Group claims Fred Smith is a conspiracy against the Christie Government!
The man who called police “Terrorists” will now have his team call on police to investigate this? WHAT A JOKE! BP LIVE ON BAY STREET!
By NICO SCAVELLA
Tribune Staff Reporter
GRAND Bahama Human Rights Association President Fred Smith has called on the government to pass a Human Rights Act and make it an offence to “abuse people hatefully in public”.
His statements were in response to an anonymous group that donned hats similar to those worn by Ku Klux Klan members and paraded in protest against Mr Smith and conservationist Louis Bacon during the New Year’s Day Junkanoo parade.
A subsequent video of the “protest” went viral on social media, with Bahamian residents expressing how “ashamed” they are to “be Bahamian”.
Last month Mr Smith and with Save The Bays director, Joseph Darville, said they feared for their lives after allegedly being targeted by an aggressive group of young men holding menacing and defamatory banners bearing their names and faces during a “hijacked” rally in support of a Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.
Responding to the protest on New Year’s Day yesterday, Mr Smith called it a “national disgrace” that sends a “clear message of hate, racism, xenophobia and anti-foreign mentality to the world”.
He also said he would be making a complaint to Police Commissioner Ellison Greenslade because he is in “fear for (his) personal safety”.
“It is shocking that my government, the police, Junkanoo committee, organisers, should have allowed people dressed as members of the Ku Klux Klan parading down Bay Street, sending a message that white rich foreigners, Haitians and Bahamians like me of Haitian descent are not wanted in the Bahamas,” Mr Smith said. “I think that was a national disgrace, and it was an embarrassment to human rights in the Bahamas. It should never have been allowed by the authorities. I am shocked that the Junkanoo community put that on. It sends a clear message of hate, racism, xenophobia and an anti-foreign mentality to the world.”
During the first week of December, Mr Smith and Mr Darville pleaded for police protection after the FOI rally was disrupted by what they claimed was a “bought and paid-for mob.”
During the New Year’s Day Junkanoo parade, an unknown group, armed with placards and donning KKK masks, marched in protest against Mr Smith and Mr Bacon. One placard called Mr Smith a “Haitian infidel,” while another read “Is Fred Smith a Bahamian or an illegal Haitian?” Another person could be seen carrying a placard saying “Fred Smith, another foreigner in the conspiracy to overthrow the PLP.”
Another read “Skin Coalition to Banish Bacon.” On the other side of that same placard, a picture of a burning cross could be seen, with text beneath it reading ”Bacon is KKK”.
One Facebook user, in response to the video, said: “As a white Bahamian, I am disgusted that this is ok in the eyes of the black population and it is another nail in the coffin for me and my family to leave because it shows no balance and no equality for the white population. If the white population ever had to display such a nasty protest, what an uproar we would have. It shows the divide between black and white (people) which shows no respect for the white Bahamians unless black Bahamians stand up to stop foolish and disgusting behaviour which this Junkanoo group displayed. I am ashamed to be Bahamian.”
Mr Smith yesterday echoed the user’s sentiments, and called on “all right thinking people in the Bahamas to condemn this outrage”. “As president of the Grand Bahama Human Rights Association, I call on my government to pass a human rights act, which will include anti hate laws, anti corruption laws, and make it an offence to abuse people hatefully in public.
“I will be making a complaint to the Commissioner of Police because I fear for my personal safety, and that of Louis Bacon, Joe Darville and Dianne Phillips, all of whom have been the object of horrible, hateful public demonstrations, social media and YouTube video hate-mongering.”