It is the view of Western Mirror CEO and Editor-in-Chief Lloyd B. Smith that for the Black descendants of the infamous slave trade in Jamaica to be fully redeemed, there must be fulsome reparation. Exploring the theme “Redemption Song: Garvey, Marley and Liberation Theology”, Mr. Smith delivered the 26th Emancipation Lecture staffed by the Calvary Circuit of Baptist Churches on Sunday, July 30.

Focusing on the lives of National Hero Marcus Garvey and reggae icon Bob Marley, the man they call “Governor” used Marley’s iconic anthem “Redemption Song” as the backdrop for his lecture, which contained the immortal words of Garvey: “Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery/None but ourselves can free our minds”. Noting that redemption in Christianity refers to the deliverance of Christians from sin and its consequences as well as freedom from captivity, he pointed out that redemption also means the action of reclaiming or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment or clearing a debt; hence, his insistence that there could be no true redemption with reparation.

Mr. Smith also lamented the fact that both Garvey and Marley, for most of their lifetime, were not fully embraced by the Jamaican people. He observed that Marley was seen as “the dutty Rasta bwoy” while Garvey was oftentimes ignored, ridiculed, and even called a mad man. In this regard, a disenchanted Garvey left for England in 1935, where he continued to promote the ideas of unity among and progress of the African people. He was plagued by loneliness, poverty, and sadness. In 1940, he suffered two strokes. He died in June of that year, a broken man. Marley, who died on May 11, 1981, at age 36, wrote Redemption Song while suffering from cancer. He knew that the end was near, and so bemoaned the fact that all he and the Black race have ever had are redemption songs.

In this context, relating the story of the Baptist War of 1831, also known as the Christmas Rebellion, which was started in St. James and inspired by the leadership of Sam Sharpe, a National Hero, the senior journalist stressed that in real terms, this was part and parcel which later be known as Liberation Theology, a Christian theological approach that emphasizes the liberation of the oppressed and engages in socio-economic analyses, with social concern for the poor and political liberation for oppressed peoples. He urged the current crop of Baptists to follow in the footsteps of Garvey and Marley in their fight for social justice, noting that freedom comes with a cost, but for those who would prepare to pay for it, maybe emancipation from mental slavery would be our reward.

In closing, Mr. Smith announced that it was his intention to establish the Sam Sharpe Institute of Public Affairs (SSIPA), which will be an independent, non-profit public policy think tank dedicated to preserving and strengthening the foundations of economic and political freedom, stressing that it would not be a partisan entity but one that will embrace membership and participation from all walks of life and persuasions.


  1. Wonderful blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!

  2. Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get
    there! Many thanks

  3. You can certainly see your skills within the article you write.
    The arena hopes for more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe.
    At all times follow your heart.

  4. Please let me know if you’re looking for a writer for your site.
    You have some really great articles and I think I would be a
    good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d absolutely love to write some material for your
    blog in exchange for a link back to mine.
    Please blast me an email if interested. Cheers!

  5. I’ll right away seize your rss as I can’t find your
    email subscription link or newsletter service. Do you have any?
    Please permit me understand in order that I may subscribe.


  6. Hello, Neat post. There’s a problem with your web site in web explorer, could test this?

    IE still is the market leader and a good element of other people will leave out
    your excellent writing due to this problem.

  7. I believe everything posted was actually very logical. But, what about this?

    what if you added a little information? I am not suggesting your information isn’t solid., however what if you added a title to possibly get folk’s attention? I mean No Redemption Without Reparation! | Western Mirror
    is kinda boring. You ought to peek at Yahoo’s home page and watch how they create news titles to get viewers interested.
    You might add a video or a pic or two to get people excited
    about everything’ve got to say. Just my opinion, it might
    bring your website a little bit more interesting.

  8. Excellent pieces. Keep posting such kind of information on your page.
    Im really impressed by your site.
    Hey there, You’ve done an incredible job. I will certainly digg it and
    individually suggest to my friends. I’m sure they’ll be benefited from this web site.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here