Rootsman (Yafeu Oesi) was a good painter and competent wood-carver, but lived his dream to become a calypsonian.
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Don’t judge my son by my actions
Leader of the Jamaat-al-Muslimeen, Yasin Abu Bakr, will not say if he supports his son’s foray into politics. “What I would say is that he is a grown man, he has a business degree and a law degree, and he is a grown man. “He could have chosen to go to court and defend criminals who get out and kill again, but he is in a position where he feels he could change the future ahead of him for himself. “You have a responsibility to make the world a better place for your kids and create a better future for them; he believes he can do that,” Bakr said.
Bakr had no political advice to give to his son, but did say what should not happen. “I do not want people to implicate him in my actions,” he said, referring to the insurrection in July 1990. “He was just a boy then, and I think a child should not be held responsible for something their father did.” With the prevailing rumour and speculation about an intended coup, Bakr—the man who planned and excuted the first one back in 1990—said that happened every year.
“People always saying this and saying that. You know what I would like to know? Who are these people...my wife and kids are people too and they not saying that. So who are these people?” he asked. Bakr said there were three kinds of people—those who acted, those who wrote about it, and those who did nothing. “Very few people, a minute amount, do things and they are the people that history records. A larger portion of the community comment on what has been done, and another large portion do nothing,” he said.
“You have to decide which category you want to be in,” he said. He said while Adolf Hitler was castigated, history must record what he did. “As bad as he was, he is recorded in history,” he said. When asked if he believed that the current conditions are ripe for another insurrection, Bakr sighed audibly before responding. “If you are conscious, if you are thinking...I am unconscious, I am not thinking at all,” he said with a small laugh.
He said it was necessary to have a sense of humour in this country. “If you want to stay out of the mad house, you have to laugh. T&T could make comic books for years and never run out of material,” he said.
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