Scratchie\’s World

School Done!!! Other stuff in life to write about now….

Suffering in Silence

I can’t help but feel distressed every morning when I pass the American Embassy here in Kingston. Jamaican’s have a saying that “If yuh want good yuh nose haffi run” roughly translated that if you want something in life you must be prepared to work/undergo stress for it.
The Embassy is located on a major thoroughfare and each morning those persons who have “appointments” are made to stand outside on the sidewalk until they are allowed inside. I find this a most demeaning and inhumane way of dealing with people, especially in their own country, all for the sake of an opportunity to live, visit or work somewhere else where things may seem better. I just see it as torture. I have no problem with operating a system but you would think that somewhere as advanced as the US Embassy could come up with a better way of dealing with applicants.
I have not addressed the issue of the roaring business opportunities that have been created surrounding the rules that one must abide with when visiting the Embassy. There are cellphone holders and baggage handlers and……….

I know there isn’t any immediate solution that can be put in place but really now…….this has been going on for decades and it really not good for us as a modern society.

July 5, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. Hey Scratchie-I know the US Emabassy’s location very well indeed. I understand they will be moving -to where I don’t know. But hopefully persons applying for vistas etc won’t have to stand out on the street curb.

    Comment by Sunshine | July 5, 2006 | Reply

  2. Yes Scratchie…true words.

    Comment by Dr. D. | July 5, 2006 | Reply

  3. On the curb? Pretty degrading. never seen that at the Bdos embassy.

    Comment by Abeni | July 5, 2006 | Reply

  4. And standing outside on the pavement is only the beginning. Last time I had to go there it was like a cattle ranch on the inside, shuffling along benches in a stiffling room. That’s why I made sure to renew my visa when I was in Holland, since the Dutch use the visa waiver programme, the lines at the US consulate in Amsterdam are mercifully short and the atmosphere so genteel.

    Mind you, we Jamaicans are JUST as bad. Have you gone to get a copy of your police report lately? First you pay the fee at the Ministry of Justice (go mid-afternoon to avoid the cattle ranch lines) and then you have to go to 34 Duke St to get your fingerprints taken. There is NO parking. At 7 1/2 mnths pregnant I had to trek from way up the road and then stand in a long rhatid line just to be admitted into the place. Thankfully the clerk took a look at my belly and dealt with me right away, but what about the other people packed up on the benches like sardines, waiting to be manhandled in a so-called brusque ‘professional’ manner. It’s sad I tell you.

    Sorry for the rant Scratchie, just had to get that off my chest :$

    Comment by slybabyk | July 6, 2006 | Reply

  5. I know well the Embassy ordeal AND the police record ordeal. I don’t like either. The US Embassy really treats Jamaicans like dogs though. Personally, I think that the vast majority of us need to travel to other destinations… other Caribbean ones, Central and South American ones and also, England and Europe. Go where you get better treatment. Of course, if you cyan do no better, well, you just have to suffer…

    Comment by Mad Bull | July 6, 2006 | Reply

  6. Well Scratchie it not only in JA dat dem ah suffer so, InBarbados also. It’s absolutely disgusting..people have to endure all kinds of weather and less dan polite treatement. The irony of it is that the locals who work as security at the US Embassy are some of the worst offenders to their own kind when waiting for a visa.

    P.S Kami, you neve see it because the foreigners have their appts in the morning while the Bajans have theirs in the afternoon, remember waiting outside on the back of the bldg.

    Same with the bench business in B’dos stuffing you like sardines.

    But if it’s any thought of action, here in Caracas, first you must get an appt over the phone, and pay your fee into a bank and some people have to wait as much as 6mths just for the appt, then endure the humilitating proceedures at the embassy itself.

    Comment by Campfyah | July 7, 2006 | Reply

  7. They do that because if the people complain they can simply show them to door. They sense their desperation so they do what ever they want with them.

    Comment by Leon | July 7, 2006 | Reply

  8. Thats my point, Leon! Is plenty, plenty other places in the world than the U.S., you know! And if its cheap goods oonoo a look, I am informed that all the ships that take goods to the US stop first in Panama, and the goods dem cheapah down deh, so oonoo can flip the finger back gi Unca Sam if him flip it gi you! Awoah!

    Comment by Mad Bull | July 7, 2006 | Reply

  9. They can definitely do better but because we are a lowly 3rd world country attemting to enter the “high and mighty” usa, they treat us like animals. The compound is large enough to accomodate a waiting room, with proper security to hold items that are not allowed in the interview room. It is just disgusting.

    Comment by CoolDestiny | July 9, 2006 | Reply

  10. I’m about to go to JA in a few weeks of course at the lush resorts you do not see any of that but I did think it odd that no residents are allowed on the property even if they are your guests! What’s that about?

    Comment by Kimmie | July 9, 2006 | Reply

  11. Can you imagine 10 comments without a reply from me in the mix…lol. Firstly, welcome to Kimmie. Please feel free to stop by anytime. BTW I didn’t know that guests were not allowed. I know the all inclusives hotels try to have very strict policies since they provide everything to anyone at a single cost but an all out ban…???? Enjoy your stay in Jamaica and try to get out past the gates of the resorts and see a little bit more of the island than just the hotel and beach. It has a lot more to offer. If you have guests may I suggest that you check with the resort about a day pass facility. Most of the all inclusives offer that at a cost.

    Comment by Scratchie | July 10, 2006 | Reply

  12. boy the US has to be heaven or at least they think so. I remember being denied a visa once even though i had documents up to my armpits just cause i had only been working for 4 months. Actually I havent been to the US since 98 because I dont like their intrusive need for so much personal info. I kno i got people there to see but I just aint going there yet.

    Comment by Jdid | July 11, 2006 | Reply

  13. JDid, they may feel that they are heaven, but the man at head of their country is more like the devil!

    Comment by Dr. D. | July 11, 2006 | Reply

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