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Our leaders have chosen to follow

Notable exception: Andrew Simons made compassionate speech in Senate debate (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Dear Sir,

What a mess all of our leaders have made by allowing human rights for a minority group to be reduced here in Bermuda.

I found myself puzzling a question when I left the Senate debate on repealing marriage equality on Wednesday.

When MPs and senators are elected as our leaders, are they simply supposed to represent what they believe to be the consensus of their constituency or are they installed as leaders to shape consensus — per Martin Luther King’s definition of leadership?

Unless leaders shape consensus, I don’t see how civilisation ever evolves beneficially and benevolently.

What disappointed me more than anything during the Senate debate was the lack of focus on the discriminated minority themselves, with a notable exception being Andrew Simons’s compassionate address. This despite a clear acknowledgement by a majority of senators that this Bill is a half-gap step and will change up in due course.

Lead or follow? Our leaders chose the latter. A sad day.