Remembering Little Black Boy
Stabroek News
February 16, 2002

Dear Editor,

Barbadian based journalist, Rickey Singh, in an analysis [ please note: link provided by LOSP web site ] in last Tuesday's Chronicle, describes the pelting of Trinidadian calypsonian, Gypsy, with toilet paper as a manifestation of latent racism. Gypsy, Singh reported, was pelted and booed during the semifinals of the Calypso Competition.

"The simple, truthful answer, of that he, a Trinidadian of African descent, has teamed up with the UNC of Trinidadians of primarily East Indian descent and the PNMites with their own quota of racism couldn't "take that," Singh analysed.

According to him: "This is the kind of emotional, foolish behaviour by those who should know better that contributes to sustaining the social/political divisions that power hungry politicians can easily exploit."

Perhaps, an analysis of Rickey's analysis might be useful.

Rickey must remember that Gypsy is more than a calypsonian of African descent. Rickey, it seems, needs to be reminded that it was Gypsy who gave Afro Trinidadians and other Africans in the region that anthem of awareness when he sang "Little Black Boy."

Look at the front, see who's the doctor;
Look at the back, see who's the lawyer;
Look in the Bank, see who's the Banker;
Look at the business, who's the owner;
Look at the staff, see who's the worker;
Look at the drugs, see who's the don man;
Look who eating out of dem garbage can;
Look at the jail, see who you see too;
A lot of little black boys just like you.

That was Gypsy with a message to the Trinidadians of African descent.

That is why he received his share of toilet paper. It was from those little black boys who had felt betrayed.

We must observe, too, that Rickey sought to come to the same conclusion when he made much in one of his columns about an attack on an insignificant player, Kwame McCoy. From his distance in Barbados, he sought to impute political motive where subsequent events, now engaging the attention of the courts, pointed clearly to personal differences.

How can Rickey, now enjoying the hospitality of a country whose people are the descendants of the survivors of the Middle Passage, comment on these incidents and completely disregard the physical attacks on C.N. Sharma and the supporters of Ravi Dev's ROAR by you know who.

Why has Rickey, as an objective analyst, not identified these incidents as manifestations of latent racism and publicly condemned them. It is because his objectivity has long taken flight.

Yours faithfully,
Little Black Boy