I think one could always help one’s country and its people from arm’s length

January 20, 2013 | By | Filed Under Letters 

Dear Editor,
Service, in whatever shape or form, is one of the distinguishing characteristics of humankind”, according to the letter of 19th January.
Quite so.  Insightful.  But, since we cannot please all the people all the time, sooner or later it all ends in tears.
In the meantime, think of the cost not only to ourselves but to our families, when we set out, idealistically, as politicians or other do-gooder singlehandedly “to make the world a better place”.
Names mentioned in the letter include Mandela, Ghandi, Luther King and Cheddi Jagan.  They indeed “sacrificed their entire life for the cause of humanity”.  To what purpose, some may ask?  It pains me  to see Lady
Thatcher, once so vibrant, enthusiastic and hardworking, now so frail, unable to walk unaided, often confused and not as close to her offspring as she would perhaps like to be.  In Guyana’s case, Cheddi Jagan’s successors are still grappling with how to ‘get it right’, his ideals ditched almost overnight.
When I remember my late best friend – who was never keen on her husband entering politics – and the toll ‘a life of (political) service’ took on the family, I shudder.  I think one could always help one’s country and its people from arm’s length, in Andrew Carnegie fashion, finances permitting.
And, to quote John Milton,  “They also serve who only stand and wait.”
Geralda Dennison

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