Kaieteur News – Herschel Walker is running for a US senate seat in Georgia. I find Mr. Warner a psychological repulsion. He opposes any type of abortion even in circumstances of incest and rape.
Evidence and statements from a former girlfriend proved that Mr. Warner paid for her to have an abortion. Mr. Walker opposes abortion because he sees it as a strategy to get him elected. Self-interest is on full display here.
It is useless to knock people for their self-interest because all of us embody that trait and we must understand it is part of human nature even though a philosopher I admire, Sigmund Freud, believed that there is no generalized human nature.
There is innocent self-interest and there is repulsive self-interest. I will offer examples of both. I loved Yesu Persaud who did immensely generous things for me. One day, he asked me to visit him at his office.
He told me he saw that I wrote a few nice things about former president, Desmond Hoyte. Then, he described Hoyte’s victimization of him when he spoke up against Hoyte presidency and asked how I can write positively on Hoyte.
I then explained to Yesu that what Hoyte did to him was wrong and I have written about that and I will continue to do so but Hoyte was generous to me. I explained to Yesu that after I came home to Guyana, the head of UG’s Department of Political Science, Professor Paul Singh offered me an appointment but President Burnham blocked it.
After Burnham died, Professors Clive Thomas, Rudy James and Harold Lutchman wrote President Hoyte directly and asked him to remove the ban. It is a letter I still have and have put it up safely. I have asked my daughter to pass on my papers to UG after I die and that letter I hope will be useful to future researchers.
President Hoyte agreed and I spent 26 consecutive years earning my livelihood at UG to support my family. My contract was terminated in December 2011, one month after President Ramotar was sworn in as president.
I explained to Yesu that though he has his feelings against Hoyte and that is perfectly understandable, it is obligatory of me as a father, husband, human being, political activist, and academic to recognize what Hoyte did not only for me but for my wife.
When we came back in 1984, Burnham applied his fatwa to my wife also. Family friend, Clem Duncan worked for Mr. Hoyte who was Vice-President under Mr. Burnham and asked him to sanction employment for my wife at GUYMIDA, the forerunner of what is known today as GOINVEST. Mr. Hoyte agreed.
I intoned to Yesu that he must understand that if I acceded to his request to condemn Hoyte for what Hoyte did to him, he was denying me my right to publicize what Hoyte did for me. These were two forms of self-interest that could easily be understood.
Yesu was a giant of a human and he understood that there was no contradiction in my perspective and that context was everything in life; that we must understand context. At the end of the conversation, he agreed that my praise for Hoyte was contextual and was not a denial of the bad things Hoyte had done to him.
The above is a strong example of innocent self-interest. I have encountered terrible, harmful self-interest that repelled me in other people. I will end with two examples. One is related to the former Guyana Ambassador to Kuwait in the APNU+AFC government, Shamir Ally.
Mr. Ally and I were close during our days of AFC activism and I remember that the institution that he worked at in the US, honoured me for my social activism. When the APNU+AFC got into power, Mr. Ally became a member of the board of GOINVEST where my wife worked and had to leave in 2011.
I never received not even one word from Ally from 2015 to 2020. Suddenly, last year, Mr. Ally wrote to tell me how he loves my columns. I angrily replied and asked him if when he was on the board of GOINVEST, he didn’t know Frederick Kissoon existed. I told him not to correspond with me ever again.
Finally, there is Dr. Bertrand Ramcharran, a former UN human rights commission executive and former UG Chancellor. Dr. Ramcharran emailed to request that I not criticize Mr. Mike McCormack, head of the Guyana Human Rights Commission (GHRA) because he is a friend.
This was blatant self-interest and I responded with trenchant bluntness. I told the gentleman that if McCormack was his friend why he does not ask McCormack to explain GHRA’s silence on the 2020 election rigging.
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