If only it’s because I’m past my mid–sixties, indulge with me as I share regrets and laments, in waffle and preaching today.
You know something? All of us matured Guyanese citizens, with any semblance of a social conscience, should weep, even figuratively, over the moral decline we are witnessing in our own society these days. Why? Because a nation without righteous, lasting, desireable values has no bedrock of longevity upon which generations to come can claim really decent lives. Instead, I now rather suspect that the new, modern “principles” of cheating, corruption, dog–eat–dog, crabs–in–the barrel will govern current behaviour – the new barometers of existence and success. Institutions of the state, even the so–called Church, are rendered unless. This is what I rue. All of us, law–abiding and still vested with the knowledge of right and wrong, should be extremely concerned as well. So to my caption about role – models. Poor but proud and trained in decency and good character, we of the forties, fifties and sixties generation looked up to parents, priests, professionals and officialdom. Earned respect flowed from our youth to those adults. Even if they were the struggling poor, we loved, feared and respected senior policemen, teachers, doctors and priests. Somehow we soon could identify the good, genuine politicians who would want to lead us. Sure there were the cons and bandits amongst those looked up to, but they were a minority then. What of today?
A shortage of quality and good
Alas, the changing values and transformed criteria of ambition and success have led to a dangerous short supply of good men and women to lead our young. Inspiration now comes from the successful corrupt, the criminal, the illegal and the rich cartel of prosperous immoral. Let’s examine various categories of our society once deservedly held in high esteem. Here goes.
Parents: the very first and fundamental source of guidance, love and teaching, but does our society enjoy the quality of expert, exemplary parenting to inspire children? Just in a few instances, frankly speaking. Divorce, living–home and single parents are what Guyana’s majority young now experience, numerous step–fathers and “step–siblings”. We know the consequences of that status, don’t we.
Teachers and Priests: Economic circumstances drive too many of today’s teachers to use extra lessons to discriminate and they seem to be the latest category to be turning to abuse of the young. If that reads as dismal, don’t despair, as it’s not yet devastating but concerns there must be. The Church here does not “boast” significant molesters but we do have suspect pastors and exploitative religious charlatans in the new popular “church”. Spiritual guidance? Compromised by the usual deception.
Police /Army: No need for me to dwell on the woeful state and public perception of these two national protective services currently.
Corrupt practices, stolen weapons, the evil, negative works. But I still agree with one writer don’t let’s paint every Force member with the same brush. Doctors/ Nurses? Same goes for these vital professionals who are charged with keeping us healthy for production and prosperity. Doctors moonlight to earn more – sometimes not paying the more taxes, we the poorer must pay, and nurses are grumpy – forgetting first why they because nurses in the first place. But blessings to the few good Care Givers still around.
The businessmen, the politicians: whew!
I’ve wondered and lamented over these categories frequently before. The Guyanese High Court of Public Opinion has long come to its decision about these dudes. Greed, graft, corruption and self-aggrandisement rule their roosts! Frankly Speaking, it’s my very own personal view that our Private Sector, the very engine of national economic growth, and the politicians – from Cabinet Minister/Members to Opposition M.P.’s are all woefully short of the virtues that the impressionable young and the upright hardworking Guyanese adult should be able to find in them. Our society would be hard put to identify many exemplary leaders amongst those necessary categories. Don’t you agree.
So where do all those negatives leave us?
Well fellow citizens, when a society cries out for honest, qualified, moralistic leadership, there is only one fundamental thing to do. That is to orchestrate, by every, peaceful legitimate means, our own cleansing “Arab Spring and Summer”. Usher in complete change and hope that the newly-chosen will be the clean, exemplary leadership – at least for an extended period.
Further I say not. End of lecture.
Yo! Paramaribo – to our East
I’d love to be in Suriname’s Capital Parimaribo over this weekend. Because, in spite of President Bouterse, the Inter-Guiana cultural festival is being hosted there.
Cayenne, Georgetown and Paramaribo will present their countries’ best in the performing and fine arts and other related cultural show-pieces. The very mini-Carifesta will not be rivalry but will showcase our similarities, differences and ties that bind – or should.
Oh but what will the Guyanese artistic/cultural delegation and hundreds of visitors discover? Here’s a sampling: A clean, healthy city full of order and aesthetics. A strong Suriname dollar which makes their consumer items competitive. A vibrant growing economy boosted by urgent, practical assistance from Asia and Brazil. (Suriname is beating us to Brazilian aid, to tourism, mining and every economic thing that counts.)
Guyanese in Paramaribo will find that whilst our Government is talking the talk, Bouterse is walking the walk! Anyway, get over the Corentyne today and still be proud as we wow the other “Guianas” with our best asset – our powerful cultural heritage.
Well, I tell you…
*1) So Finally – they’ve broken their silence on the other building scandal at High and Princes in Georgetown. Our poor tax dollars.
*2) So Officer Merai doesn’t actually trust his own officer colleagues. Well why should we?
*3) On Monday I sought treatment at our Georgetown Hospital. From the Orthopaedic Consultant to the young pharmacists, x-ray technician and office assistant I was well treated, professionally and courteously.
When I saw the thousands awaiting – and getting – treatment, I thought of what is really “Free”. I saw too the stress and challenges to a good multi-ethnic staff. As I say thanks here, I hope it’s not my name and personality that benefited me.
Try hard GPHC – to treat all as I was treated. Thanks again.
‘Til next week!