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Values under assault

As Barbadians prepare to elect their Government for the next five years we are all considering our future and who should lead us in these very demanding times.

We have challenges that are shaking the very foundations of our society.

Our problems are not economic.

Our values are under assault.

Integrity, compassion, trustworthiness, wisdom, discernment, fortitude, consistency, execution, principles, fairness — these matter and will overcome any challenge.

The poem below may help others as we think about the leaders we elect soon:

The Contract

A word from the led

And in the end we follow them –

not because we are paid,

not because we might see some advantage,

not because of the things they have accomplished,

not even because of the dreams they dream,

but simply because of who they are:

the man, the woman, the leader, the boss,

standing up there when the wave hits the rock,

passing out faith and confidence like life-jackets,

knowing the currents, holding the doubts,

imagining the delights and terrors of every landfall;

captain, pirate and parent by turns,

the bearer of our countless hopes and expectations.

We give them our trust. We give them our effort.

What we ask in return is that they stay true.

— William Ayot: Small Things that Matter

New leaders will shun the cult of the hero. Instead, they will practise their leadership quietly and effectively. They will lead by example and commit their energies to the service of their wider communities. The situation calls forth a different brand of leadership. It is the quiet and authentic expression of better values that are most needed.

— Peter N. Boos FCA

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