LETTER OF THE DAY -Jamaica: 'nuff problems'
The Editor, Sir:
I am disappointed, but I understand the need to get rid of Air Jamaica. It has been such a financial drain on Jamaica for so long. Why should we be angry now?
When it was alleged that the airline was being used as if it were a car service/deli-very van by a lot of executives, why weren't we angry then? When an executive had a departing Air Jamaica flight return to the gate to pick up a foreign dignitary, why weren't we angry then? When Bruce Golding shuffled that executive around as if in a game of musical chairs instead of firing her, why weren't we angry then? Because everything in Jamaica is 'no problem mon'.
We, as Jamaicans, have long learnt to adapt to adversity and banded our belly when necessary. Now we are like frogs in a pot of water with the temperature slowly rising. We are now feeling the heat but it seems we lack the strength or sense of urgency to jump out.
We keep recycling the same set of stale failed politicians, the same one-track-minded 'hit men' police, and the same failed business executives for financial guidance. We cling to the same old way of doing things, even with diminishing or no returns.
altar of ignorance
The so-called intellectuals at the University of the West Indies (UWI) are like aspiring dancehall kings and queens. Instead of articulating solutions and mental upliftment, they have started worshipping at the altar of ignorance.
For our crime problems we have had The Eradication Squad, Operation Ardent, ACID and Kingfish, to name a few anti-crime initiatives over the years. We actually boast about the 'killer' policemen we have in the police force, but what has been our reward? Do we then need to kill more people?
A friend of mine recently commented to me that the country was being run like a go-go club; appearances are enticing, but the aim is to take your money and leave you to die from some rotting disease you contracted.
We need help. We need a change. We need to start looking within ourselves and stop making excuses and admit that we have not seen any upward trajectory in Jamaica for a while now. We need to acknowledge that we need a long-term plan.
We need new, intelligent and unselfish leadership. We need real moral leadership as the religious leaders have failed us. We need a new police force as the current two are no better than the gunmen; and sometimes are the gunmen who hunt us.
Look around you! There is absolutely no plan for the country's future being put forth by the political leaders. They are too busy protecting their political henchmen and figuring out new ways to tax the citizens with nothing offered in return.
When are we going to stop saying 'Jamaica, no problem' and stand up like Paul Bogle? The country can't even deliver water - which is a natural resource - efficiently. How are we going to move forward without the basic necessity of water?
I was at home in Jamaica during 2008 and there were always water lock-offs and there was no drought then. We have become too lackadaisical in our demands and have lowered the bar until it is now on the ground. It seems that we no longer care. When will there be a pushback against political incompetence, political ignorance, the tsunami of violence and the state-sponsored terrorists we call a police force?
In a 1973 speech, former prime minister, Michael Manley, said, "Change is the willingness to look at your system and have the courage to know what is wrong."
Jamaica, we need change, then we need a revolution.
I am, etc.,