Mon | Dec 5, 2016

Implement citizenship classes

Published:Tuesday | January 12, 2010 | 12:00 AM

The Editor, Sir:

Once upon a time, as a country and a people, we were revered and begrudged by our Caribbean brothers and sisters. Today, we are the object of derision and humiliation because of the behaviour of approximately 100th of one per cent of our population.

I have just read about the total humiliation of a young Jamaican woman who spent six months studying Spanish in Peru, and on her way back home via another entry point, the Peruvian authorities totally humiliated her to the point of tears, and advised her that all of that was due mainly to the fact that she was Jamaican.

What can we as a country do to once again command respect internationally? The United States recognised certain failings and have taken steps to correct the misconceptions of the country and its people.

My suggestions are as follows:

1. All schools should offer mandatory classes in citizenship and Jamaican history, with the national anthem and pledge recited daily.

2. Citizenship classes and counselling should be offered in communities across Jamaica to shore up pride in our country. Citizenship certification should be issued to participants.

3. Every travel agent should offer a do-and-don't list to all Jamaicans travelling overseas. There should be consequences for travellers who do not adhere to the rules of the countries that they visit. Maybe a number of years of not being able to travel out.

We cannot continue on this pathway of the total destruction of the good name of this country and its people.

I am, etc.,

VERNA GORDON-BINNS

theashton@cwjamaica.com

Black River

St Elizabeth