If selling alcohol continues to be morally correct and legal at 12pm on Sundays; why is it not moral and legal at 2am on Sundays? And why is it OK when the Liquor Licensing Board authorises the playing of music and dancing late into a Sunday morning on New Year’s Eve because the leisure Lords demand they do so; if the justification for this restriction is religious?
And is it fair that the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service is used to prevent unemployed young Caymanians and low paid foreign workers from gathering and listening to music peacefully after 12am on Sundays while the rich may gather at their private estates and condos to continue enjoying themselves with their rosters of associates and friends or fly to Miami, New York, Las Vegas, Bahamas or any other part of the world to party like rock stars?
In the area of Central George Town known as McField Square, people have gathered early Saturday and Sunday mornings after clubs have closed, for many years now. This came about partly as a result of the closing of School Road and the later erection of some wooden structures, which served as stalls for Market Cayman. Market Cayman was a 2004 UDP venture that tried to give some people a chance to sell and buy in their own neighbourhood. Out of this beginning, four commercial ventures survived, one being a Late Night Kitchen known as Jah T’s Don’t Blink -Taste on Your Face Cuisine. Jah T’s is a hit among locals and visitors from around the world. With my support and encouragement over the years, the owner Anthony Brown, or Jah T, worked really hard to build this business in order to reform his way of earning money.
Late Night Kitchens are a part of Caymanian nightlife and can be traced back to the 1950s; and should not be confused with “Sessions”! And although the taste in food may have changed the feeling many have to meet up for a short time after the bars have closed whereby they get together to eat something before going home has not.
Unfortunately recent actions of the Royal Cayman Police Service in McField Square, suggest that the police efforts are to destroy this expression of local Caymanian culture. But I can say without fear of contradiction that the violent incidences that may have taken place in nearby McField Lane have had no relationship to the gatherings in McField Square. In fact it would be difficult for the Seven Mile Beach Clubs to beat its record of peaceful gathering. And if the area and the gatherings were unsafe we would not so often have the privilege of serving food to members of our government and parliament after hours.
Thus the purpose of this letter is to ask the higher ups in the Royal Police Force and our politicians why very aggressive constables are now sent to McField Square to scare away our customers and ruin police community relations? To be Frank, I also have a commercial interest in this area. I am the owner of El Caboose restaurant, which is now opened only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. This is due to the fact that we cannot afford to be open for business during most of the week because of high costs and low returns. I recently invested a substantial amount of money in making improvements to El Caboose, which was formerly called Chuzzo Cuisine. Are we low locals not even allowed to get the pickings from the tables of those better positioned?
Fortunately, the police over the last six years have worked with us even if lately some confront us with hate and aggression in their eyes. I guess it is unimportant to them that they might be losing great opportunities to learn to know the communities they say they serve since they are not from here. The police’s recent actions can certainly not be due to the fact that we play music since this area is a commercial/residential area of Town that has already lost its residential character.