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A thousand points of light

PLP or who: given today’s state of affairs on the political landscape, David Burt is in the unhealthy position of having no real opposition (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

“Don’t shoot the messenger”, a comment often heard in our political circles and debates. I can recall many years ago while still in my teens and perhaps what may be considered formative years.

It was a time when I questioned the world and all the assumptions I had come to know, particularly the religious assumptions. I recall giving what I thought to be a rational speech in a church one evening, which challenged some of the assumptions and laid bare a few questions.

I recall the minister after my speech trying to set the atmosphere straight, stopping just shy of saying the youth is confused. The little youth was not confused; this was the beginning of my journey up through the world of reason.

Some people will not suspect or challenge assumptions, but for those who struggle for the meaning and purpose of life, they will not be content floating in the current of popular opinion. They need certainty and self-actualisation.

This was what I found refreshing from our latest opinion writer, Walter Zupp. My own experiences and knowledge of Bermuda, in particular, and general knowledge of the world cause me to oppose many of his views — especially the ideas of culture — and I believe with time his thoughts will shift.

However, his synopsis of Bermuda as ideologically dead, where thought is held hostage to a design and as he puts it “murdered in our sleep”, could not be said better. It is to be hoped that he is a sign that a renaissance generation is possibly on the horizon.

It must be boring when the main drumbeat and the only thing we can think of in a political context is who can win the election — Progressive Labour Party or who?

Well, you say, that is the reality. No, that’s the nightmare.

The reality should not be who can win, but rather what can win. Yes, what idea of a Bermuda, what ideas of inclusion or participation. In short, what form of democracy?

At the end of the day, the kind of people we create in our society depends on what we have as a political construct. We have to begin to see that with what we have, we are systematically cloning zombies — people are as if they were born dead and, through ignorance, maintained as robots to service a commercial empire through a political elite. The population systemically held in place by its veneration of a party construct that fosters political elitism.

I did not say we need to get rid of parties. However, in order for people to be alive, they need a system where they have the electoral right to participate fully and equally. What we have at present does not and will not do that.

Each person would need a purpose in their own forehead about what this country means and where it is heading, and it doesn’t have to be the same. What I am describing is not a party platform; it is a human platform that is vitally needed as the bedrock to form the basis of a truly vibrant egalitarian society.

A whole new world of thought, not this concept of one mind, one aim, together we stand, divided we fall.

We need to build a society out of many minds, multiple aims and a thousand points of light.

We came out of a monarchy and authoritarian colonial rule. The system is inbred, so much so that the idea of equality and inclusion is totally foreign and would need to be fought for to be achieved.

We, even as the former slaves, have got the idea of rulership in our heads and veins to the extent that we are now the neocolonialist whose ways hardly can be distinguished from that of the former — it’s now our system.

Nevertheless, the high road is always there. The trickle of light that has always surfaced through the years, which expressed the republican ideal, still remains as a conscience.

If the term “republican” is too political, the goal is to create a brotherhood of man where no person rules over another. If there is a ruler, it would be one of our collective makings. There would be always the opportunity to lift the indigent, to bring light where there is darkness, to take care of the seniors, and to set a proper example for the young.