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Just don’t tarnish the Jewel

FeaturesJust don’t tarnish the Jewel

By Colin Hyde

   No applause for Hon. Shyne Barrow, the present leader of the opposition, for declaring that the presentation PM Briceño made at the 9th Summit of the Americas on behalf of Belize and the Caribbean was dictator-loving. Did he really charge the present government with diplomatic prostitution for its stance on Cuba and Venezuela? My, my, the PM was speaking for us, the Caribbean, and Central America except for Guatemala, when he shared how we felt about the exclusion of those countries. The opposition leader clearly didn’t consult with the other leaders of the UDP before he spouted off. I guess some people feel you can’t go wrong if you try to please the world’s biggest power.

   Following up on the speech condemnation, next thing we know the UDP has a press conference at which the opposition leader, according to reports in the Guardian, says the PUP looks like it is slipping into authoritarianism, Belize is becoming dictatorial and autocratic, people are dissatisfied with the PUP, and low voter turnout in the recent village council elections is a testament that people are fearful of showing dissent to our present rulers.

   Full exploration of this voter turnout statement in this piece will take me over my word limit, so for now I’ll just say that if individuals are afraid of the government, they have absolutely no fear of being found out in a village council election.

   On the heels of, or just before throwing all that mud, making his authoritarian/dictatorship charge, the opposition leader appeared at the doorsteps of the US Embassy, or wherever the officers of that powerful country hang out. His rotten objective is obvious. Some interesting cases are coming up; it is all about protecting the caucus that engaged in corruption and brought shame upon the nation and the UDP. Fair enough to defend your crooks, but the main opposition has to choose its tools carefully, so our international image doesn’t get smeared.

   Mr. Shyne made some clarifications, one of them being that some opinions he shared are his and his alone. The present PM “seemingly” was the only politically active member of his party who supported going to the ICJ. But that vote was an internal matter. The 9th Summit was the international stage, and that made the comments of the representative of the main opposition also big stage. The UDP has much responsibility here. When a ball club sends a rookie onto the field, they don’t know that the novice will succeed but they know that he/she has prepared for the job. That leader’s job isn’t for a trainee.

   Politicians are in the arena to win, but as there are laws that govern the conduct of war and sports (simulated war), there are lines that politicians must respect. In our quest to win, we must know that the Jewel must not be tarnished.

   There’s precedent for this, in the local LGBT book. More than once, the local LGBT leader has thrown us out there as a nation that is in the habit of being physically violent to the gay community. Most everyone will tell you that that is not true. There are numbers out there on many bad things in our society. If a child/youth is molested, most likely it is a family member who did it. If a woman gets hurt, most likely it is her male partner who did it. There’s no hard data, but the consensus is that when a gay man is physically assaulted/wounded/ tragically killed, it is the act of another gay man.

   There is no truth that we are in the habit of depriving gays of jobs. Wait a minute, people who claim to have access to information say that the biggest plum jobs in our country are held by our brothers and sisters who belong to that community! The only issue is when overt gays try for jobs as teachers. There are aggressive types who will teach children falsehoods. It’s really incredible that some don’t accept that God only made one orifice for sexual expression, and the female of our species have it. Everything else is from the minds of man.

   It’s true that some of us are guilty of the serious crime of verbal assault. We are far from perfect, and we must work to improve ourselves. Gay is very strange, and there are people who don’t accept that this is 100% a wiring thing. Those of us who don’t understand this need to check ourselves, so we don’t do wrong to people.

   Our country is very small, a little jewel, and we must protect it. We have issues to deal with at home, and we must do so without crossing certain lines. It is unfair, even criminal, to carry our name abroad as gay enemies. But you know what it is about. It’s about selfish gain. How we look abroad matters naught to those who will satisfy their selfish ends.

   As per the condemnation speech, it is good that not one UDP leader cheered. That game was to curry favor with the Americans. Of course we all want their love, but it’s a bad page for a political party to try and win that affection with the charge that we are sliding away from democracy.

Me noh andastan Ms. Griner

   I see where mighty famous retired middleweight champion boxer Roy Jones, Jr. has offered to put his freedom on the line – I think that means go to Russia – to try and get American basketball player, Brittney Griner, out of a prison there. Roy has dual US and Russian citizenship, and he is a lot more famous than Brittney. I’m not about raining on Jones’ desire to try and be a hero, and I don’t lack compassion for Brittney; I’m just about discussing a matter for its potential to influence people about why we must think hard before making decisions that can impact others.

   Brittney entered Russia to play basketball a week before that country invaded Ukraine. The young woman plays in both the US and Europe, reportedly because two salaries are better than one. When she arrived in Russia, there were reportedly a couple marijuana things in her possession, one of them oil.

   I was extremely surprised when I learned she had gone to Russia, for that country had amassed massive amounts of artillery on its border with Ukraine, and war was imminent. If there is a war ongoing or likely, and it doesn’t concern you, get the hell out or don’t go the hell in.

   I should apologize for using the word “hell”. Those are not the kinds of terms I use around a lady. I am not carrying any bias against Ms. Griner because she is full blown LGBT, with wife/husband, a marital situation that definitely does not help her cause in Russia. I think over there that “felony” is eased some because the wife/husband stayed home, in the US, but if Ms. Griner felt that she would have been accorded gentlemanly treatment for being of the gentle sex, you bet her not being a “regular” woman hurt her position.

   My big beef in all this is that in going there, she set up innocents, like Roy. I’ve read that Russia was offering to trade her for someone in a US prison that might be a big gun and ammunitions agent. Of course I feel for her, but her ignorance or selfishness has put her country in a spot, and could cause Roy to lose his freedom, even endanger his life.

   On the reverse side, there is always a reverse side, the US might be glad to see Russia looking so bad, so unmanly to treat a lady so cruelly, and Mr. Jones might be in desperate need of a cause to fight. But let’s keep it simple. What the hell was Ms. Brittney thinking when she entered a country on the brink of war?

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