Recently I was privileged to be in the company of a Trinidadian national with such love for Saint Lucia that I had not encountered in a long time, if at all. While everyone around her was droning on about the sad state of local affairs she lauded the living standard on this island that she and her husband had for over ten years called home. Compared to her native home, she said, Saint Lucian life was bliss. Last year the twin island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago had recorded 478 reported homicides. This year promised to be worse. But then while crime appears to be on the increase regionally and internationally, locally too, for many Saint Lucia remains, well, simply beautiful.
Armed with a refreshed perspective after spending the week sifting through hardly uplifting local and international news, I tuned in Rick Wayne’s TALK show. His first order of business was to read an article by STAR reporter Claudia Eleibox (reproduced on page 5) entitled “Must It Always Take a Natural Disaster to Correct Man-Made Disasters?”
The host made clear his appreciation for young writers and others passionate about their areas of endeavour, and shared with his audience that the STAR’s newest reporter had started working with the company as a receptionist, and contributor to the paper. Meanwhile she dreamed of moving full-time to the editorial department. Literary talent quite obviously runs in her family. Her mother, Ms Piare, has for several years been a teacher at Castries Comprehensive. For me there was an even more personal connection as Claudia and I had not only grown up in the same neighborhood (unbeknownst to both of us) but her mother had also been my literature teacher in my days at C.C.S.S.
As the show progressed, it was clear that the words contained within the young woman’s article, highlighting how much things had changed yet remained the same over the years in Ste Lucie, would set the theme for the evening. Shortly after that Rick introduced a surprise guest: Pastor Eristhe. It wasn’t long before their conversation arrived at the nation’s core values, our broken justice system, government generally, and related social systems, all of which Eristhe acknowledged had failed miserably. The pastor echoed the public cry for radical change and then, just like that, the discussion settled on the topic of morality. As it turned out, the night’s main topic! At its centre was Finance Minister Ubaldus Raymond and whether in his circumstances he should resign his office. The pastor thought yes, “on moral grounds”. But every single caller disagreed. I recommend those who missed Thursday’s TALK tune in at midday on Sunday for a repeat of the show. I suspect it will provide ample opportunity for rear-view mirror perspectives. You could even come away thinking about why, as loaded down with problems as we are, still we’re not quite lost – yet. Which brings us back to my Trini friends. Have a great and safe weekend!