I wish to thank your newspaper immensely for highlighting the prevalence of noise and its devastating effect on citizens. Dr Joyce Jonas’s letter in your newspaper of March 22 shows that there exists many caring and sympathetic Guyanese.
On Sunday, March 22, the Starlite Drive-in unleashed on citizens the most immoral, vulgar, indecent and disturbing show yet in the history of Starlite. From 2 pm it was tuning and humming, and from 6 pm at the loudest volume, it was an open invitation calling people to witness gyrations never seen, and as if bent to destroy our future they announced that children under ten were free. They kept hammering on that, although children would be seeing drinking and smoking, and watching lawlessness on the stage. This could encourage them to want to start imbibing alcohol.
The songs were the worst one could imagine, with the little children there and with the MC showing off the vulgar gyrations on stage of big men and women, the illicit and sick songs, ‘Rum Til I Die,’ ‘Pass the bottle,’ with loudest talk describing women’s sexual organs. This went on until 2.30 am, with the loudest sounds imaginable blasting − no sleep, the Sparendaam police officer being willing but impotent, without any way to contact the senior police officer on the ground. Neither did he have a vehicle and he was alone. I told him I could transport him, but he was afraid because there was a senior police functionary at the ground. Poor chap, I sympathized with him, as at about 1.30 pm he could answer the phone no longer; he told me he was getting so many calls he did not know what to do, and he could not understand what the officer at Starlite was doing. I told him I could guess. He obviously hung up the phone.
You know what, the Saturday before, the police again allowed the music to go on until 3-4 am, with it being slightly toned about 2 am. It goes to show that the police were probably having a real good time. It was the same story the Saturday before − yes, for three successive weekends, citizens, the unworthy residents of Happy Acres, Montrose and Better Hope, who have no right to rest and enjoy their lives, have had to endure this nightmare. This nightmare about which the Kaieteur News expressed approval in their article of March 16, talking about ‘Rum Til I Die’ and ‘Pass the Bottle,’ not forgetting the tearing of the lacy panties, all in the presence of women and children, especially the under ten-year-olds. I believe the Ministry of Human Services needs to look into why little kids are offered free admission somewhere where alcohol is openly sold and consumed, and where panty-tearing, or whatever it was, went on.
For myself, I could not rest, could not read, could not even watch TV, as the earth was vibrating and the windows were jingling. I could see neighbours peeping constantly out of their windows, all hoping the Starlite nightmare would end. For three successive weeks, a senior police officer gave permission for shows in one area, with the officers at the ground permitting it to go hours beyond midnight.
This nonsense has to stop in this country. These attempts to vulgarize and lead our children down the road to perdition and immorality must end. The government must wake up and set a policy; the police must stop issuing licences for open shows in residential areas; the government must construct enclosed soundproof arenas for the unleashing of gyrating vulgarity, if that is what it likes. If the government attends to the interest of the vulgar show masters, someone has to arise to satisfy people like us. We cannot take this any longer; we cannot take it any longer! The Minister of Health has to intervene, and he has to take action now as he did over smoking and Aids education. He knows how to get things done, and is definitely a no nonsense person. I raised this with the Minister of Home Affairs in the past, but nothing has been achieved.
We have a right to peace and quiet; our children have a right to study and read; we have a right to listen to decent, inspirational and humane music, and to entertain.
I am now seeking advice from my attorneys about bringing an action against Starlite Drive-in for preventing me from obtaining rest, for causing constant migraines, for which I am now being treated locally and overseas, for affecting my children’s studies and also for making them ill. I am consulting with the neighbourhood to help them as well to bring an injunction against the police to stop them from issuing licences for such vulgarities, and against the Starlite from hosting such shows until the determination of the issue.
I love my country and I stay quiet for many things, but I have to let go on this.