Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Reasoning not numbers

A Sylvester John in the Express of July 15,2009 wrote a letter entitled "Bias Abounds". Mr. Sylvester in his letter has indicated that the political commentators who criticised Independent Senators Gail Mehair and Michael Annisette are 'anti-PNM' because they criticised the two Independent Senators who voted for the Government but was mum on and did not criticise the other seven Independent Senators who voted against the Government and with the Opposition.

Appraising Mr. Sylvester's arguments I couldn't help but wonder if he was one of those stary eyed die hard PNM supporters who thought that Mr. Manning was raining words of wisdom upon him in Woodford Square on Monday night when he Mr. Manning, on his platform of political education expressed 'his' (leader of the PNM) support for the two Independent Senators who voted along with his Government. Mr. Manning indicated to his supporters to 'not to take on' the critics because they will tell you it is wrong for the two Independent Senators to vote with the Government, but it's ok for the other seven to vote with the Opposition.

Mr. Manning was being true to himself as a seasoned politician when he sought to put the vote concerning the suspension of Local Government Elections, in the context of numbers i.e. how much voted for and against, as opposed to putting it in the context of the 'reasoning and motive' behind the voting. Whether Mr. Manning's twist of things on his platform of political education is something beneficial to his ever seemingly gullible supporters is something to be discussed at another time. I just want to take the opportunity however to indicate that people like Mr. Sylvester should not buy cat in bag. The issue critics had with the two Independent Senators voting with the government is not simply the fact that they voted with the Government, but the reason why they voted with the Government.

Ms Gail Mehair in particular, during her contribution said that Government's proposal to postpone Local Government election is unconstitutional yet she voted with the Government because as she indicated it is not her duty to thwart Government's policy. It is this blatant contradiction of principles and logic that stirred the ire of Ms. Mehair's critics. If something is unconstitutional, especially something as postponement of any election for not one, but four consecutive years then this is an attack on democracy and it is an attack against the citizens of this country and it is the duty of any member be them Opposition or Independent Senator, to thwart any Government policy when that policy is an attack against the democractic rights of citizens.

So I say to people like Mr. John do not be fooled by your Prime Minister because unlike him, myself and many other citizens do not see things only in terms of 'numbers'. We listen to what our elected leaders have to say, and we also listen to the non-elected ones like Ms. Mehair and if what comes out of their mouth does not make sense as in this case, then we owe it to ourselves as citizens in a democratic country to hold them accountable and question them when their actions and explanations thereof defies basic commonsense and most of all when their actions run counter to the spirit of democracy and contrary to our constitution. Numbers do not justify any action of any Government, if that were to be the case then all history books should be re-written and Hilter should be made a great historical leader because he had the support of the majority of Germans while millions of jews were being murdered like chickens on a poultry farm. ©

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