Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Stepping into the deep end...
My last post discussed the emergence of the OBA (One Bermuda Alliance) on the political scene and no matter how much things seem to change, they in fact stay pretty much the same. The discussions that seem to be prevalent in and around our society seem to be related to when and if an election will be called, and if we as a nation are prepared for it. Such discussions seem to include talks of independence, and as usual all things underlying (racism...colonialism). Devolution of our sensibilities is well under way, and before we know it, we will be drowning in propaganda and all things that will keep us away from the decisions that must be made, decisions that will ultimately determine our future.
When it comes to making important decisions, we have a hard time with the connection between head and heart. Our head tells us that we must make an intelligent decision based on facts and figures, issues and policies. Our heart tells us that we must make an emotionally intelligent decision, following our heart, and not allowing propaganda such as "the race card" to blindly drive us to make a decision that in retrospect might not have been made in a non-election period.
It is always advisable to know how to swim before we jump into the deep end of the pool. In fact, it might be advisable to make sure there are enough life preservers around, just in case we need one. Recent elections, have shown that without a viable opposition, we will have our current government for a long, long time to come. The status quo. Certainly there are some who believe that the status quo is unacceptable, but the vast majority, who can not conceive voting for the opposition, would seemingly rather drown than seek the only other option available.
Currently the options are the governing PLP, or the UBP.... oops.... I mean the OBA... I forgot that there was a difference. Are these the only options that we have? We could choose to NOT vote, which I do NOT personally approve of. The last by-election, showed only 40% of the constituency's electorate participate, and that can not be acceptable at all. How can a candidate be elected when under half of those who are able to vote, don't? In fact, the majority, by not participating are conceding their futures to choices made by others! Insanity. The birthright of everyone in our country is the right to vote, and if it means that much then get involved in the process and get in a candidate that will best represent your views.
There is a third option (or fourth if you have an independent candidate in your constituency), and while a third option would not be a vote of confidence, it would send a clearly defined message to our supposed leadership. A move of huge proportions, a vote of "un-confidence" in the leadership and the opposition. A vote that speaks volumes, and explains the level of frustration in the community and in our country as a whole. The key is to set in motion a movement of change, a movement that will set in motion the steps of a new democratic environment, one that would allow the people to have the ultimate say as to who they want to lead their country.
The third choice... the "spoiled ballot". To enter the voting booth and make the only choice that we can. To purposefully and dramatically write UNWORTHY on the ballot. To tell those who would seek to lead that we will not vote for people simply because there is no choice, but that we do indeed choose... none of the above. A radical approach. What then? Will the current government remain in power by default? What will happen then? We can't possibly go off half-cocked and simply destroy a system without a backup plan, without a plan for the future... can we?
I actually would like to believe that we can do this and before we go to the polls, we can have a backup plan, we can have a better idea, we can get rid of the partisan politics that continue to inspire hate and divide us, that we can at long last have a government that is representative of our people and will answer completely to us. A fair balance of representation in 9 parishes, 3 corporations, and ministers for each major portfolio. A smaller, harder working government that works for the people.
A chance for change. A chance to have accountability, respect and a vote that matters. Isn't that the way it should be?