Stand Up for Jamaica writes about the power of reintegration

Petchary's Blog

Being a human rights activist in Jamaica is not an easy life. There is a persistent narrative that these dedicated and decent human beings “defend criminals.” In fact, certain categories of Jamaicans are deemed hardly eligible to apply, or be considered for such a thing as human rights. It’s different if one’s own rights have been taken away though, or those of a friend or family member, or a neighbor; then the perspective suddenly changes. Nevertheless, I am told, “We are a Christian country.”

It always strikes me as deeply sad, in a nation that has suffered so much from one of the most appalling human rights abuses in world history – the Transatlantic trade in enslaved Africans and plantation slavery. We are confronted with this blood-soaked legacy at almost every turn. And yet… Sometimes I think George William Gordon, or Sam Sharpe, would be concerned at our disregard for…

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