The great Bob Marley once sung; “I can’t tell the woman from the man.” Today those words are still true as transgender and transsexuals have all but destroyed the line between male and female. What has become even more difficult, however, is figuring out who is on the side of good or evil; love or hate; war or peace, freedom or bondage; justice or injustice.
The line between the oppressor and the oppressed is becoming more blurry than it has ever been. In the history of mankind, it has never been more difficult to figure out who is enemy and who is friend; who is the oppressor and who is the oppressed; who is the terrorist and who is the freedom fighter; who is the prophet and who is for profit.
Who would have thought that we would see the day when a white woman from New Zealand with blue eyes would be the one to boycott performing in Israel because of their inhumane treatment of the Palestinian people? Yet as this white woman stands up for justice and put her career on the line, you have dreadlocks wearing Jamaicans, claiming to be Rastas who are embracing the same Israel that she is boycotting.
Grammy-award winning artiste, Lorde, canceled her concerts in Israel following activists’ calls for her to join the growing boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement targeting Israel.
Activists have sought to economically and culturally isolate Israel since 2005, when a coalition of 170 organizations from Palestinian civil society called on “people of conscience” to employ non-violent tactics to pressure Israel into ending its military control of Palestinian territories and comply with international law in its treatment of Palestinians.
The BDS movement is modeled after a similar campaign in the 1970s and 80s to end apartheid rule in South Africa.
In response to the movement, numerous writers, artists and musicians have canceled events in Israel or declared their support for a cultural boycott. Among them are Lauryn Hill, Roger Waters, Elvis Costello and Lorde.
Who are not joining the boycott apartheid movement are the ones you think would be the mostly likely to join. Those are the reggae artistes who claim that they are Rastas fighting against the injustices of the world. The ones who are always chanting down Babylon in their music, however, when it comes to real freedom fighting, it stops in their lyrics. They love spitting bars against oppression but would never spit in the face of the oppressors. They claim to be prophets or sons of prophet but their priority is to make a profit. Thus, for a few dollars more, they make oppressive deals behind a closed door to perform in an oppressive concert outdoor.
Reggae artistes who have and continue to perform in Israel include Ziggy Marley, Alpha Blondy, Damian Marley, Chronixx and Sean Paul.
Anyone who is surprise that so many so-called Rastas are supporting Israel has not been paying attention. Who would have thought that we would see a prominent Rasta referring to Barack Obama, the first Black president of the United States, as a “waste man”. Then within a year of that incident we would see another prominent female Rasta embracing Donald Trump whose bigotry rises to the likes of Mussolini, Hitler and Leopold II.
These are the days when you cannot afford to let a man tell you who he is, he must show you who he is.