An editorial in the Guyana Chronicle, dated July 3rd, 2012, elicited a fierce public reaction. Many individuals and organizations voiced their outrage at the insensitive race-baiting, trashy piece of journalism. Within a matter of days, and to his credit, the Chairman of the Board offered his apology. His response is commendable.
While Mr. Burrowes recognized the implications of the editorial, however, the former Chairman of the Ethnic Relations Commission, Juan Edghill, continues to live in the clouds. According to one newspaper, he essentially said that he saw nothing wrong with that article. In fact, he claims that the writer was stating facts.
In a society like Guyana’s where racist insensitivity can cause an explosion, Edghill’s statement, in our opinion, was callous and clumsy. Throughout his tenure at the ERC, nothing of significance was ever accomplished. He still seems to have no vision, and no independence of thought.
Edghill’s behaviour is very similar to that of the prophet Balaam in the Bible. The Bible tells of a King by the name of Balak who sent for a prophet named Balaam to come and curse his enemy, the Israelites. The Spirit of the Lord forbade him, and even his donkey spoke up to warn Balaam; all to no avail. Eventually, Balaam went ahead, and although he did not curse Israel, he provided critical advice which he knew would destroy God’s people. Later God dealt harshly with this treacherous and greedy prophet.
The PPP is a house that is crumbling from the weight of corruption and iniquity. Seemingly blinded by self-hate, Edghill is oblivious to all the evil that surrounds him. As ethical stalwarts of the former PPP abandon that sinking ship, Edghill and others of his ilk continue to see no evil and speak no evil of a government whose policies continue to be anti-working-class, anti-poor, corrupt and sinister – without regard to the races of their victims.
While the Chronicle editorial is clearly and manipulatively racist, the new PPP government’s policies and behaviours are just as clearly and consistently broader: they discriminate against all citizens so long as they are poor, regardless of race. Messrs. Ramjattan, Nagamootoo, and now Ramkarran, all former senior members of the PPP, reacted to the stench of corruption coming from the new PPP, and departed.
The uncaring “Bishop”, however, can find no fault with something as blatantly divisive as the editorial in the Chronicle. While none of these men even claim to be from the clergy, their commonsense and consciences drove them to take action, regardless of the personal cost.
No number of favours or amount of money would chain them to a party which has so visibly lost its way, the new PPP.
Many believe that apart from changing their corrupt ways, the new PPP would do anything to have these gentlemen return.
They realize that each of these men has the courage of their personal convictions.
They have stood for moral principles. Some people seem to stand for nothing but personal convenience. In time, we believe even the new PPP will conclude that they are opportunists.
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