(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — Which one of this season’s calypsoes might be a “nightmare” for National Security Minister Stuart Young?
Grenadian star Mr Killa’s Run Wid It is the culprit, Young confirmed at a recent post-Cabinet media briefing.
Young quipped that it’s giving those in National Security “nightmares” since the tune brings to mind people picking up things and running with it.
But that controversy apart, if there are concerns about this season’s tunes objectifying women, female calypsonians—like Nadia Batson—are taking up the fight for women with calypsoes like So Long, says Culture Minister Nyan Gadsby-Dolly.
Young and Gadsby-Dolly spoke about the 2019 calypso and soca picks during Thursday’s post-Cabinet media briefing when asked their choices.
Young said, “If you ask me to name the top five Carnival songs this year, I won’t be able to name them. My head’s been down focusing on safety and security. I did go to the Army fete out of a sense of duty, I walked the crowd and left a short while later.”
While Young mentioned Kees Diefenthaller’s Savannah Grass and others he seemed less partial to Run Wid It. But he said he hadn’t heard many songs objectifying women.
Gadsby-Dolly’s immediate favourites were Farmer Nappy’s Hookin Meh and Batson’s So Long.
Her take on whether some of this season’s tunes objectify women: “Calypsoes speak about the landscape. If you look at our calypsonians in terms of female and male, most of our calypsonians are male and a lot on the mind of entertainers at Carnival time may be what they see in the public and speaking of general issues in T&T, they speak about what’s important to them.
“The issue of objectification may just reflect the landscape of the entertainment and the landscape in T&T. I think I heard an issue about ‘Hookin Meh’ and that was an issue that resonated around the Caribbean region. I’ve heard mixed views on it, as there will always be people who see objectification in everything that happens and then there are people who will not see that and see a different view.”
She added, “I don’t know that there are less songs about women or if there are less songs that seem degrading to women. There are different views on what objectification is, some of it doesn’t have to be bad and some of it definitely, I think, in the public view, could be better in how the song puts across the messages.”
Young commended all protective and security services for the work they’ve been doing during the season.
“We’ve had a very long run-up to Carnival, longer than usual in the past few years. So far there’s been no major incidents. Driven by intelligence-led operations, we’ve had quite a successful period up to now,” he said.
“We’re now in the final stretch and plans are in place. I hope on Ash Wednesday I can say we had a good Carnival.
“The protective services will be out in numbers and we’ll do all necessary to keep people safe and secure. I hope we have an incident-free Carnival. Be aware of your surroundings, walk in groups, careful what you drink…and use sunblock.”