“Experience is a hard teacher. She gives the test first, the lesson afterwards.” – Anonymous
When Great Britain granted us our political Independence in 1962, we showed such promise and potential as a new Nation. In 1961, we voted on the West Indies Federation which failed miserably. In hindsight we, as a Caribbean people, could possibly have been an economic powerhouse who could hold our own against the likes of the European Union, the countries in North America and the different Trading Blocks around the World today. It was because of shortsightedness and downright ignorance by certain people and reactionary forces why we are so behind economically, socially and politically in this Globalize 21st Century World today. We would have been, arguably, better off than we are today.
All the Caribbean Nations went their own separate ways to fend for themselves which was a colossal mistake. We are bearing the fruits of our collective shortsightedness and ignorance. All hail to a true legend that is Norman Manley. He was a man who did not do things for short term political gains as we saw with the West Indies Federation. He was indeed a true Statesman, in every sense of the word. My question is where are the Statesmen (and Stateswomen) in Jamaica today? I am talking about the ones who will stand up for principles even though they may face electoral demise.
“Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – Aristotle
From 1962 until now every Government we ever elected have ruled with a divide and conquer mentality. As the saying goes “it is a fight for scarce benefits and spoils for only the chosen few.” We would not have this mess if we were mature and disciplined enough as a people to get our Independence in the first place. Successive leaders have squandered the potential of our Nation to grow because of political expedience and that same shortsightedness I mentioned earlier in this piece. Some politicians, on both sides of the political divide, pitted Inner-City Communities against each other to the detriment of Jamaica in the long run all for political power BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY. We are seeing the effects of it today with the latest State of Emergency called because of violence. When SOME of these politicians gain the power they dispose these same people, MY PEOPLE, like garbage. This makes me sick to my stomach! These same Inner-City “Community Leaders” have since grown and expanded, building a worldwide empire fueled by drugs, gun and prostitution. They have gotten bigger than the politicians who once had bankrolled them.
“All who have meditated on the art of governing Mankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of Youth.” – Aristotle
Instead of giving books and the tools necessary for a solid education some of these politicians fueled them with drugs and gave them guns to do their dirty biddings so as to gain political power. Now it is biting them all in the behind while Jamaica at home and abroad suffers for it. I hope they are happy with themselves. These gangs have morphed into unstoppable juggernauts who are uncontrollable and holding many law abiding, decent citizens hostage. It is as if Jamaica has turned into a quasi-military society where suddenly every man is a bad man. We have turned into a gun worshipping country which is not good at all. This is a tragedy of the highest proportions because the mostly good, law abiding Citizens are under siege because of just a few rotten apples (politicians included). How the tables have turned! Having said that, I want to say this. Mr. Golding, based on what is coming out slowly but surely, if you have a shred of decency or integrity, please resign? YOU HAVE FAILED SIR! You are an embarrassment to the people of Jamaica just like your opposite Portia Simpson-Miller who is way in over her head. Jamaica deserves…NO! JAMAICA DEMANDS… inspired young, bold, innovative leadership independent of the politics of old which is destructive. The people have gone through hell and it has reached such a breaking point that if something is not done radically to reform our system then we will become like Haiti or, God forbid, worse.
“Where there is no vision, the people perish.” – Book of Proverbs 29:18
The two political leaders should be ashamed of themselves as their leadership has led Jamaica down a path of definite destruction and ultimately death. You Mr. Golding are a failure. Please, look for other work because obviously you cannot handle being Prime Minister for the most beautiful country ever created. You sir, when launching the National Democratic Movement, blasted the “Power Elites” of having a strangle hold on power and not truly representing the people. You sir, were the one who said that we needed Electoral, Constitutional and Structural Reform in every facet of Government. You sir, turned your back on what you so self-righteously preached against what is ailing Jamaica. When you finally gained power, like Portia Simpson-Miller and eighteen years of PNP rule, you sat and did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to change the culture. No more sir! Do what is right. Have a little integrity and decency and resign. If anyone wants to use this piece as a beating stick for Mr. Golding it is meant for all those incompetent politicians out there who are just as bad (probably worse). Your incompetence knows no bounds and Jamaica deserve much better. You never gave second thought as to who you hurt or had to step on going to the top and gain power at all cost. You have all, for the most part, been horrible, incompetent failures. Do Jamaica a favour and go. Do not make promises you know that you cannot keep, do not bother with the long, tearful goodbye speeches because Jamaica has had it with your collective mediocrity and stupidity. So, Portia Simpson-Miller you have neither the moral authority nor the judicious capacity to say a word in criticism. You are a part of the problem so, if you are tempted to say anything please, SHUT THE HELL UP! You should pen your resignation also. You are the queen of incompetence madam. Hopefully the people will not riot so much that the whole thing finally collapse beyond repair. We are sick and tired of all the nonsense by our elected officials but, we as a people are strong and will get through this latest crisis. We are strong and we shall overcome. Bruce Golding and Portia Simpson-Miller do us all a favor. We want nothing more from you because you both have shown your ineptness and mediocrity to lead. For the love of God and everything that is good in the world please, RESIGN!
David A. L. Franklin, Jr. is a business owner/operator who currently lives in New York.