There seems to be some confusion within the Royal family. Such confusion may be used as supporting evidence by those who wish to remove the Queen as our Head of State. Since there seems to be one-way traffic on this issue in the media, some balance is required.
The Queen provides us with valuable insurance. We should not cancel our insurance policy unless we can obtain an equal of better one.
We should insure against unaffordable foreseen events. Many of us have car, home, and health insurance. We have it to protect us in the event that: our home sustains major damage, our car is involved in a major collision, and we suffer a major medical emergency.
Like any insurance policy, we hope that we will never have to use it. No one wants to suffer major damage. However, if we do, it is comforting to know that the event was insured.
We are not insured against the mismanagement of our economy. We elect politicians who: pass laws to increase our burden of taxes, restrict our opportunities to earn, and confiscate our property without compensation.
If we do not like their management methods, then our options are to either: like it, lump it, or hope that more responsible persons will offer to manage our economy. A more responsible government will: reduce the tax burden, allow all Barbadians to participate in Barbados’ economy, and behave fairly.
If our constitution allows us to remove an inept and corrupt government administration every five years, then what additional insurance can the Queen provide Barbadians? We have Royal insurance for two foreseen events.
After World War 2, many African colonies obtained their independence. Many hastened their economic and social decline when they politicised their countries’ public services.
To protect Barbadians from a similar fate, the DLP and BLP representatives agreed to a constitution where the Queen’s representative would be responsible for hiring, disciplining and firing public workers.
After we were granted our independence, our politicians pursued a path that could only ruin our economy. First, they recommended aged persons to be appointed as Governor Generals. Then they placed political agencies between the Governor Generals and our public workers.
Finally, they gave our Governor Generals tiresome ceremonial duties, that distracted them from the gradual politicisation of our public service.
Our Governor Generals no longer protect us, by defending our public service from politicians who want to politicise it. Although we are insured against this foreseen disaster, we are left exposed as if we were not insured. Therefore, that Royal insurance is currently useless.
The second insured event is exemplified by Grenada. In 1983, the Grenadian military lined up the Cabinet of Grenada against a wall and murdered them. They then turned their guns on the people and killed at least 19.
Fortunately for the Grenadians, their Governor General accepted his responsibility to protect Grenadian citizens, and activated the Royal insurance policy. Thus, the Grenadian people were liberated from tyranny.
Contrast that relief with the situation in Rwanda a few years later. The United Nations had military units in Rwanda, who confirmed the massacres of one ethnic group. Every week, we would learn of an additional 50,000 persons that were massacred.
The UN’s only response was to issue useless resolutions, telling the murderers to behave themselves. The murderers ignored the resolutions and slaughtered 300,000 people. The UN responded with more useless resolutions. So, they slaughtered 500,000 more.
What did the US do during the slaughter of about 800,000 persons. They were trying to find a way not to call the mass slaughter of one group of people genocide. By doing so, they convinced themselves that they did not need to stop the killings.
It is foreseen that we will be deceived into electing a tyrannical administration one day. When we are being mercilessly oppressed, on whom can we call on for relief. We will likely die waiting on the UN, US, EU, or CARICOM, because we have no insurance policies with them.
They may or may not stop our political oppressors, depending on if it is in their self-interests. With an active insurance policy, the only reason why our suffering will likely be prolonged, is if our Governor General sides with our oppressors, and does not activate our Royal policy.
If our Governor Generals act only in the best interests of those who recommended their appointments, then our Royal insurance is illusory. Before we wake up one day to find ourselves uninsured, perhaps the time has come to ask our Governor General for the circumstances under which our Royal insurance will be activated.
Ugandans used to have Royal insurance, but their politicians cancelled their protection. Without this restraint, approximately 500,000 Ugandan citizens were murdered, for political reasons, during Uganda’s first 15 years as a republic. When a nation becomes uninsured, the only losers are its citizens, unless every person is allowed to self-insure, like in the US.
Grenville Phillips II is a Chartered Structural Engineer and President of Solutions Barbados. He can be reached at NextParty246@gmail.com