HELLO MI neighbour! Have you ever wondered why the majority of us flout laws that have been established to govern how we behave with one another? Is it because we are rude, crass or unruly? Or is it that we lack the capacity to obey rules?
I came across hundreds of Jamaican rules that almost cover the alphabet, from the 'Access to Information Act' to 'Workers Compensation Act'.
Whether or not we are familiar with them hardly makes a difference. We just seem to have this gift for law violation. We violate the road codes, we violate the Noise Abatement Act, and we violate the rights of others and every other law which crosses our path.
But here is the question, how can we obey those laws when we refuse to obey the very vital 'neighbour law' handed down by the Creator?
This law states that we should love our neighbours as ourselves and that we should do unto others as we would have them do unto us. The law further states that we should not covet our neighbours' wives, husbands and property.
Golden rule rules
If we replace that law with the one that says 'I will do as I please', it's like replacing a trailer engine with that of a motorcycle and expecting peak performance!
Why are people's human rights being infringed indefinitely? What about the injustices that are being meted out to people, daily, without any redress?
The work of Jamaicans for Justice and other groups that champion the cause of others must be applauded. Yes, they do a fine job at highlighting the tear-jerking injustices that are being levied against the disenfranchised. But, but, but ... they could shout until they are blue, their efforts may not achieve much because we can be just with one another unless we are willing to follow the golden rule: 'Do unto the other the very thing you would want the other to do unto you'. Snicker if you may, but this is an undeniable fact.
What then do we do? Take a look at those instances where the 'neighbour law' is observed and start putting your own structures in place to facilitate adherence to this law of laws.
As you proceed, here are some tips from the Bible to guide you:
Honour your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land.
You shall not murder.
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not steal.
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
You shall not covet your neighbour's house. You shall not covet your neighbour's wife, or his male or female servant ... or anything that belongs to your neighbour.
Until next time, remember that the 'neighbour law' requires that we help someone from list below.
Thanks for helping
1. Winsome, for connecting Kerry, St Catherine, with clothing solutions for her children.
2. Carlene, for helping Nasta's brother, St Ann, who needed a wheelchair.
3. Ms Goodhall, for offering special assistance to neighbours.
4. Antoinette, St Andrew, for offering a stroller to a baby.
Opportunities to help
Neighbour, mother of girls, seven and nine, in need help with food and clothing.
Neighbour in desperate need of a wheelchair.
Neighbour, asking for sizes 16 and 18 clothing for church. Size eight shoes also needed.
Lisa, mother of five, seeking neighbours' financial assistance to open a shop.
Shereka in need of clothing for girl age 17 and boy 10. TV also needed.
Chad, Clarendon, needs books - Biology 1 and 2, Understanding Physics and A Level Chemistry.
Cynthia, St Andrew, needs a used or new sewing machine, unemployed, unable to find a job.
Tracy, Portland, child afflicted with eczema, cannot afford treatment, asking neighbours for help.
Neighbour, unemployed uncle needs a double-bed mattress.
Neighbour, St Catherine, needs a stove to prepare meals for shut-in neighbour.
Neighbour, sister is a mental patient and unable to work, children need help with lunch money.
To help, please call 334-8165, 884-3866, 299-3412 or deposit to acct # 351 044 276 NCB. (Bank routing #: JNCBJMKX) or send donations to Hello Neighbour C/o 53 Half Way Tree Road, Kingston 10; e-mail email@example.com.