Jamaican-born: am I not a citizen and a Briton?
Each species cares for its members. Human beings are not odd in having the instinct. But that instinct often gets in the way of racists wanting to persecute a part of humanity.
Such racists seek to kill mankind’s instinctive care for fellow men by dividing humanity into categories, each deserving of a different degree of care.
The practice of dividing humanity and treating part as sub-human did not die in the 1830s with the abolition of the slave trade, but lives today in the Metropolitan police force.
Rather than used the outdated idea of race to divide human beings in order to deny Black people their humanity, the police instead use nationality to achieve the same ends.
Jamaican-born is the label of choice used by the police to divide British citizen into different categories: British-born and naturalised-Briton.
Born in Jamaica, the Jamaican-born is a naturalised British citizen. Often times, the Jamaican-born is actually a British-born citizen. The 1948 British Nationality Act gives the right of citizenship to people born in Britain and its colonies. Until August 6 1962, Jamaica was a British colony. Post-war migration to Britain from Jamaica means a majority of people police now categorise as Jamaican-born are in fact British-born citizens.
Police use of the label Jamaican-born to show division in British citizenry contradicts government’s policy on the meaning of Britishness. The citizenship pledge each new citizen now makes binds him to Britain. The pledge is a right of passage, the purpose of which is inclusive. Home secretaries have reinforced the idea that the pledge is about inclusion, about becoming a Briton.
But, although he is a citizen, the label Jamaican-born excludes him from ever becoming a Briton.
Like the slave, confronted by the brutality of slavery, was forced to ask: “Am I not a man and a brother? So too today, each Jamaican-born, faced with murderous policing, must ask: “Am I not a citizen and a Briton?” To which the police reply: “You’re bleeding well aren’t, sunshine!”
Well, if he is not a Briton, what then is the Jamaica-born? The context within which the label Jamaican-born is used provides an answer.
As an identifier of a particular category of British citizen, Jamaican-born is hardly ever used in a positive context. For example, within the pages of the Guardian and Observer newspapers, Jamaican-born is nearly always used in reports linked to gun crime (1). It is therefore to the crime pages of these “liberal” newspapers the reader is directed to find out what the Jamaican-born British citizen is.
The Observer’s crime correspondent is Tony Thompson, “a leading authority on gangland Britain” (2). As luck would have it, Thompson is also Britain’s biggest bullshiter on the idea that the Jamaican is a nation apart, the evil other.
Thompson describes the Jamaican in very much the same way as he describes the Jamaican-born, which is thus (3). Firstly, the Jamaican-born is natural-born killer: “[his] propensity for violence knows no bounds” (4). Second, he loves guns. Third, he is willing to use guns “both against one another and the police” (3). Fourth, he is to blame for a “completely unprecedented” level of gun violence in Britain (3). Fifth, he is a born-criminal, a ganja merchant and murderous crack-cocaine dealer (5).
Sixth, lacking any sense of right and wrong, the Jamaican-born sows his wild oats without any regards for the by-product of his hanky-panky: children (2). Finally, he is as thick as two short planks. Preferring gangster rap to textbooks, he disrupts the few classes he goes to. Often, he skips school lessons to commit crime.
So, according to Thompson, the Observer’s police propagandist, the answer to the question “what is a Jamaican-born British citizen?” is: a dangerous criminal (3). In sum, the Jamaican-born is a dangerous social problem which the police must manage.
By defining the Jamaican-born posing as a problem to society, Thompson, the Observer and the police are running a classic racist scam: demonise in order to persecute. History gives a lot of examples of what Thompson and co are up to, but one will be enough.
In the 1930s, the Nazis tried, and succeeded, in dividing German citizenship into two kinds: non-Jewish and Jewish. German Jews had their citizenship diluted and in the end taken away by the same scam police today use to devalue Jamaican-born citizenship: crime.
When Chris Fox, president of the Association of Chief Police Officer, blames post-war migration for a “whole range of new crimes” (6), he is merely repeating what the Nazis had said about German Jews: “Jewry is organised criminality” (Hiemer 1942). In other words, Fox is saying there exist in Britain a Jamaican-born problem.
What the police say about the Jamaican-born problem is a big lie, a deliberate falsehood. Its use is divisive, to set apart black and white Britons. This ultimately divides humanity into “us”, British-born worthy of communal unity, care and respect. And “them”, blacks, whom British-born must police because Jamaican-born are in Kipling’s words “half devil and half child”.
Given its racist roots, the concept of Jamaican-born give rise to a troubling question, “whither the Nazis, wilt the Metropolitan police?” In other words, will the Nazi ideology which underpins Operation Trident leads to a policy of stripping the Jamaican-born of his citizenship before deporting him to Jamaica?
Hiemer, Ernst (1942) “When will Jewish danger be over” Calvin Education
1. Thompson, Tony (18/07/99) “Yardie terror grips London” The Observer
2. Thompson, Tony (17/04/05) “Blood Lines” The Observer
3. Thompson, Tony (21/09/03) “Without a gun, you’re dead” The Observer
4. Thompson, Tony (25/05/03) “They’ll shoot anyone – even the police” The Observer
5. Hopkins, Nick (14/06/03) “Drug gang warning by police” The Guardian
6. Ahmed, Kamal (18/05/03) “Immigrants ‘behind crime wave’ – police” The Guardian