The Sheep That Roared!
Iwish to comment on an article by one Nicholas Joseph that featured in the of Saturday 22 October 2016. I was taken aback by the words: ‘I think I know what Josie was attempting to say but he did not express it correctly.' One does not say this even to children. Of course one is free to express a disagreement but to intimate that you know what someone has in his or her mind is beyond the pale. It is a little much to try and enter a person's mind. But I guess people who create prophets, playing God, can do that and more.
Then there is the matter of a Honda car number PA1. I was a government minister when my South Korean Pony motorcar suffered a politically motivated fire; it was replaced with a Honda. That Honda car was the first on the island to carry the alphabet-series ‘A.' The police introduced the letter ‘A' and began numbering vehicles from one again, after the island had reached 9999 registered vehicles.
Before that new Honda, I saw that George Odlum was going to wreck the St Lucia Labour Party. I would have none of it. Odlum went berserk! It was he who ran to the Castries market steps to inform his ignoramuses, the few who still listened to him, that PA1 stood for “political ass number one.” Of course neither he nor his acolytes bothered to comment on PA2, PA3, PA4, and so on. The number of vehicles grew and the letter “A” climbed to 9999—the number of political asses on the island, by Odlum's deduction.
Then there is the question of the words Joseph chooses to describe Odlum the English Literature master at St. Mary's College who nodded off in class more than any teacher should. From those early days through Bristol University and the St. Lucia Arts Guild some of us saw Odlum as a literary giant. Our own limited knowledge of literature allowed us to interpret Odlum's political phrases and actions as theatre. Nicholas Joseph called him “the peoples' prophet.” Others may even choose to call him a god. It's a free country after all. I wouldn't be the least surprised if Joseph, and others who think like him, would some fine day form a dead prophets' society here in sweet Saint Lucia, their sole aim being to erect a stone monument of George Odlum, placing it next to that of John Compton in Constitution Park. What a come down from the days of “Papa Jab!”
Odlum's Crusader newspaper of the early 1970s would say to that come down: Eh bien, bon! Bal finis veulon en sac. Si tout George se George, the dead prophets society could then reserve a place for chief ministers and Prime Minister George Charles and John George Melvin Compton. When people ask why, members of the dead prophet's society can reply: the stone with the big belly was the peoples' prophet and he deserves his place for trying to create history, and for making blind apostles.
Perhaps another group representing fake and imaginary revolutionaries who knew little about a Rat Island meeting in the early 1970s would remind them that Saint Lucia and Dominica were to follow Grenada, but Saint Lucia's cardboard soldier panicked. Come hell or high water that connection between Rat Island of 1971 and ‘Let the people protect their revolution (1979)' will one day be told. These were not empty, thoughtless words as poor Louisy evidently thought. This island was meant to copy Grenada in its bloodless revo/ coup. The lesson: A sheep in lion's clothing is still a sheep, albeit a sheep that roars!
Over and over we may hear someone condemning Haiti. "The people in Haiti are too evil! They believe in iniquity! So God punishing them for their sins..." It is true that God does not like spiritualistic practices like obeah/voodoo, for such practices are connected with the demons and Satan, God's enemies. So we rightly condemn those practices, which are harmful. However, is it fair to condemn Haitians in general? Is there no decent Haitian at all? Come on. I personally know that there are godly, decent living Haitians who do not get involved in demonic activities. Yet, some of these suffer from natural disasters. Is God punishing them? Job was an outstandingly righteous man. Job 1:1. Yet Job suffered a lot at the hands of the Devil Job 1:12, 14 - 19; Job 2:7. Stephen was stoned to death. Acts 7:58 - 60. The apostle Paul faced many hardships too. 2 Corinthians 11:23 - 27. Other servants of God faced difficulties too as shown at Hebrews 11:35 - 37.
Are we to imagine that these godly persons were punished by God? What about godly ones in Haiti who suffer; are they punished by God? Job 34:10 and James 1:13 prove that God does not do what is wicked; he does not bring trials on people. God allows people, including his servants, to go through trials but he does not cause them. Ecclesiastes 9:11 says that "time and chance happeneth to them all." So people, being at a certain location at a certain time, may suffer due to some disaster striking in that location.
So it is with Haiti. Its location makes it prone to disasters. If another country was located where Haiti is, and Haiti was located south of St. Vincent, for example, then that country in Haiti's current location would have been having the hurricanes, earthquakes etc. and experiencing suffering. Then Haiti would have avoided those disasters. Feel sorry for the poor of Haiti, the children eating mud cakes etc. They have been made to suffer for years due to exploitations of the past and present, bad governments and so on. Condemn the practice of obeah/voodoo but NOT the Haitians. Sympathize with, and pray to the Most High for them to cope, while we ourselves try to live God's way, avoiding a selfrighteous, judgmental attitude toward Haitians. Psalm 65:2; Psalm 83:18; Ecclesiastes 7:20, 22; Ecclesiastes 12:13, 14.
Is there more to Haiti disasters than spirituality or bad luck?
Nicholas Joseph was one of George Odium’s more ardent supporters. Did he also believe the author of this article was a sheep in wolf attire—Judas in a wool coat?