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Stepping Stones
Edition 7
Stepping Stones
Edition 8
Stepping Stones
Edition 9
Stepping Stones
Edition 10
Stepping Stones
Edition 11
Stepping Stones
Edition 12
Stepping Stones
Edition 13
Stepping Stones
Edition 14
Stepping Stones
Edition 15
Stepping Stones
Edition 16
Stepping Stones
Edition 17
     

I attended the town hall meeting in Providenciales a few days ago. I listened, and watched and even participated. This week I am commending our people for speaking up, for saying just what they meant and doing so firmly and with one voice. I wish I had the permission to single out some of our brilliant young people who made me proud that night. In fact, am proud when I watch or listen to them on talk shows or read their articles.

I encourage you to continue the fight. Yes, you may be singled out, but you understand the injustices, you understand the strategies of the Brits and you all are willing to take the risk. I am praying for you that God will keep you safe as you step into the full potential of leadership in your country. Relationships in Turks and Caicos have brought us to a test. Our relationships may have cause great upheaval in our lives and have shaken us to the core. Our relationships may have even caused us to question our firmest beliefs at times and it may have caused us to hurt each other without knowing. Sometimes even after we have learned about the harm inflicted upon us by others or the harm we have caused,we may choose to be unforgiving or to fail to say, ‘I am sorry’. I stood in the meeting thinking about the road we’ve travelled together as a people; thinking of the good times we have enjoyed and the hard times we have suffered. I reflected on the journey, and now that I am practicing to see the good opportunities in any bad situation, I remember that all upheavals have their purpose. They usher in new beginnings.

They cause us to examine ourselves and our behavior, and prompt us to develop faith and courage- which without the ravaging effects of hurt and pain, we would never experience. During the past few years, I’ve heard our people pleading with the former Governor Gordon Wetherell and now this Governor Ric Todd to stop referring to all our people as ‘corrupt’. To paraphrase, I have heard speakers saying “not all of us are corrupt in this country”, yet both Governors and their friends have continued to use what seems to be their favorite accusations and implications all the time.

Well where am I going with this? It seems to me there are a lot of double standards in this country. At the meeting, I pointed out to the governor,after understanding his strategy of painting us all with the same brush, that it could not be fair for him to speak freely about the ongoing court cases, but persons, who were charged, such as myself, could not. In my opinion, it seems that we have all been convicted in advance and are all subsequently referred to as criminals. This cannot be right and it can never be fair. If no one calls this into account, then the Governor may well be on his way to the finish line.

This was unbelievable, but you- the people who were there at the meeting saw it and pointed it out clearly to him. Remember what he said, “Your brothers and sisters”. He has us all in the same box. He sees us as one, as a people related to each other. Brothers and sisters are sometimes of the same behaviors, they have the same DNA they come from the same environment. They are all just alike. He said “your brothers and sisters have been accused of serious crimes, people who have been charged with serious crimes, should not be allowed to get away with them”.

Though he has said “they have been legally charged and haven’t been legally convicted”, our certain conviction seems to be implied. Whatever happened to the basic legal standard of being innocent until proven guilty? As I said at the meeting, history has recorded, (though it may not have been explicitly written) the divide and conquer strategy of the British Government. I paused to think about the Governor’s use of the term ‘not legally convicted’, within the context of his speech. You too may do your own research and soul searching.

As I reflect on these issues, it seems to me that the Governor is suggesting that we have already been convicted, just not formally or legally. This Governor seems to be following in the footsteps of his predecessors. So what are the stepping stones in this matter? First we must establish that the British Government has launched a campaign to divide’. Next is the obvious step to ‘conquer’.

Go to the dictionary and seek the meaning of ‘conquer’ or let me help you- Conquer-
1. Overcome and take control of (a place or people)
2. Successfully overcome (a problem or weakness). All these imply we are in a war. And though we are not armed with guns and bombs and tanks, it may yet be true. We are in a quiet war, a test of wills between the strength of the British Government and the passion, the courage, the
resilience, the patriotism and the faith of the people of the Turks and Caicos.

For the British, their stepping stones are to employ their people and send our people home. Among others, too many to mention, it is to dilute our culture, our heritage and take us back to the places where they had us for hundreds of years; in the yards- in the fields. Perhaps this is what the Governor meant when he alluded to the fact that there is nothing wrong with being a minority. Who aspires to be a minority in their own country?

As I stated earlier, I am indeed so proud of you, you stood up and spoke to the occasion and I pray that the tapes of these meetings would be shown on television the same way the former Governments tapes were shown. That is what a responsible government would do.

This week, one of my friends whom I respect highly wrote to me and said “this is a necessary evil we are going through, to bring us to our sense of independence” and I am going to add, this has taught us that we are indeed brothers and sisters, even if there are the good the bad and the ugly among us.

Our relationships are our mirrors; they reflect where we are in consciousness. And if we are willing to face the truth about ourselves, let our Stepping Stones be our relationships offering the lessons that lead to our greatest transformation.