Black X's Father's Day trekSunday, June 20, 2021
ST MARY, Jamaica — After a day of walking from Port Maria in St Mary to Waterhouse in Kingston, Derrick 'Black X' Robinson finally got to wish his 83-year-old dad Happy Father's Day at about 9:30 Sunday morning.
He had last seen his father Gossit 'Bill' Robinson on his dad's birthday last May when they went to church together.
Black X believes it is best not to disrupt his father's regular routine or make impractical commitments to visit. But Father's Day happened to coincide with a planned walk to once again bring attention to the call for Tacky to be a national hero.
Tacky was a Coromantee chief in Ghana who was enslaved and taken to Jamaica. On Easter Monday, 1760, he led what some consider the most significant slave uprising in the Caribbean second only to the Haitian Revolution. It didn't succeed in overthrowing the British and establishing an African state as Tacky had envisioned, but it led to weeks of unrest among slaves in other parishes.
Black X is outgoing chairman of the Tacky Heritage Group (THG) and over the years he has journeyed on foot all across the country to bring attention to his cause. He made this latest trek with an almost 40-pound, 18-foot long chain around his neck. Its links are said to represent the THG's generational connections.
Black X's journey began at the Port Maria Clock at about 3:00 pm on Saturday. At 6:30 am on Sunday OBSERVER ONLINE caught up with him by cell phone. He was in Stony Hill, St Andrew.
“I am the warrior on the field; I continued [walking] through the night,” he said. “The body is a little bit droopy; but you know the brain is the one that gives the command. Every household, every person of Jamaican descent or connection should be aware of Chief Tacky and our desire for him to be declared as a national hero and for 1760 to be recognised as that breakthrough, the beginning of the end of slavery.”
At his side was Loraine McPherson-Williams who succeeds him as head of the THG. In Stony Hill, the chains were removed and a fresh suit of clothing donned in preparation for Black X's visit with his father.
Three hours later they were reunited in Waterhouse. Black X thinks his father may have had an inkling he was coming as he had not visited him last month.
"When his birthday come and him don't see me, him seh, 'I know I soon see that boy',” said the proud son.
But the one-day trek wasn't just about Tacky and reuniting with his father. There was a third element to Black X's journey.
“It is a nice day to recognise fathers, but it is also a time to really have a serious social discussion so we have the theme: Men as protectors, not abusers,” he explained. “It has caught on well. We want to pick up the conversation and discussion as we go. If changes should happen, let men lead the change.”
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