It’s that time of the year again when nearly a million revelers from across the globe converge upon Eastern Parkway Brooklyn, New York for the annual Labor Day parade, correction West Indian Day Parade and J’Ouvert Festival.
Recognized for its costumes, colors, food, revelry and display of Caribbean flags everywhere, West Indian Day Parade and J’Ouvert Festival is known for the bloodshed, violence and death that occurs, this year’s festivities being no different.
J’Ouvert “unofficially” begins around midnight even though many of the began weeks to days earlier and yes, it is an all-night celebration of dancers, people dressed up in costumes, some in masks and steel bands on trucks.
Combine that with alcohol, summer weather conditions, drugs, the ingestion of other toxic chemicals non-stop for the next 24 hours, sometimes longer and you have spontaneous combustion — VIOLENCE.
Hours before the sun would rise on this year’s J’Ouvert revelries, two young people would be dead and five others wounded.
Tiarah Poyau, a 22-year-old student, a St. John’s University grad student with a promising future lay dying on a Brooklyn sidewalk after daring to tell some inebriated thug who approached her from behind and began grinding his body against hers to “get off me.” The thug, Reginald Moise, according to witnesses pulled a gun on the 22-year-old killing her instantly.
The other was 17-year-old male from Trinidad and Tobago, Tyreke Borel, a high school senior and aspiring car mechanic killed just hours after his mother warned him not to attend J’Ouvert.
The mother of 17-year-old Tyreke Borel said through tears Monday that she’d cautioned her son to stay home for J’Ouvert, but the teen had insisted on joining the revelry where he was shot and killed.
“He was just a lovely child who wanted to enjoy the Labor Day. I told him to be safe. But he’s 17. He didn’t want to stay home,” said Alima St. Clair at her Flatbush apartment….
Borel who arrived in New York four years ago was killed at 3:45 a.m. by a stray bullet to the chest at the corner of Empire Boulevard and Flatbush Avenue as he sat alone on a park bench taking a break from the revelry.
Poyau was killed 30 minutes later at 4:15 a.m. shot point blank in the right eye at Empire Boulevard and Franklin Avenue a little more than a block from where Borel was killed.
A 72-year-old woman was shot in the hand and arm, her wounds are not life threatening and a 23-year-old woman who was stabbed declined medical attention and before day’s end, there would be more shootings.
[Particularly, discomforting is the death of Tiarah Poyau who at first glance reminded me of a family member.]
Noted on Poyau (who interned at Price Waterhouse)’s LinkedIn page the following:
My greatest achievement was in Spring of 2014 when I studied abroad in Paris, Rome, and Seville. Apart from being able to get away for a while, I was given the opportunity to push my limits and be responsible for my personal growth and development journey.
Since, I have used all tools available to me to enhance my professional image. My ultimate goal is to be an accountant at a prestigious firm where I can constantly learn new things and pursue opportunities at firm locations around the world.
I am seeking an internship where I can get real-world experience with new technology, learn to communicate effectively with clients, and challenge my intellectual abilities. I am always interested in meeting new people, hearing success stories, and acquiring helpful bits of knowledge at every chance I get.
On her Facebook page is a photograph dating back to May of this year of the deceased dressed as a geisha. As is also the case of young Tyreke Borel, both had the world at their feet but instead two bright lights have been snuffed out by those who have no regard for the life of another.
Some of the incidents occurred during J’Ouvert and the others hours later during the parade. Most occurred within the same area several blocks away from the location where 43-year-old Carey Gabay, an aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo was killed last year when hit by stray bullets during a shootout between gang rivals.
Gabay and one other person was also shot and killed in the midst of J’Ouvert festivities.
Every year, someone’s blood spills on the streets of Brooklyn during J’Ouvert. Every year someone ends up in the morgue and after each incident profiteers, i.e., party organizers, government bureaucrats, vendors, etc. race baits and takes offense at anyone who complains about the parade’s history or suggests that it should be discontinued.
All pretend that the violence is not that bad, a fluke or out of the ordinary for these events. Many blame those crazy Americans because no one from the Caribbean community would commit such acts of violence.
Before the sun set this Labor Day, De Blasio as his predecessors did before him held a photo op much like last year’s promising to reign in gun possession, crime, street gangs and violence even threatening to make this year’s festivities the last of that which should have been done away with two decades ago.
Then by noon the following day, with last night’s dog and pony on record, all threats suggesting the cessation of these annual festivities are walked back.
While great sound bites to those buying the bull, threats to reign in the possession of firearms are threats against the legal ownership and possession not access to illegal firearms, the tide of which are virtually impossible to control.
In the following video, Commie Bill is talking loud and saying nothing.
Same time, next year.
Cross-posted at Wow! Magazine (formerly Watcher of Weasels).