Is Vision 2030, A realistic Dream or just Wishful Thinking?

            The act of giving voluntary services to the enrichment and enhancement of one’s community is substantially important in ensuring that a robust self-sufficient group of people living in an area can clean-up after themselves. They can observe the highest quality of living standards especially where sanitary, monetary and educational necessities are concerned. This can be achieved through their own small acts of community service, vital to man’s survival.
            Vision 2030 outlined as its mantra, to make Jamaica, by that year onward, one of the most suitable, ideal, comfortable and safe locations in the world to do business, work, build homes and raise families. Of the four goals outlined, I perceive that to raise families in communities free of fear from intruders at night, free of violence and senseless destruction it requires the collective and co-operative efforts of residents of a community, people of the nation. Wherever one’s humble abode lies shouldn’t he guarantee along with his neighbour, comfort and peace of mind in an area which he/she shares? Isn’t it all our responsibility to ensure a healthy environment to cushion the development of our children and their children’s children? Who will do it for us if we don’t embrace the responsibility ourselves? We shall not sit idly by while the land is ran amuck by vicious vandals.
            Therefore, we all have been called up to enforce and build towards the safety of our offspring. In places where there is open play, the perimeter should be barricaded, fenced and gated from external breeches which can impact their health and security. Pedestrian crossings should be marked on every major thoroughfare, junction and street. Traffic wardens also need to be in position to monitor the speed of motorists and aid in secure crossing, especially for children. Another goal directly linked to volunteerism is where making Jamaica an ideal spot to do business is concerned. For decades, criminal elements have plagued the country’s main hubs for trade and commerce, especially the locations for earning foreign exchange. These areas have also had to have constant refurbishment because of the manner in which inhabitants litter, damage and pollute the soil, the air and the bodies of water flowing through hills and valleys into streams, catchment areas and into other connected water masses. No man would want to conduct monetary transactions and exchange currency in an area which is displeasing and unsanitary to them. That is why it is the responsibility of naturals of this land to maintain an attractable and enticing surrounding which we may all claim with metallic pride.




How civil are our civil leaders about our civics?

          Well, a civil war would certainly indicate that there exists a vast philosophical gap between the inhabitants of a certain geographical region; seeing as civics is the study of the rights and duties of citizens of any specific area. Now with revolutions sparking all over the world and civil wars being the order of the day nowadays, we the citizens, should really being to ask ourselves; how many of our leaders are really civil, especially about our civics? How much concern and genuine interest do they demonstrate for the people who elected them to assume collective stewardship of our civics? In seeking an accurate answer to that question, I’m certain that it is plainly visible, especially in modern politics, economics and the mannerisms with which these leaders communicate and distribute sensitively critical information. Therefore, since it is unrealistic to rely on those we have chosen to represent us in diplomatic and parliamentary relations, we the citizens must assume primary responsibility of our civics.
          How exactly should I do that, one might ask. While I don’t have all the answers, I will assertively say that we must put our foot down wherever and whenever we can in whichever matter we see fit. Ancestry and Iscience are a significant part of who we are and who we must become. Knowing exactly how our ancestors lived, ate and co-existed with animals is the key to our continued survival. Not only should we seek to bridge the void left wide open by our incapacity to evenly sustain the world’s population, but we should venture on living meaningful lives. Interconnecting our talents and employing interdependence to solve our worldly problems, while leaving no room for any more to arise can be a satisfactory origin. Of course, the preservation of our natural environment is also high up there with appreciating the people around us and their opinions. Consumerism is a major factor in how the world’s leaders and major corporations malnourish our brains and slyly filter harmful substances and instill their own perverse agendas.
          Syria has long been a land caught in a tug of war by internal and external forces that prioritize the available resources and commodities over the lives and livelihood of her natives. Radicalism, extremism and religion are mainly fingered as the reasons behind the constant fighting but I’m sure those looking on analytically would beg to differ. It is said that the radical nature of those devoted to Islam and Islamic beliefs are to blame, but really it is the dividedness that leave us and them segregated. Sports do a great deal in unifying a people, because there is no doubt that had Jamaicans not been so successful over the years in sports; we would certainly have a few civil wars on our hands. I mean, the hardships that are inevitable in life, coupled with the nonchalance and selective ignorance of the leaders we have elected really drive us nuts. Instead of fighting and rebelling against the ‘system’ with might, I believe it’s time we do what is right and utilize the brightness of our intellectual light.
          Intellect does not solely refer to theoretical knowledge, it is the know-how. The know-how to till the soil, irrigate it; extract poisonous substances from plants and reverse the poison, making it an antidote. Additionally, it speaks to mastering patience and reverence to a science. We all should develop attitudes for gratitude, and aptitude to soar at the altitude of collective success; because what is success if it is selfish? What is the point of gaining all attainable things without ones to share with?  My brothers and sisters let us never be fooled into believing that wealth can purchase health. It maybe can obtain legislative stealth, but most certainly not health. Our health has to come from within us, owning up to a natural urge to be intrigued by physical as well as mental health. But what exactly is mental health? Well, according to mental health professionals and psychologists, it has to do with how well we operate and interact within our immediate surroundings. What we can inhale, taste, sensitize, visualize and acoustically register is not even remotely close to 50% of what actually unfolds around us. We see and hear what the mind conceives. Therefore, the conception, conceptualization and eventual manifestation of unified upliftment must first begin in the mind.
          So as we think, so do we become; and in thinking unity so will we amalgamate. In amalgamation, will there result procreation. Let us not provoke our brothers and sisters to wrath simply to test their faith, but instead resort to testing their inter-personal skills for enhancing the welfare of their native brothers and the entire human race. Let us not complain about the inactivity of our leaders, but instead through constant activity null their idiotic idiosyncrasies. Let us be our own enablers for progress. Even though I call on my people to cease their complaints; that is no excuse for the leaders not to do the jobs they swore to unconditionally, impartially and diligently undertake.                    



Where is your love Jamaica?

          It is the year 2014, yet woefully, people still cling to the notion of traditional sports. Unfortunately, a man such as Mike Fennell, acclaimed to be well versed in all the sporting endeavors of Jamaica’s athletes was oblivious to the existence of the Jamaica Taekwondo Association (JTA) and its affiliation with the world governing body, the International Taekwondo Federation (ITF). Very recently, Wolmeriane alumni pursuing their tertiary education at the University of the West Indies (UWI), emerged victors in several chess games over their Yale and Arizona State University counterparts. After the fore mentioned international chess tournament, the Jamaican Chess team ranked as the second best team which took part. Moreover, even though many Jamaicans are unaware, we do possess a wealth of successful chess players and even a few grandmasters. I say this to say that no extraordinary importance should be placed on any single sport simply because of its popularity or our ability to excel at it. As sports they all need to be acknowledged as inspiring, uplifting and unifying; thus raising the bar of our overall competitive edge.
          In the year 1988, Jamaica made its bobsledding debut at the Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Being a tropical island paradise and having sunshine all year round, yet being able to compete in any edition of the Winter Olympic Games points to the limitless sporting possibilities and potentials of this great nation. Obviously, the contingent sent to represent a tropical nation participating in winter sports would be automatically seen as underdogs. Nevertheless, since her appearance in 1988, Jamaica has been able to send teams to the Winter Olympics for the subsequent editions of 1992 and 1994 and several worldwide and regional championships. They had very little practice going down a bobsled track, and a lack of optimal equipment resulted in them having to borrow spare sleds from other countries to compete. In a show of worldly brotherhood, other bobsledders were quickly willing to lend their guidance and support. The 1988 Jamaican team did not officially finish after losing control of the sled and crashing during one of their four runs. However, they showed significant improvement throughout the games and impressed observers with unusually fast and record-breaking starts. So inspiring was the story of four stereotypically defying Jamaicans that it resulted in the production of the major motion picture Cool Runnings.
          Jamaica has been internationally represented in a wide array of sporting disciplines. Some of these sports include; rugby, squash, swimming, water polo, synchronized swimming, volleyball, badminton, ice and field hockey, beach football, netball, boxing, basketball, baseball, motor cycling, cycling, rally car racing, taekwondo, equestrian, lawn and table tennis. Having reviewed this list one will notice a few popular sports missing; which is another indication of our versatility as world-class performers on the international stage. Each one of these sporting programmes should be allocated adequate funding to develop at the grassroots level and sustain competitors while having rehabilitative capabilities for injured and recovering athletes. Apart from the Paralympics itself, Jamaica has been able to consecutively send constantly growing delegations of Paralympic athletes to several international championships. Not only have they sent teams of Paralympic athletes, but these athletes, like their more able-bodied counterparts have also proven their prowess, putting behind all doubt of our ability to ‘rise to the occasion’ and have cemented their own places in the Paralympic record books. Initially, Jamaican Olympic teams would consist of no more than 5 members, now that figure has increased to a minimum of 50 members (25 men & 25 women). Since the turn of the 21st century, Jamaica has become a household name in the world of sprinting. Coming from such a small team, it is now almost unimaginable to have an Olympic Games without the Jamaican sprint powerhouses, namely Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and living sprint legend, Usain Bolt.     
          Tessanne Chin has put in years of work. She has notched unmatched levels of performance experience with the likes of international reggae icons, Shaggy and Jimmy Cliff, to name a few. Regardless, it was not until she made a last-ditch effort (according to her) to audition for TheVoice™, an American high-calibre singing competition and was fittingly awarded the top spot, that we began to attribute the recognition her talent truly deserves. Why is it that we lazily await international recognition before accrediting our own? They never did love poor Marcus. So, in the famous words of the revered singing legend Burning Spear, Where is your love Jamaica?

Jamaican Bobsleigh Team Debut At Calgary 1988 Winter Olympics

At the Calgary 1988 Winter Olympics Jamaica sent an unexpected team to compete in the bobsleigh event.

Though their participation did not end in medal glory, the team won the hearts of their fans and competitors, returning to future games as equals.

The Jamaican athletes were – nonetheless – determined to excel at the Games and had their fastest start so far in their final run. However, during the run, the sled crashed in one of the turns which took away the teams possibility of an officially recorded time.

Jamaica has had a team ever since; qualifying for the 1992 Albertville and 1994 Lillehammer Winter Olympic Games.