Sunday, April 5, 2015

A Matter of Trust...

Before he was 'outed' in the Parliament Keith Rowley refused to acknowledge and in fact actively conspired with others to deny the existence of one of his children. And while you're thinking about that, and while those employed to distract and misdirect from this issue attempt to spin it as a simple omission, understand this also, that a lie by omission is a lie where one neglects to include important information; an outright lie is a lie where the truth is deliberately skewed so as to mislead. This was an outright lie.  How we deal with other facts surrounding the outing that may or may not have been true is for other conversations, but this needs to be put on the table naked and exposed and seen for exactly what it is, that over the course of forty three years of his first child's existence and at least twenty five years of his own political career, Keith Rowley set out to deliberately mislead and deceive the public by telling a lie.

The question then begs to be asked, how does one trust someone who is capable of this grand a lie on this epic a scale? How does one trust with public office someone capable of this sinister a conspiracy over almost half a century and who has as of this writing still has not personally acknowledged his lie and given an accounting of his actions?

In all of his biographies including his Parliamentary bio where he swore that the information he gave was the truth to the best of his knowledge, the Leader of the Opposition with forethought and planning lied to the public by claiming two of his three children. What else then has he lied about over the course of that time?

The Collins English Dictionary defines character as - “the combination of traits and qualities distinguishing the individual nature of a person or thing,” and in this regard and for this purpose we are now knowledgeable of at least one defining trait in his character, that for whatever else he might be, Keith Rowley is a liar and a teller of untruths. That he is willing and able to conspire with others to deceive, that he is capable of misleading an entire nation and would skew facts to distort reality as long as they served his needs or ambitions.

Are those Prime Ministerial qualities or the traits of a person that we want to trust with high office?

According to Section 84 of the Constitution of the Republic of Trinidad & Tobago - "A Minister or a Parliamentary Secretary shall not enter upon the duties of his office unless he has taken and subscribed the oath of allegiance and oath for the due execution of his office." The last hurdle before receiving the instruments of office, can a convicted teller of untruths be trusted to be guided by an oath?

The People's National Movement for their part owe an explanation to the country regarding their choice of political leader and an accounting of what steps if any are going to be taken to deal with this. For a little while at least they have ownership of the matter even though it should also be one for the public domain. We the people of Trinidad & Tobago have been worn down over the years and our standards have been eroded to the point where many do not seem to have a clear understanding of what is right and what is wrong. Political expediency should never be the filter through which one makes important assessments that could govern one's future or, put another way, it is unwise to apply temporary solutions to a permanent problem.

It comes down to trust. Can Keith Rowley be trusted now that we know he has demonstrated that he is capable of lying and of conspiring to deceive?

In times of strife and other national concern what holds power to the Office to which Keith Rowley aspires is the faith the public has that their leader can be trusted to do the right thing. Now that trust is broken, can the aspirant be considered fit for the position? How we answer that question ultimately reflects our own character in how we view issues such as right and wrong.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Roti Chronicles...

There is a hidden malaise in this country, a quiet struggle being played out at every level of society that needs to be addressed and ventilated once and for all.

Few things impact the lives of so many people as positively as roti, and this must be taken into account whether choosing either a life partner, embarking on a new relationship, or deciding who to vote for at election time. 

Many people make choices based on things other than love of roti, and these decisions are doomed to fail. It makes no sense to hide it, and my greatest pity is reserved for those who have to hide to eat their roti and deny that the love exists in the first place. What type of existence is that? I suggest being open and honest from the beginning, and see if your new partner shares your feelings for roti; you may be pleasantly surprised.

In his book "Seeing is Believing," Harvey Glasses remarked - "ahhh, curry mango, are you sweet friend or spicy foe?" to which i respond "neither, my good man!" This confusion is systemic of a devious group dedicated to the undoing of the roti movement, and their most notable triumph to date has been the removal of roti from Religious, National and State functions, with the introduction of knives and forks to the consternation of many.

We must not let this prevail.

I have written to the head of most churches and religions on this issue, strongly suggesting the word roti, or better yet roti itself be included in the actual marriage ceremony as the unifying symbol of love it is, but to no avail. 

The closest I have come to success in this is in a thinly veiled attack on my love of roti by the Archbishop's Office in a letter that ended with the confusing "for the love of God, Jesus and Mary, Please stop writing to us."

As I am not sure what they are trying to say I will keep writing to them until they make themselves clear.

On the political scene, at least two ex-Prime Ministers publicly displayed their affection for roti on the campaign trail, only to distance themselves once in Office. I am not saying anything and people are invited to draw whatever conclusions they choose, but maybe that is why they are 'ex' Prime Ministers today. 

We live in enlightened times, and the High Courts of the land intervened on behalf of those who felt slighted by the highest national award, and it has been replaced by the 'Order of Trinidad'. With no apologies I say to the Government 'not good enough!' We need an award that exemplifies love of all things Trinidadian, and I humbly suggest the creation of the 'Order of Roti', to be given in recognition of people who have reached the highest level of national contribution while openly admitting to their own roti love affair. (Please note the 'Order of Roti' should not be confused with 'ordering' a roti, because then everybody will want an award).

In closing, and I do not believe for one minute that this is the end of this very contentious issue, I would like to encourage all citizens to wear green (and a kinda pale biege with brown spots) in solidarity with roti lovers throughout this land as we call for a national Roti Day holiday to recognize the importance of roti once and for all.

The significance of this movement will grow to be seen for what it is, and if the Government refuses to lead from in front, we may have to have a roti march every Friday, around lunchtime, from your closest roti shop.

In the immortal words of Dr. I. P. Freelie - "Never underestimate the power of the people to change the world, and never eat buss up shut in long sleeves".

Stand strong, brothers and sisters, we struggle on....

The Color of a Gun...

How long is a perfect day
How much does a bullet weigh
What is the color of a loaded gun
How fast can a dying or a dead man run

How many jumps does it take to touch the sky
How many tears does a broken heart cry
What does it cost in copper and lead
How many dying, how many dead

Tears of the children washing away
The one that kills, how much does it weigh.
Blood in the moonlight, blood in the sun
Tell me my friend, what is the color of a gun...