"Blood run done, CEASE, NOW PEACE".
5 December 2002
To the Editor (Garfield Grandison), The Gleaner Company Ltd, PO Box 40, 7 North Street, Kingstown
Fax: 922 6223 - Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Copies: To anyone I can think of that seems appropriate.
The Editor, Sir:
I have come back to Jamaica to bury a member of my family who was violently robbed and brutally murdered in cold blood.
I am sad to find the war zone state that this land of my birth is now in; indeed before coming here I was somewhat afraid. Our beautiful Island paradise is in danger of becoming a wasteland like Afghanistan. The war is for the hearts and minds of men, and a mindset based upon greed and lack of respect for life of a small minority of the population, who do sometimes corrupt others.
I would like to add some suggestions (by asking and begging certain favors of certain people) to the multi strategy approach that needs to be adopted to return Jamaica to peace. To end the war and reduce the violence in Jamaica it will take a combination of measures that have been discussed at length, such as poverty reduction, youth employment, changing the messages of covetousness and violence broadcast by some media (I have estimated that with the lots of TV I watch, I will have probably seen more people die that all of my past generations put together.), capital punishment, justice, improved detection and prosecution (where the law is not enforced anarchy will reign), higher moral and ethical leadership, return to religious and other higher values, the carrot and the stick etc. etc.
In summary I would like to ask everyone to try their best to agree, declare, implement, monitor and enforce a ceasefire for the whole of next year 2003. It will help to reduce the killings and play a major role in the decade of the culture of peace that we are now in. To end a war and gain peace somewhere along the line you must have a ceasefire.
I have called the campaign "Blood run done, CEASE, NOW PEACE". People may be able to give it a better name.
I would like to ask and appeal:
1. To Civil Society to support the Arms Reduction Coalition (ARC) (see www.action-for-un-renewal.org.uk ) international campaign calling for the states of the United Nations (UN) to agree a legally binding instrument requiring member states to reduce the amount of resources spent on arms by between one and five percent per year for a period of 10 to 25 years. I hope you agree this is a reasonable request. Especially as it is based on Article 26 of the UN charter wherein states commit to and charge the Security Council (SC) " to promote the establishment and maintenance of international peace and security with the least diversion for armaments of the world's human and economic resources". ARC was officially launched in the UK parliament in June 2002. Even a 1% reduction in the US$840 billion (JA$42 trillion) spent on armaments last year, will provide over US$8 billion per year (over US$80 billion over 10 years) that will make a positive difference to earthism programmes such as poverty reduction, sustainable development, conflict prevention, peaceful resolution of conflict, protecting the vulnerable, maintaining the environment, and effective implementation and still leave over US$830 billion per year (over US$8,300 billion over 10 years) to be spent on things to kill people. I hope Civil Society will support ARC (perhaps even forming their own ARC group here) and the Government will add whatever support it can to it at the UN.
2. Everyone, If you see an illegal Gun then smash it up; bruk it up so that it cannot kill anyone else. We need to reduce the amount of guns in the country as guns are made to and do kill people.
3. To the young people especially men who find guns attractive or are attracted to guns, Young man, Turn away, turn away from the path of destruction. Young man, Turn away, turn away from the guns of death. If on average people who study hard and learn dem book and get good qualification or go through the pains and toils of apprenticeship to learn a trade and become a craftsman, earns US$10,000 per year more than others, how much is that worth in total over your working life. Plus you have yu liberty, yu noh lock up a jail and yu get to live past 30 years old.
4. To the Trigger Happy Ugly Thief (THUT). Me Seh. Yu mumma never born yu Fe thief. Excuse me; if you don't understand the vernacular, let me translate. Your mother did not bear you for nine months, give birth to you, nurse and nurture you for you to grow up to steal, rob, and murder. Yu mumma never born yu Fe be a murderer.
5. To the dons and leaders of the gangs and posses. If your life here on earth is to have any meaning, then declare a ceasefire for the whole of next year 2003. This means agreeing, declaring, implementing, monitoring and enforcing a cease-fire. No gun shots for a whole year. Imagine how much benefit that would bring to the whole of society. To every one including the possies who's greatest problem is the gun. After a gun is fired you not only bring down your enemies upon you but also the security forces. I give you a choice, declare a cease fire for the whole of next year and do something useful with your life here on earth. Or continue with the cocaine trade, gun crimes and remain another poisoning evil criminal murderer. Tell THUT if him a gunslinger, sling him gun under house bottom for 2003, if him carry gun a pocket, just rest it under him pillow and leave it a yard. Consider this request deeply, as the only disadvantage I can see to it is the validity you will get if you can deliver.
6. To dem people associated with THUT, don't take any of THUT's money. Ask whey him get any money him a give you. Because if you accept it you will be guilty of the crime of receiving / handling stolen goods. A blood money. In some case you will become the equivalent of those birds that feed on the flesh. If THUT is your friend, end that friendship now or be always prepared to die. Because the reason he is a THUT is he is evil and covetousness and will sooner or later kill you for one reason or another. The poverty story only works up to a point. Over one of the worlds six billions people live in extreme poverty. A noh all a dem a tief and murderer. The vast vast majority struggle with life and bear their burdens like the rest of us. De bad seed inna THUT and dem woman will have to work hard fe get it out a fe dem generation. Dem woman have to careful because some a dem sell poison to kill people and mash up dem life.
7. Although like all of us, they have some of God in them, they are so controlled by sins and devils that that has withered. Brethren pray for them. If they should lay down their arms, surrender themselves, confess their sins and show true remorse go lightly on them. Many of them can still be saved.
8. Everyone needs to adopt the philosophy of "do not reap what you do not sow". Doing otherwise is unfair to the cultivator and often causes contentions, war and violence. Ask before yu tek, and expect the answer to be no. People are very generous (e.g. Church People read 1 Peter ch4 v 8) and will and do help when they can and feel it appropriate. The international community can help provide some resources to help reduce the root causes of the violence such as reducing poverty. Indeed salt fish price is so high now because almost no more cod fish left. The whole world needs to adopt this philosophy or else we wont have enough birds, animals, fishes, plants and trees left, and life will no longer be sustainable on earth.
9. Everyone. Have a nice Christmas. Do what you can to help get and support the ceasefire for 2003. After boxing day wear a flower, red outside and white inside to show you want a ceasefire. "Blood run done, CEASE, NOW PEACE"
By Karl Miller, Secretary, Arms Reduction Coalition, C/o. Action for UN Renewal, 3 Whitehall court, London, SW1A 2EL.
Blood run done,Cease now peacewas a combination of:
1. My ideas - Mainly the call for the ceasefire and ARC.
2. Discussions with local people. - Although I argued strongly against capital punishment many Jamaicans I spoke to wanted it - I don't believe it will solve the problem and do not advocate it. Most people I spoke to were scared, felt terrorised and very concerned by the killings and violence. Many people will not go out at night - so much so it is affecting attendance at some events. It was discussed by everyone including the newspapers, business people, radio talk shows and TV.
3. Poetic licence.
I summarised my Ideas and some of the unusual points from many of the discussions I had. The consensus was that a multi strategy approach entailing a combination of measures is required.
Regards ... Karl