It is with immense discomfort that BU comments on the reported abuse last week of a seven year old boy at the hands of two eight year old girls. Yes believe it or not, these are children in our primary school system. As you would expect there is the predictable response from those BU has been describing of late as …. These people continue to ignore the weeds overrunning the lawns by comforting themselves that this kind of thing was happening in days of yore with the same frequency. How can anyone deny where there is a gathering of human beings good and bad things are likely to occur? Of course despicable deeds occurred in the 50s and 60s but are we saying that they occurred with the same monotonous regularity and acceptance?
Sorry, BU is not convinced that such an ambivalent position will help to build the kind of society which will enrich the lives of all Barbadians. The barefaced display of crass behaviour by Barbadians, young and old, which veers sharply from the value system of old has been under threat for some time now. BU accepts that value systems will shift as people become more enlightened but some basics which we* Barbadians still hold dear, must not be tampered with at this stage.
Let us critique two examples which appeared in the media last week. Senator Reverend Dr. David Durant (not sure if we got the protocol right with the titles) and Minister Stephen Lashley chided Barbadians for being too harsh in their criticism of the path Rihanna has chosen to trod to support her career. Here is a young lady who is idolized by many of our young children entranced by the prevailing pop culture, she goes naked when she desires, she engages in childish retorts with all and sundry; the latest being Louis Farrakhan, she skips from boyfriend to boyfriend as anyone would change underwear and we could go on, yet she remains a Barbados Youth Ambassador, what are we saying to our young people? How are guiding our young people?
We are told this is what artistes in the pop business have to do to be successful therefore Rihanna’s behaviour is acceptable and should not conflict with the decision to confer the title of Youth Ambassador. BU has a problem with this conclusion which is based on what others have dictated to us. The requirements of a relativist culture should not guide or define the value system of Barbados. We have developed a model which has served us well and upon which we have built a relatively successful society. Why should we at the altar of what is secularly expedient buckle to an ‘anything goes culture’ which has clearly overwhelmed us?
There is the other example where Durant asked Bajans to forgive Jippy Doyle, who was found guilty of raping a 13 year old girl at the time, all of Barbados knows the behind the scene machination which surrounds this matter. The Court in its infinite wisdom reversed the decision on appeal. Now give us a ‘frekking’ break Senator Reverend Dr. David Durant!
There was a time when the schools were managed using a ‘Joe Clarkian’ style. Principals, teachers and prefects patrolled the school premises with pride to ensure the school rules were adhered to. BU remembers fondly teachers and prefects alike who gave up their breaks to assist with ‘monitoring’. Can we say the leadership of our schools and by extension society, operate with the same level of dedication?
To those who will label BU’s position one of doom and gloom, we accept the title because it is now left to a few who have to speak out.