Endemic and widespread in the Jamaican society, it appears, is an accepted culture of dishonesty and deceitfulness, with which it seems the entire society is at great ease.
Imagine an established tailor being elevated, with no formal training, to being the leading roadworks contractor in the village. And more laughable yet, said tailor dispensing roadwork at the measure of his tailors tape. Reasonable, rational folk would expect the tailor to wisely engage the appropriate expertise, once awarded this undeserved pot of gold, to facilitate delivery of high quality, durable construction. After all this is not simply roadside bushing or street cleansing.
But because the contract is tied to irrevocable political strings, no such action is taken or deemed necessary. This ignorant and despicable approach to the awarding of contracts, and penchant for dishonest behaviour is not unique to tailors or the political palate. The result is roadwork which washes away at the first sign of rain, and like improperly tailored clothes unravels at the first strain applied to the region of a weak stitch.
Recall famous lawyers disbarred for willfully taking money with which their clients entrusted them. Remember, though few, but well known by the general populace, police who at traffic stops unabashedly declare left or write. Clearly meaning if no money is delivered a ticket will be issued.
The well meaning and long overdue recent positive changes to the new road traffic act may be undermined by this reprehensible conduct. Careers are thus thrown in jeopardy as it were for two farthings. And the reputation of the hard working, honest police, the majority in the force, unfortunately and unnecessarily tarnished. Recount the politician who dispenses a contract contingent on kickback.
Do not overlook or excuse the pastor who betrays the trust of his congregant by becoming an undesired consort. Yes, analyze even more closely the journalist who because of early primary or secondary training and exposure is now wedded to a party line that betrays reason and independent, analytical, fair journalistic integrity.
It seems ‘anancyism’- the practice of ‘one up man ship’, ginalship, and ‘me smarter than you’ – has bleached into and inexorably corrupted every fabric of the society. Doctors providing and charging for services a patient does not require or request! Those charged to uphold integrity blinded by connections and cozy relationships. Yes dishonesty abounds and has subserved national interest, fair play and rational thinking.Everyone now is left to believe and accept that the only way to survive, nay prosper, is to hop onto the dishonesty and corruption gravy train.
Andrew Holness must declare a Jamaica take a look at me week. During this week every Jamaican should be asked to do some introspection and personal reflection. Asking am I who I should be, where I should be, and behaving like I should if I wish to contribute to my success and the success of the society? How can I make a meaningful, positive difference in my community and society? All media, teachers, police, soldiers, nurses, ministers of religion, lawyers, students parents, fathers and mothers, hoodlums, gunmen, scammers, taxi drivers, public transport operators and all employed in the public service should be asked to engage in this activity?
Media houses can daily ask listeners to participate by answering this question: As a society are we in a state of permanent inertia complaining but doing nothing to change our negative image and situation? And then elicit the commitment from that individual respondent on how he or she plans to, starting today, make a difference.
Minsters addressing their congregations may wish to participate in this National endeavour to honestly work towards demystifying the cause of the high murders, rapes and robberies plaguing the society. The Trojans horses in our midsts can finally be identified and destroyed.
The NCU radio group is already trying to make a dent by expanding to year-round their random acts of kindness outreach to schools program. In addition, their weekly Saturday morning children’s program aims to impact wise decision making and the need to instill and develop, laudable, highly principled values during the process.
The RJR-Gleaner group will no doubt, in their highly anticipated and advertised Saturday morning program targeting this same demographic, deliver programming geared to motivating children to being the best they can be. These are solid societal building blocks. Deliberately and consciously reshaping the nation’s citizens to be more compassionate, thoughtful, caring, and understanding of the value of each life and the amazing contribution each one can provide is beginning.
Jamaica as a society is finally awakening to her potential, and to securing her more positive moorings.
Guest author: Leon Wright.
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