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Call a spade a spade

So Dr. William Duguid got up and Parliament and cuss and the people in an uproar calling for an apology and more.

But I agree with Dr. Duguid – it is time to call a spade a spade. And that is all.

I really don’t like to talk anything about politicians or politics but when I heard the wailing and beating of chests as Barbadian mourned this great travesty I was very amused.

Actually, the whole thing reminded me of Saint Peter’s hypocrisy of doing one thing with the Gentiles and then another with the Jews and then being admonished by Saint Paul.

This society is so hypocritical; and I am not preaching from on high because I am a part of this society, but we need to get real and stop the partial, sometimes moral attitude.

A few months ago there was a photo in Barbados Today and on Facebook and subsequently published in the Nation newspaper of a little boy attached to a whopsie, gyrating behind of a grown woman.

This prompted the loud cry of moral voices that literally tore up the print media for publishing such a picture. Persons commented on the moral responsibility which the Fontabelle media house had seemingly sent on a cruise on one of the mega ships berthed in the harbour.

We heard of the psychological scaring that the child was subjected to – he looked as if he was enjoying himself to me. There were cries to lock up the woman; don’t even bother with a trial or to waste time, and lock up the ones spurring them on as well. And I said wow!

Now we have another media house, positioned in the Pine, but accused of having George Street influence seemingly falling prey to taking a callous approach to their moral responsibility.

It befuddles me; honestly it does. Why are people being bent out of shape because a politician cusses?

When it suits us we berate politicians and lower them in the estimation of humans and every other living thing as unscrupulous individuals whose only aim is to get elected or re-elected. When it suits us we assert that they will do so by hook or crook, all sorts of tricks and promises. Politicians are made out to be the worst people on the planet – you can’t get rid of them because they coming to trick you before elections and if they are successful, after elections you can’t find them because they trick you and gone.

Now we go into their work place, well aware of the privilege politicians have when they enter Parliament and almost in the year 2013, we bring coverage live. We know that they can say what they want to say, much of which the media cannot even report and we bring live coverage; not delayed by five minutes or five seconds and are now calling for a politician to apologise because he cursed.

I don’t understand it. There is nothing I can think of that indicates that a politician is a vestibule of morality. That is not the impression I was ever given. We cuss them and pull them down, but suddenly they are expected to portray themselves as lighthouses of moral stature.

I would never condone words perceived to be indecent language as right. But Dr. Duguid said a true thing, we need to call a spade a spade and stop having one set of rules for one set of people and another set for other people.

Cussing in Parliament is not the problem, cussing is the problem. It is a most distasteful practice that rolls from the lips of even primary school children. But we really don’t take it seriously. There are actually times when we permit cussing and it is okay. When we go to shows and MCs are telling jokes it is okay for them to cuss and accentuate and punctuate and emphasise what they are saying with a little “pip” – and we enjoy that.

When persons are livid, we brush it off if they let go two “bad words”; That is understandable, after all they were “ticked right off”. And I am sure anyone reading this can get very creative with the last phrase. Barbadian speak with pride that the “R word” is Bajan. People identify their own by skin colour, shape of eyes and nose, texture or hair or height and we are proud to identify our people across the world with the use of the “R word”.

So all of a sudden, a politician, the people we expect nothing good from, let some bad ones fly and we up in arms. Get off it.

We need to forget about the individual and deal with the real issue, which is cussing. The same way that smoking was banned in public places, so should cursing, and we wouldn’t have problems in Parliament or in the market.

As a young reporter I used to encounter persons being charged for using indecent and even insulting language. We need to look at that seriously and attached stiff penalties and empower the police to enforce such a law. Yet then again, I also encountered persons who reported that indecent language was the standard language of police dealing with certain elements of society. We might be shooting ourselves in the foot.

Well, I am done with cussing and I hope you are not cussing me. Have a great weekend.



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