Let the Jackasses Bray

By Dr. Selwyn R. Cudjoe
July 24, 2016

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeMy good friend called. She was irate: “Why don’t you speak to [not with] yo’ good friend Sat?” “Why yo’ say so,” I asked. “He called Manning a racist.” I don’t know if I was supposed to return the insult, but I am aware that if everyone is a racist then no one is really a racist. Counter accusations are generally useless.

Sat claimed Manning was a racist because, among other things, he closed down Caroni 1975 Limited and paid the workers $2m. That Manning may have calculated that the sugar industry was no longer economically viable did not enter into Sat’s thinking? But even if Manning paid the workers $4m it would not have endeared him to Sat.

Sat was born in 1931. He is solidly ensconced in a past in which he is comfortable. Nothing can release him from the psychological trauma that time holds for him. His world is determined by beliefs and practices (ideology) that cripple and enslave him rather than open him to exploring his humanity.

Though it is 2016 Sat sees nothing wrong with a girl marrying at the age of 9. He is not even open to the possibility that a child of 9 is not emotionally or physically mature to consent to marriage. Anyone who holds a contrary position is told to mind his own business. He does not understand that it is our collective business to protect all 9-year- olds in our society.

But there are modern versions of the Sat phenomenon that hide underneath the veneer of post-modernism and castrated satire as George Lamming once described V. S. Naipaul’s earlier works. As the “old men” of the IRO grappled with the moral dilemma inherent in the marriage of 9-year -olds, Raymond Ramcharitar suggested they read Vladimir Nabakov’s Lolita to get a better understanding of the problem. He says that “if the ideas the book carries entered the collective consciousness of a group of key people (like those who make decisions for the rest of us) we might all be affected for the better” (Guardian, June 22).

Ramcharitar wants to suggest that a reading of Lolita may do the transgressive work that Azar Nafisi, Reading Lolita in Tehran, did for readers in that theocratic state. But even if one derives aesthetic pleasure from reading Lolita the rape of a twelve-year old is not the message one wants to send to the IRO or the nation.

Then there is Kelvin Baldeosingh, an angry anti-religionist, who sees nothing wrong with insulting Muslims on one of their “holiest days in the Islamic calendar” (Ishan Ishmael, Guardian, July 8). He castigates Islamic teachings against homosexuality and how women dress by using flagrant Islamic stereotypes. Several years ago, I woke up on a Christmas morning to his parading his atheism in the newspapers.

Such constipated mockery hides deep psychological wounds. Frantz Fanon has analyzed the deep inferiority complex that has taken root in colonial subjects. Might Baldeosingh’s attempt to inflect pain on those he feels are weaker be one way to come to grips with his own psychological insecurities?

I will not judge Keith Rowley as harshly as Michael Harris did in “A Conversation Worth Having” (Express, July 18). Rowley wanted to refute Sat’s overwrought rhetoric which, together with the self-indulgences of Baldeosingh and Ramcharitar, creates greater national unease than Rowley’s interventions.

Although there is a danger that “even irresponsibility in the end develops its own logic” (Nabakov, Invitation to A Beheading), Eric Williams offered the best antidote to this crippling psychological disorder. He counselled: “Let the jackass bray.” One day they may exhaust themselves.

12 Responses to “Let the Jackasses Bray”


  • Excellent advice by Cudjoe for two of the most loquacious bloggers on this site. “Let the jackasses bray”

    • Yes Tman, anything to relieve the pressure on Sat’an Mahar and the seditious Indian insurgency which he inspires.

      Here is my response:

      May the Most High expose the wicked ones in our midst, that the racial cancer that they represent may be excised from the body politic, that peace and harmony may reign in this land.

      I withhold my peace from you, but to others as usual I say

      Shalom.

      • “So while keeping their 340,000 voting bloc firmly under the SDMS thumb by means of well-watered and oft-repeated grievances against the PNM, they will offer every blandishment to the “gullible niggers”.–Yoruba

        In a democracy all donkeys are allowed to bray. Yoruba I know you want to be the self proclaim chief “nigga” donkey. Why would anyone want such a title is beyond me.

        People vote for political parties for varying reasons. Historically the PNM and UNC have sat on the seat of power and that trend will continue. As the chief “nigga” donkey you are giving too much credence to SDMS. Judging from your statement it appears as though you think Sat was the one running for election and he was the head of the UNC. But that is how donkeys think. It is hard to reason out anything with a donkey because they believe they are right and everyone else is wrong, to prove their point they will misquote Scripture and take the Good book out of context to make even God look like he is on their side.

        Since the PNM assume power in your eyes things have gotten better. But the reality is proving differently as Gypsy sang “little black boy”, a better song than Chalkdust sang. Crime such as home invasion is on the increase and everyday the criminals are reported to be little black boys. Why? They are looking for soft targets to not only rob, but rape and destroy. As the Good Book states. The thief comes to kill, steal and destroy. As the chief “nigga” donkey Yoru you must discourage such anti social behaviors. It is your duty…use this medium for good.

  • Eric Williams offered the best antidote to this crippling psychological disorder. He counselled: “Let the jackass bray.” One day they may exhaust themselves.

    What applied, devastatingly, to Calypsonian Chalkdust, does not necessarily apply to Sat’an Mahar.

    Chalkie was making political commentary in the way a calypsonian does. Who even remembers what the issue was? But a calypsonian is like a loyal and honest Opposition. He criticizes based on his best understanding of the issues. But the one that heads a government will always be aware of many other relevant considerations of which the calypsonian, even the most incisive, may not be aware. For such a one, Eric was right: “Let the jackass bray” was the most comprehensive and effective of put-downs. He also had his way in the House of pointedly turning off his hearing aid.

    I do not agree that this is the best approach to dealing with a disloyal opposition, one moreover that is engaged in sedition.

    PM Rowley seems to understand the matter a little more clearly. By merely mentioning the word, “sedition”, the disloyal opposition is put in check. It must now consider and re-consider its more disloyal utterances. For freedom of speech is far from an absolute right. Slander, libel and sedition are not protected free speech.

    Sat’an Mahar will never acknowledge either authorship of or being the inspiration behind the seditious Indian Policy. But the T&T Government would do well to interpret Sat’an’s utterances through the lens of the Indian Policy.

    Item #2 says: “Our people must undermined (sic) this nigga (sic) government… This is very important for our (sic) return to office, we must not allow ourselves to be ruled by monkeys (sic)…”

    Obviously, Sat’an Mahar is hewing to this Item #2 of the Indian Policy. In this light, he had to tarnish the reputation of Manning as best he could, at least in the eyes of the “Indian” base.

    At the same time, Kamla waxed fulsome in praise of Manning, as if forgetting all their clashes in the House. Why? So as not to offend the PNM voting bloc, for the UNC well knows they have no chance of ever being re-elected without garnering some crossover vote from the “niggas”. It worked in 2010. So while keeping their 340,000 voting bloc firmly under the SDMS thumb by means of well-watered and oft-repeated grievances against the PNM, they will offer every blandishment to the “gullible niggers”.

    I submit that Sat’an Mahar’s and Kamla’s utterances in the matter of Manning’s death and subsequent eulogising/demonising may best be understood in the light of that seditious document, the Indian Policy, and more specifically Item #2. This is not a matter where it is best to “let the jackass bray”. This is a matter for stern and robust response, as insurgency always is.

    I will continue to offer this prayer: May the Most High expose the wicked ones in our midst, that the racial cancer that they represent may be excised from the body politic, that peace and harmony may reign in this land.

    Shalom.

    • “So while keeping their 340,000 voting bloc firmly under the SDMS thumb by means of well-watered and oft-repeated grievances against the PNM, they will offer every blandishment to the “gullible niggers”.–Yoruba

      In a democracy all donkeys are allowed to bray. Yoruba I know you want to be the self proclaim chief “nigga” donkey. Why would anyone want such a title is beyond me.

      People vote for political parties for varying reasons. Historically the PNM and UNC have sat on the seat of power and that trend will continue. As the chief “nigga” donkey you are giving too much credence to SDMS. Judging from your statement it appears as though you think Sat was the one running for election and he was the head of the UNC. But that is how donkeys think. It is hard to reason out anything with a donkey because they believe they are right and everyone else is wrong, to prove their point they will misquote Scripture and take the Good book out of context to make even God look like he is on their side.

      Since the PNM assume power in your eyes things have gotten better. But the reality is proving differently as Gypsy sang “little black boy”, a better song than Chalkdust sang. Crime such as home invasion is on the increase and everyday the criminals are reported to be little black boys. Why? They are looking for soft targets to not only rob, but rape and destroy. As the Good Book states. The thief comes to kill, steal and destroy. As the chief “nigga” donkey Yoru you must discourage such anti social behaviors. It is your duty…use this medium for good.

      • Tman, you are incoherent. Whatever you have been drinking, or smoking, stop it.

        Yoruba I know you want to be the self proclaim chief “nigga” donkey.

        First you accuse me of “religious hypocrisy”. When I ask you for just one example, your reply: none, zero, nada, zilch…

        Now you accuse me of wanting to be the “self proclaim ‘nigga’ donkey”. Your basis for that curious claim: none, nada, nothing, zilch…

        I quite understand that *you* wish to continue your name-calling approach. “Religious hypocrite” does not work, obviously. So *you* — it is hardly self-proclaimed — reach so low as to call me a “chief nigga (sic) donkey”. Well there, there … I hope that makes you feel better…

        But I thought according to your Indian Policy, Item #11 that your were the superior one. Evidently you are mistaken in that. But you already know that, otherwise in Item #6 you would not admit to t’iefing in SEA to “maintain” top placement. Why? If you are superior, why would you need to t’ief to maintain top placement?

        And if you are superior, why do you resort to calling me names. Again: the lawyer that has facts on his side argues the facts, if he has the law on his side he pounds away at the law. But if he has neither, he calls his opponent names…

        As you do here. And incoherently I might add.

        Look, get yourself together, and stop this snivelling. Obviously, despite the very creditable schooling you received for free under PNM rule, you spent so much time beating the proverbial book that you didn’t really learn very much.

        Music for example teaches one how to work for the good of all as a team. Sport teaches us how to lose gracefully. Even the greatest of champions will one day lose. I still have the mind of a very creditable batsman, but alas, the body long ago forgot.

        The SDMS in its insurgency could care less.

        What did Sat’an Mahar once say?: while the little black boys are beating pan, ours will be beating book! Yarite. Now we know you have been t’efing in SEA placements. (Not you personally so far as I know, but you are here giving moral support to that abomination called the Indian Policy, and unable to defend it, you resort to name calling).

        Calypsonian Gypsy, with all due respect to his talent and wisdom, is the proverbial donkey in this matter. If anything, he fell under the spell of the SDMS, even joined with its political arm the UNC, and thought that Indian-crafted nonsense could have any applicability whatsoever to the plight of the “little black boy”. Yes that jackass certainly brayed, confusing others as well as himself. Today, I wonder if he has learned himself the error of his ways.

        Speaking of which, I wonder if Jack Warner is still a Catholic/Hindu, like Cudjoe is an Anglican/Orisha. Such confusion amongst our exemplars. The one was the self-proclaimed “HNIC”. Perhaps you are confusing me with him. The other presumes to lead “African people” into “empowerment”. Yet another one, a “neo-Buddhist” wants to venture into the well-worn tracks of the “turd force”, clueless from get-go. No. I am not one of any of that ilk. I have neither church nor party. But I do serve the God of all. Therein lies my relevance, if any.

        But “chief nigga (sic) donkey” I neither claim nor self-proclaim. Come better than that, if you can.

        May the Most High expose the wicked ones in our midst, that the racial cancer that they represent may be excised from the body politic, that peace and harmony may reign in this land.

        I withhold my peace from you, but to others as usual I say

        Shalom.

        “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of Yahweh, and their righteousness is of me, saith Yahweh.” (Isaiah 54:17)

  • A man is the sum experience of a life lived. In society we need the donkeys to remind us that civility and social discourse still defies the arrogant and unlearned. We are all at various stages or strata of learning, just like a sedimentary rock.

    What defies my level of understanding is that some people never change. I remember meeting a friend whom I had not seen for 11 years. We met and he continued the conversation as though we had seen each other a few days ago. Yet there are others in my extended family whose behaviors remain insular to current realities and they still have the same old box that they once placed me in. That box I have outgrown and will rather they place me in a bigger box. But that will suffocate their narrow view of me.

    Knowledge is suppose to make us wiser. As the writer of the book of proverbs note “a wise man increases in learning”. Yes there are ideas I once norished but today they are almost “anethema” to my current world view.

    So why is the Information Age passing so many by and the obsessive compulsive ignorant catalyst of social demagogy allowed to rule. Are we all unlike the wise man? Doom to entertain the worst of humanity buried in our subliminal. Or is it the old brain logic eating away at our current realities and subjecting us to our former predispositional logic. Those social constructs must be eradicated to protect us from ourselves or we suffer the death of a billions souls now manuring the soil of this world. Rawanda taught us nothing…World War II inspire us to build even more weapons of mass destruction…the death and abuse of young black male by white officers in the U.S. Racism teaches us nothing but the continual attempt to destroy and subjugate others whose blood are red as ours. Whose pain we experience yet ignore. But I digress and leave it all in the hands of the creator.

  • Racism teaches us nothing but the continual attempt to destroy and subjugate others whose blood are red as ours. Whose pain we experience yet ignore. But I digress and leave it all in the hands of the creator.

    Perhaps Mamoo is having an epiphany. Glory be to God if that is the case.

    Yeshua taught us though at John 8 and elsewhere that those who are of their father the devil are indeed a lost cause. They are the tares sown with the wheat, who are to be gathered in that day, not to be garnered into the barn, but to be burnt as chaff; Matthew 13:30.

    But it is a matter for the Most High and His angels to know who is who, and to separate the wheat from the tares; Matthew 13:36-42. It is not for us mere mortals to know for certain who is who.

    What we are given is the understanding to know that one who is a reflexive liar, and shows no regard for the truth, is more than likely of the devil, because that is one of the signs by which he identifies himself.

    Mamoo is proud of boasting that he cites facts, as though he is yet to understand that one may lie better with facts than without. The best lie is the one that is 90% true, as every accomplished liar well knows.

    Sat’an Mahar is the same. He cites facts. Caroni. Radio license. Occah Seepaul. CJ Sharma. He waters these as grievances. But he neglects to acknowledge and consider that none of these facts may support the charge of racism against Manning, if Manning was motivated by something other than racism in his actions in these matters.

    Thus every supposed fact is confounded as to the conclusion sought to be drawn — a hypothesis of racism as the guiding motive — by the likelihood, indeed the greater likelihood, that Manning was motivated instead by the innocent hypothesis of fulfilling his sworn oath of office: to do right without fear or favour, with malice or ill-will toward none etc., in the interests of T&T.

    Malice and ill-will were not part of Manning’s make-up, whatever his manifest faults. It is clear to me that Manning did not seek to subjugate nor oppress the indo.

    In any case, in none of Sat’an’s cited facts is that case made, since all are confounded by the presence of innocent motives.

    So the facts, as often the case, are used to advance a lie.

    What did Yeshua say?

    “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” (John 8:44)

    If there are signs of epiphany then I applaud the awakening of a once reflexive liar. But I do not hold my breath waiting for surer signs of transformation.

    Shalom.

    • Thanks for keeping it short, concise and not the very emotional ramblings that you often times demonstrate. This is an easy read. It shows you have the potential for good. Another thing you need to do is stop seeking to see the worst in others. We are all beggars seeking bread. Sat, Cudjoe, Rowley, Kams, (Manning) are mere mortals interpreting the world through their experiences. We have to respect those experience but not necessarily agree with them. Time is always the ultimate decider of all human experiences. Time with tell. I have my time and you have your time. So make the best use of your time.

  • Let the Jackasses Bray…

    But why do ‘I’ feel like the beast of burden?
    Always having to tote this load and told to bear it…

  • “Let the jackass bray.” One day they may exhaust themselves.
    Very true. Where is Alyass? Exhausted herself?

  • Trini have so much JACKASSES, And they dont stop BRAYING. Is the Country moving forward any better????

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