Journalism, it is said, provides a first draft of history. It can also be a cliché’ and if it is not objective can be a big joke and mockery. What does one think of Dominican citizens who are residing abroad and are trying to make sense, analyze and chronicle current events that are occurring at home?
These ‘wanna- be’ journalists can easily fall into the proverbial trap of seeing and viewing things from their monitoring posts in foreign lands far away from Roseau in a completely different context.
Nonetheless, some of us are attempting to make a meaningful contribution to how events are distilled and interpreted in Dominica with less emotion and more rationale. But do we have the permission, expertise, to narrate and analyze these events? That will ultimately have to be answered by rational readers and history.
Whatever your opinions and positions on this matter are, one must, therefore, ask, what are we trying to prove and achieve? What is the goal and what are the motivating forces for the sometimes-fruitless exercises in literature writing, citizen journalism or (some say) just propaganda? But I hope my efforts and contributions will influence policy and debate and maybe result in change for the average Dominican. Along the way, I try to provide useful opposition to the powers that be. This is what legitimate democracy is all about.
The simple reasons are that some of us who are away from home with a panoramic view of things are only trying to generate meaningful debate and discussion in a pure, unpolluted and uncontaminated political, non-partisan manner. That is my goal.
Some say this is virtually impossible in Dominica. Despite this negative but maybe realistic point of view at this stage of our existence and development, one has to try and keep hammering away at that uncomforting truth. With lucidity of mind and economy of expressions and passion for truth and fairness, I dispatch my articles to this platform.
In so doing, I hope I am making a small and meaningful contribution to the tone, tenor and nature of some of the simple, yet complicated and contaminated issues which serve only to divide us further as a nation and people (and race) and retard our collective growth and prosperity. I also write because of my nostalgic memories and beauty of the countryside, the La Plaine Valley where it all began for me, Portsmouth and Roseau. Dominica’s everlasting vigor, vitality, and good-naturedness of our people, and the reverence for our painful history and most interesting colourful culture, guide me.
When writing, I make every concerted effort to stay in the center of political consciousness and rational objectivity. My one hope is that my contributions and that of the other objective writers are not futile. Nothing human is absolute or perfect. At the same time, nothing can be practically useless, or oblivious, at least not in the long run.
What I hope my articles convey is unconditional love, affection, and agony for our island home in its many forms, simplicities, complications, beauty, and ugliness. I also see in a remorseful way, that the political pettiness and myopic ways of thinking and acting on the part of some of our politicians and other leaders pose an unavoidable challenge to our supposedly victorious Dominican good values. Between the words and sentences, I am filled with emotion, nostalgia, joy, sadness, anger, restlessness and confusion.
We do not have to be physically present at home on the ‘ground’ to feel and understand these political, social or economic dynamics, currents, and headwinds. Why do I continue to write while (supposedly) enjoying a comfortable life more than 2000 nautical miles away from the banks of the Sari-Sari and Laronde rivers or Kingshill, Castle Bruce or the affluent community of Morne Daniel?
This past week watching the video of the two ‘Manicou’ mercenaries (dogs of foreign conflict and war) planting a black bag case (‘sac noir) with supposed money in front of UWP leader’s residence at Morne Daniel to try to frame him up bright chills to my spine. One’s home is a refuge point from the world whatever your station in life is. Watching this video, I was emotionally moved not because I can identify with Mr. Linton as a husband and father of two teenagers whose primary task is to provide a safe and protective dwelling for his family, but simply as a Dominican and human being.
What is even more disturbing is that the ‘Manicous’ did not come from nearby Ravine Coque or Fond Cani but are British citizens from the UK. There are many questions to be answers on the magnitude of the Watergate scandal which cost Richard Nixon the U.S presidency and sent a few of the most powerful men in Washington to jail and others to resign. How did they get here, who requested their services and how much did it cost, who protected and facilitated their stay and movement who aided and abetted them.
But we have seen this movie before in the case of Alie Reza Monfared (44), the international fugitive with multiple passports including Dominica who was given safe heaven on Dominica before he was nabbed in the Dominican Republic by Interpol after a lengthy international manhunt. He is now rotting in an Iranian prison waiting for a firing squad. The sad case of Mr. Gon Emanuel whose house was firebombed on Christmas morning and who went to his grave without getting the justice he deserved when all the evidence was present. This may not be the first and last salvo before ‘the do or die’ election and Dominican should brace themselves.
Has Police Chief Daniel Carbon issued or is he willing and or able to issue a press release or hold a press conference on this compelling new evidence on this national security case? This writer’s opinion is that Carbon should turn in his badge and gun and go home. Can PM Skerrit, his deputy Reginald Austrie say more on this matter as they were eager to scream on the platform in front of their base? Can Ian Douglas whose father, Mike, Uncle, Rosie and grandfather, RBD (RIP) must be rolling in their graves for what he has become reveal more information on the sac noir operations he was so passionate riling about before the roaring base in La Plaine? Interpol should be summoned to investigate this matter. What a shame!!! What a shame!!! This is why I am compelled to write when I have the time and energy to in order to chronicle this for our current and future generations.
I am neither a politician, journalist nor a member of a political party. What I have is a deep moral conviction and deep love for the Isle of Beauty. In fact, the name of my political party is Wai’tukubuli “Tall is her body”. I believe that maybe, out there I have a strong belief that my words in print will ultimately count and perhaps even right wrongs. Maybe these endeavours will probably help to gradually awaken our (so-called) leaders to the fact that petty politics and divisiveness (especially among families) can no longer be ignored and allowed to continue.
I am well aware that some of my writings earn me more hate than praise or accolades. Quite frankly I am not looking nor concern with either. My focus is about the ideal and idea called Dominica where I was born and raised with decent values deep in its belly and the potential of its people especially the children. I am not impressed with dishonest politicians even more so when they open their mouths publically ‘snakes and bats’ come flying out.
The combination of moral and ethical clarity, honesty, professionalism, and humanity are the directions I travel in order to untangle some of the murky waters our nation and leaders find themselves in. As a teenager of the mid-seventies, I write because I am happy and thankful to be alive to bear witness and try to understand the rapid transformations, transitions and regrettable transgressions that our island home and its leaders have experienced, and are experiencing.
Dominica today sits on a fault line at the edge of a precipice. The growing differences and huge disparities of income levels among many segments of the community are gradually reshaping the society for the worse. These dynamics have unraveled the socio-economic dynamics of our country. Sadly the decaying social, political situation today and the collapse of the economy are more than frightening. Who should be blamed for this run-a-way decay?; the church, courts, and or political leadership, or all of us?
What does mass economic citizenship really mean today and what will it mean two decades from now? Will it mean that foreign governments can meddle in the internal affairs of Dominica? Some say that with the arrival and influx of so much unaccounted big money into politics, total confusion has taken place and ‘Armageddon’ is around the corner. Will gangsters stay our land freely looking to cause harm and mischief?
This new model is very frightening and sooner rather than later it must catch up with us big time. The world and region have been watching those political dynamics and currents that are occurring in Roseau very closely and the manner with which the courts are dealing with them. But the larger question is; is it time to invest in our systems and communities instead of listening to charismatic personalities (so-called leaders) who are doing little but getting our people involved in the ‘snake pit’ of backward, antiquated, divisive and petty politics? This writer’s position is that it’s a new day and we desperately need a new sense of order and new leadership.
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