Bestiality, brutality and bravery on the Marudi Trail
Whether you are strong or weak, your love of family leads you to incredible heights of valour. A man would jump in the raging waves to save his loved one. He would confront policemen with guns who are beating his loved ones. Some will go beyond protection and become the aggressor if their family is being assaulted by employees of the coercive state apparatus.
If a policeman had assaulted my offspring in front of me the way a policeman beat a little child canopied in his mother’s arms while she was protesting, that policeman would have had to kill me, because there was no way I would have not violently confronted him.
What happened on Marudi Trail two weeks ago is just another indication that one day (I believe not far in the future) this country is going to explode. Every aspect of this violent assault portrays the consuming inferno that this country has become. First, the occupying miners who were beaten by the police had days before met with President Ramotar on the question of the unused mining concession awarded to a Canadian company. It was no coincidence that the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) accompanied by heavily armed policemen went on the Marudi Trail to protect the Canadian concerns while the issue of occupation was not settled.
Thirdly, was it necessary for such a large, armed contingent to be sent up to the site to confront unarmed protestors? Fourthly, in whose interest did the police function? If the GGMC requested police assistance did it have to be such a show of force for the protection of a Canadian company? Would the police have been so concerned if the request to remove the so-called illegal miners came from a Guyanese dredge owner? Fifthly, this violent use of force to protect the interest of a foreign company is sickening when one takes into consideration the controversy over the privilege given to a Chinese firm that excluded the employment of Guyanese skills on the Marriott Hotel.
I have long contended in my column that unless we move the focus away from the lower ranks of the police force that brutalize innocent Guyanese and hold their commanding officers responsible, then these lesser persons are going to continue with their sadistic bestiality.
Would any Guyanese have imagined that after three innocent protestors were gunned down by the police in Linden, and a mere lad is shot dead by a squad in Agricola, followed by wild police shooting near the White Castle Fish Shop on Hadfield Street, policemen could openly brutalize unarmed protestors on the Marudi Trail?
Let’s make a comparison with the policeman who mercilessly mauled the child, his mother and her brother and other protestors at Marudi Trail, and Robeson Benn’s entry into NCN to remove a calypso from the airwaves.
Why did Benn do it? He had to know it would have created a storm. He had to know that a Minister cannot waltz into a public corporation and order employees around if he is not the subject Minister with the relevant jurisdictional authority.
Benn did it anyway because he knew he could have done it and get away with it. Benn knew that no sanction would follow because his bosses (he has one boss, the President) would not discipline him. To put it pointedly, Benn knew he could get away with it. Why did burly policemen with guns point their weapons at innocent protestors lying on the ground? Why did a police corporal take a cutlass, chop a tree branch, make a woody weapon out of it and savagely beat the mother and her little son knowing full well that the cameras were on him?
Like Benn, he knew he would be supported by his superiors. Benn and the police corporal are no fools. They knew they could do it. The fools are we in civil society. The fools are the opposition parties that are tripping over each other to attend meetings with the Office of the President and vying with each other to get concessions from the State. The AFC boycotts a State event, APNU goes to it. APNU boycotts a function, the AFC attends. This is the state of our politics so Benn, the corporal, the Ministers, the Police Commissioner and the President can do what they like.
We must salute the relatives of that mother who was beaten. They threw their bodies on her to protect her. In the meantime, Police Commissioner Leroy Brumell says the corporal will not be interdicted during the investigation. Now you can understand why he brazenly beat the woman and her son.