Would ASP Welch please remove those blinkers!

In one Barbados

Is justice and fair play.

In de next Barbados

Al Barrack still ain’t get pay.

In one Barbados

Good kaiso get no recognition.

In de next Barbados

Salsa does win de crown.

I had to stop and think anew.

Yuh know de man was right;

Dey have two Barbados fuh true.

I’m telling you, that’s my view:

Dey have two Barbados fuh true.

Calypsonian Adonijah was right!

And with all due respect to the goodly police public relations officer Acting Superintendent of Police David Welch, he is wrong! Our police officers are not known to be very impartial in terms of their investigations when it comes to colour and creed. In fact, we dare say that far too often our policing decisions appear to come down on the side of Black and White, as we were forcefully reminded this past weekend.

Were it not so, then there would have been two command centres established instead of only one at Strong Hold, St George, to coordinate the massive search for missing Caucasian woman Karen Harris.

Ironically, Harris, 49, disappeared on the same day that Carlton Blackman, 42, of Lodge Road, Christ Church, seemingly vanished.

However, the disappearance of Blackman, who is a Guyanese by birth, didn’t trigger so much as a smoke signal or message in a bottle, while it appeared that no stone was left unturned in the valiant quest, which took the search party through rickety cart roads and bushy gullies, to locate Harris.

In addition to a 30-member strong police contingent, there were canine detectives with sniffer dogs, Barbados Defence Force officers with heavy artillery, Red Cross personnel, the Roving Response Team, you name it.

Thankfully, both Harris and Blackman are now back home safe and sound.

But while others may be anxious to bring to a close what has undoubtedly been a painful chapter for those familiies involved, we believe it has reopened an important public discussion that needs to be had in Barbados about issues of race, power and the strong arm of the law.

Not to take away anything from the valiant efforts this past weekend of the 500-strong search party, including civilians –– mostly Caucasians –– it has to be said that the never-before-seen pooling together of resources, be it horses, SUVs, motorbikes, drone technology and the like, was easily one of white Barbados’ finest hours as they searched for one of their own.

However, we cannot help but be haunted by the unanswered cry of Pamela Holford, whose 31-year-old son Sidneato Holford has been listed as missing by police since January 14.

With every passing day her hope fades that her son is still alive, but her family cannot afford to pay for a pony, much less drone technology, which makes Saturday’s well coordinated effort seem so very unjust.

It begs the question: is there really any justice for this island’s poor people?

Paradoxically, it was neither the unprecedented response of civilians nor the security forces that led Harris home.

But we believe the level and type of state resources which were brought to bear should be made more accessible to less affluent Barbadians.

Indeed, for those who think it is needless for us to raise the race card, why didn’t the same group of well meaning Barbadians come out before in support of the return of Nathaniel Pilgrim, Nichelle George, Antonio Watson, Shane Cumberbatch, Destany Boyce and others who went missing in the past year alone? Furthermore, in a population of mostly Blacks, why wasn’t this reflected in the numbers who came out this past weekend?

It is time to remove the blinkers. The lesson for all of us is that united as a country, we can achieve a whole lot more.

Perhaps missing teenagers Gillian Bayne and Thelia Snagg would have been found long, long ago. And maybe 27-year-old Jamar Andre Maynard may not have lost his life foolishly by way of a police bullet back in 2012, or Johan Bjerkhamn handed a suspended sentence for shooting his 11-year-old son back in 2011.

But whether we want to admit it or not, “dey have two Barbados fuh true”.

3 Responses to Would ASP Welch please remove those blinkers!

  1. Wendy Clarke
    Wendy Clarke March 2, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    Kudos to the author of this article. The whole let’s look for the white lady situation has me seething. Black tax payers in Barbados ensure your hard earned dollars was not spent on this especially when we have some of young children with pit toilets as part of their school premises. Enough is enough. It’s no longer what you have heard you have now seen it with your own eyes.

  2. Meakai March 3, 2015 at 10:23 am

    I am having great difficulty reconciling this article with the amount and type of coverage this incident received from the powers that be at Barbados Today.

    We all know that “dey have two Barbados fuh true” but what about Barbados Today?

    Is this just another case of bandwagon hopping?

  3. Asiba March 3, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    Factoid: Historically , the Police Force was established to” protect ‘ white people. That was the mandate of the Force.

    Question: How in a small society like Barbados , can there be such an imbalance of power .

    Statement: White people have all the resources they need to do whatever they want. By what means did attain such resources.


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