Barbara GLOUDON Friday, August 07, 2015
ANSWER this for me: What has brought about the seeming indifference on the part of some people for celebrating our nation's Independence, the recognition of a momentous time in our nation's history? When the celebration was introduced 53 years ago it was the belief of the majority of our island's people that we had reason to celebrate. We were as free as possible in defining who and what we wanted to be.
|Independence Celebration at National Stadium|
Half-a-century and a toops later, it is sad to see how a new generation expresses little or no interest. There's no indication that they would care to put right those things which are distressingly wrong. Day by day cynicism grows more and more with the cry "Independence ah nuh nutt'n". Okay, so who is going to put things right?
From one year to another, the official Independence celebration finds itself buried beneath a mound of argument about why Government spends any money on it at all. An event like the Grand Gala, for instance, continues to be the main target. The contradictions are not without reason. The Government machinery seems still unable to create a format which catches the interest of the population, as it used to in the early years. In trying to make improvements, the first thing is to do away with the old format and back it up with a realistic budget. The need for islandwide promotions to draw attention to the fact that we are one people, whose objective was to demonstrate respect for one and all, is necessary.
If we cannot succeed from the start, then we'd better do all that is possible and work hard to get it right.
Another thing worthy of recollection is that when Independence celebrations were first introduced, people took for granted that the bridge between urban and rural would always be part of the scene. Today, the rapid expansion in the two areas, plus the development of telecommunications and broadcasting, in particular, unites us in some ways and separates us in others. We no longer have to leave 'country' to come to 'town' to see "what a gwaan". There are more choices now; roads and highways enabling us to stay or go where we want. Big entertainment travels from the east to the west. We have the big stadium in 'town', but country has enough mini ones of their own to satisfy rural interests. The centre of entertainment gravity has shifted. more