Let me start by wishing you and all your readers as well as the people of St. Maarten a blessed and prosperous 2021 with a complete recovery from COVID-19.
I am aware that our form of government is not the same as that of .the USA, but in my opinion more and more the majority of our people in government are too often at loggerheads with our kingdom partners because our people have a tendency to deliberate the way they see on American television instead of governing according to our constitution. I am aware that politicians usually do as much as they can get away with. That is not an excuse for irresponsible behavior..
Because of COVID-19 the people’s outlook on life has been altered and I expect responsible members of Parliament to be aware of this and act accordingly. There is a popular saying: “It is not what you do, it is the way that you do it”. In this case it is not only what is said, but also who said it. What I know is that everything that happens in the country is the responsibility of the government. Let me be clear, I did not write that the government is responsible for doing it. So, if you are a member of Parliament it is also your responsibility.
That is why I usually comment on certain expressions from the members of Parliament when they are expressing themselves publicly. If we follow the reaction of the youth all over the world of late, we should choose our words more carefully. Making a point to impress the people in order to be able to keep one’s followers can be done in different ways. That saying “you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar” is true. This tactic should be used by members of Parliament and not words bordering on incitement.
I would even smile at sarcasms, but these are definitely not the times for that kind of behavior. When we are ready to accuse anyone of not being responsible we should first look in the mirror and ask ourselves “Am I a responsible person?” I usually do when I write letters to the Editor.
The Dutch translation for responsible is “verantwoordelijk”. Check the Van Dale Dutch dictionary for the different meanings. This I also do, because words have different meanings and can be interpreted several ways and even be taken out of context.
Do the right thing, be responsible, choose words carefully, and think of our youth.
Russell A. Simmons