We hear on the radio shows and read in the local periodicals persons expressing their desire that conditions in the US Virgin Islands improve. We complain about the conditions in our schools; we complain about our infrastructure- our roads are in very deteriorated conditions. We also complain about our public servants and the public service we receive. There is a growing climate of lawlessness, people no longer obey basic rules of the road and other traffic laws. We complain about the inconsistent enforcement of our laws; when at all. In the criminal justice system, where prosecutors go to court unprepared and judges are too lenient with convicted criminals. Our elected leaders choose to consider a constitution before addressing the current political status of our Virgin Islands. Are we ready for change?
Many local citizens, democrats and others, have chosen Sen. Barak Obama in the Democratic Party contest to nominate its standard bearer. Sen. Obama campaign motto is Change. I am wondering if the local politicians who stated they support the senators candidacy have also embraced his proposal for change, changes that we really can believe in? Sen. Obama talks about changing the mindset that has the country going down the wrong path. Do our politicians understand the need for positive change? Do they understand it is time we change the way we run our government? Do they understand it is time for us to raise the bar, that we travel the high ground of morality and personal integrity? We need to be better role models for our youth by practicing honesty, humility and elevating the quality of our public discourse.
Can we really change our focus from personal gain to community gain? Can we be more visionary and courageous in addressing our community challenges? Can we be more committed to law and order, to justice for all? Can we say what we mean and do what we say? Can our politicians strive to gain and retain the respect and confidence of the populace? Can our politicians respect themselves and others? Are these not changes that we can believe in? Can we assume the responsibility that is ours in this democratic society? To be vigilant and call attention to deficiencies in our government and praise those public servants that are doing an excellent job as public servants? When are we going to be mad enough to tell the politicians enough is enough and demand better accountability? These are changes we can believe in.
I would exhort you, my fellow citizens, to exercise your rights and responsibilities by being involve in the affairs of our government and fight off the highly pernicious cynicism that have afflicted so many of our fellow citizens for too long. Together we can accomplish almost anything we choose to accomplish, let us unite because divided we have been failing and will continue to fail, divided. Let our generation leave a legacy of positive accomplishments to the succeeding generations, that they may look back on our contributions with gratitude. All good works involve some sacrifices, let us then boldly move forward together, implementing all the necessary changes that will contribute to our positive progress as a people, as a nation.
J. J. Estemac
St. Thomas, VI
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