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Showing posts from 2006

It is unseemly, disgusting and sickening!

On June 2, 3006 UNAIDS report for the Caribbean revealed that AIDS-related illnesses are the leading cause of death for people ages 15 to 44 in the Caribbean, accounting for 27,000 deaths in 2005,. Further although Bahamas, Barbados, the Dominican Republic and Haiti showed they had "dented the progress of HIV" that region still remained seconds only to Africa as it regards infection rates.

More alarming data from the UNAIDS reports show that at the end of 2005 approximately 330,000 HIV-positive people were living in the Caribbean. Particularly,
-22,000 of whom were children
-51% of people living with HIV/AIDS in the region are women
- an estimated 37,000 new HIV cases were reported in the Caribbean in 2005
-12% of reported HIV cases in the Caribbean result from homosexual and unprotected sex.
-in region only 25% of people needing antiretroviral drugs was receiving them
- In Trinidad and Tobago, females ages 15 to 19 were six times as likely to be HIV-positive than their male counte…

A New Pastime: Turtle Watching

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For the last three nights environmentalists/conservationists, turtle watchers, Canadian scientists, forest rangers and curious on-lookers have been flocking to the black sand beaches, stretching from Cabana to Melville Hall, just outside my village, to see leatherback turtles come ashore to nest.

The female turtles come in, dig a whole in which to bury thousands and thousands of eggs and then return to the ocean, leaving the eggs to hatch and the young turtles to brave the elements on their own.

There is much folklore about this natural phenomenon. There are those who point out the dark clouds in the sky, claiming that they are signs of the large amphibian coming ashore. They explain with conviction that when the clouds darken, the rain drizzles heavily and there is some lightning, it means that the creatures are near shore. They also claim that turtles prefer to lay their eggs in the black sands because the heat the sand provides high temperatures during the day to hatch the eggs. …

What?!

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That is all I could say right after I heard the story I am about to relay.

The parents of some students of a secondary school are taking the school to court for punishing its entire fifth-form class after some pretty out of hand behavior by a few students. I think the group punishment was that there would be no graduation for the entire Class of 2006. Some parents have expressed their opposition to what they think is an unreasonable action by the school. It appears complaints to school authorities have gotten them no satisfaction and so they have threatened to take the school to court. Yup! The parents are suing the school!
But the most amazing part of the story is not even this although it is pretty far-out. I wonder if anybody can guess what the original offense committed by the few was. Well the Roman Catholic affiliated school had organized a spiritual retreat for its most senior students. It is a tradition of sort among RC schools here. Anyways the retreat was on and it p…

Windsor Parks Sports Stadium: Gift or Burden?

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In Dominica the average sports fan, more so cricket fans, will be elated come December 2006, the carded end of construction of the Windsor Park Sports Stadium. The stadium is a gift worth EC$33 million, from The People’s Republic of China to the Government and People of Dominica.

The mostly cricket stadium located in downtown Roseau will be of International Cricket Council (ICC) standard and will accommodate state-of-the-art facilities which include among others 10,000 seats, a media centre, practice nets, players’ complex, digital score boards and five cricket pitches. The young and aspiring cricketer should be ecstatic because after decades of empty promises, the cricket stadium is finally a reality. The Government of Dominica should be and probably are proud that they could deliver this facility, without burdening the Dominica Treasury.

So all looks well finally in Dominica as far as the sport of cricket goes? After all, cricket is one of the more popular games in the Caribbean. The…

I know black men who hate on Oprah

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I often wonder why so many black men hate on Oprah so much. Well I guess she is not in the physically beautiful league of a Pam Grier, Lena Horne, Halle Berry, Vanessa Williams, Janet Jackson etc. The above women among many others are the women black men tend to hold up as attractive. It seems that most black men think that physically both Oprah and Whoopi for example are as attractive as a donkey's behind. I think both these women are beautiful in their own right and therefore I don't agree with these men but I understand. In the real world it is in this way most men's preferences are shaped. So I concede on the attractiveness quotient bit.

Oprah however is a woman who, like many black women even if they are only successful at having raised some kids into upstanding contributing citizens, has done wonderfully well for herself, by herself and most importantly with lots and lots of hard work. She has achieved and achieved big and is a mover and shaker in the world. So …

Vanishing People....A Village Dying?

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Twice recently I have felt in the pit of my stomach the dread I must have felt the days surrounding my father's death. I was three when my pops passed but I know that event made an indelible mark on my psyche because that feeling of dread would overcome me every time I happened on death or funerals. Mark you, the funeral did not have to be of a very good friend or close family member to awaken such a visceral reaction. An accidental meeting of a funeral procession was enough.

So who died recently? Whose funeral? Well it is not who but what and I really don't know if it is a death or a major transformation. That dreadful feeling has reared its ugly head not in signal of an actual funeral but for a vanishing people and maybe for a village dying. I have been looking closely at the village where I was born and raised; my immediate neighborhood and the whole village. Recently I even had the opportunity to accompany my mother on her visits to some shut-ins in the village. What I am…

The Parrots of Dominica

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Isn't it a beaut? This is the national bird of Dominica. Its scientific name is Imperial Amazon. It is found only in Dominica and local name is Sisserou, the Carib word for parrot.

The Sisserou parrots on Dominica all but disappeared after the passage of Hurricane David in 1979. Scientists believed that only about 50 of them remained on the island after the destructive storm. As such Dominican Forestry and Wildlife officials had to wait until 2000 to get a glimpse of the huge parrot in its stumping ground, the Morne Diablotin National Park.

The Sisserou parrot resides mainly in the thick rain forest reserve situated at the foot of Dominica's highest peak [4,747 ft, Morne Diablotin]. The parrot shares the lower elevation of its home with the other equally popular Jacko Parrot. The Jacko Parrot or the Amazona Arausiaca is smaller than the Sisserou and is also endemic to Dominica.

Dominica is lucky in that these two parrots of the Amazon species have survived to this day. Parrots…

Of Q-Tip and Wutliss Luv

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Wutliss luv I define as what ordinary women do when they fall in luv with some star or personality who they will never meet or know. Like how some women just luvs them a Denzel Washington while others luv them some Will Smith or Morris Chestnut. For me it is the nondescript Q-tip of the Tribe Called Quest. Yes Q-tip!

Most people who read this would wonder “why?” I don't know either but there is something about this man that my spirit just loves....From the first time I saw him in Tribe, I was hooked. He is not remarkable physically or as a rapper. Never dresses up as Kanye West does... he certainly does not bling like most of the brothers in the entertainment business....does not seem to make much money and certainly does not appear to squander whatever he makes like most of these ‘never-see-come-see’ fools either.The strangest thing about me and Q is that I don't follow his career and I know none of his songs off-hand. I can re-call the chorus of Bonita AppleBum with Tribe …