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Garveyism the answer to curbing crime, says community activist

Published:Monday | February 8, 2021 | 12:18 AMCecelia Campbell-Livingston/Gleaner Writer
Marcus Garvey
Marcus Garvey

As the murder figures continue to climb, community activist and caretaker for the Manchester North West constituency, Damion Young, is expressing regret about the failure of the powers that be in not aggressively pushing the teachings of Jamaica’s first national hero, Marcus Garvey, across the society.

Young said, had this been done, the society would have been a much better place and not saddled with the high levels of crime it is now contending with.

“I really believe that, had Garveyism been embraced and taught in the society, we would see less violence, because our youth would have a better appreciation of where they are coming from. Our youth would have a philosophy of a guided mindset that could instruct, inspire and motivate them to be better citizens,” Young shared with The Gleaner recently.

According to him, many of today’s youth – especially the males – are lacking father figures and positive role models, and the ones that they look up to are the ones that will influence them to take up guns or improperly guide them in solving disputes.


Reiterating his belief in Garveyism being pushed in society – be it on billboards, posters, or part of text messaging – Young said, had it been a part of their consciousness, it would have resulted in a more strategic mindset.

“It would have empowered us. It would have uplifted us psychologically, emotionally and mentally because of people who know what they are about, people who are strong on their history, confident of themselves working in harmony has to be a more stronger people, and I am certain that there would be less crime among us,” he said.

Young said, through the various roles he plays, Garveyism is something he uses to guide him on how to carry out his functions.

As a classroom teacher in the early days of his career, he said he taught about the struggles that Marcus Garvey went through, how he overcame and what he and other black persons stood for.

When Young served as president of his citizens’ association, he said he organised activities such as Jamaica Night during the month of October when Jamaica’s heritage is celebrated.

“Even where I am now working in the agro industry, I see myself as an advocate for farmers and I advocate for them because I believe food security is crucial. I believe that a nation that cannot feed itself is setting up itself for disaster,” he stressed, pointing out that COVID-19 has showed the country up big time, as it crippled the tourism industry and other sectors.

Young, in stating Garvey’s fight in pushing for self-reliance, and the need to appreciate our blackness and economic security, said he will continue to bat for farmers, with his attention being focused on Clarendon, Manchester and St Elizabeth.

Going forward, Young stressed that a resocialising approach is needed in having Garveyism at the centre of the country’s institutions and philosophies.

“As a society next to God, Garveyism should be taught because we all need a moral compass which an understanding of the Creator will provide us, but alongside that, because of the nuances in society and the various struggles the world has to endure, such as bigotry and one-upmanship, we need a guiding philosophy. We need additional guidance from persons who have endured the struggle to be able to pass down those principles which they used to overcome, passed down to us, Garveyism is the answer,” he said.