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Sunday, May 10, 2020



And to think that everyone’s mitochondrial DNA is derived from the mother, who got hers from her mother infinitum...(whether you are male or female).

Take this back many genomic generations ab initio and it begs at least two questions:

1. Is God a woman!

2. Did Eve come first?

3. Or even if Adam did come first, with his maternal mitochondrial DNA from God, was it the woman in God that sent Eve onto him?

Sorry, 3 questions!

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Father Son and Holy Proteins

In His Image

By Lester CN Simon-Hazlewood

If DNA is the Father molecule and RNA is the Son molecule then the central dogma of molecular biology says that instructions from the Father can be transcribed onto the Son, the messenger, who can then by translation send that message onto us, proteins.

And if by reverse transcription the Son can become the Father, can we protein beings not only exist in the image of the Father but through his Son, inform the Father?

And if again, some 98.5 % of our genome is truly not involved in protein synthesis (and supposedly not involved in {“reverse”} protein prayer ) but rather that 80 % of this “dark genomic matter” is concerned with architectural planning, genomic blueprinting and regulation of the expression of the word of DNA, then heaven must be a place where most of the heavenly energy is expended not directly on us but indirectly on ensuring that heaven is in good, constitutive order, presumably for us.

And so, finally, if all of the above is true then the central dogma of our existence on this earth must surely be, not necessarily to pray incessantly but rather to use our “dark, latent, silent energy to ensure that like in heaven, our planning and blueprinting and regulation of life on earth is in constitutive tolerable order.

That then is truly heaven on earth!

Friday, August 3, 2018



It’s my birthday. I am reflecting on my 67 years of life on earth. Reflection at this age is mixed with looking forward; and so my thoughts immediately went to my favourite, deceased uncle. He taught me two important lessons.

Lesson one: Doing what Jesus did will help to find you a place in heaven. My uncle preached that he should go to heaven because if per chance they made an error and he descended into hell, all he had to do was to call up to Jesus and remind him that he, my uncle, was a carpenter too, and tradesmen should look after each other; a sort of union thing.

So what about all those who did something or try to do something that Jesus did, will they be able to get the same passport into heaven? Those who give you cheap wine, as if they made it from water; those doctors who think they alone can heal the sick; those pathologists who raise the dead by taking the body from a lower to a higher tray in the morgue; those school bullies who take away your lunch of bread and salt fish to feed a multitude of school children; those who have to walk on water when the heavy rains come; those who are anointed by prostitutes on and off Popeshead street.

Lesson two: Addiction comes in all forms. When his drinking was destroying his liver and swelling his feet, I was silly to try to show off my medical student knowledge about the effects of alcohol. After my dissertation, he calmly directed my attention to a plant in the house and, taking me back to one of my duties as a child, reminded me that plants need water. My tears were almost enough to soak the plant. We should all have plants inside and outside the house.

Can it be that you learn your most memorable lessons early in life? If so, what lessons did I learn from bullies in school? They will never stop until something drastic, more drastic, happens. For example, when you are confronted one night by two of them, you surprise them, and yourself, by thumping one of them in the face, and pushing the other one into the gutter. And run away to fight another day.

But why did they do these seemingly strange things? Like; put a piece of bush on your shoulder and dared you to brush it off! It was not my bush so I didn’t want to touch it, even though it looked freshly plucked and clean. But it was my shoulder; given to me by my mother and father. Was I a breech birth with troublesome shoulder delivery? Confused, I stood still, shoulder square and broad, lest the bush fell off, in the blowing wind (with no answer).

So now, at a certain workplace, some nearga will put glass bottles on the property on the shoulder of the grassy knoll , where vehicles can park. And I am suppose to remove them? That this will happen to me one day, decades later, is what my school bush-bullies were trying to teach me?

And too, they will waltz up to you, three or four of them, as if they knew that the waltz is in three-four time. Then they commanded me to touch my button (“If you think you bad”). Now, this was more serious and confusing than the bush on the shoulder. With all the hand washing my school clothes had to endure, my granny, with her aging body but seemingly microscopic eyes, will regularly sew buttons onto my shirt. Why then should I interfere with my granny’s handy work, other than when putting on and taking off my shirt? Plus, I did not think I was a bad person, who had to do bad things like touch one’s own button on the command of someone else.

So now, again at a certain workplace, the same place, some nearga will deliberately park their vehicle behind mine, in such a way, and so close, that I cannot move. They refuse to drive around the building to find trouble-free parking waiting for them. They must the descendants of the button bullies, now telling me to get in my vehicle, my very own vehicle, and reverse (“If you think you bad”.)

Growing old has it virtues, the single most important one being, no longer in my younger, more effervescent days, I am a little calmer; I think. I take almost all matters with a pinch of salt; or I do away with the salt altogether and drink more water. My birthday coming always at Carnival, water will serve me well in the Burning Flames after passing through Hell’s Gate. I am not a carpenter.

Sunday, June 3, 2018


The Counterpoint of Classical Music and Black People.

Recently, black musicians playing classic music have attracted the attention of more than a few people. Actually, and factually, we have been playing this genre of music since the 1820’s, with black musicians and composers to still learn about and celebrate. Ambivalence seems to ransack the thoughts of both musicians and listeners. A true counterpoint exists. And as in any counterpoint in music the independent parts are also interdependent.

The typical, negative reaction of most blacks to classical music is largely based on two factors: The mere sound of the music, and, probably more important, the historical relationship between Europe and Africa and the Caribbean.

So what happens to a black listener or musician who falls in love with classical music? How do you react to those whites and blacks, and voices in your head, telling you it’s not black people music, so leave it alone? Do you note that classical music ranges in style from baroque to "classical" to romantic to modern, with sometimes razor-thin separation, if any, between traditional classical music and jazz in the modern style of classical music? Do you counter by reminding them of all the genres of music blacks have given to the world, or do you walk away and deny the genuine emotions you feel, and ask why are others denying what must be the same emotions on hearing, at least some forms of, classical music?

It may just be that a black person, listener or musician, has to live a bipolar life. A life in which you understand and value the contributions of black people to music on one hand, or in one head, and, on the other hand, or in the other head, notwithstanding the history of Europe, or standing with a constant reminder of the history of Europe, you do the same valuation of European classical music.

But how can you live such a crowded, maddening life without seeking to find “that tune”. That tune that has never been played. That tune that some refuse to hear. That tune that says until and unless Reparation is seen as a civilizing principle and process, for whites and blacks, to the actualizing end, dissonance will ravage and consume the counterpoint. And that is not music.

Monday, July 31, 2017

It's Carnival, Baby!

Midsummer Nightmare

Dr. Lester Simon-Hazlewood

A long time ago in the land of Nti, the Arn festival of emancipation was celebrated by taking off one separate article of clothing every day for twelve consecutive days. To prepare for the festival, some folks dressed heavily, donning thirteen pieces, whilst others made no such stuffy preparations and gleefully, at the drop of a hat, started doffing their hats, their shoes, ounces, pounds and hundredweights of makeup, wigs, weaves and other hair pieces, over-wear, wear, and underwear, and even layers of their beautiful, black skin. Others just took off altogether and left for the neighbouring lands of Uda and Unda.

On the sixtieth anniversary of the festival, the king summoned all the minstrels to his palace. Some singers were also kings and queens of the land in their own musical realm; and musicians were regarded highly as the main custodians of culture. Some musicians played music that made people start to dance, stop dancing, and start to dance again; again and again. This led to some of them deployed as traffic wardens dressed in red, amber or green, to make drivers slow down, stop, and start again; again and again. They also played special music to stop drivers using their cell phones in traffic.

The most difficult task these warden-musicians faced was getting drivers to be kind; to say thanks to other drivers who were kind to them, and to be wary of weary passersby trying to cross the road. However, some of these passersby, old and young, were very cantankerous, an assumed native characteristic, and oftentimes told the warden-musicians, who were mostly horn players, that they, the musicians, were going to get a real, good blow…. in a certain, basal part of their anatomy.

At the meeting at the palace, the king announced that this anniversary was very special; that there should be no nastiness, not even from Queen Ivenus, the loved one; that the land needed special music and special songs and especially, special dances. No longer will emancipation mean taking off one’s clothes. Instead, emancipation will mean from now on, and forevermore, respect for each other. There was a long, deafening silence, so quieting one could hear the wailing waves of dead ancestors coming from the bed of the middle passages of the Atlantic Ocean.

The silence was broken by a silly musician, actually a comedian masquerading as a musician. Some often asked what was the difference between the two? He reminded that being respectful can be dangerous, even fatal. He recounted how his brother, a Rastaman, had ventured into a cowboy saloon in the Wild, Wild, West; and on pushing past the swinging, saloon doors, greeted the cowboys by hailing, Jah! May his wandering soul, emancipated from his bullet-ridden body, shredded to pieces, rest in peace. After the token laughter, the comic-musician didn’t tell them how the police said they had so much respect for the first, real Rastaman in Nti, Ras King Nki, that they respectfully locked him up innumerable times; seeing how he had plenty locks.

Being minstrels, they all tried to impress the king and queen with tales of misbegotten respect. Like the one, told after a festival many years ago, about the respectable, hoity-toity woman who didn’t want to dance in the middle of the road for all to see. Instead, she danced and danced, respectfully, round and round, behind everyone’s back, until she ended up dancing on top of her stepmother’s grave. Sadly, the stepmother had been buried at sea.

Some minstrels were not pleased with the new decree and wondered aloud why respect and lubricious, emancipatory dancing had to be separated. They reminded that respect begins at the bottom. A plump, maiden minstrel, of good background stock, as they are wont to say in the land of Nti, was not at all amused. They laughed at her and made her feel so badly, she had to retort. She reminded them how disrespectful many songs were of women, as if all women were descendants of Jean and Dinah, the English ones, and Rosita and Clementina, the Spanish ones.

She pointed at one musician in particular and told the gathering how he had tried to interfere with her, as they are wont to call it in the land of Nti, and how she refused his advances and told him what to do with his unrequited love. Now they all wanted to know what she told him. School children say, as they are wont to say in the land of Nti, that after he told her she was being obstinate, she advised him to go home, take a shower, drink a rum, lie in bed and, with a novel, sardonic double entendre, “Wet you hand and wait for me”! Even the nubile queen roared and choked with laughter, until her head fell off and landed in the king’s lap. No one made any jokes about the king giving back the queen her laughing, choking, fallen head.

The oldest musician showered bounteous praises on the female minstrels, until he was reminded that he had fallen victim to the mango juice legend. Again, school children had it to say that legend has it that whosoever washed their face with mango juice and went to sleep will fall in love with and become addicted to and tied to, as they said in Nti, the first thing they saw on awakening. So, who tied the red cow in the pasture next to his house? He quickly hid the Red Bull drink in his hand. And that was the clean version.

Then the king’s seer, Oma, addressed the gathering. A broad hush brushed across the floor. The ceiling dropped a few metres to meet it. Quiet filled the room as the walls drew closer. One musician thought of calling on the group, Air Supply. Surely the sage will have something sagacious to say. After all, school children say, he was the most learned man in Nti. They say whilst studying for degrees at the University of Timbuktu, he took Kelvin, Celsius, Fahrenheit and Centigrade too. By this time visitors to the palace, who had come from far and farther and farther still, had joined the assembly. Oma proclaimed emancipation, like reparations, to be a two-way civilizing act. And one minstrel whispered to another that to repair past damages, and with due respect, they will no longer play mas on Redcliffe, Market and High Streets, or any other one-way street.

And so it became that for that festival and thereafter, all the music and dancing were played on two-way streets. Then the visitors, some of whom were colonizers, went back to their homelands and told their kings and queens including King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, that carnival, emancipation and, most importantly, reparations all meant respect for all humanity including oneself. And they all lived and danced happily ever after.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Long Live The Caribbean Court of Justice


Dr. Lester Simon-Hazlewood

In an epiphany moment one day, many years after I had grown up, I was travelling on a road away from my village when a giant, incandescent light bulb appeared and revealed the rationale for the seemingly irrational behaviour I had witnessed as a child in some of the inhabitants of my village.

When the debate about the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) digs up irrational, societal behaviour, coupled with irrational responses, we should call in the social psychologists and forensic anthropologists; neither of which I am.

My vote is a yes for the CCJ becoming the final appellate court of Antigua and Barbuda and the region. My vote is a yes because I have regarded the eleven-year history of the CCJ and I have listened to the objections and I am convinced my decision is the correct and logical one, based solely on the legal evidence. Nothing else.

A stark irony of historic proportions is being played out by those who oppose the CCJ and by some who are for the CCJ. When the argument moves away from the sterling work of the CCJ over its relatively short history, we run into contradictions. Yes, the CCJ is not just about the CCJ itself but also about how we feel about ourselves as a Caribbean civilization. But no, the central and essential argument cannot and must not reside in the societal package that encloses the CCJ.

If the yea-voters make the argument that the CCJ is essential because the Privy Council does not understand our local and regional nuances, then the same yea-voters cannot be alarmed when local and regional judges understand our local and regional nuances diametrically differently from the way we understand them.

This differential was the basis of the Observer Group legal case. It revolved around the legal concept of the stark nakedness of the constitution, compared to the inhibiting, tight clothing and aloofness of the constitution. To be fair, the Observer Group went to the Privy Council because that was then the final court of appeal. I am convinced that any such group going to the CCJ will get the same judgement that was handed down by the Privy Council.

The legal profession has an intrinsic problem of alienation from the public. The medical profession had a similar issue until it was forced to come to terms with primary health care. The journey from the posh doctor’s office to squalid communities and to health clinics to practise social and preventative medicine was not an easy trek for many doctors, whether trained at the University of the West Indies or in Cuba.

The CCJ is on a blistering marketing campaign that is almost perfect. The Right Honourable Sir Dennis Byron, president of the CCJ, gets a 99 per cent rating for his presentation, “Restoring Public Confidence in the Independence of the Judiciary”. His 1 per cent shortfall is for not admitting that confidence must be stored first before it can be re-stored. Additionally, the abject failure of the rank and file members of the legal profession, singly or in associations, to court, inform, educate and champion societal issues is a blazing backfire that bellows a loud wake-up call.

But, as Dorbrene O’Marde wrote, it is not about the CCJ. The nay-voters may be saying that they are dissatisfied with the lower courts and they want them fixed first. More deeply, they may be saying they are dissatisfied with their lives, with the way they see not just justice but many aspects of Caribbean life in general and the legal profession in particular.

This entire matter brings to mind the suicide of Kirillov, a character in the novel, The Possessed, by the Russian novelist, Dostoevsky. The reference to this suicide and the intransigence of people is not uniquely mine. The following quote from Stanley Crouch is essential.

“Negro Americans are not predisposed to follow people. They aren't. That's why there is always a certain element of chaos in the negro world because I think from slavery we just didn't like [follow instructions]. So someone telling you over and over that you got to do this, you know....I'm not doing that, just because you said so. Yes, but it's right. I don't care if it's right, I'm not doing it anyway. Why I'm not doing it? For the same reason Dostoyevsky said I'm not going to do it. So that I can tell you that I exist. So I'm just gonna mess your stuff up.”

Interestingly, Stanley Crouch, a jazz critic, with whom I do not always agree, was writing about how Duke Ellington was able to keep his band of dueling personalities together,

Kirillov decides to commit suicide because to him it is the most important act of self-will. A blogger noted that it is his non-cooperation act against his maker and hence his ultimate expression of unbelief.

I believe the nay-voters are not shooting themselves in the foot. They are shooting themselves in the head in a sardonic plea for emancipation from injustice. If this is correct, and if the reference to this intransigence, this inertia, this nihilism and this non-cooperation is correct, (I will take away my ball and stop the game), then there is only one way out of this uniquely Caribbean, societal, suicidal conundrum of justice. It is that voting for the CCJ must be synonymous with and predicated on a vote for reparations.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

A Police Tief Me Hag!

New Year Resolution

Dr. Lester Simon-Hazlewood

This is just a friendly suggestion. For Christmas 2016, be highly selective of those to whom you offer good tidings of great joy. For example, if a seemingly pregnant woman and a man and a donkey come caroling at your gate and beg lodging for the night, do not under any circumstances put them up in the manger.

We rescued them and put them up in the manger. And now look at us. The first clue should have been the donkey singing. It was a Trojan ass. The second clue, in hindsight, was that they must have landed on one of our many isolated inlets and checked out, but did not check into any of the hotels. We should have suggested that they take up the CIP program, Christmas in Paradise.

So here we are at the police station undergoing questioning by a police officer who thinks he is really hot, with degrees in Centigrade, Chemistry, Fahrenheit and Forensic Sciences. He wants to know why I was away in the manger when the police came. I told him the yard-man usually looks after the cows and pigs and other animals in the manger. I couldn’t tell “when c’est last” I looked out there. But since we had already decked the halls with boughs of holly and it was a silent night, I was just going to see how the strangers were settling in, when suddenly the police pounced on me.

The officer said I should have suspected something when the strangers came calling late at night. He suggested that I should be very careful, especially at Christmas time. People take advantage of other people’s kindness; and you don’t know who might be a terrorist these days. Then he let on about manure in the manger containing gases like ammonia and carbon dioxide that can be toxic, and hydrogen sulfide and methane that can be used for explosives.

We were shocked! I told him I was so thankful and grateful that they had been trailing the terrorists from the time they landed. Realizing we were not in cahoots with them, he decided to let us go with a stern warning. Seeing we were nervous and distressed, he kindly offered us a plate of food and a drink since the police were having their Christmas party.

As we sat down to eat, I started wondering why the police allowed these dangerous strangers to reach so far; and why they were really patrolling our area so much that night. Just then, I saw someone passing in the police yard with a crocus bag under his arm. Then I saw cousin, King Obstinate locked up in a cell, singing in a sad refrain, “Family! A police tief me hag. A police tief me hag. A police tief me hag and wrap um up in a crocus bag.”