Hurricane Canada Hits the Caribbean

| September 25, 2012

Darby Etienne MA Diplomacy

US President Franklyn Roosevelt said,

‘This is pre-eminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today ………….’

 Remember when hurricane Tomas caused ‘commess’ in both countries with tons of rain, hurricane Canada is similar by comparison, ‘dis’ time is tears flooding up ‘de’ place. In true Caribbean spirit, so that everyone understands the Caribbean feeling when news of the visa restrictions hit the cities of Castries-St Lucia and Kingstown-St Vincent and the Grenadines.  We may be named after Saints thanks to the British, but trust me, martyrdom is lost here, our greatest fear should be fear itself.

Oh my people whose responsibility is it? Blame!!! Everyone’s pointing fingers at one another however most hands are pointing towards the Governments; Vincentians saying that Canada is now stopping illegal immigrants.  Big question – how can you be illegal before you even get there? St Lucia, in an official response called it “an unfortunate blow”. Whichever way you look at it the fact is ‘the people now have to pay more money, with a long story’ as some put it when they wish to visit relatives in Canada.

De Opposition seh not dem, Governments seh not dem so who is blind, deaf or dumb! Both ah dem dam lie! In 2001, the Canadian Government expressed their concerns to the SLP Government – St Lucia; and YES, just last year the prime minister of the UWP Government was informed of Canada’s concerns over the number of St Lucians (population 177,000 and St Vincent and the Grenadines – 120,000) seeking Asylum. By comparison not even Iraq and Afghanistan have that many people seeking refuge, but why?

Photo courtesy flickr.com

That should have been the enquiry. Who are the terrorists, what religious fanatics and where or who are the homophobes? Sorry did I just say NO.  What I should say is that homophobia is a conscionable issue.  Generally we in de Caribbean make plenty jokes about everything including people’s sexual orientation. If they know for certain you are in fact gay your back needs to be broad to handle a joke three times a day like medicine, Excuse ME! Don’t get me wrong, I am not condoning any criminal act against another human being.As I conclude let us be frank! Unemployment in St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines is at an all time high, crime is at the highest level since records began and no sustainable industries like what banana used to be for their economies.  So many people searching for opportunities for a better life bombard the Canadian authorities with false claims for asylum.

The Canadians have been patient with the islands before arriving at the point of introducing visa restrictions.  However the fact that the Caribbean Common Market and the Government of Canada are locked in trade negotiations suggests there is reason to believe that this is a wakeup call for the Caribbean islands.  The necessary systems must be put in place now, alongside the Canadians to ensure that they meet with international standards and function at a satisfactory level. What do you think about this whole issue?

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Category: Caribbean Diplomacy, Culture & Society, Politics

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