, breakfast for two at the
hotel restaurant, one romantic
massage for two and one day
jeep rental.
For more information visit or
call 868-639-3551.

Coco Reef Resort & Spa
With lush tropical land-
scaping and a private white-
sand beach, Coco Reef Resort
& Spa is considered one of
Tobago's premier hotels with a
blend of modern convenience
and old world charm.
The honeymoon getaway
at Coco Reef Resort & Spa
includes four nights/five days
deluxe ocean view accommo-
dations with private balcony,
one tropical breakfast, a les-
son in the art of romantic
massage, daily candle-lit din-
ners with a bottle of wine,
tropical fruit basket and floral
bouquet upon arrival, one day
vehicle rental and roundtrip

Iriple wedding at Pigeon Point loDago.
airport transfers.
For more information
visit or call

Palms Villa Resort
This 10-acre estate com-
bines the tranquility and beau-
ty of the unspoiled rainforest
with luxury villa accommoda-
tions. After the ceremony is
over newlyweds can enjoy
their first week together at the

Palms Villa Resort Tobago
with the Romantic
Honeymoon special which
includes seven nights accom-
modations in a luxurious pri-
vate villa, complimentary bot-
tle of champagne and a basket
of fresh fruit upon arrival,
tropical breakfast the first
morning and a romantic
boat trip.
For more information visit or

call 800-819-5118.

Blue Waters Inn
Considered one of the
Caribbean's best eco-resorts,
Blue Waters Inn is conve-
niently located on the bound-
ary of a 46-acre wildlife sanc-
tuary and the Caribbean Sea.
Honeymooners looking
for a little adventure can stay
at the Blue Waters Inn and
take advantage of the special
which includes the choice of a
one day scuba dive lesson,
half-day island tour, half-day
of snorkeling or half-day rain-
forest tour, a complimentary
bottle of wine and tropical
fruit basket.
For information visit or
call 868-660-4341.
Tobago, sister island to
Trinidad, is the quintessential
Caribbean island with seclud-
ed beaches, quaint villages,
award winning eco-attractions
and private villas.
For more information on
Tobago visit www.visittoba- tt or call 800-816-7541.

August 2009


lwww -. .*rib e g -dy~omA


As part of celebrations in
the United States, several
events marking Jamaica's
Independence will be held this
month. Some are listed here:

* Aug. 8, 1:30 p.m. An
exhibition of works by
Jamaican artist Louis Davis
will be presented at the
Southeast Regional Library,
Broward College, 7300 Pines
Blvd., Pembroke Pines,
The master of ceremonies
will be Easton Lee. Spoken
word artist Nzingah Oniwosan
will also make a presentation.
For more information,

* Aug. 8,7 p.m. The
Jamaican Association of
Central Florida will hold its
Annual Independence
Banquet at the Rosen Plaza
Hotel, Orlando, 9700
International Dr. featuring DJ
Charlie Brown and Jammin
For more information,
visit www.jamaicanameri- or call Hyacinth
at 407-578-8141.

* Aug. 9, noon "Jamaica
Day A Family Fun Day"
at Exchange Park, 2771
Columbia Drive, Decatur,

* Aug. 9, 11 a.m. Ecumenical

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Independence Service at
Dunbarton Chapel, Howard
University School of Law,
2900 Van Ness St. N.W. in
Washington D.C.

* Aug. 9,2 p.m. An after-
noon of music and dance at
the Organization of American
States (OAS), 17th Street and
Constitution Avenue N.W. in
Washington D.C.

* Aug. 9, 10 a.m. -
Independence service at
Grace Episcopal Church, 3600
North Australian Ave., West
Palm Beach, Florida.

* Aug. 9, 10 a.m. Annual
Independence Mass at Our
Lady of the Lourdes Catholic
Church in Kendall, 11291 S.W.
142 Ave.,Miami, Florida.

* Aug. 15,7 p.m. Annual
Independence Ball hosted by
Atlanta Jamaican Association,
Inc. at the Renaissance Hotel,
1 Hartsfield Centre Parkway,
Atlanta, Georgia.
President Jamaica's Court
of Appeal Seymour Panton
will be the guest speaker.
For more information, visit

The Miami-Dade Public
Library System will continue
to offer free "Investment
Workshops" this month at the
Main Library, 101 W. Flagler
St. in Miami, Florida.

Friday, Aug. 21, noon to 1 p.m.
- "Investing Basics: 20 tips
for Becoming a Smarter
Ini\ I< r For more informa-
tion, call 305-375-2665.

In advance of Florida munici-
pal elections in some of
Miami-Dade's cities this fall -

including Miami, Miami
Beach, Hialeah and
Homestead and other local
and state races set for 2010,
candidates and their staff
members can brush up on
election and fundraising regu-
lations at a campaign skills
seminar sponsored by the
Miami-Dade Commission on
Ethics and Public Trust.
Two seminars are planned:

* Aug. 26, 6:30 p.m. at Victor

Wilde Community Center,
1701 W. 53 St., Hialeah.

* Sept.16, 6:30 p.m., City Hall
Council Chambers, 790 N.
Homestead Blvd. (U.S. 1 and
S.W. 312 Street), Homestead.
For more information or to
reserve a seat, call Robert
Thompson at 305-350-0630 or e-

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August 2009



A Jamaican woman's difficult journey outside the closet

The final two chapters of
this book are the most
climactic, unlike most
formulaic memoirs that crest
in the middle and peter out by
the end.
Staceyann Chin's life-
changing event takes place in
a male bathroom on the
University of the West Indies
Mona campus. She is accosted
by a group of boys who are
determined to "f..k her to
bring her back to the right
way of thinking".
Yes, this book is about an
"out" lesbian who grew up in
a Jamaica that found it diffi-
cult to accept her 'otherness'.
An independent and defiant
child from early on, Chin

shares her world with readers
with sensitivity. Her upbring-
ing will not be strange to read-
ers; in fact, many will relate
personally to her story.
With an absentee mother
living in 'farin', Chin and her
brother Delano are raised by
their grandmother in Paradise,
a town in the parish of
Hanover. Chin, along with
others in the town suspect her
father is the well-to-do
Chinese man who owns the
big store in Montego Bay, but
he denies it. So, parentless,
she puts up a feisty, strong
armour for protection.

Her story is told in many
voices; that of the innocence of
a child, a curious adolescent,
and a woman finally believing
and accepting her own expres-
sion. She weaves minute
details to draw the reader in.
We are right there with her as
she plays with the ni, hi

fowls that have feathers that
make them look surprised".

We empathize, we sympa-
thize with her, we share her
pain and frustration. At the
tender age of nine Chin's
poignant words tell the story
of repeated molestation.
"There is something
crawling around in my

panties. I open my eyes to
find Andy on top of me. One
hand is covering my nose. His
mouth is over mine. The fin-
gers of the other hand are in
my panties, pushing them-
selves into my coco-br.LJd .
Chin's story is the universal
plight of many children grow-
ing up in poor environments,
moving from house to house,
but never finding a home. It is
this sense of imbalance that
runs throughout her life, a
rootlessness that has left marks.
But, her story is also one
of upliftment, perseverance,
and achievement. In the face
of life's difficulties Chin got
lost in her world of books, a
passion that would take her to
university and a successful
career as a writer, actress,
activist. Indeed, her strength
and conviction is what helped
her navigate her journey to
Her stirring high school
speech acts as the catalyst to a

renewed faith in herself and
the whole-hearted acceptance
of who she is -Staceyann Chin.
She takes the first serious
steps to accepting her lesbian-
ism, eventually "coming out"
after a liberating trip to New
Back home, her new
found liberation is not so easi-
ly accepted. But, through her
trials, pitfalls, and triumphs
she exposes some of the hid-
den 'rituals' and guises the gay
and lesbian community go
through to survive in a
Jamaica she sees as homopho-
bic. She also makes clear her
reality, and perhaps that of
others that leaving the island
is the only choice for the
openly homosexual.

Dawn A. Davis is a freelance
writer for Caribbean Today.

On the fast track, Jamaica rises to summit of sprinting


Last summer, track and
field fans all over the
world were awestruck
by the performances of
Caribbean athletes especial-
ly Jamaicans at the Olympic
Games in Beijing, China.
For many, the single toast
of the Olympics was undoubt-
edly Jamaica's Usain Bolt,
who shattered three world
sprinting records on his way to
earning three gold medals. His
feat was so stunning, it's still
being talked about a year
later. It has also rigorously
charged the expectations of
things to come.
But Bolt was not alone
among Jamaican athletes who
excelled in Beijing. Sprinters
Veronica Campbell-Brown
and Shelly Ann Fraser
secured gold medals. Melaine
Walker won the 400 meters
hurdles. The men's 4x100
meters relay team was also
victorious, and others secured
medals on the track as well.
All this help to raise the
profile of the sport. But the
outstanding accomplishments
of the Jamaicans also drew the
international spotlight to the
island, as well as suspiciously
dark clouds. Many wondered
how a small country could
produce such sustained excel-
lence on the track. Rumors of
deception some whispered,
others shouted loud enough -

circulated. They came from
critics desperate to take the
sheen off Jamaica's brilliant
performances, especially when
they overpowered much larger
and richer
nations such as *
the United

Now Delano
Franklyn, in his
book "Sprinting
Into History:
Jamaica and the
2008 Olympic
Gaii, ', helps to
quiet the skeptics. As
the cover notes accu-
rately states:
"Jamaica has long
been a global power
on the track, having A
achieved far more
medals on a per capital basis
than any other country in the
So no one should have
been surprised by Jamaica's
heroics in 2008. Yet, in the
book, published in April by
Wilson Franklyn Barnes and
dedicated to capturing
"Jamaica's performance at the
Olympics over the years, espe-
cially during the 2008 Olympic
Gai, ', Franklyn just wants
to make sure.
The author also wants to
make it clear that Jamaica has
achieved prominence in other
fields as well, and so he
launches early a list that
includes music legend Bob
Marley, politicians Marcus
Garvey and Michael Manley,
and cricketer Courtney Walsh.
Jamaica's "breathtaking

accomplishment" in 2008 may
have jolted the world to pay
closer attention, but the coun-
try has long been at the fore-
front of inter-
acclaim in
many fields.
S a as Franklyn
stated in the
"when it

Jamaica is
now where
it's at".

book is
as well, com-
ing on the eve of track's next
big engagement, the IAAF
World Championships in

Athletics set for Aug. 15-24 in
Berlin, Germany. One year
after Beijing, another stage
has been set for Jamaica's best
athletes to challenge the
Franklyn sets his own
stage with clear writing and 10
well-organized chapters. He
reels in the parameters sur-
rounding track and field. Raw
statistics help stir a nation's
raw emotions. Helpful tables
and photographs tell Jamaica's
story in Beijing and before in
detail track fans will naturally
embrace, but the casual
observer is sure to find an
interesting tool as well.
The chapters parade the
finest of the island's athletic
qualities. Profiles of the ath-
letes bring back warm memo-
ries of past accomplishments -
from Arthur Wint to Merlene
Ottey. The records stand for
II l l L Nlj S.
But Franklyn succeeds

with a bigger task, that of
telling the world exactly who
Jamaicans are; a people not
willing to back down from
even the most daunting tasks.
The book is about a nation
that is proud of its heritage
and not afraid to let you
Three chapters are dedi-
cated to Bolt's incredible story.
But the book addresses almost
every aspect surrounding
Jamaica's track and field, par-
ticularly its accomplishments
at the Olympics. Franklyn
examines its history, politics
and business. He even allows
room for its critics.
In the end, Jamaica lives
up to its incredible billing. On
the track in Beijing, that was
again made clear, just as it had
been many times before.

Gordon Williams is Caribbean
Today's managing editor.

(305) 885-0558
Fax: (305) 887-6684
7790 NW 46th Street Unit 18 Miami, Florida 33166 email:

August 2009



~ A Caribbean Today special feature

Keeping kids healthy as they head back to school

As children head back
to school, parents face
another season of
fighting cold and flu germs.
In an average year, chil-
dren catch six to 10 colds. In
families with children who are
in school, the number of colds
per child can be as high as 12
a year, according to the
National Institute of Allergy
and Infectious Disease in the


United States.
"The change in weather
during back-to-school season
is the ideal environment for
cold- and flu-causing viruses
to thrive," says Dr. Lauren
Feder, author of Natural Baby
and Childcare (Hatherleigh
Press. 2006). "And with
crowded classrooms, your
children are more likely to
come in contact with germs

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that could get them sick.
That's why now is the best
time to learn what you can d(
to reduce the chances of youi
family getting sick."

Here are some must-kno
tips from Feder to combat ill-
ness as kids head back to
1. Humidity and hydration
are a must Dry nasal pas-
sages are more vulnerable to
cold and flu viruses. When
humidity levels are low, con-
sider using a humidifier to ad
moisture to kids' bedrooms
when sleeping and in other
areas of the home. Drinking
lots of fluids like water and
juice is also a great way to
stay healthy and hydrated.
2. Killing germs is easy -
Some viruses and bacteria ca
live from 20 minutes up to tw
hours or more on surfaces lik
cafeteria tables, playground
equipment and desks, accord
ing to the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and
Prevention. The good news is
that cold and flu viruses can
easily be killed with hand
washing. Insist kids wash their
hands with plain soap and
water around the house and
while at school.
3. Catch symptoms at the
onset To better chances of
nipping symptoms in the bud
be prepared by updating you
medicine cabinet with choice
that address early symptoms.
Also consider over-the-count
er options beyond antihista-

mines, decongestants or cough
suppressants since the U.S.
Food and Drug
Administration have ques-
tioned the safety and effec-
tiveness of these ingredients
for children. Oscillococcinum
(Oscillo), a homeopathic flu









There are many ways parents can help
kids avoid illness.

Children's Chestal cough
syrup work safely and natural-
ly without causing side effects
or interacting with other med-
ications. The sweet taste of
the quick-dissolve pellets and
honey-based syrup are kid-
friendly and more appropriate
for younger ages than most
other drugs.
4. Pack some personals -
It's polite to share; it's not
polite to share germs. Smart
parents will pack a few items
like a small personal crayon
pack, an individual mini pencil
sharpener or mechanical pen-
cils to reduce kids sharing
germs. Packing a travel size
hand sanitizer and pocket
packet of tissue in their back-
pack is also a good way to
combat illness while they are
at school.

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world for 65 years, now offers Courtesy of ARAcontent
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Jamaica introduces national

targets for literacy in schools

The Jamaica government is
to introduce new national tar-
gets for literacy in schools.
"Every primary school
principal, before the begin-
r ning of each school year, will
s be set a target for perform-
ance in literacy," Education
Minister Andrew Holness told
the House of Representatives
last month.
"The targets may be
adjusted upon appeal of the
principal, with valid explana-
tion and with the agreement
of the
Ministry (of
to a level
where it is
reasonable to t
the local cir-
and resources
of the
school," he Holness
But the education minis-
ter said that once the targets
have been agreed, they will
form part of the performance
appraisal system for the prin-
cipals. Holness said that
while literacy targets have not
been set for this year, they
would be done as soon as the
Grade Four Literacy Test
results are available.
Just under 50,000 students
across the island sat the Grade
Four Literacy Test on June 18.
The results will be made avail-
able in mid-August.

boards would be asked to
take action against principals
who consistently miss their
targets, where it is obvious
that the repeat rate is growing
in the school and where it is
apparent that there are no
intervention initiatives in the
school. He said that principals
must design programs and
mobilize parents and stake-
holders toward this effort.
"Where there is a genuine
lack of skill in conducting liter-
acy interventions on the part of
teachers, the Ministry stands
ready to support and coach.
Where there is a lack of knowl-
edge of structuring and design-
ing special intervention pro-
grams, the ministry stands
ready to assists," he told legis-
"However, where there is a
breakdown in staff morale, pro-
fessional misconduct, absen-
teeism, dereliction of duty, inef-
ficiency, incompetence, and
general disinterest, the princi-
pals must act, with the support
of their boards, to bring those
teachers to account."
Meanwhile, education offi-
cials have announced that a new
version of the United States
Agency for International
Development (USAID)/
Government of Jamaica
Expanding Education Horizons
program is now being designed.
The program is aimed at
enhancing curriculum delivery
and improving literacy and
numeracy in 71 primary schools.



Holness said that school

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August 2009


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W-w~crbbatoa. co

~ A Caribbean Today special feature

It's tug-o-war over the back-to-school budget

ack-to-school shopping
can be an exhausting
and expensive experi-
ence and many parents start
off on the wrong foot before
they even get to the store. But
there are simple ways to make
this annual shopping trip effi-
cient and affordable.
According to the National
Retail Federation, the average
American family spends $385
on school supplies for elemen-
tary school students the bulk
of which is being spent on
clothing, electronics, shoes
and school supplies. With
more families feeling the
pinch of the economy, that
simply isn't a feasible amount
to spend this year. Follow a
few simple tips and you can
save money and time.
Get a list from your
child's school
According to a recent sur-
vey from Healthtex Children's
Clothes and Trone, Inc., 39
percent of parents fail to
make a list of the back-to-
school items they need. Once
you've got a list, stick to it.

New project sh

students to mo
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC The Barbados-based
Caribbean Examination
Council (CXC) has signed an
agreement with the Institute
of Critical Thinking at the
University of the West Indies
(UWI) that could result in a
"paradigm shift from role
learning and regurgitation to
real thinking".
CXC Chief Executive
Officer Dr. Didacus Jules,
speaking at last
month's signing
ceremony, said that
the syllabuses of 11
CXC subjects
would be reformed
drastically so as to
produce people
capable of making
meaningful contri-
butions to society.
"Over the last
10 years, regional
ministries and also
the private sector Students will
have been calling for think more.
a different type of
output by examination boards.
Employers are saying they want
people with a capacity to apply
their knowledge," he said.
The pilot project, to be
conducted over the next two
years, would focus on the fol-
lowing subject areas:
Caribbean Secondary
Examination Certificate
(CSEC) level, mathematics,
physics, biology, integrated
science, economics, Caribbean

Getting the most for a dollar is a major
Thirty-five percent of parents
admit to purchasing school
clothing and supplies using the
"I see it, I like it, so I buy it"
motto, according to the sur-
vey. Why buy what your child
won't need?
Make a budget According to
the same survey, 45 percent of
parents do not make a back-
to-school shopping budget.
Use your list to figure out
what you absolutely need and
compare with your household
budget to determine how
much you can spend. Make it
a fun family activity to search
out the lowest prices on things
you need and give a small
prize to the person who saves
the most money.

lifting Caribbean

ire 'real thinking'
history, geography, social stud-
ies, principles of business, and
English A (language) and B
(literature) and literature in
English at the Caribbean
Advanced Proficiency
(CAPE) level.
Pro Vice-Chancellor of
Planning and Development at
UWI Dr. Bhoe Tewarie said
that various faculties and lec-
turers at the universi-
ty would be involved
in the new project.
thinking needs to
start early, ideally in
primary school, after
pre-school exposure
has instilled self-con-
fidence as well as cre-
ativity in the child,"
he said noting that
the new process had
already started with
be asked to the School of
Education at the UWI
in Mona, Jamaica.
He said that the collabo-
ration between the institute
and CXC would make a quali-
tative difference to education
at the secondary level.
"It will have the positive
effect of improving evaluation
mechanisms, strengthening
curriculum, enhancing syllabus
and transforming pedagogy."

Affordable, fun clothing One
of the biLI back-to-school
expenses are new clothes.
Shopping summer sales can be
a great way to score bargains
on the outfits you need. Kids
will outgrow a $40 shirt just as
quickly as a $10 shirt, so think

affordability and durability.
Stick to stylish, durable, age-
appropriate clothing that's
always affordable like
Healthtex clothes. Each item
is only $8.
Added savings Buy school
supplies like notebooks,
paper, pens, binders, scissors

and glue in bulk at warehouse
stores for extra savings or
stock up when the dollar store
has them available. Whether
you're shopping online or in
the store, use coupons or
online coupon codes. You can

The October issue of Caribbean Today will
feature a comprehensive examination of how the
healthcare industry serves the Caribbean community.
With a proven track record now
in our21styear of service to
readers in the United States and
the Caribbean Basin, Caribbean
Today reaches an audience of over
112,000 highly qualified readers. Th
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19% have a college degree, 32% nave some
college. In today's economy, our readers are highly
esteemed. 59.6% own their own homes. 76t% are
between 25-54 years of age (readership study conducted by
Circulation Verification Council
Caribbean Today is uniquely positioned to deliver product, retail and services messages to a community
with whichit s identified. Miami Dade Communications Department ranks Caribbean Today sixth overall
out of the72 publicationsthat it does business with, and number one, as a Black publication.
Cal Now to spek to an advertising associate.

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August 2009

B n C K


Er *. r....!Hl

August 2009



s c100

~ A Caribbean Today special feature

Tips to keep kids safe online

The end of summer
means it's time to head
back to school. It also
means kids are spending more
time online prepping for the

With the cost of food,
fashion and living
steeply on the rise in
the United States, it is no sur-
prise that college tuition costs
are also greatly increasing
from year to year.
Students and their fami-
lies paid on average from $108
to $1,398 more in the 2008-09
school year than the previous
year for tuition and fees, a
trend that is likely to continue
well past 2009, according to
the College Board.
Here are some simple
ways your family can save
money while still getting
everything you need for going
back to college:

* Don't double up Call your
roommate(s) and coordinate
who is bringing what. No sense
splurging on a microwave if
your roommate is already
planning to bring one.

* Smaller is better Buying in
bulk may seem like a good
idea, but food can go bad,
storage is limited, and it's easy
for bulk items to go to waste.
Buy only what you need when
you need it, and if you want
more, go back.

* From trash to treasure For
furniture and items like lamps,
desks and bedside tables, shop
at garage sales. Prices are
cheaper to begin with since
the items are used, and you
can negotiate.

For one-stop shopping for
everything else on a budget,
most college campuses feature
at least one mass retailer with-
in a 10-mile radius: from Wal-
Mart, Target and Kmart to
Bed Bath and Beyond. Now
when students and their fami-
lies stock up on everything
from school supplies to toi-

letries, they can also re-stock
their wardrobes.
"Many people don't think
of Target as denim destina-
tion," says Jenifer DeSofi,
senior merchant for Signature
by Levi Strauss & Co. Men's
Department. "We created a
line of stylish, high-quality
jeans for men in a variety of
popular fits like the Slim
Straight, Loose and Bootcut.
All our jeans are available for
under $30 to answer the needs
of the value-minded con-
Authentics Signature by
Levi Strauss & Co. jeans are
available at Target stores and
for men and kids. All styles
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m/us for more information.

- Courtesy of ARA content

avoid online Ir,,LiL,"
Teach your kids to stay
away from free downloads
like screensavers, surveys and
online club registrations.
Many of these I rL s ", like
games and wallpaper, include
hidden spyware and adware
programs. These can monitor
keystrokes, track Internet
logins and transmit confiden-
tial information.
Lock your valuables -
protect against viruses and
Some e-mails contain
harmful software that can dam-
age your computer or track
your Internet activities all
without you knowing. Anti-
virus and anti-spyware software
as well as a two-way firewall
will protect you from inadver-
tently accepting unwanted files
attached to e-mails.
Hall monitors needed -
be aware of all online activi-
ties Help your kids be respon-
sible online by blocking inap-
propriate sites and preventing
risky online activity.
For tips on keeping your
computer and kids safe, please

- Courtesy of ARA content

upcoming school year, finish-
ing summer homework lists
and reconnecting with sum-
mer friends.
Likewise, cybercriminals
are online targeting them
through e-mail, IM and phish-
ing scams, and even trying to
make contact on social net-
working sites, blogs and chat
rooms. What's a parent to do?
But parents don't need to
worry. Experts at computer
security company McAfee
have some simple ways to
keep kids safe online so par-
ents can have peace of mind.
There's no free lunch -

It's tug-o-war over the back-to-school budget
(CONTINUED FROM PAGE 19) out the door, "shop" around notebooks you'd stocked up
save hundreds of dollars on your house first. You'd be on earlier, and then put away
the clothing and supplies on amazed what you can find and forgotten about.
your list. when you look around in
your drawers and in the back of Courtesy of ARAcontent
Stop before you hit the your closet. You may even
store Before you even head find a bounty of pens and

How to save when college costs rise

August 2009

B n C K


...... r.. ....

.... .... i.

NSU. A World of Difference.
Whether studying business, education, medicine, computer science or other fields, the students at
Nova Southeastern University match the ethnic diversity and cultural mix that make South Florida stand
apart. More African-American and Hispanic students earned their doctoral degrees here than any other
university in the nation. That same diversity is also reflected in NSU's faculty, staff and alumni. And NSU
continues to receive high rankings as one of the best environments for minority students, including best
law school by Hispanic Outlook for Higher Education magazine. It's the union of diverse backgrounds
and traditions that makes for a more enriching university experience and truly brings the world together.

YOUR FUTURE. YOUR TERMS.SH 800-541-NOVA Fort Lauderdale-Davie (Main Campus)


August 2009



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Stuart, Florida Waterfront Condo 2/2 ground
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Lucie River, heated pool, covered parking, quiet
neighborhood, close to downtown. Estate sale,
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Dragados-USA, Inc. is seeking qualified, capable, certified DBE contractors
specializing in heavy civil roadway and bridge construction for the 1-595 Expansion
Project. We anticipate to award contracts in the following areas including but not
limited to; Heavy Bridge Construction, Excavation, Earthwork, MSE Walls, Barrier
Walls, Sound Walls, Highway Asphalt Paving, Jack & Bores, Water & Sewer,
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At the present time Dragados-USA, Inc. is in the design and permitting stages and
will make plans specification packages available by specific scope of work as the
plans are completed.

Please email or fax Dragados USA, Inc. if your company is interested in being a potential bidder,
your area of Interest, along with a copy of your company's certification. Email Address: or via fax: 964-827-2336. Dragados USA, Inc. Is an Equal
Opportunity Employer

August 2009








August 2009

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