The good, the bad, and the ugly (January 26)


The Shaggy Make a Difference Foundation has donated the proceeds from the Shaggy and Friends charity concert on January 4, totalling J$70 million (about US$700,000), to the Bustamante Hospital for Children. (Press reports indicate that private donors included DJ Squeeze of Linkup Radio, who gave J$1 million, and athlete Yohan Blake, who also pledged J$1 million. Other donations included US$20,500 from Food For the Poor as well as J$389,200 via the Digicel Text line. Corporate donations included J$3.75 Million from SportsMax and Jamaica National Building Society, which handed over US$8,110 after a pledge to donate US$1 from the proceeds of each money transfer from the United States to Jamaica between January 2 to 15.)


Press commentary about a report on Education and Crime was shoddy and unfair in referring to ‘prison schools’ and suggesting a causal relationship between school attended and likelihood of imprisonment. Government reaction, notably by the Minister of Education, to criticisms of the report were also casual. Not surprisingly, many teachers have reacted negatively to the report and commentaries.


An 18 year-old black South African skier, Sive Speelman, Screen Shot 2014-01-26 at 2.33.17 AMfrom a poor, rural area in the Eastern Cape where it snows, has qualified for the coming winter Olympics in slalom. But…the South Africa’s national Olympic committee has decided that Speelman isn’t good enough, so denied him the chance to compete. This move has been criticized in South Africa and abroad. Speelman is outside the top 2000 but amassed enough points to gain eligibility to compete in the Olympics. In the association’s words, it wants “to ensure participation…is of the highest quality…unfortunately will not be delivering (sic) him to the Winter Olympic Games.”