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Let the Jackasses Bray

By Dr. Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 29, 2011

There is blindness among the leaders of the UNC government that will lead to its demise. Overconfident by the results of May 2010, it refuses to see that its victory was not so much an affirmation of their prospective policies (which were ill-thought out at best) but a refusal of citizens to accept what Mr. Manning and his team were doing. In rejecting PNM the electorate stated categorically that they were against Manning's increasingly tendencies of one-manism, his refusal to listen to others; and his knee-jerk support of Calder Hart whose practices left many persons uncomfortable.

In their glorious delusion, the UNC do not realize that Trinidadians and Tobagonians are a wise and patient people. They are willing to give a person a chance provided he or she respects the terms of the social contract established among them and displays a genuine attempt to be fair and unbiased.

The UNC-government has proven to be a complete failure, faltering only to deceive. They have inflicted upon us Anand Ramlogan, Tim Gopeesing, and Suruj Rambachan (the most obvious of the lot) whose racist tendencies surpass anything we have seen before in a T&T government. Since their victory little (or almost nothing) has been heard from Errol McCloud, Macandal Dagga and Ainsworth Jack.

Jack Warner is another story. His power is fading slowly. Soon he will be a voice of the past and Hindu hegemony will be complete. Poor thing. He (and certainly we, the people) did not know that when we elected the UNC we were installing a Hindu theocracy rather than a liberal democracy.

This raises the following question: Did Kamla believe that when the people of T&T voted for the UNC under the guise of the People's Partnership they expected to see a government in which Hindu zealots determine policy and point the direction in which our society should go? Did they believe they would live to see a day when African people would become the butt of scorn and ridicule?

When we elected UNC did we expect to see black folks discriminated against in every walk of life; public boards manipulated so blatantly by the heavy hands of government ministers; state resources given away so wantonly; and Trinidadians and Tobagonians placed in a position in which they hear echoes of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and the Fiji Islands resonating loudly in their ears?

But, as my mother used to say, "what miss yo' eh pass yo."

The crisis of confidence in our government began from day one. The fist thing from the PM's lips was the proclamation of a multicultural policy rather than the emphasis on our oneness as a people. This divisiveness was intensified by the imposition of a state of emergency (SOE) for which no serious rationale has ever been given. All the Minister of National Security told us was: "Please believe in me. I have your best interest of heart. I am black and so I cannot help but act in the nation's best interest."

Then the police arrested only black men from black communities and the obvious bias of the government was on display. Their credibility took a serious beating.

In an attempt to boost their credibility (or so it seems) the Commissioner of Police announced that a radical Muslim group in Central Trinidad who were linked to members "of the Picton Road, Laventille and other criminal gangs" were conspiring to assassinate the Prime Minister and selected members of her Cabinet. A government source told the Express that "the police have enough evidence and information to ensure that detention orders are obtained against the suspects. 'The plan was at an advanced stage and they had international connections to terrorist links.' The source added that the plan to assassinate Persad-Bissessar and her colleagues was caught in the 'nick of time'" (November 27).

Strangely enough, we are not told who these persons are, their specific charges, or the evidence that led to such a drastic announcement. Since Laventille and the criminal gangs were not enough to support their brief they had to broaden the conspiracy theory and add in "international connections?" We are asked also to believe that folks outside of T&T are bent on bringing down our government.

Somehow, T&T is yet to be convinced about the truthfulness of these assertions. The Minister of National Security ponders aloud: "I'm saddened by the revelation of some with something as serious as this and utterances that tend to trivialize what has occurred" (Newsday, November 28). Yet, the credibility of the government has fallen so low that even outside sources have cast a skeptical eye on the government's claims. Reuters reported: "The government's vague announcement and reluctance to provide more information has puzzled many in the twin-island Caribbean country" (November 28).

In fact, Kevin Gray of Reuters seemed to be on to something whey he noted that "Many ordinary Trinidadians also express doubt [about news of the assassination attempts] suggesting that Persad-Bissesser may be trying to shore up her political support at a time when her government has been struggling to revive the economy."

Like I said, Trinis are wise and patient people. They could read people and situations from a million miles off. UNC may feel that it has fooled us but the reality is different. Although we are prepared to be tolerant we are not prepared to be lied to or to be made fools of. Dr. Williams did not educate us for nothing.

My mother, God Bless her Soul, used to say, "the longest rope has an end." In her moments of greater tolerance, she would say: "One day for you; another day fo' me." As Dr. Williams, the quintessential Trinbagonian, said of Chalkdust, "Let the donkey bray." Time will reveal UNC's folly and their willful blindness.

Mr. Sandy need not worry nor be afraid. Each passing day and every unsolicited UNC utterance the UNC digs its own grave and plans its ultimate demise. Trinbagonians are only waiting to bury them with the necessary opprobrium they deserve.

Professor Cudjoe's email address is

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