There were five of us in the exercise therapy waiting room; the only male was, yes me, and the only black person was you guessed it-me. The small talk turned from health matters and whose knee no longer worked properly or whose elbow existed in name only to gender affairs and who should rule the world. It drifted from 21st century Michelle Obama being better than Barack to 15th century Joan of Arc braver than the French male generals at that time, also if elected Hillary Clinton will be a better President than Bill Clinton, and every other woman that showed or exercised power anywhere being better than their male counterparts everywhere.
Yet though crudely put, the women were composing a needed message. The age when women could not vote is passed and with new technology and easier access to schooling at all levels the time of the famous Sandy Posey song with the line, “A Single Girl Needs A Sweet Loving Man to Lean On,” is mostly gone. Indeed in a number of cases it is the single girl who supports and maintains the living of the sweet man whether a loving one or not. There are women who seem to be content to climb steps to get handouts and there are politicians who are happy to see them do that in exchange for votes and other things. In the main in the business of politics and political parties, women are seen only as voters. One local DLP politician even thought out loud calling the women supporters ‘sexy ladies’ a sexist remark which would have caused women in other lands to torch the place down.
The political system is a man thing. Women tactically refuse to join in the ‘mepwi festival’ that passes for political debate in our land. Yet if they want to change things they must be “in it to win it.” Even when the first female Prime Minister came to town the Eugenia Charles cabinet was largely male populated. Granted she dominated them and was given the gift moniker that all tough women in politics grudgingly receive from the men –“Iron Lady”. It’s as if the men are saying that a tough woman is a rare thing and if you find one you must define her with a slogan. The Speaker of the House who wants to sound tough with the male Opposition members in the House has been in that post since before some youth who are now teenagers were born but is mostly regarded as a puppet of the male Prime Minister. In the justice system though it is represented by an iconic image of a woman holding the scales of justice it is still a male dominated affair. When a woman is placed in a post of authority there is almost a feeling of surprise, surprise and a wooloo-woolah accompanied by perverse suggestions that she must be doing something underhand to get there. But women have had awesome power from the beginning of the Scriptures when we are told that a wimpy Adam surrendered his authority to Eve and then cowardly made an excuse to God, “The woman made me do it.” Women do have the power to make the men do it and change the world. It is that lever that God used to get Adam off his contented butt just eating free food, to work for his living gaining bread by the sweat of his brow.
However despite all the schooling and high tech advances it appears that the Women of Waitikubuli (WOW) prefer in the political system to be regarded as just voters who are happy to be called “sexy ladies” in sexy outfits for the enhancement of political rallies every five years. The WOW’s power is ignored because for the most part they prefer to remain silent on issues that affect them.
The sufferance that gets my attention is that women allow recalcitrant dads to get away paying just pathetic pittances to support their children and content to not pressure the politicians to increase the court ordered allowances to an amount more appropriate to the cost of raising a child today. When a woman who under the pressure of raising four children turned to the government for assistance she was publicly ridiculed on a radio talk show and derisively called a ‘baby machine’ by governing party agents and the women of Waitikubuli stayed silent. It seems they prefer to be referred to as giddy-eyed voters instead of making demands of those who come offering T-shirts and trinkets seeking their votes. In the case of legal justice women stay silent as they have mostly been when Greta Emmanuel an aged woman was firebombed in her home at Goodwill three years ago and despite a confession on police record no one has been made to pay for that to this day. When women are raped and abused it is mostly men who are on talk shows speaking out for them. When it comes to promotion within their workplace it is usually, “Later for the woman,” even though she performs to the same level as the male workers and but for space considerations I could go on and on.
I am heartened by the emergence of Monel Williams the United Workers Party candidate for the St Joseph constituency who stood among the heavyweights on a political platform and won the day with a speech like poetry in motion held together by its resounding chant, “For this cause I rise.” These words are now firmly placed in the ring of our politics forcing even trite responses from her political opponents. When the PM tried to ridicule her by calling her a, “half and half” candidate her response was powerful to the point of being deafening throwing down the gauntlet boldly and without compromise, “I am fully loaded.” The desire to diminish the importance of women is nothing new. The church denigrated the significance of Mary Magdalene in the life of Jesus by simply dismissing her as a prostitute. This fed their fanaticism for ‘men only’ priests. For centuries the fact that she was one of the ladies standing at the foot of the cross when the male supporters ran away and the first to report the resurrection of Jesus, “I have seen the Lord” did not even cause the righteous men in their nice holy robes to blink. The PM’s attempt to dismiss Monel simply backfired because this is not the time of Mary Magdalene. It is not her schooling and her good looks that make the difference as there are many women perhaps higher schooled and just as good looking but where are they? What makes Monel stand out is her strength of presence and a willingness to demonstrate that inner strength in the midst of the storm as if to portray the title of the Bishop T D Jakes bestselling book, ‘Woman thou art Loosed.’
We are now in the countdown to General Elections and so the time has come for the WOW to come forward and to raise their voices in the debate and the struggle to remake, reshape and renew, even redeem Waitikubuli for the sake of their children. As we look and see the children becoming criminals, drug abusers and undesirably psychopathic we should know that what is wrong with one can easily if unchecked be what happens to all and what you think is a ghetto problem becomes yours in your ivory tower. You can choose to hear no evil, see no evil and enjoy yourself but it is later than you think. This is the year for women to show that there is more depth to their political lives than waiting to be called, “sexy ladies Gee, Gee, Gee.” This is the time to resist intimidation be it political, social or carnal and stand up, stand out and be silent no more. History has shown that the call to do big things usually comes from the least among us- those born in animal feeding troughs called mangers and those who come from the loins of the rejected poor. Monel has given the call by which all the Women of Waitikubuli can begin to march with one voice, “For this cause I rise. For the sake of our children together we rise.”
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Honestly, Dennis is showing his political bias, political bias with some good points but obvious bias nonetheless…but Dennis’s political leaning aside I just don’t get how any woman of substance can sincerely and whole heartedly support the labour party at this time. Yes, you are free to choose a side. but in so doing do you really need to prostitute your character and morals to do so by backing such a boldly corrupt regime? these guys are guilty of blatant sexism, chauvinism and sexual discrimination against women ONTOP of all the questionable and outright corrupt things they have been doing. I generalize but most of these males are pretty guilty…
Women should be standing up in droves to protest against this current administration…and YES if and when another party like uwpwee( couldn’t help myself) comes to power do the same for them too. Call a spade a spade if workers were corrupt when they were in power then the labour party has faaaar surpassed them now but the voting public seems too intoxicated on the swill this administration is feeding them to stand up against the government’s injustice because they “love their pm”.
HEY, to you simple minded POE-TOE labourites out there (and let’s face it there are a lot of you!) NO I’m not simply saying support UWP!! I’m actually asking you to do something much much harder…to THINK and show some character and backbone… smh there are some who like to accuse ppl of being pro workers party just because they speak out against what’s going on with this administration because they as supporters are simply too pathetic to engage in a genuine debate and noooo by debate I don’t mean a shouting contest! . For your information (as if some of you hypocrites didn’t already know) there are plenty labourites who are fed up with Skerrit and his Cabal so look within your own ranks before you start labelling others!
I should say that there are obviously many intelligent and good hearted labourites I can think of some off the top of my head right now, but if those who call themselves labourites or ANYONE supports the utter none sense that these guys are doing…they need to do some serious soul searching…WEH!!!
Ok I normally dont rant like this but I thought it was needed. And let me apologize on the behalf of the men, small and insignificant pitance maybe but im still gonna say it, yes women have been given inequitable demeaning and despicable treatment by men and that should never happen. Furthermore It is selfish and unfair for Dennis or anyone to use this women’s rights issue for political mileage. Even if that was not his conscious intent it came across clearly enough in his article. THERE, I said it, that may have made absolutely no one happy but at least I ended my rant slightly on topic
Women equate politics with strength. Therefore women tend to support men in politics rather than support a weak woman just because she is a politician. However strong woman have always been part of the political landscape and have been fully supported. Persons such as Dame Eugenia Charles, Doreen James and Gertrude Roberts have made their marks. But politics is tough and women prefer to work in the background giving strong support and guidance to the men. When the time is right, more women will come forward like Monelle did. This is a big decision for a woman to make!!!
Dominican women are mostly to blame for this cult of Skerro phenomenon.
It started with a set of middle aged and older women who started with this give the boy a chance mantra.
It is these same women who will turn a blind eye to ANYTHING if they like you. It is also those same women who didnt like the look of Edison and now Lennox.
Labour has realised this and has put good money maintaining many of these women, from young to the old. It is institutionalised bribery. Go into any office. It is mostly women being employed.
It is women who decide the elections, not men. It is mostly women who are employed and maintaining families. It is they who turn a blind eye to corruption if they are getting something to feed their children.
Their form of pragmatic morality has gotten more entrenched as the economy has gotten worse.
Lennox is not someone I usually agree with but on radio the other night he said that if Dominicans allow themselves to be bribed, UWP will lose. They just dont have as much money as Labour does.
The women of Dominica will decide this election once again. If they continue to operate on the same scale of judgement as they have in the past then because they like Skerrit they will impose Labour on the country again.
And there will be nothing anyone can do about it.
People get the governments they deserve.
You are right. The women in Dominica will decide the election in favour of PM Skerrit and the DLP. And you know why? The DLP Government under PM’s Skerrit’s leadership has put plans and programs in place to take care of the children of the’ macho’ men in DA, who do not maintain them. So yes we will rise with Pm Skerrit and the DLp once again
If that was the case the state of womanhood would be way stronger in Dominica.
Instead you have a whole population of women who are obliged to support a party because it is subsidising them.
And then they have the gall to call themselves independent women.
patcho you hit the nail on the head! This is an issue that almost no one talks about publicly yet most acknowledge to some extent including many women – at least in private conversations or in situations they feel they have nothing to lose by admitting it… except I might add its male laxness that have a lot of women in that position in the first place. Not that it justifies this sort of self serving shorted sighted thinking…
Reality is men will probably need to do better before those women who are perpetuating this behaviour even start to think of changing… if they ever do…
Great commentary once more. Very enlightening piece. Love your thought process. Keep it up!!
how mark marie doh sue monel for maya angelou words yet?
the Speaker of the House has called on Women to become involved in politics but i did not hear Her congratulating Miss Williams on the declaration of Her Candidacy .
Be careful what You ask for !
Because of their rights to vote women can dream of being in politics. Do not idolize Monel William in undertaking the challenge to run for the St. Joseph District. She also had a predecessor from that very district who was a female and became DEMAGED merchandize. She was also thrown under the bus by her male collogues. In running for public office you are open for scrutiny, praises and ridicule. As a mother and grandmother can I tell my teenage daughters that Monel is an example that they should look up too,or can they mimic her behavior?. How has Monel advance the rights of women in her village? Can I tell my daughters it is OK to live in the condition that she is living? Poverty is not the issue THERE! She created that atmosphere. A persons’ Morals and values tells a lot of this persons’ character. If she was living in New Jersey DYFEST would be involved. Is that the character we want to represent us? When you idolize her, you open the door for public scrutiny. This also tells a lot about the people that forms the party. People life style has a lot to do with one self.
DJ that surely was a Double Century
Dennis, everyone has an opinion. As the saying, “As many heads there are, it is as many opinion there will be.” You have an opinion which belongs to you and you alone. Since everyone possesses different individuality traits, we cannot all agree with what you stated. I, personally do not endorse your writing and reference to generalizing about women.
In addition, your reference to biblical occurrences dating back to when Our Lord Jesus Christ was on earth 2000 years ago, your comparison of it then and of today is inaccurate.
I wished you had left this out of your writing since it has no bearing on your political article and criticisms and politics of today.
Beware of blasphemy and being critical of the Church and causing others to think like you and agree with you when they also do not have an understanding of what occurred in those days. I wonder if some of them fully comprehend what is occurring today. The next time you write, consider that.
Denis Joseph is a political hack for the UWP, just as Voice and Sogo is for the DLP.
But what he wrote is true. Many WOW don’t vote on the issues but sadly on how opposite sex looks.
I appreciate your perspective on women issues presented here. However, there is a lot of work to do because while some WOW will get the message there are those with weaker intellect who would need a little more explanation. Consider presenting this is kweyol on Q95. Great piece as usual.
Well written Mr Dennis keep up the good work. It is time for Dominicans to hold their political leaders accountable for their actions. Only in dominica politicians can do and say anything without being held responsible. When a young woman walk inside the pm office seeking assistance to further her education. And the pm can respond by saying take off your clothes and can have sex with the young lady because she is in need. For this cause the women of our nation must rise.
“For this cause I rise”…we all should rise against this nonsense in DA…..Monele hats off to you….like the article
Dennis you had me there. As a woman I love to see people champion our cause because we have suffered a lot. I got caught up in the reading but didn’t read through the fine line. However, when I read a comment posted by “Independent” I read your literature again and had to agree that Independent is wright. Your champion of our cause has ulterior motives. As she put it, “it’s like sheep in wolf clothing.” Don’t do that to us, be real and do what is right. Champion our cause because that is the right thing t do, not for political gain or profit.
We call ourselves contemporary people yet we still wallow in the misogynistic ways of the biblical days.
Many come portraying an image of freedom fighter for the women yet they remain silent when women in Dominica are still being abused.
A Women was almost raped by a minister and what happened – even women in the police force who knew of the report made by the same woman stayed quiet. I am not even touching Gretta Emmanuel and others who were ttacked and the so called women rights activist in Dominica have their tongue anchored on a rock.
But DJ how do we expect better from the women rights activists when many of them are bido l’eglise and listen to a Christian doctrine that continue to perpetuate one of the biggest lie ever. Mary Magdalene was Jesus woman ( yeh I said it Jesus banging Mary Magdalene) and the church for it’s own selfish reasons prefer to demonize Mary Magdalene. Why it is that the church wont change their characterization of Mary Magdeline – it bits me. But then again it was only in the mid 1980’s that the church acknowledge that the world was round and not flat.
Gallelio was criticized and demonized for stating that the world was round and rotated – the truth . So to Denise you will be demonized for talking against the treatment handed down to Monelle Williams for simply declaring herself a strong woman with independent thoughts and opinions. The woman in Porssie spoke about her difficulties and the neglect she received from her Parl Rep and Reginald Austrie and guess who attacked her on the radio. Not just the lunatic Krazy but his tadio talk show hostess a supposedly woman of stature.
Frenz, in view of all your comments on DNO, I do not expect you to say anything better and complimentary when it pertains to matters of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Church and the Faith. You possess a warped, indifferent opinion which is incorrect. I am informing you, if you do not consider it, you are an enemy of God, His Church and a blasphemer. God will punish you for what you have stated. Woe to you! Wait and see.
I urge you to cease your blaspheming and critics against God and His Church. As God knows, sees and hears all things, there is a price to pay for that. It is only a matter of time.
are you serious about that MARY AND JESUS VIBES? boy i never knew that. hope that is not BLASPHMEY.
Warrington notice that the bible conveniently does not have an account of Jesus’ life between the age of 12 and his late 30 or actually the time at which he was crucified. Well ask yourself why.
You see people like Truth and Justice now simply the truth already condemn me to their hell but guess what I will go via donkey while those hypocrites will take the high speed train.
Warrington, this is the type of propaganda which will cause some who are weak of faith to doubt their faith and fall away from it.
If I was a foolish person, I would have done just that when the enemies of the Catholic Church approached me and commenced their charade of their false indoctrination. But for the grace of God and his enlightenment, I have remained steadfast in the faith.
Frenz is no expert. He speaks based on his ignorance of what is contained in Holy Scriptures. The truth is hidden from him due to his mentality. He has depicted where he stands about God, the Ever Blessed Virgin Mary, the Faith and the Church.
Read/study Holy Scriptures about what St. Paul said pertaining to people as Frenz, influenced by Satan “who is condemning himself to Hell” for his words.
I will repeat what Our Lord Jesus Christ said about people as Frenz: “By your words you will be acquitted. By your words you will be condemned.”
Pray to God to open your heart and mind to the truth. Leave Frenz just where he is, on the road to nowhere. At this point, I laugh at Frenz and feel sorry for him. Let us pray for him.
It is strange what politics can do to the mind.Choosing a woman based on political partisan to highlight the plight of women is so hypocritical.Why would you think that Gretta Emmanuel was a victim as a woman who was marginalized. Is this what Politics has done to your mind making such nonsensical statement.
Accusing Catholic women for being passive or silent in not taking a stand on issues relating to their rights as woman is so cheap an foolish,could you not comment on this commentary in a secular manner,by the way If Mary Magdalene was demonized as you believe why is it the Catholic Church say prayers to her in admiration.Your comment with religious and Political rhetoric does nothing to show support for women in the cause of equality.
Dude the more you show up is the more you expose your ignorance. Mary the mother of jesus who the Catholics pray to is not the same as Mary Magdalene that the Christians referred to as a prostitute.
“could you not comment on this commentary in a secular manner” – WTF are you saying. That stuff you smoking in Portsmouth stop it fella – stop it’s making you stupid.
I wish Frenz would remain silent and hold his mind and his fingers on the keyboard. He confuses some people with his indifferent comments.
Actually many say it is Mary Magdalene. There seems to be a misunderstanding. It is the sinner of Magdala. Our Lord Jesus Christ forgave her. He said, “Let he who is without sin caste the first stone.”
We cannot comment on a secular manner where matters of the faith is concerned. This is something a person as Frenz will never comprehend because he does not possess likewise mind, a godly one. People as he lead others astray. He is bad news.
Dennise let me congratulate you on this great article. Be aware that the attack dogs will come out to hunt you for speaking the truth about the ay women aught to be treated and included.
Now some people who pose as champions for the cause of women are the same ones who denigrate women on the political platform. The famous lines by the speaker of the house who declared herself a vermin at a public meeting and also the nasty statement about the distance between Helens legs
But Dennise as we know you speak the truth in Dominica and yours A444 is that of the Labor Party attack dogs and ignoramuses like FAST N FURIOUS, INDEPENDENT,OBSERVER. In fact expect them to ignore the truth that you have spoken and attack you even if their sisters, parents, wives , women themselves are victims of the woes that you have spoken about.
Dennis has the truth and speaks the truth? If so, let him change what he perceives should be changed in Dominica for its betterment. Some people talk behind the scenes but no action.
I do not think you know what truth is.This commentary shows nothing of it’s kind to truly champion the cause of women.Yes, we all know that women are treated differently and marginalized
but this commentary poorly addressed the problem and only serve to satisfy a political ideology.
“what is wrong with one can easily if unchecked be what happens to all and what you think is a ghetto problem becomes yours in your ivory tower. You can choose to hear no evil, see no evil and enjoy yourself but it is later than you think.”
Very interesting and timely piece, Mr. Joseph
great commentary as usual.
This would have been a very good piece if you didn’t inject your political bias. I know of at least two women who are now serving on the govt. side but you neglect to mention or recognize them. Recognize heir strength, independence and ability to exist in a political environment dominated by men. Are you saying that women can only be women if the take up the cause of the UWP? This is so insulting. As a woman I take some positive from what you have said but will reject your political rhetoric.
I am a strong independent woman who doesn’t believe in these politicians because I am of the belief that they are all the same, looking out for themselves. Your political bias injected in this commentary clearly support my point. You must first see us for who we are and not because we share your views or support who you support. Make no mistake, we aren’t asking to be treated differently and Monel shouldn’t be treated any different from how a man would be treated in the political arena. So for castigating people who treats Monel as a politician contradicts your point for women inclusion in the system and is disrespectful and sexist. We should be treated equally and only then will all men and women alike consider us to be equal.
I do believe that we can and should make greater contribution to politics in Dominica. In fact we may be more proficient, efficient and productive. It should be also our right to be respected not withstanding what political party we choose to represent.
If you were truly independent and objective you would understand the central theme of the article. The focus is not about women in political party or which party includes women. The focus is about all women whether Blue Red or green or yellow must stand up for the things that are dare to women.
If you want to focus on your petty biasness just declare yourself a Laborite and move on. Stop pretending. Since you spoke about women in partisan politics et me let you know that since Mary Eugenia Charles Dominica has had women in politics and key positions. Under Eugenia Charles we had minsters and senators who were women. The same with the UWP government and the present Labor Party government and so the only point that you have made just because you want to attack Denise is a moot point. No significance at all.
I am not sure why a 21 century woman would disagree with what Dennise has written. I guess nothing of material and substance can get past your ignorance and blind partisanship.
Certainly, an avenue is opened for both women and men to release their frustrations, and disappointment with each other. The power struggle is peaking between the two genders, male and female. Truly, our world is taking a historic change and women are no longer seen as the reproductive servants of men. Be prepared for serious havoc between the genders as we all stand for our rights and freedoms.
God Watch Over Us!
Vincent Rolle, Houston, Texas, Laudat, Dominica.
Exactly my point. Disagreeing with you and some of Dennis points according to you has made me less a woman in the 21st century. It has made me a labourite and taken away my independence. You cannot seek to champion women rights but at the same time, seek take away their independence. We cannot only make sense or have a voice when we support your point or views. We must be equal in all areas and be respected no withstanding whether you agree with our point or not.
Glanvillia, I totally agree with you. Like so many responders on DNO, Independent has missed the salient point completely. Politics is not the central issue that Dennis was talking about. It was about the status of women in DA period, whether it is sexual abuse, rape, non payment of child support, job opportunities etc. RESPECT for WOMEN is in my opinion the underlying theme of the piece. Govt. Ministers want sex from women who go to see them about a job, such disgrace
It is generalizing to think that all women are the same; not intelligent at all. It is a downright error to assume that, on the part of both Dennis and you.
To write a comment and say quote” The focus is not about women in political party or which party includes women. The focus is about all women whether Blue Red or green or yellow must stand up for the things that are dare to women.” What an absurd statement. This comment says two things about you.One You did not understand what you read in the commentary or you are just blinded by you political partisan, the latter is what I think. Your hypocrisy insults my intelligence.
the women of the labour party are part of a corrupt gang who lure women with the promise of money to study and then make advances at them. As women they must speak up or disassociate themselves from this gang
You could be sued for defamation of character; for libel.
Independent, I like your response because as I read the piece I noticed it was well crafted with its political bias. I am happy for Monel and all other women who are in the political arena but to single out Monel surely shows that the message is more of an advert than a cause to champion women rights. It has a lot of great points but as the good books said, the devil will come as a wolf in sheep clothing. This is an exploitation of women rights for others to gain politically. Like you I am an independent, who has not voted. I will be in Dominica for the carnival season during which time I will ensure that my name is on the voting list and get my voters ID card. I await to see who can convince me to vote for them and like you I will be guarding against these bias political rhetoric.
Good response. We cannot let these men get away with these without calling them out. They want to champion our right for their own cause. It is like prostituting women all over again.
Like you comment Independent. :-)
So for this take the correct stance Independent you seem more dependant. To the point of being a portervoz spokesperson for backwardness,defending the undefendable.The courrpt, the drug dealers the crooked Sino beggers(international panhandlers)Independent belong in the hall of the shameless lowlife which crawls the surface of the earth.
I am sorry you feel that way and even you in your time of ignorance need forgiveness. You are forgiven. Sometime we can’t see further than our political bias. I guess I need to choose a party.
I think it is hughly insulting to identify the two women currently serve in the present administration as anything even remotely significantly lifting the profile of women in Dominica. On the contrary they demonatrate they demonatrate a collective level of unbelievable interlectual impotence that any attempt to compare either or both with the modern intelligent strong woman of stature is an act of contemptous folly.
Your insult clearly says who you are and what you represent. It is not about women rights but personal gain. We will not allow anyone of you people to prostitute us for political gain.