EDITORIAL: On knocking reality into the head
. . . We had 84 matches, and you have one match in which the players became heated as [would] happen in any competition. – Professor Eudine Barriteau, deputy principal of the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies.
For Professor Eudine Barriteau, “heated” is not even a euphemism for violent; it might be a synonym for excited. But bloodletting in any game is a great deal more than heat, or excitement; it is plain violence.
In Professor Barriteau’s oxymoronic quote above it is inferred that this kind of “heat” could happen in any match, but yet the boast is that of 84 games there was no violence in 83.
It was a pathetic attempt to spin the indefensible on the Jamaica-Barbados basketball brawl at the Barbados Community College gymnasium on Wednesday night.
At her Press conference in the 3Ws Pavilion on Friday, the professor, in a markedly failing endeavour, sought to put blame on THE NATION for sensationalizing, suggesting that our report on the bloody game – which the police had to put an end to – “attempted to use the competition in the basketball match as a metaphor for national relations that have absolutely no bearing”.
Our writer on that disgraceful display of conduct merely opined that the “fracas couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Caribbean neighbours [Jamaica and Barbados], with relations strained because of the Shanique Myrie allegation of assault at Barbados’ airport in March”.
If Professor Barriteau is of the view there is no straining between the authorities of the two islands, to her be all glory. But we hold no such contemptuous attitude towards reality.
God knows, we need to do everything we can to ease the tension caused by the Myrie affair; but not by pretending that a Bajan player didn’t suffer a gash over his right eye on the court Wednesday night. The UWI?Games were marred; any blood-spilt violence is a spoiler.
In her own vacillation, the professor admits that Wednesday night’s brawl involving the Jamaicans was not the first. Confirming this is Cave Hill Blackbirds head coach Derek Aimey.
He referred to similar violent incidents: at Mona in 2001 and at St Augustine in 2003.
But the “beauty” about it, for Dalton Myers, head of the Sports Department at Mona, is the “end result”.
Said he at the Barriteau Press conference: “. . . Everybody comes together unified, showing we are one University of the West Indies.”
Yes, after having the hell beaten out of you!