The following statement was released earlier today (Mar 2) for publication…
Social Justice Bermuda (SJB) says the OBA problem remains and was clearly bigger than Marcus Jones. It was just over a year ago that SJB first called for his resignation over his support of disgraced former President Trump in the aftermath of the January 6th, 2021 coup attempt. We argued at the time that Marcus Jones was not fit to serve in the Senate and that as long as the OBA kept him in the Senate, then they are guilty by association. We stand by that position and regret that it took a year for his removal. The signal that sends to those appalled by the unhinged and oppressive values of Trumpism still remains.
That is the problem. The values that are given a safe harbour by the OBA leadership. The Opposition Leader’s defense of Marcus Jones’s vile victim-blaming behaviour must not be swept under the rug. Marcus’s comments were offensive and an apology for abuse. There are no ifs or buts about that, and for the Opposition Leader to even try to justify the comments of HIS Senator speaks to a wider problem within the OBA. Quite frankly, based on the excuses of the Opposition Leader, it seems clear to us that the resignation is not because they genuinely disagree with the sentiments expressed by their Trump supporting Senator, but solely in reaction to political optics.
We believe that the entire OBA leadership needs to attend SCARS training immediately in order to begin the process of changing their mindset around these issues. Marcus Jones’s comments in the Senate were those of an apologist for abusers everywhere and through history. He came across himself as a predator. That there were many comments online defending him is disgusting to us and highlights the problem of abuse and abuse excusers that wreaks havoc across all segments of our community.
We believe this needs to be a moment for genuine learning and change and we encourage all people of all political affiliations to support the Centre Against Abuse, SCARS and the CyberTips initiative who all do amazing work to counter the blight of abuse in our society.
Social Justice Bermuda (SJB) is a non-hierarchical collective of Bermudians who are inspired by the global Black Lives Matter Movement and the way that communities around the world are standing together to tackle and dismantle oppressive systems of injustice and racism. We are an advocacy group with no political affiliation. While some of our members have publicly identified themselves, others choose to contribute anonymously; there is no official leader of the group.