What do we do to heal the unhealable?

Dear Editor,

In this country, scribes and columnist alike wail about this humongous racial divide that exists in this land. The problem, however, is that none of these columnists and scribes is prepared to point fingers. This racial divide that we have could not have materialized out of thin air. Everything has a beginning, or am I to understand that this is just one of life’s phenomena? Should we just blame the politicians, without actually checking the root? And what part did we, the people, play?

Mr Ramkarran sees it as the “root of all evil.” A political victory is seen in purely ethnic terms. Even though it is the root of all evil, according to Mr Ramkarran, he makes no suggestion as to how it can be healed. Mr McDonald sees it as “the disruptive, unhealable, seemingly eternal antagonism between Indo Guyanese and Afro Guyanese.” So what is his suggestion; what do we do to heal the unhealable? Dr Hinds says, “it is no secret that the majority African Guyanese and Indian Guyanese attitude to the PPP and PNC respectively is influenced by ethno-racial considerations.” He observes further “some would even accuse people like me of racism for daring to raise the issue of race.” Raising the issue of race, and not checking the core is an exercise in semantics.

I have often wondered if we could have a catharsis in this country. If we could have telling of the truth and nothing but the truth so help us God, maybe then we will be able to face up to the many things that we have hidden, including the racial divide and how it was started. No one seems capable or willing to begin an investigation and let the chips fall where they may.

Was it always like this? Did we hate each other from the very beginning? How and when did this racial divide start? Who is responsible? Maybe Mr Ramkarran who has been a member of the PPP for ages can assist us. How about Eusi Kwayana? Something had to have happened to sever this relationship. What was it? What were the words or the action taken that created this crisis? This crisis that is a festering sore that we cannot heal or are not inclined to try.

Burnham and Jagan won a political victory in British Guiana in 1953, supported by Guyanese of different ethnicities. They then split because of differences. Was it the split that created this division? Surely if there was animosity it had to be political and not racial. Several Guyanese of different ethnicities went with Burnham as others stayed with Jagan. Could it be as humans we think in superior and inferior terms, and that could be catalyst for this division? Or is it a cultural thing that was seized upon by unscrupulous persons and used to our detriment?

If I am being naive I apologize. But maybe the scribes and columnists will divorce their attached souls and try to erase this hatred by creating a real catharsis. I am suggesting, however, as Guyanese that we unearth this division, and live up to our motto as “one people, one nation, one destiny.”

Yours faithfully,

Milton Bruce

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