If Rasta is still what the founders Marcus Garvey and Leonard Howell created the movement to be then a lot of these reggae artistes who call themselves Rastas, are fake. The funny thing is, it takes a white pop star from New Zealand to show just how fake these new millennium Rastas are.
Lorde has taken a stance against racism, injustice and oppression by refusing to perform in apartheid Israel. While she is doing the right thing, many of the so-called Rastas are selling their souls for a pot of the oppressor’s gold.
The New Zealand singer-songwriter who is only 21-years-old, originally agreed to stood on the side of apartheid like the fake Rastas of Reggae but she was shown the light and chose to stand for justice instead.
Lorde was sent a letter by two women (one Jewish and one Palestinian), which read:
“Today, millions of people stand opposed to the Israeli government’s policies of oppression, ethnic cleansing, human rights violations, occupation and apartheid. As part of this struggle, we believe that an economic, intellectual and artistic boycott is an effective way of speaking out against these crimes. This worked very effectively against apartheid in South Africa, and we hope it can work again.”
Lorde thanked the ladies for educating her then did further research on the Israeli occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people before making her decision to cancel the concerts. She would have made millions of dollars by performing in Israel but she chose righteousness over riches, something the fake Rastas of Reggae could not do.
You cannot be a Rasta and still be on the side of oppression, it just doesn’t work like that. In fact, an oppressive Rasta must be the biggest oxymoron of all time. Therefore, Ziggy Marley is a fake Rasta; Damian Marley is a fake Rasta; Chronixx is a fake Rasta.
While Lorde is boycotting apartheid Israel; Ziggy Marley, Damian Marley and Chronixx have all performed there for a few dollars. Maybe none of these so called Rastas bothered to listen to a real Rasta when he sung: “Don’t gain the world and lose your soul, wisdom is better than silver and gold.”
Lorde is not the only international singer to boycott apartheid Israel. Lauryn Hill and Gorillaz also refuse to perform there. Of course this is what we expect from Lauryn, she is just practicing what she sings about. The fake Rastas of reggae on the other hand, they sing about fighting against injustice but if the price is right, they will support injustice in an Israeli minute.
It was not long ago when you could not think of reggae music without thinking of resistance against oppression and injustice. Most reggae artists, especially the Rastas were somewhat freedom fighters and reggae music was their chosen weapon to fight.
Things have changed, the new millennium “Rastas” will not think twice of selling their souls for a pot of gold and when the price is right they stand with the oppressors on the side of oppression.