Thursday, November 08, 2007

Letters to the Editor

One does not have to travel as far as South Africa to learn from the example of a great and humble man. In the midst of the freeness, bacchanal, low blows and cheap tricks that constituted the TT 2007 Election, the quiet strength, humility, respect, integrity and genuine desire for the communal healing of "our country" demonstrated by Winston Dookeran stood out above all.

Elspeth Duncan,

St. Augustine


I wrote that letter the morning after elections. It appeared yesterday in the Guardian and Newsday. (For some strange reason my letters to the Express always bounce back saying "cache full"). One of my best friends also wrote a letter that morning, as did my sister and another friend and, no doubt, countless other people who had never even written to the editor before. Emotions were high, with tears and anger for many as their manifestation.

Last night I checked my voice mail and there was a message from a woman I don't even know. She had read the letter (or 'article' as she called it) in the papers and perhaps looked up my name in the phone book. "I read your article on page 28 of the Guardian," she said. "It was so comforting. Thank you and God bless you." She sounded like an older woman. The emotion in her voice told me that she had obviously been devastated by the news of 'zero seats for COP' and was being comforted by anything written in support of them. Who knows ... maybe she called up and thanked everyone who wrote supportive letters and used real names that she could look up in the phone book.

Now that my emotions have abated, I can step back, see clearly and calmly accept that the results, just the way they are, are a good thing. Zero says something about the COP: their values are in such a different league that not even in gaining seats could they be classified or grouped with the likes of the two other parties. Let those two and their followers bicker among themselves. COP has more support than they know. As FA said in her comment on yesterday's post, the 'runt', even though a late developer, is capable of great surprises. (Example of a great runt).

My emotions temporarily surged again yesterday as I drove down to Point Fortin to continue work on the HIV project. Upon approaching San Fernando we saw massive victory billboards featuring mid-shots of the smiling PM. The photo is unflattering and makes him look like an oversized chipmunk or, as Katie said, "a rodent". The 'winning party' is celebrating victory based on the illusion that 'the majority' wants them. How far from the truth ... when one counts the numbers who voted against them ... plus those who did not vote at all.

Anyway ... enough politics. Back to normal programming from tomorrow.



Anonymous Kikipotamus said...

I am reminded of the Green Party and their work in the US and Canada. No seats, no seats, one seat, no seats. And yet they continue to work tirelessly year after year after year. I do not believe that work is for nought. I feel strongly that one day it will all bear fruit, such sweet fruit.

4:56 PM  
Blogger Lynn said...

I think the woman reached out to someone who held her beliefs and she needed to connect. Nice that you did what you did and someone heard you and showed appreciation.
Thankgoodness elections come around again.

9:44 PM  
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5:57 AM  

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