Thursday, 6 March 2014


Did Therold Prudent just say that he would legalize ganja and let school age minors smoke giant joombas in the classroom?

Is Therold Prudent out of his mind?

No. Of course not. He never said any such thing. Why would you even think that?

But what Therold Prudent did say could very well amount to the decriminalization of ganja.
W hat 5-bag ting y'all talking there?
Holland doh have no five bags!
Ganja is the single most potent political and economic issue of the near future in St Lucia. And there is practically no one left who still believes that the  decriminalization of ganja will lead to the end of Western Civilization as we  know it. However, because of fear of Uncle Sam (Samophobia) and love of the Pope (Papaphilia), Caribbean leaders have stayed far away from acting on their true feelings to the most controversial herb on Earth. Now that Uncle Sam is legalizing marijuana state by state and the Pope is so cool he sounds like he smoked a joint, there seem to be no major obstacles left to the decriminalization of cannabis.

Americans are practically teaching islanders
Advanced Lessons In Growing Better Weed
on the internet
Still, the paralysis on the part of leaders like Kenny Anthony and Allen Chastanet persists, even though the reasons for their fear have dissipated like, well, like smoke. Into the breach have come the green parties of St Lucia.  Melanie Fraites Green Party has used social media almost exclusively to promote ganja  on its health, economic and social reform planks. Andre De Caires’ Lucian Greens has promoted marijuana as part of a wider agricultural restoration, with surprisingly strong grassroots support among small farmers.
Fraites, Green Party
Marijuana is the solution
De Caires, Lucian Greens
Marijuana is a very important part of the solution

And now, Therold Prudent, the most conservative of the green party leaders, seems to agree that the current state of hypocrisy on marijuana needs to change.

The upshot of the matter is that Prudent is a good Catholic boy who, unlike some people in other parties, has probably never smoked a joint in his life. But Therold is also an economist and a bit of a social scientist, so he can’t conscience the waste of human capital occasioned by the prohibition of pot. Crack, yeah. But jailing fellas for a joint?  That’s not Prudent economics.

And so…

Unlike some people who happen to be the current political leader of a party in parliament, Prudent wants to have an honest discussion on the legalization of ganja. In fact, Therold doesn’t just promise a talk shop. He promises a referendum.

Bum-baba-BUUMMM! A referendum. People voting, deciding for themselves, whether or not to free up the ganja. Democracy is action, changing the shape of government and society according to the will of the people. That’s almost more radical than just using government power to change the legislation. And it leaves the six  people who still hate ganja with the hope that, by some chance, or miracle, the people of St Lucia will not vote overwhelmingly in favor or striking down this poverty-inducing law.

But anyone who knows anything knows how a national referendum on ganja will turn out. I don’t even have to say it.  Just ask yourself: If you put marijuana legalization to a vote in St Lucia, what do you think is going to happen?

If more than 25% of all the adults are either smoking or  have smoked or know someone who smokes, if cops and judges are tired  of ganja prohibition and if just about everyone has a ganja-smoking dread in their family….hmmmm….

With a hot issue like ganja to propel the rest of his message, Prudent could unlock an entire bank of passive voters who have remained so unimpressed with Labour and Flambeau that  they practically  never voted. As long as Labour and Flambeau continue to avoid the ganja question with all their  might,  he will have the cutting edge argument for how to restore agriculture, boost foreign exchange earnings and decriminalize the act of being young  and poor in the Eastern Caribbean.

Prudent may have hit on the smartest political strategy for what is inevitably the hottest political platform issue of the future. Which is basically: “Hey, let the people decide.”

Samophobia and Papaphilia Unite!
In the meantime, both Kenny Anthony and Allen Chastanet are trying as hard as possible to talk about everything else if only to avoid the question, “Have you ever smoked a joint in your life?” and it’s natural follow up, “Did you like it?”

CHAS: So you wanna snoke a joint after?
KING: Gasa, I eh snoking no joint with you, dread!
Don’t even ask for Gail Rigobert: “Gaunjar? Whort’s thart?”

The only problem with a referendum is that Prudent has to convince ganja smokers to put down the joint and get off the chair under the tree to go all the way to electoral  station to vote for him. If scientists are right about the effects of weed, the green parties are going to have to do a helluva lot of mobilization and motivation just to counteract the paralyzing effects of increasingly excellent marijuana.

If ganja voters get too high on election day, it’s back to business as usual.
"Garnjer. Gaunjar. Garunjaur.
Ganchar. Gunjer. Can I just say carnerbis, instead?
Gail Rigobert,  leader of the opposition, trying to say the word ''Ganja.'

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