Peter Tosh Di Bush Doctor Fi True

Two spelling systems are used for the Jamaican language below. The first, which I call ‘Chaka-Chaka’, is based on English spelling. The second, ‘Prapa-Prapa’, is the specialist system designed by the Jamaican linguist Frederic Cassidy. It has been updated by the Jamaican Language Unit at the University of the West Indies, Mona. After the two Jamaican versions, there’s an English translation.

CHAKA-CHAKA SPELLING

Long-long time before Babylon system start talk-talk bout ‘medical marijuana,’ Rasta done know seh di holy herb a fi di healing a di nation.  Rasta study Bible an dem overstand ital livity.  Inna Genesis 1:29, Jah seh, “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the [sic] which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.”

Dat a King James Version.  It come out inna 1611.  Inna dem deh time, ‘meat’ did mean all kind a food.  Nuh so-so food from animal.  Wa we call meat now, dem did call ‘flesh meat.’ An dem did have ‘green meat’ to.  Dat never mean seh di ‘flesh meat’ did spoil.  Green meat a food from plant.  Wat a way English language can wheel an come again like dem dancehall DJ!

Rasta fight gainst Babylon system weh turn Jah good-good herb inna ‘illegal drug.’ Inna “Equal Rights,” Peter Tosh aks dis ya question: “Who are the criminals?” Di answer mighta look simple.   Dem bruck law.  Who fa law? Tosh did a aks one serious-serious question bout who have di right fi decide who a criminal an who innocent. Fi im answer: “Got to get equal rights and justice/ And there’ll be no crime.”

“SLAVISH MENTALITY”

Inna “Legalize It,” Tosh seh: “Singers smoke it/And players of instruments too.”  An “Doctors smoke it/Nurses smoke it/Judges smoke it/ Even the lawyers too.” Tosh know seh Babylon system a go turn di singer dem an di player a instrument inna criminal. Police nah go arrest an brutalize di doctor, nurse, judge an lawyer dem.  Dem nah go a nuh prison.    Dem come from di right class an dat a go protect dem.

Inna “Bush Doctor,” Tosh seh ganja “can build up your failing economy/ Eliminate the slavish mentality.”  Inna “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh show wi how fi emancipate wiself from “the slavish mentality”: “Light yu spliff/Light yu chalice/Mek we smoke it in/ Buk-in-Hamm Palace”.  An “chase way all dem vampire.”

Buckingham Palace a di headquarters fi di King an Queen a England.   Deh so dem run tings.  Buckingham Palace a di ‘legal’ system weh control Jamaica.  Wi gwaan like seh wi independent.  But Queen Elizabeth a di head a fi wi country.  Tosh a encourage wi fi bruck Buckingham Palace law an eat di meat weh Jah gi wi.  An a nuh ongle inna Buckingham Palace Tosh seh wi fi light spliff an chalice.  Wi fi dweet inna di House of Congress – anywhere di vampire dem deh. 

April 20 a di day fi big up ganja all over di world. Wi ha gi Peter Tosh nuff-nuff respect.  Im never live fi see America a free up ganja. An Jamaica never change fi wi Dangerous Drugs Act til inna 2015. But inna “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh did prophesy:  “This is a true emancipation/ Come to set the people free.”

PRAPA-PRAPA SPELIN

Lang-lang taim bifuor Babilan sistim staat taak-taak bout ‘medical marijuana,’ Rasta don nuo se di uoli orb a fi di iilin a di nieshan.  Rasta stodi Baibl an dem uovastan aital liviti.  Ina Genesis 1:29, Jah se, “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the [sic] which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.”

Dat a King James Version.  It kom out ina 1611.  Ina dem de taim, ‘meat’ did miin aal kain a fuud.  No suo-so fuud fram animal.  Wa wii kaal miit nou, dem did kaal ‘flesh meat.’ An dem did av ‘green meat’ tu.  Dat neva miin se di ‘flesh meat’ did spwail.  Griin miit a fuud fram plaant.  Wat a wie Ingglish langgwij kyahn wiil an kom agen laik dem daansaal DJ!

Rasta fait gens di Babilan sistim we ton Jah gud-gud orb ina ‘iliigal jrog.’ Ina “Equal Rights,” Peter Tosh aks dis ya kweschan: “Who are the criminals?” Di ansa maita luk simpl.   Dem bruk laa.  Huu fa laa? Tosh dida aks wan siiryos-siiryos kweschan bout uu av di rait fi disaid uu a kriminal an uu inosent. Fi im ansa: “Got to get equal rights and justice/ And there’ll be no crime.”

“SLAVISH MENTALITY”

Ina “Legalize It,” Tosh se: “Singers smoke it/And players of instrument too.”  An “Doctors smoke it/Nurses smoke it/Judges smoke it/ Even the lawyers too.” Tosh nuo se Babilan sistim a go ton di singa dem an di plieya a instrument ina criminal.  Poliis naa go ares an bruutalaiz di dakta, nors, joj an laaya dem.  Dem naa go a no prizn.    Dem kom fram di rait klaas an dat a go protek dem.

Ina “Bush Doctor,” Tosh se gyanja “can build up your failing economy/ Eliminate the slavish mentality.”  Ina “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh shuo wi ou fi imansipiet wiself fram “the slavish mentality”: “Light yu spliff/Light yu chalice/Mek we smoke it in/ Buk-in-Hamm Palace.”  An “chase way all dem vampire.”

Buckingham Palace a di edkwaataz fi di King an Kwiin a Ingglan.   De so dem ron tingz.  Buckingham Palace a di ‘legal’ sistim we kanchruol Jamieka. Wi gwaan laik se wi indipendent.  Bot Queen Elizabeth a di ed a fi wi konchri.  Tosh a enkorij wi fi bruk Buckingham Palace laa an iit di miit we Jah gi wi.  An a no ongl ina Buckingham Palace Tosh se wi fi lait splif an chalis.  Wi fi dwiit ina di House of Congress – eniwe di vampaiya dem de. 

Iepril 20 a di die fi big op gyanja aal uova di worl. Wi a fi gi Peter Tosh nof-nof rispek. Im neva liv fi si Amerika a frii op gyanja. An Jamieka neva chienj fi wi Dangerous Drugs Act til ina 2015. Bot ina “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh did prafisai:  “This is a true emancipation/ Come to set the people free.”

ENGLISH TRANSLATION

PETER TOSH THE TRUE HERBALIST

Long ago, before the authorities began to talk about ‘medical marijuana,’ Rasta already knew that the holy herb was for the healing of the nation.  Rasta study the Bible and they understand living in vitality.  In Genesis 1:29, Jah said, “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the [sic] which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.”

That’s the King James Version.  It came out in 1611.  In those days, ‘meat’ meant all kinds of food.  Not just food from animals.  What we call meat now was ‘flesh meat.’ And there was also ‘green meat.’ That didn’t mean the ‘flesh meat’ was spoilt.  Green meat was food from plants.  It’s remarkable how the English language can just ‘wheel an come again’ like those dancehall DJs!

Rasta fought against the authorities who turned Jah’s perfectly good herb into an ‘illegal drug.’ In “Equal Rights,” Peter Tosh asked this question: “Who are the criminals?” The answer might seem simple.   They break the law.  Whose law? Tosh was asking a very serious question about who is entitled to determine who is a criminal and who is innocent. His answer: “Got to get equal rights and justice/ And there’ll be no crime.”

“SLAVISH MENTALITY”

In “Legalize It,” Tosh asserted: “Singers smoke it/And players of instruments too.”  And “Doctors smoke it/Nurses smoke it/Judges smoke it/ Even the lawyers too.” Tosh knew that the authorities would criminalise the singers and players of instruments. The police wouldn’t arrest and brutalise the doctors, nurses, judges and lawyers.  They wouldn’t go to prison.    Class privilege would protect them.

In “Bush Doctor,” Tosh advised that marijuana “can build up your failing economy/ Eliminate the slavish mentality.”  Inna “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh showed us how to emancipate ourselves from “the slavish mentality”: “Light yu spliff/Light yu chalice/Mek we smoke it in/ Buk-in-Hamm Palace”.  And “chase way all dem vampire.”

Buckingham Palace is the administrative headquarters of the British monarchy.  It represents the ‘legal’ system that controls Jamaica.  We act as though we’re independent.  But Queen Elizabeth is the head of state.  Tosh was encouraging us to break the laws of Buckingham Palace and eat the meat Jah gave us.  And it’s not only in Buckingham Palace that Tosh said we should light our spliff and chalice.  We must do it in the House of Congress – wherever the vampires are. 

April 20 is International Marijuana Day. We absolutely must give Peter Tosh maximum respect.  He didn’t live to see the gradual freeing up marijuana in the US. And Jamaica didn’t amend our Dangerous Drugs Act until 2015. But in “Buk-in-Hamm Palace,” Tosh prophesied:  “This is a true emancipation/ Come to set the people free.”

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