Reposted: May 24th, 2013
By G. Michael Reid
Saturday, May 18, 2013, 13:25
A bigot is a blinkered, narrow-minded person,
usually also very intolerant and unable to see anyone else’s point of
view. People can be bigoted about things that have nothing to do with
race, for example, religion or sexual orientation. A prime example would
be Archie Bunker from the old television sitcom “All in the Family.” ~Wikipedia
Belize is a melting pot of many different races, cultures and
lifestyles. We currently exist in a state of what might be considered
relative harmony. It was not always that way. I have always felt that
the greatest accomplishments of our late leader George Price, was his
ability to hold this mangled mess together and steer us from colonialism
to our state of “jerry-built” Independence. It could not have been very
As it is, we are very much a polarized nation, deeply divided along
religious, philosophical and in particular political lines. We are
governed by a Constitution which affirms “that the Nation of Belize
shall be founded upon principles which acknowledge the supremacy of
GOD…” Considering our attitudes toward others and the types of crimes
and gross indiscretions of late, one would be hard-pressed to convince
anyone of any such thing.
Belize started out as a settlement of ragtag pirates and a few
slaves. They subsequently turned to the harvesting of the rich mahogany
and logwood trees that they found growing in the area. They pushed
inland as far as the Rio Hondo and established parameters for what would
become this “tranquil haven” of “wealth untold”. Of course, from early
in our existence, our neighbor to the west has been violating the tenth
commandment and “coveting” all that we hold to be ours.
There is a long standing argument as to whether slavery in Belize was
any different than it was in the United States. I am inclined to the
position that slavery was slavery in any form or fashion. What was
different was the aftermath of the atrocity; whereas miscegenation was
illegal and prohibited in the states, it was widely practiced and
accepted here in Belize. As a result, by the time the masters had
depleted the forest and were ready to return to their true wives in the
mother country, we were left a colony of mixed up and confused mulattos.
Some were darker and some were lighter and that subsequently laid the
foundation of our most prominent paradigm. While in the U.S. they were
fighting for civil rights, we were fighting to see who was better than
Before us of even, were the Mayans, who left a rich legacy and
monuments of their storied past. We treated them in pretty much the same
way that Vega and Grijalva are now treating the Noh Mul monument; with
distain and disrespect. While their descendants are still here, they
seem to have as much rights as their “native” relatives to the north.
Banished to reservations and now being pushed even further to make way
for rosewood harvesting and oil drilling expeditions.
Then came the Garinagu! How we hated them and would not let them
within 36 miles of our nest of ungregariousness. We called them Kerobs
(or Cherubs if you read the Bible) and looked down on their customs and
eating habit. They were “bregging” and always smelled like fish! It took
many years but we eventually realized their worth and allowed them to
educate our children, play us music and stand on the wall of our
security. All of us are indeed now one and haven’t we come a long way
Then came the Mennonites. They were different; acted differently,
dressed differently and “did not bade for forty days and forty nights”.
We didn’t like them much either, however, we eventually also realized
how valuable they were to our economy and in supplying much of the food
that we needed to eat. They are also now fully integrated into our
society. Hell, there is even one way up as a high ranking minister of
Then came the Chinese, “trying to make a dollar out of fifty cents”.
At first there was a trickle and then they began to pour. They paid good
money for their passports and they wrestled away the fry chicken and
then the boledo business. In the beginning, as is usual, we didn’t like
them. We robbed them and even killed a couple here and there. Then we
ate their chicken and became hooked. They are now thoroughly assimilated
into society and a couple is also up in the echelons of politics.
Then the immigrants from our Central American neighbors began
arriving by the boatloads and truckloads. Spanish people that snuck in
while we weren’t even looking. These “yellow-belly Panyas” ate corn,
slept in hammocks and were boisterous when drunk. We did not care much
for them, looked down our noses and felt ourselves superior. Then we
realized that they also did a lot of farming and worked hard at the jobs
that we thought ourselves too good to perform. We did not like it but
we eventually had no choice but to accept them. We started leaving and
they kept coming until now, we are reduced to “minority” and they
elevated to status of “majority”.
Now, here’s the real point! Bigotry is etched deeply into our nature.
We almost need it because we have to feel as if we are better than
somebody else. At least on the surface, we have done well in accepting
or at least tolerating other races and cultures. We have come a long
way, no doubt, and now we are living together and it is a beautiful
thing to behold. It was a tough and rocky road to this point but we did
it and it has done us well. We have much spice in our coalition.
Now here come some idiots who are tugging at the last vestige of our
snobbery. We have stopped hating other ethnic groups and now we have no
one else to hate and feel better than, than those who call themselves
“lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender” (LBGT). No way in hell! If we
have to pull out every leaf of the Bible and beat them with it until
they surrender, we will not surrender our right to hate. This is our
last bastion of superiority and we refuse to let go. If need be, we
shall assail the gates of the courthouse and sing sankeys and read
scripture ‘til thy kingdom come. They will not win! How dare anyone try
to deny us our right to be bigots? We are what we are!
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher.