If the way 2018 began is any indication, we are in for a hell of a year. Months of speculation were proven correct with the televised announcement by the now former GG of plans to demit office by the end of 2017. Soon thereafter — on January 4 — the other shoe dropped. The thud reverberates to this day.
The news came via a press communiqué that said: “Prime Minister Honorable Allen Chastanet has announced that Her Majesty The Queen was pleased to approve the appointment of Mr. Emmanuel Neville Cenac as the new Governor General of Saint Lucia, effective 1st January 2018.” To most, everything about the release was déjà vu, save for the revelation that our new governor general’s first name is Emmanuel; not Neville.
Reactions to the much-prophesied event came swiftly. It was as if no one ever had the smallest clue whom the new occupant of Government House might be. Suddenly, the main topic among Saint Lucians at home and abroad — to judge by the often-bizarre Facebook jottings, callers to Newsspin, and noise from the nation’s ubiquitous watering holes — was the aforementioned press release. The biggest surprise in a long time was the ascendance of Chandel Mol.
For an abrupt change, the street talk was not about the latest discovered corpse or the previous night’s leaked government document. Now, almost every sentence on every other corner started and ended with “governor general”. But perhaps nowhere has the debate been more heated than the arena that has supplanted the kabawé as the comfort corner of choice: Facebook.
Many tend to dismiss social media exchanges with palpable contempt. And not always without good cause. I, however, prefer to believe that regardless of how crass, inane or downright libelous Facebook dialogue can be, still it represents the voice of the people — some intelligent, some absurd, some absolutely infuriating. The same mix that is to be found in the most advanced of environments. Some might say FB encourages warped philosophers and others who’ve never entertained an unbiased thought. Even if it is as it is perceived, the gutter of discourse: so what? We are oh so happy to dance, like good little rats, to the often off-key tunes of radio and television personalities as well as the politicians to whose derrieres their lips are surgically attached, but we have no time for Devon Nick and Arthur Chastanent?
For those of you who may be reluctant to venture near the gutter for fear of sullying some imagined purity, please permit me to bring the gutter to you by way of Facebook’s New GG Greatest Hits. Sit back, relax to the beguiling stylings of Gerry George. Laugh as you take in the comedic brilliance (though unintended) of Sigbert Degazon. Allow Dan Louis to take you on an exploration of self. Enjoy the below in their unaltered forms.
“Sometimes I wonder why one of these heavy weights he used to lift up back then didn’t crush him or something . . . ”
“People keep asking me, how old is the GG?’ I don’t know. All I know is it was he who called the police when Cain killed Abel,” wrote one commenter.
“We don’t have to accept stupid ass man. He is a jackass.”
“ If is Kenny that choose someone you’ll woulda eat Kenny shit so shut up!”
“ Soft candle was our only option!?!?!”
“ Gg to me is good girl or good god.”
“The treacherous serpent shows his face again. This man has no spine, lacks any shred of hunour and ios completely shameless. This is your choice Chastenet? I know he has ben licking your boots (and any UWP PM’s boots realy) for any morsels which fall from your mouth. I know that you just want to get rid of this brown-noser so you handed him something to shut him up.”
“The man dying just now you’ll stressing youll self.”
Bad grammar, other literary faux pas, and potential legal liabilities aside, there is no fault to be found in the sharing of views and venting of frustrations via social media. Even if the information provided is regularly senseless, unnecessarily vitriolic, and devoid of even the semblance of truth, the world is better
for it; if only for a laugh. However, be forewarned,
while social media platforms such as Facebook afford everyone the opportunity (particularly the marginalized) to draw attention to deserving grievances, they also afford an equal opportunity to exacerbate collective outrage without due consideration.