SASOD Members Call on Digicel to Apologise for TOK Performance

Dear Editor,

The T.O.K. performance at the Digicel Experience concert held on Wednesday 14 February, 2007 at the National Park left much to be desired. Most of the lyrics by the Jamaican group were riddled with references glorifying crime and violence. Phrases such as 'trigger finger', 'gun finger', 'shotta' and 'gangsta', among others, were used in ways which only seemed to promote violence as a means of settling conflicts. Although the T.O.K performance ended with
two songs with calls for "peace and love", this message was lost and was inconsistent in their performance in which there was a constant bombardment of language which gleefully promoted violent behaviour, especially gun crimes.
In the same vein, T.O.K also had no problems using the Digicel event to express their homophobia. There were at least two detectable homophobic references in heavy Jamaican patois 'no fassie cyan dis Guyana crew' and
in their performance of 'keep it blazin' in which homosexual men come in as targets for 'fi a'(fire). The performance reached its lowest point when one of the T.O.K. group members had no problem making sexually inappropriate remarks to a girl who was visibly underage, and then proceeded to dance in the most sexually provocative manner with her. It was also shocking that the mass crowd did not seem to find this unacceptable. Even DJ Benny D, who accompanied Akon, commented that unlike some other men there (obviously alluding to the T.O.K band member) , he does not want any eleven year old girl to 'feel him up'. Digicel's Experience has been demeaned by the negative aspects of popular culture which seem to promote violence, homophobia and pedophilia. We call on Digicel to issue a public apology for this regrettable experience.

Yours faithfully,

Alana Thorne
Devon Ambrose
and other members of SASOD
Tags: Offensive LyricsGender EqualityConcertDancehall