“The winding road”... “Y’u a hear mi Fardah...is not an easy road... no star!” Its distance is measured by time, calculated in each man’s own pace and fortune. Despite everyman’s formula being the same all does not have a similar result. Massive of people trod “the winding road” in search of a better life for a better tomorrow, but in reality, for many, it amounts to nothing than a daily struggle, a “tug and war” to make ends meet.
Commentary Jamaica Magazine

"The Winding Road."

The winding road”… “Y’u a hear mi Fardah…is not an easy road… no star!” Its distance is measured by time, calculated in each man’s own pace and fortune. Despite everyman’s formula being the same all does not have a similar result. Massive of people trod “the winding road” in search of a better life for a better tomorrow, but in reality, for many, it amounts to nothing than a daily struggle, a “tug and war” to make ends meet.

The journey for the vast majority, tiresome and weary, plagued with obstacles of hardships, frustrations, “nuff bad-a-ration and fret-ration.” Yet each day, everyone heads back to the trail down “the winding road” in an attempt to defy the odds, emulous of those before them that have made it, in hope of their own personal triumph and success. That’s the daily state of affairs for “Suffer-asYes Iyah….Poor people (Zeen), the underpaid working class, Yea man! Ghetto Youths in particular.”

Isolated from society’s main stream, Ghetto Youths have to find them own tributaries and paddle them own canoe so as to get into the flow. Every Ghetto Youth proclaim a familiar phrase that “time hard and things tuff, but man and man haffi eat a food han provide fe dem fam-b-ly still” hence their will, hence their deeds. Compelled by poverty, tortured by suffering and needs they trekked “the winding road” in search of anything legit that will preserve life and can give a little stability, dignity and respectability to their lives. Often times, nothing turns up and so, undoubtedly some Ghetto Youths resort to “hot stepper hustling.

The ruling class behind leather padded doors and around varnish mahogany tables in far too many instances labels all Ghetto Youths as hoodlums and hooligans, thieves and murders, uneducated and illiterate … “But that nuh true brethren … listen….Ghetto Youths noh all cantankerous, finger fearing shattas; dunce heads nor loafers, wucklis or good-for-nothings.” “Ease off Iyah”, desist from smearing and tainting Ghetto Youths character with the grease, grime and hard to remove stains of unnu stigmatic lip-brush.

The effects of such labeling create an inferiority complex and inculcate negativity, affixing on Ghetto Youths a sense of condemnation, inadequacy, failure and doom. One cannot bungle and tie up the lack of opportunity and misfortune as a lack of intelligence and ambition when “unnu mek them” condition almost inescapable…. Ha Almshouse that, full fletch sheg-ry dat Iyah”…

The Government of the people who don’t give a darn about the people ignites the fire and set the country ablaze every “gad live long day” with high prices and taxation, job redundancies and privatization. The Business Sector follow suits, continuously pouring flammable interest rate on credit cards and loans, while paying low wages and very little benefits to the few they provide with jobs.

Ghetto Youths in the fire are desperately trying to escape as none can bear the heat. Do you expect them to stay there and roast or to gallop from the inferno? If you don’t provide them with an exit, the art of survival is that each Youth will mastermind one…like it or not, they will.

Me comrade Wacky always say, “Unnu” teach the people to pray bout, “give us this day our daily bread,” yet “unnu nuh” help them to grow the wheat, in fact,” unnu” import the flour and raise the price of bread and like parasitic bugs, (ticks that is) feast on the blood of the poor..” den ton roune have the audacity a diss man.”

The average Ghetto Youth is law abiding and peaceful, industrious and productive, skillful and employable and bless with strong aptitudes towards learning. Mister Bigman, tend to the seed and you will harvest the crop. If you plant corn you can’t reap rice. Plough the field, scatter the seeds of opportunity and hope, and provide Ghetto Youths a better way out.

“Right yah now,” Ghetto Youths are totally dissatisfied with the teeny bit of proportions and the continuous false promises from the powers that be. The everlasting hardship of Ghetto Youths in the wilderness of poverty will always cause some to take a tortuous path, a detour from “the winding road.” Society, the Government and Business Entities should not continue to deny Ghetto Youths needs by not providing forms of employment, skill training and social intercourse.

One hand can’t kill lice.” There must be meaningful dialog between Ghetto Youths and the Government, Businesses and Social Organizations; followed by more work in progress and less “bag a talk.” When the community pools its resources, aided by all stakeholders, the result can only be a better road, less winding and serves the best interest of all.

Anyways, Ghetto Youth, “gwaan hold the faith Iyah, noh give up; continue the struggle and Jah Guidance zeen.”

Hasta la Victoria Siempre”….Until victory always! One Love Zeen.

About the author

Kharl Daley