Our Readers' Opinions
December 23, 2010
Christmas – a time for unity


Editor: Christmas is the most feted yet revered religious holiday the world over. The birth of Jesus Christ holds prominence in this festive season as a universal symbol of hope and goodwill. It is a time when we pause our selfish clocks and fleetingly address the plight of the poor and under-privileged.{{more}} Cosmetic love abruptly replaces deep-seated animosity as year-long foes become friends. Is this done out of genuine love for humanity or in order to conform to the expediency of the season? The Vincentian experience suggests the latter since the norm is to lead lives of intolerance, betrayal and greed, trampling on hapless mortals in the stampede to prosperity.

Our attitude during the ignominious election campaign defines us as a people condemned by myopic interests and self-centred pursuit of glory. The depth of our political illiteracy came to the fore as was frighteningly reflected by the God-like status we bestowed on our political leaders. Many Vincentians, including renowned clergy heads, embraced Demagoguery as politicians were mistakenly exalted above God. Indeed, our spineless clergy conveniently evaded the myriad of unethical and immoral political conduct rubbished throughout the state in order to enhance their party’s chances at the polls. It is a sad state of affairs when religious leaders promote party reverence and loyalty above the principle of the church.

During the no-holds barred election campaign, families were torn apart and long standing friendships ruined as politicians manipulated a nation’s woeful inability to rationalize issues. In the absence of critical thinking, politicians were able to feed gluttonous portions of sweet lies to a vulnerable electorate. The most absurd was that 20,000 (1/5 of the population!) jobs would be created within the first half of a party’s term in office! Interestingly, this nation-changing piece of information was only presented to Vincentians 6 days before General Elections! Fortunately, 52% Vincentians voted that they are not that dumb.

I remain convinced that GOD spoke through the index fingers of all Vincentian voters to purposely split the nation in halves. He showed the incumbent leader who is in charge by allowing his party to slide periliously close to defeat. He allowed the Opposition to see and not enter “The Promised Land”, by enticing them to smell, but not taste the aroma of victory. Splitting the nation numerically (8-7) and geographically (Windward ULP, Leeward NDP), is God’s way of imploring us to strive for reconciliation and to seek for common ground. It is incumbent on us to use our Christian virtues to alleviate the social malaise created by our blind pursuit of partisan politics.

The Prime Minister’s brazen claims that the financial inputs of illegal businessmen were decisive in the outcomes of three marginal seats are cause for alarm. The fact that such claims were not roundly condemned by the Opposition would suggest that there is merit in the PM’s pronouncements. Law-abiding Vincentians should ensure that these unscrupulous elements be not allowed to bare root and extend a strangle hold on this blessed island. The lessons of Christopher “Dudus” Coke and the anguish he caused peace-loving Jamaicans, especially Tivoli Garden residents, should be contemplated. We should endeavour to nip lawlessness at the bud and let peace reign from shore to shore.

Coming on the heels of a contentious and tribal general election season, Christmas 2010 should be embraced with introspection and renewed resolve in SVG. As a Christian-oriented society, the onus is on us to reconcile our differences and ill-will for the common good of our blessed nation. In the interest of nation building, aggrieved politicians should stop bamboozling the minds of misfit and accept the election results. We owe it to our children to facilitate the decrease of the December 13th political, demographic and geographic gulf/chasm that threatens to rip our fledging nation apart.

Let’s cease the initiative to use this period of advent and goodwill to engender peace and love within our God-fearing society. The church should also use the birthday of Christianity to redeem itself by restoring pride and credibility to the Faith. Remember, Vincentian politics is a parasitical art, whereby politicians manipulate the pendulum of the nation’s psyche to attain power. However, CHRISTMAS is a festive season when Christians re-invigorate their flock to practise chastity and love for and among each other.

Merry Christmas SVG!

Collin Haywood