I listened to a discussion on a radio programme last week with Godfrey Augustine and others; the topic was the Revolution. Well unfortunately most of the people who spoke were merely young enough to be only a Pioneer during that period in our history. So, as very little is said about March 13, 1979 which so far has been glossed over as the start of the Revolution, many people have not come to the reality that that day was as dreadful a day as October 19, 1983. I was a Civil Servant then and the only song that came to my mind on that Tuesday was “what will this day be like and what would my future be?”
To provide balance in the discussion it would be good for people to google the list of the detainees during the Revolution from March 13, 1979 onwards and pay close attention to the reasons why they were imprisoned. It’s all well and good to have a little humour in your discourse, but the seriousness of the period moreso March 13 should not be overlooked. While you were joking about barbecue being introduced by the Cubans, somebody out there was hurting because of memories of the bad treatment at the hands of the Revolutionaries.
While you pioneers were singing the Freedom song as children of the Revolution, you all were none the wiser of the new system that was being introduced because the revolution collapsed before the political school which was planned for the Dome in Grand Anse was set up. People must know that this is a very sensitive issue; can you say for sure that Jackie who lost her leg in the bomblast has overcome her sadness as she must now live with one leg? It’s all well and good to focus on the good ideas the revolution brought to Grenada. But in doing so do not ‘pull the wool over our eyes’ again, there are those of us who lived through it and lost our government jobs and subsequently our pensions.
The argument may be raised that what happened on March 13, 1979 was a necessary evil or a means to an end. But even today it brings tears to my eyes; that day was a dread one in Saint George’s with fellas with guns running helter skelter and even driving up Market Hill. I recall when an announcement came on the radio to bring in a certain trained military man dead or alive. The mood of the day was dread. It was the period when phones in private homes were not so popular so communication was challenging. The people from the Revolution hunted Gairy’s followers like dogs on a hunt. Dereck Knight narrowly escaped their clutches as he fled to Saint Vincent. It was a sad, sad frightening day in similar fashion to when those who lived by the guns, died by the guns October 19, 1983.
So Scholar when I listened to you all I said it’s not your fault because you were too young to know; you just need to do more research with an open mind.