Sep 24, 2019 Editorial
There are ongoing sounds of political promises to rescind the 2 a.m. curfew. This paper has difficulty believing that anyone, any aspirant, any group, could be so irresponsible to Guyanese citizens – so contemptuous of so many Guyanese neighbourhoods, and so utterly casual about the vulgarities that once prevailed and the associated lawlessness that flows from such declines.
It is at times like these that there must be great gladness in the hearts of the many Guyanese who hurried out of here (and completely distanced themselves) from the conflicts and sicknesses that hang heavily over this society. So, too, must be the thinking of the few remaining for possessing the good sense to disengage from things political.
All Guyanese should be familiar with the piercing volumes that once battered ear, civility, and sanity during the pre-2 a.m. curfew era. There was the uninhibited bacchanalia that brought out the worst impulses, and the most riotous aspects of our reckless natures. Every day was carnival and Mardi Gras and one greatest show in the world after another, all rolled into one.
Examples were set from many levels of the loud karaoke excesses, the public urinating and public vomiting in disgusting exhibitions of a dissipated lifestyle. Many of such participants have gained a notorious reputation. There was neither interest nor discipline nor strength to be otherwise. No standards and values, too, to hold in check and contribute to bettering for many.
Because many more were heavily impacted, than those carousing and imbibing and spending the mainly dirty money that made all things possible in Guyana, including breaking the law, and then buying it. Those would be the many trapped hapless, living in the vicinity of the whisky stills, gin joints, rum shops, and dives of varying pedigrees. Taken together, places of low and fashionable repute. Fashionable for those who, most likely, cheat and beat their spouses. Fashionable for those who celebrate another rewarding day in the foreign currency laundromats that put on a good show (they believe) as to structures of capitalism, civil society, and charity.
There were the many in communities across the country who were affected, intimidated and scared, and suffered in resigned silence; the many who reported to the police and the press of the tortures inflicted and perpetuated through acute and dangerous noise nuisance levels; the many more, who endured nobody (not police, not politicians) doing anything. There were no seniors saying anything, other than drink up and be merry, for tomorrow may never come.
Those were the more visible tips of the iceberg. For invisible were the many police officers touched and tainted by easy liquid cash to hear nothing, but the cash ringing (rustling) on their persons. Nothing done; nothing doing. By anybody. Students struggled; honest workers were forced to keep the clock company, and families and places of worship all paid a steep price.
But nobody among the compromised policing crowd and the backward political class gave a damn. There were the many cascading effects that were covered up, evaded, or ignored: drunk driving, hit-and-run fatalities, domestic abuse, GRA contamination (unlicensed liquor stamped) underage drinking, teenage prostitution (though never seen in that perverse light) and the host of tempting pickings for police people up and down the chain.
Yes, the people complained bitterly but they, too, are guilty of identifying with, pledging support, and then delivering it to those they embraced, but who abandoned them.
There are hundreds (maybe a thousand) issues of significance, if not more urgent priorities, and rolling back the 2 a.m. curfew is one of the paramount considerations put before the voting public. Surely, this society can’t be this crass, this classless?
There is recognition for the constitutional right of boozers and inhalers and hustlers to the poisons of their choice, and around the clock, if it comes to that. But not when the cascading effects of all the ills identified earlier sabotage this society. There were those plagues and now there is talk today of removing the 2 a.m. curfew. Is this the highest wisdom we are capable of, the best we can offer?
What calibre of thinkers live here? What kind of country is this? What manner of people are we?
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