Archive for the 'Racism Watch' Category

Why describe fatal events as Black

By Kwame Nantambu
January 14, 2020

Dr. Kwame NantambuThe recent tragic crash of Ukraine International Airline Boeing 737-800 shortly after taking off from Tehran, Iran, thereby killing all 176 passengers on board, has once again brought to the fore the use, albeit misuse, of the term/label Black to describe/analyze such fatal/bad incidents/events.
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Question of race and ethnicity in T&T

By Dr Kwame Nantambu
December 16, 2019

Dr. Kwame NantambuOne of the most perplexing and intractable issues/problems in T&T is the utter, total misuse albeit mis-categorization of the term “racist” to describe interaction between citizens. And this overt faux pas reared its ugly head during the recent local government elections and the puerile parliamentary squabble between a PNM government minister and a UNC opposition senator— two putatively educated grown men.
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Caring for the Sensitivites of Others

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
December 06, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAna, not her real name, is an enormously intelligent woman and a dear friend. On Monday she sent me a text: “I am one of those who disagree with you on the Sat issue. We must talk. I am organizing for work so now is not a good time but we must do so later.”

We talked later that day. She said: “Sat has said many hurtful things about black people. Black people do not have many idols to look up to but we have Martin Luther King. And then you come, as a prophet of God, to absolve Sat from all of the hurtful things he said about us.”
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Sat Maharaj and Martin Luther King

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 26, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeOne radio host called my comparison of Sat Maharaj with Martin Luther King “sacrilegious” while a caller to another radio station wondered what had happened to Professor Cudjoe since 2011. “I had admired Professor Cudjoe but now I don’t know what has gone wrong with him. Imagine his comparing Sat to Martin Luther King.” These were some of the condemnations that arose from my remarks about Satnarayan Maharaj.
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Sat Maharaj Is Dead

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
Posted: November 26, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeRemarks made at the Sending Home Ceremony of Sat Maharaj, Secretary General of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha (SDMS), at the SDMS Headquarters, St. Augustine, Trinidad, West Indies, November 18, 2019.

Sat Maharaj is dead!
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Two Trinidad and Tobagos

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 20, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeAs Boris Johnson, UK prime minister is finding out, and Keith Rowley, T&T’s prime minister has found out, it’s easier to be on the opposition benches and spout invectives than it is to be in the driver’s seat making consequential national decisions. Boris lost pivotal votes last week in the British parliament as his Tory diehards voted against him. Even his brother—Jo Johnson—resigned from his ministerial post and his seat in Parliament. Boris is likely to have the shortest tenure as a UK prime minister.
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Slavery, Education, Social Justice

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 16, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoePart of the excitement of being an educator is my having spoken in many places (such as Canada, the United States, Central America, South America, the West Indies, Japan, Africa and the Fiji Islands) about slavery, education and social justice. I am always excited to share my thoughts about these issues and learn what others have to say about their conditions.
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Diversity Matters

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
October 29, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeIn 2003 I fought a doggedly battle to convince educators at (The University of the West Indies) that grades and standardized tests should not be the only criteria for selecting students to enter our university. Many people castigated me and a few called me a racist. Morgan Job bleated: “If Selwyn Cudjoe’s racist quota is implemented, UWI will have semi-illiterate African lecturers teaching illiterate students. They will go into the classrooms, the Public Service and police to compound the problems which plague the nation, and are a necessary consequence of the blight of mediocrity we have nurtured and promoted” (Trinidad Guardian, August 21, 2003).
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Public Enquiry needed into the Education System

By Dr Tye Salandy
October 09, 2019

Dr Tye SalandyTwenty years ago, in 1999, young Clivia Jones went to school with a modest cornrow hairstyle only to be told by the Corpus Christi principal to fix her hair or stay home. This incident came to mind when I read of two recent incidents that have been highlighted recently within T&T’s education system. The first incident was the teacher in a POS school spewing racist and classist statements. The second incident is the issue of the student at the south Anglican school who complained about being harassed for wearing her natural hair in Bantu knots, twists and cornrows. From my own experience in the education system as a student, educator and researcher, issues of discrimination, abuse and damaging approaches to differences are deeply entrenched across the education system. This is so despite the actions of some dedicated and fairminded teachers and administrators to do better.
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Misplaced Philanthropy

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
September 20, 2019

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeOne cannot help but be amazed by the indigestible piffle that emanates from the mouths of our politicians when they speak about issues concerning the society. We hear their speeches and read their statements, yet we wonder if they understand what they are saying and the implications of their actions.

Take, for example, the prime minister’s response to the concern that most of the students who were selected for the national mentorship program in energy are Indo-Trinidadians. After fierce criticism about this imbalance, he replied with self-evident pride: “I initiated this program by sending out personnel to find our national scholars…trained in areas of expertise useful to the Ministry of Energy. We decided that those who had done extremely well, with first class honors, should be gathered to rebuild the pool of expertise in the ministry and enable the country to cope with the requirements of the energy sector….
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