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November 22, 2013
Historical Notes St Vincent and the Grenadines

Historical Notes for November 22

“The usual Christmas demonstration of the labouring classes – comprising the procession in about Kingstown of rival bands of music from the different villages – has been suddenly interrupted this year by the interference of the police; on what grounds we are unable at present to state; seeing that these processions are all, perhaps, with a few insignificant exceptions, calmly and orderly conducted, and were encouraged by the community as it betokens a far better state of things than the ‘mimic warfare’ which the labourer had been accustomed to hold.{{more}}

Much dissatisfaction has been expressed throughout the Town on the subject. We cannot understand the doctrine which allows a certain class of the community to go in procession through the streets of Kingstown, proceeded by bands of music and the same privilege to be denied to another class? We have not time nor space to devote to the subject today, but it is an unwarrantable interference with the privileges of the people in trying to abridge the little harmless recreation which the festive season encourages; far better is it to the advancement of good government, to have an orderly and contented people than to have a discontented community and a gaol filled with drunken or disorderly rioters.” (The St.Vincent Witness, December 28, 1871)

The Police

“…Mr. Daniel Durham has favoured the Inspector of Police with a declaration or action at law for false imprisonment-damages £200. Whenever a disturbance takes place, people at a distance are apt to wonder at the cause, and speculations wide of the mark are discussed; Imagine a peace officer, on horseback, fluctuating from the effects of inebriety and uttering the most obscene imprecations to the unfortunate beast, and because a bystander laughs at his “jollying propensity, “ he is ordered to be locked up, and after being imprisoned for several hours, bail in the meantime refused, he is cooly told “You may go about your business there’s nothing against you”. This is precisely what has occurred here within the past fortnight. We shall see whether the tax payers will be made to suffer

again unrighteously for the misdoings of an official who is ignorant of and indifferent to, the duties which he is required to perform and for the efficient performance of which he receives a larger salary from the public.”

(The St.Vincent Witness, January 26, 1871)