There is a proliferation of letters back and forth on the subject of the banning of food items and who the individuals were affected by it. The discussion has entered the realm of specifics, ie, which race did the banning of food items impact most? From the many letters in the press one would be tempted to believe that the Indian section of the populace were the ones to feel it most because of their religious ceremonies. The Indian writers should be commended for being bold enough to highlight the religious aspect.
I wish to draw to the attention of those in the African community a few salient facts: the banning of certain items did affect churchgoers in the Christian community, and I speak of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in particular, of which I am a congregant. I vividly remember how the banning of wheat flour and grape wine affected the church greatly because certain ordinances of the church such as holy communion would have lost that sacred touch without the usual unleavened bread and unfermented wine. Those in the church hierarchy petitioned and literally begged Burnham for a reprieve, only to be rebuffed by him uttering those infamous words, “You people can use cherry juice instead.” Our church leaders had only one redress, resort to the smuggling in of wine and flour or the purchasing of these items on the black market. It was a dark and difficult period for the church then with a leader who couldn’t care less about church or people. Yet many in the Seventh Day Adventist Church approximately 80% of whose membership held allegiance to the PNC regime would selectively choose to have amnesia about the obvious violation of this their sacred responsibility to God.
The fact of the matter is whenever discussions of this nature surface, I would like my fellow writers to be civil in their penmanship and leave out the politics and race factor.