Dr. Kwame Nantambu

Moral Decadence in TnT

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
May 05, 2007

Now that the Danah Alleyne/Akon episode has been the "conversation piece" in TnT, it is vital for all concerned Trinbagonians to engage in retrospection rather than self-indulging pontification.

The fact of the matter is that the Club Zen fiasco only reflects/mirrors the sad tragedy/reality of the all-encompassing cloud of moral decadence that now hovers over TnT's society.

The fact of the matter is that if one was to stand back and ponder for a minute, one would realize that both male and female patrons dance that very same 'Club Zen way' at "all-inclusives" and fetes during the Carnival season. What's the problem, people?

The fact of the matter is that both male and female masqueraders of all ages dance that very same 'Club Zen way' on Carnival Monday and Tuesday as they perform for the 'judges' at the then Queen's Park Savannah. What's the problem, people?

The only apparent/obvious difference is that the two dancers at Club Zen had on more clothes than the Carnival masqueraders. What's the problem, people?

TnT is in a state of moral denial. Why are Trinbagonians so surprised at what took place at Club Zen? This genre of behaviour only reflects the "free-up" attitude/ mentality of Trinbagonians. Trinis like it so, 24/7/365 – Carnival or Lent.

Of course, the obvious fall-out is that no adult attempted to rescue this teenager. She must be forgiven. She must not be burnt at the stake. She only acted or reacted as a true Trini in today's decadent societal moral morass.

What took place at Club Zen was a moral crime that is too ghastly to contemplate but it must be examined and analyzed. The entire society stands accused as the prime accomplice in this moral indictment. Danah Alleyne's blood runs through all Trinbagonians.

However, there is always something good in everything that's bad.

One good thing that comes out of this tragedy is that society must now look within itself and engage in moral-conscience examination.

A fruit does not fall too far away from its tree. The behaviour of fifteen year-old Danah Alleyne is the fruit that this society has borne/created. This must be clearly understood by all Trinbagonians.

Moreover, one should not be too surprised that a school girl was involved in this moral madness/mayhem. Indeed, one can argue that the current status of immorality and pornography in the nation's public schools made her do it. What's the problem, people?

The second good thing that comes out of this moral dilemma is that all clubs owners in TnT must now adopt and rigorously enforce a new policy that states: "No ID; no entry. No exception."

In this way, even if an older person bought the ticket for underage Danah Alleyne, then, her ID would have denied her entry into the club. This policy must be enforced without exception and regardless of the patron(s) who seek(s) entrance into any club.

The bottom-line is that although morality cannot be legislated, at least, it can and must be instituted in TnT.

The Club Zen incident must be looked at as a timely wake-up call for all Trinbagonians to answer in the positive. There is no need to engage in the blame-game and finger-pointing; those knee jerk reactions will only be counterproductive and self-destructive. We are all our brothers' and sisters' keeper at this moment of moral crisis and decadence.

Now is the time to re-examine the lewd/provocative, albeit pornographic-oriented lyrics in soca songs. It was this mind-set/atmosphere that erupted/exploded at Club Zen. Hence, the reason why all the patrons were in the ultimate happy, "free-up" mood. Ergo, the dance between Danah Alleyne and Akon was acceptable and "cool."

This is the insane and scary level of morality in today's society. The crucial question that comes to the fore is: How low can TnT's societal-personal decency, morality and public responsibility go? – only time will tell.

In the final analysis, Trinbagonians may think that they are living in financial/economic heaven but the stark reality is that they are living in moral hell.

Shem Hotep ("I go in peace").

Dr. Kwame Nantambu is a part-time lecturer at Cipriani College of Labour and Co-operative Studies and University of the West Indies.

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