Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Devon Dick | Have politicians no shame? Maybe not!

Published:Thursday | June 15, 2017 | 6:00 AM

Theresa May, British prime minister, called her nation to the polls on June 8, seeking a bigger mandate in order to be in a position of greater strength to negotiate with the European Union in the complex Brexit talks. However, she lost the majority in the House of Commons. May's Conservative Party won 318 seats, 12 fewer than it had before she called a snap election and eight short of the required 326 seats needed for a single majority. May should have walked away because it means, based on her desire, she will be weakened in the negotiation with the EU. For the sake of the country, she should go and allow someone else, who does not have such baggage, to try and get the best deal for Britons.

Furthermore, she initially said she would not call a snap general election. Then she changed her mind and lost 12 seats. She also lost credibility because she was being opportunistic, and it backfired. She should go. Then this minor party is willing to join with May so as to move in the corridors of power. How could these politicians join with someone who is in a weakened position which will not benefit the United Kingdom? Have politicians no shame? Apparently, May does not.

It is clear than the Conservative Party recognised that there is need for resignations because two of May's top aides, Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill, have resigned as a result of the electoral setback. Why not May?

May should not have offered herself to be prime minister after David Cameron took the principled position to step down after he lost the referendum. Since May was part of the team within the Conservative Party who supported to remain in the EU, then she should not be the one to lead the country into the talks to leave the EU. The British prime minister should be someone who voted for Brexit. Cameron was principled, while May was not.

 

SIGNIFICANT IN THE NEW BRITAIN

 

Cameron called an election which he did not have to, and lost and resigned. May called an election which she did not have to, and lost the majority and she does not resign. We like to pretend as if British politicians are paragons of virtue who resign after electoral defeat and on principles. Maybe this is not true.

Some argue that female politicians would make better politicians than males in terms of principle and integrity. May shows that it is not necessarily so. It is not gender that determines integrity, but having convictions that will be principled, no matter the cost.

Theresa May made a good speech about the way forward in a post-Brexit Britain. Her goals were clear. However, in her speech she never mentioned Jamaica or the Caribbean. Apparently, Jamaica will not be significant in the new Britain. In fact, Jamaica did not count in the old Britain because on any tour of London on a tour bus, the Queen of England is mentioned as the head of state for many countries, but no mention of Jamaica having Queen Elizabeth as the head of state. Jamaica does not need to ape the British, but needs its own code of ethics.

The problem with some politicians is that it is not about service, but rather the prestige and power than comes with governing a country. It is not service above self. It is not country before self. It is not about living the sacrificial life. Rather, it is making a career out of politics and having no life after politics. It is about entitlements and self-interest. It is a shame.

- Rev Devon Dick is pastor of the Boulevard Baptist Church in St Andrew. He is author of 'The Cross and the Machete', and 'Rebellion to Riot'. Send feedback to columns@ gleanerjm.com.