Feb 26, 2012 Letters
I refer to David Dabydeen’s letter in the Feb 2 edition of KN (“Modernization of the UG Library should be our top priority.” I never liked David Dabydeen, seeing him as someone who puts political sycophancy in front of scholarship (not that I think Dabydeen is any outstanding Guyanese scholar).
I never thought Dabydeen was made of any substance and that was later confirmed to the entire Guyanese population when he recommended then President Bharrat Jagdeo for the Nobel Peace Prize then publicly denied it. He forgot at the time he had sent an e-mail to a journalist at KN, Nadia Guyadeen, detailing his recommendation of Jagdeo. At the time Guyadeen shared the e-mail. She probably never thought that Dabydeen would have denied his own submission. I enclosed the e-mail with this letter
In his Feb 22 letter, David Dabydeen has only exposed himself as a superficial thinker and someone utterly foolish to publish what he did in his mail. Dabydeen is more of a politician than a scholar.
Seeking to justify the under-funding of UG by his political masters in Guyana, he writes that many British universities are facing cutbacks. The asininity in that argument is that the UK has hundreds of universities. Guyana has one only.
Dabydeen urged me to seek support from UG scholars about upping my research. Yet he didn’t name one. He couldn’t. They probably would have replied and embarrassed him. Here is more asininity from Dabydeen. He tells readers that my UG salary is funded by sugar workers and labourers. So is his Warwick University salary.
It is funded by British workers. He forgot to mention that as a Guyanese, he turned his back on his country a long time and worked in the UK earning a salary higher than British labourers, UK nurses, UK teachers and other British workers. Dabydeen has to be one of the biggest fools in the world to say that as a university lecturer, I receive more than a canecutter.
Isn’t that so in every other country in the world, including Dabydeen’s adopted country? At least, I never thought of leaving Guyana. Dabydeen isn’t coming back to Guyana like his friend Compton Bourne, UG Chancellor who openly told Stabroek News that he has settled in Trinidad.
But Dabydeen is happy to become Guyana’s ambassador to China and flies to Paris often with Guyanese taxpayers’ money to attend UNESCO meetings. Surely, we have our own Guyanese scholars here who should be our UNESCO ambassador rather than someone who flatly refuses to work in his own country
Here now is Dabydeen in his own words. When you read the nonsense this man writes, then you understand how some scholars are charlatans and politicians masquerading as academics. I quote Dabydeen; “In all the furore about providing more taxpayers’ resources to UG, there was no mention of the need to enhance the stock of the UG Library, which is the core of the institution of learning… the library prepares Guyanese for a learned and scholarly future… for what it’s worth, I think the modernization of the UG Library should be our top priority.”
Here is a man in the same letter telling UG lecturers that they must do research and in the same breath tells us that UG does not have a modern library and having one should be UG’s top priority. Dabydeen cannot see the asinine contradiction in his thinking. But he writes as a politician not an academic. If you can do research at a university without a modern library then why do you need a modern library?
Thank God, Dabydeen teaches poetry at Warwick and not sociology, political theory, philosophy and International Relations. Think of what his students would have been taught. Dabydeen goes on to tell us that he and his colleagues would gladly donate computers and hundreds (his word) of books to the Library.
But where are these computers and books coming from when Daybadeen told us that British Universities are cutting back like hell. Where is Dabydeen going to get the money from to send down books and computers to UG. I guess from the British taxpayers who pay Dabydeen to engage in politics in Guyana.
I hope all students at UG read the nonsense this man wrote and judge for themselves some fools that masquerade as scholars
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