Tired of 'ingratitude' lectures
The Editor, Sir:
I recently read an article by Ken Jones captioned 'Choices: Running off, or standing Up' (The Sunday Gleaner, In Focus, April 4) and was moved to respond. Mr Jones spent much time regaling the efforts of Norman Manley and other great heroes and heroines in improving the lot of the people for whom "pigmentation would have mattered". Ridiculous. What people of his generation do not want to accept is that they have willed to the current generation of Jamaicans a wretched, violent and morally bankrupt environment.
I, personally, am fed up of people telling me how black people could not work in banks. Maybe it's a feature of my age, but I am not satisfied with that. And what exactly are these young graduates to do? Hold on to memories of the actions of great men while they can't feed their families or even keep them safe? What use is a 'big job' when you can't leave your home at night (or day) in peace?
I am not advising anyone to leave Jamaica. That is a personal choice. But it does rub me the wrong way when someone, not of my generation, wants to preach to me about ingratitude, particularly when preaching to a generation of young people who, by and large, have never known a peaceful Jamaica.
The article reminds me of my experience at high school. After doing my CXCs and doing fairly well, I pretty much had my choice of sixth forms to attend. I remember being lectured at length by one of the teachers at the school about why I should stay, largely for the prestige of the school.
I eventually remained though, of course, not because of anything the teacher said. I noted with some amusement, however, that within a year of the great entreaty, the teacher herself had left the school.
I am, etc.,
ANDRE ST PAUL