Mar 02, 2021 Letters
GHK Lall writes frequently in your paper as well as in another medium. He writes on various issues. Saying he is a prolific writer or commentator is an under-statement. Aside from Freddie Kissoon, he is probably the most published writer in the Guyana mass media over the last few years. I do not always agree with his views on issues. And some of his writings are severely critical of the PPP and its leadership. But he also takes pot shots at the PNC (APNU) and AFC.
There is no reason to question President Ali’s sincerity in pursuing policy to unite the nation under “One Guyana” theme and policymaking that was rolled out two weekends ago. President Ali is not pursuing measures to polarize the nation, but to bring healing. The nation is supportive of the policy.
While I don’t endorse Lall’s views, I support his freedom to comment or report on issues in the media. I also support others right to reply to him. Is he out of depth (to comment on issues) or out of his league? (Feb 25). Absolutely not! That heading is misplaced as the letter does not demonstrate how GHK is out of depth. He demonstrates knowledge and competence in almost all the subjects at which he commented. He is an exciting writer and is well read by the public because his writings are always talked about by many of those with who I interact. His kind of scholarly commentaries draw readership. They are not in agreement with him but they do read his comments that seem to have a general theme of the tragedy that Guyana finds itself. He is a prodigiously gifted commentator who is not fearful of tearing through others. Some of his punches against politicians are hard. His impact must be staggering in order for anyone to say he is out of his depth.
To say someone is out of depth (on an issue) suggests that the person is not sufficiently qualified or lack the capacity to comment. Only an accomplished intellectual or scholar or academic icon may have a right to tell someone he is out of depth. Yet, it is an inappropriate term to describe a writer. It is venomous and derides an opponent. KN and no media should have permitted anyone to use that term against a writer. It is unfriendly and demeaning, or belittle someone that he is a non-achiever. It is very disrespectful, suggesting acrimony, animus, and hate. Anyone who uses that term is themself out of depth. I never saw an accomplished academic used that term against a fellow writer or commentator or academic unless in a heated exchange. It is the first time I saw it used in the Guyana papers. A good respected writer is humble, not haughty and hubristic. No matter how vehemently opposed one is to another person, never say someone is out of his league. With my multiple PhDs, I would never use that term against anyone no matter how limited is a person’s academic achievements or commentary on an issue. One must display respect for all views.
I do not know GHK’s academic background. But he certainly is not a non-achiever. I never met or interacted with him. So I cannot comment on whether he is out of depth on specific issues. He seems academically accomplished, well read, and comes from solid college training. He uses language correctly. His writings suggest he attended college. On reading, writing, and academic achievements, I do not think he pursued short cut academic studies. He would have done a lot of reading and studies in pursuing a Bachelor Degree that provided him the skill set to pursue a Masters. On line long distance studies don’t provide someone the same skill set or expertise as in classroom. A BA degree requires taking some ten courses a year, three or four hours a week for a four years period and the MA another ten courses plus a year of thesis writing. Each MA course requires reading of some ten books a week over a fourteen weeks period plus writing papers almost weekly for each course. That is a humongous amount of reading plus writing of papers. GHK would have acquired skill set to comment on issues.
His writings suggest he studied finance or economics or stocks and therefore not out of depth on those or related issues. He writes with great vitality and alacrity. And he has fluency in a remarkable range of disciplines that seem to spill effortlessly, and they are written with some level of erudition. That is not the hallmark of someone out of his league or out of depth.
Separately, I compliment GHK for his courage to write on issues at which others avoid. I do recall his writings condemning the attempted electoral fraud between March 3 and August 2. Few exhibited that kind of courage to speak out against fraud.
I do confess, however, that GHK has an awkward style of writing that virtually no writer utilizes in the media. Sometimes, his arguments are not easy to understand without some re-reading. It is the kind of writing style used in novels or essays in studies in English Language and English Literature and not the social sciences. It is the kind of writing that would impress Professors in grad school as I recall when I took several English Literature courses on the writings of James Joyce, VS. Naipaul, RK Narayanan, Chinua Achebe, Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou, Wole Soyinka, Mark Twain, among others.
It is advised that Mr. GHK can be more politically balanced in articles that appear to be strongly anti-PPP.
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