Author: Jeevan A. Robinson - MNI Media | Date: 05 December 2018
Why do we speak about the redevelopment of Montserrat in the passionate tones that we do?
Often, I ask myself, why bother writing about anything to do with the redevelopment of my homeland, when seemingly the majority of the people for whom the representation is being made on behalf of, seemingly do not care for substance but instead glamorise the absurd and the sensational.
I have had a private thought that I will speak briefly of here. It is my view that the recent census just undertaken will reveal that the Montserrat many of us are fighting for in our minds does not exist. Many of us are pushing this imaginary idealism that simply is vastly different from what the realities for the island are currently. What do I mean? Well, let me simply state that when the census results are presented then I will further this conversation via a piece dedicated to that specifically.
Montserrat is a land I see primed in conflicts. Luckily, the conflicts are not those that present themselves in physical confrontations. We are not there thankfully as a nation. However, the conflicts are ripened in the way we interact socially with each other.
For instance, social media has been our greatest connector post volcano, but also too it has been our greatest destabilizer. Very often, many use this platform to share bullying tactics and fear mongering about the country of their birth. Sometimes it would seem as if for some folks if there is nothing negative to say about Montserrat, then they would end up drowning in abject misery. It is as if there is a stark enjoyment to continually share, repetitively, the negatives about Montserrat.
But more so, what I note is that all the negatives about Montserrat are seemingly the government of the day’s fault. I swear, if the sky turns yellow tomorrow it will be deemed the government of the day’s fault. Now, is this really seeking debate and discussion I often wonder, or is it more that some delight in embarrassing the hell out of their own country?
Elections are on the horizon for Montserrat. In this same window, I have been hearing and have indeed published timely contributions that examine this talk about bad mind and grudge being pervasive within the Montserrat society.
What troubles me is that over the course of time, I have noted that some of the folks who are speaking towards bad mind; some of whom pretend that bad mind and grudge does not exist in Montserrat, are some of the most perfect examples of, and practitioners of the very same bad mind, grudge, gossip mongering and maliciousness.
I also see some political aspirants who have seemingly signed up to ideologically driven victimising political associations. There are some political parties and their people, who once you do not agree with them, they embark upon a campaign of lies and misrepresentations against you.
Are these the people who seriously are saying they represent the future? They who are snobbish and dishonest, that if anyone dares to challenge them, then such persons must be an agent of a third party. The fact they advocate this is laughable and bordering on the ridiculously insane quite frankly. They apparently have this messiah complex of; “how dare you say such things about us? Can’t you see how amazing we are!”
Edgar Nkosi White once wrote in a piece he submitted to MNI Media that; "Grudge" is something which we in Montserrat cannot take actual credit for inventing, but we've certainly developed it to an art form.”
The late great Alphonsus “Arrow” Cassell at the height of his musical prowess sang about grudge and bad mind within Montserrat’s people, for he too felt that negativity all those years ago. It seemingly has for a long time been prevalent; pervasive and damningly profound!
No one individual will eradicate grudge and bad mind on Montserrat, or from amongst Montserratians. Some of these so-called “saviours” are steeped in it, and have bought into it wholesale.
Montserrat is being strangled from within. The within I speak of is not a political inference either. This nonsense that all was well and good pre elections 2014 is a damn lie. A lie being pushed and repeated for political expediency, and those who revel in it are politically naïve to believe in that fallacy.
NDP destroyed Montserrat. NPLM helped to weaken Montserrat. MCAP fudged up Montserrat. PDM damaged Montserrat. They all contributed to our present state of affairs.
A party did not get a 7-2 ass whooping last election because people disliked RTM only. That is another obsessive nonsense being touted.
People were feeling the pressure under MCAP too, and they expressed it at the polls not because PDM were so great, but because they saw the clique type regime, and insular leadership of MCAP killing their dreams and hopes in the same breath people accuse PDM of similarly doing today. Let’s have honest conversations about Montserrat for once and quit these fallacies that Montserrat was great pre-2014. It was not.
Now, to where we are presently, and how to get past this talk of grudge, bad mind, envy, and the calls for a political messiah?
Let me state here that I do not believe in this oddity that one man can fix Montserrat. This idea that Montserrat needs a saviour is self-defeating. This idea that Montserrat has a singular “conscience of the nation” is laughable equally. We all have our collective parts to play, and we all must find our own inner conscience individually.
Montserrat cannot rise by disrespect and lying on each other, or pulling down each other at every turn. Montserrat will not rise when all we see are a bunch of people dribbling over this fiction of power, some of whom do not even interact or mingle amongst the people they seek to represent in a small community. Montserrat will not rise when the persons coming forward for leadership are beholden to repressive political tactics; some of whom are the biggest proponents of the same bad mind, grudge and vindictiveness we are seeking to curb as a people.
The list can go on, but Montserrat requires many elements for it to rise. A start can be when we as a people begin that mental shift from within. It is my belief that any change we seek from a reality of stagnation begins from within our very own conscience. Ideologies are borne from within, thus when prospective leaders come speaking of change, if they are not speaking of what they will enact to change repressive ideas from within the mindset of the people, then they are wasting time I feel.
Societies do not change only on lingo spoken by political power hungry aspirants. To change the course of the country you have to find a way to have a total paradigm shift. That requires a degree of radicalism and revolutionary fervour, and also toughness to push through the obvious setbacks you will face.
How dedicated are these ones aiming for high office to truly bring real change, by shifting the baring of an entire country totally, by breaking away from those repetitive norms that still operate within the people?
How many will address that honestly, and not seek to deflect from the conversation being presented that is not geared towards dumbing down the dialogue to suit their quests for relevance.
Note: Jeevan A. Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of Marketing, News & Information Media - MNI Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org