A property on the Essequibo was found by a judge to have been obtained fraudulently by an offspring. The storied Shanta’s has sibling disputes about proof of claims relative to a sale, among other things. These unsavory disputes and claims and counterclaims over property are part of the acceleration into decline of this society; a dumpsite that is of the dark and deceptive underbellies of a citizenry, which to the greatest degree imaginable has discarded character and soul, so that it can gain the upper hand and prosper.
We are a paper society. It is a questionable stained kind of parchment with invisible ink, replaceable sheets, and subjected to every manner of crooked rearrangement. The biggest and boldest, the clear-cut nastiest, must be the masterpiece theater that is the Guyana Constitution.
From a certain perspective, it represents the mind of a Machiavelli, the handiwork of Mithridates, and the eyesight of Justinian. Thomas Jefferson said it must be more than a “parchment barrier.” Such is the Constitution of Guyana that is more than a barrier. It possesses all the density of the Dead Sea with the sponginess so permitted.
The Constitution of Guyana has assumed all the flotation of those long-ago paper airplanes handcrafted by young children, and tossed about, drifted about, and landed wherever the wind blew. Thus, we blow one another about from pillar to post and then back. It is the most deceiving and destructive of paperweights.
In the real world of flesh and substance, of blood and family (friendships, too), paper, tricky texts, deceiving documents, old and new and missing wills, and superseding legal foolscap are but a sampling of the criminal tomfooleries that have proliferated in this land.
There are cases of brother against brother, husband against wife, children versus parents, best friends against each other to gain clear legal nod for a shot and claiming of the individual equivalent of the winner takes all culture that saturates.
The legal path is known to be helpful, most collaborative, definitely conspiratorial. There are substitute documents made to appear indistinguishable from the real thing. There are documents made to take wings and never to be seen again. There are workers in and around the factory that is the court system, who have made a killing out of stripping others of their due and facilitating the giving to others what does not belong.
It is a nice living up and down the chain that is the assembly line that starts from street level and reaches all the way to chamber level. Usually, there is only one group of losers, which would be those cheated out of their rightful legacy or legitimate partnership share or authentic ownership claim.
But that is in the limited world of personal and civil disputes that make their way into the public consciousness. A wider lens sweep should persuade that this is a severe societal problem, and one indicative of the decay that has taken hold, and which has rotted us to the core, including those not directly involved or impacted.
Because when individual paper trickeries proliferate, then the larger society inevitably deteriorates. For in no time, this grows and grows until it becomes a way of life. The way that is settled upon, because of the oft sampled, never repented comforting realized from corners cuts and people shafted.
Further, greater society suffers when the system of judicial review and award itself becomes compromised to the point that it lacks credibility, loses its pristine standing.
There is plenty of apocryphal paper in this town. The United States consulate alone can compile its own set of Encyclopedia Americana on the farces and follies of Guyana. It is a work in progress, with a huge reservoir from which to retrieve historic materials. That is out of view and out of reach of greater Guyana, but it is there.
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