Why can’t our politics be like our cricket fans and children?

Why can’t our politics be like our cricket fans and children?

Aug 23, 2017 Features / Columnists, Peeping Tom, https://www.kaieteurnewsonline...t-fans-and-children/

The Caribbean Premier League came to Guyana this past week. The support given by Guyanese was overwhelming. Full houses packed in almost all nights.

In fact, in some matches the crowds were so thick that people began to wonder whether more tickets were sold than seats or whether unauthorized persons were allowed into the ground. But that is another issue for another time.

For every person in the ground, there were about five persons who wanted to be inside – but either could not get a ticket to buy or could not afford it. People were begging all around for tickets. They just wanted to be part of the support brigade for the Amazon Warriors.

The Guyana Amazon Warriors enjoyed tremendous support. Forgotten in the patriotic fervour which swept Guyana over the past week was the owner of the franchise. It did not matter to Guyanese who owned the franchise; they were there to support the local team and they did.

Why can’t Guyanese politics be like our cricket? Guyanese support their team, regardless of whether it is Harper, Hooper, Sarwan or Chanderpaul as the captain. Race does not matter. The Guyana team is supported.

It should be that way in politics. Why should it matter that it is the PPPC or the PNCR in government. Once the teams play by the rules and there is a democratic winner, then all Guyana should support the winning team. This is what democracy is about.

Unfortunately, we have seen what has happened in Guyana whenever the PPPC has won elections. The supporters of the PNCR take to the streets in violent protests. We have seen what has happened when APNU wins elections. The PPPC supporters feel marginalized. They do not support the winning team.

We have to put that aside. We have to cheer for Guyana so that an election does not continue to be such a traumatic event. Whoever wins must enjoy the support of the other side. And if next time around, the other side wins, the same must happen.

Guyana needs the results of elections to be respected. If this happens, then the people can justly feel that if the government does not perform, then they can remove them without fear of ethnic or political insecurity.

This may seem to be a simplistic way to deal with a very complex problem. But the fact is that if we can unite around our cricketers, especially when their performance was almost rock bottom, then we can stop being disruptive in the wake of elections.

The Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) results also came out this past week. A number of students did very well, but the majority of students did not do well. But as usual, the top performers will be showcased, as they deserve to be.

The authorities should refrain from announcing, at this stage, who were the top ranked performers. The government’s ranking is not the CXC’s ranking. Last year, the person with the most Grade Ones was not awarded as the Best Overall Student by the CXC. The regional examinations body has its own system of ranking and that ranking is not known until the end of the appeals period which is about a month from now.

The relevance of this is that there are Guyanese, adult Guyanese, who are undertaking ethnic censuses of the top students. They are counting how many persons of one ethnicity are in the top ten and how many of another are. Do not let anybody fool you, as sickening as it is, this is happening, and has happened on both sides of the ethnic divide.

But look at the excited faces of the children. They are not prejudiced at all. They are not into ethnic head counting. They are just happy for each other.

Why can’t our politics be like these children? Why can’t it be free of racial bigotry and prejudice? Why can’t everyone be happy for an old man like Mr. Granger to finally get his chance at becoming the President of Guyana in his twilight years, just as how some persons were delighted when Mr. Jagdeo became the youngest President?

Guyana’s politics can learn from our cricket fans and our children.

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