THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE
Dr. Lester CN Simon
Why is it that some people do not join organizations or become diehard members of political parties? To answer this question, I turned to an excellent book by Loretta Napoleoni called Modern Jihad and subtitled, Tracing the Dollars Behind the Terror Networks.
I am not aware of any terrorist organization in Antigua and Barbuda. Nonetheless, all organizations, legal and illegal, have to abide by their own code. There is discipline among bands of thieves and even in the blazing depths of hell. Napoleoni said she wanted to know how her best friend had become a terrorist and why she had never tried to recruit her (Napoleoni). Her friend explained her motivations and revealed that Napoleoni was judged to be too independent and single-minded to join an armed organization.
Our concern here is not with armed struggle. Our concern is with the basic fact that some people are simply too independent and single-minded to join any organization. This is not to say that political organizations do not have independent thinkers. They do.
Nowadays, a rising level of expression of independent thought is staggering through this country. It can only be good for Antigua and Barbuda. Many of us are caught up in the rapture of the election campaign but we know that it is a time for critical thinking. Then this barefaced, mamaguy, samfie, Solomon O' Gundy, ginal pollster comes and tells us that all of us know, that all of us know (mark you) that general elections are won or lost in the 2 to 3 days before the election. Who is peeping the cards? Who is playing mas? Skylarking!
I have a big problem with anybody, politician or non-politician, trying with their entire academic might to pull wool over my eyes. However, it is quite another thing when a Brer Anancy pollster tries to shear a whole flock of sheep in front my face;
sans humanite, as they say in Trinidad and Tobago. Hear this brother man: Our carnival is in July and August, ah telling you!
So how is something as crucial as a general election won or lost just 2 to 3 days beforehand? Turn the whole Ides of March into one big fete, man. After all, it will still be a party, even though not a political party any more. Have we learnt our lessons so well from our erstwhile masters that we cannot resist the penchant to destroy ourselves? Or is our unmentioned, conniving, ancestral fungus then in West Africa, still infesting us?
Critical thinking should show us that blind obedience is not good for the eyes. Unquestioned obedience is always confined to a solitary answer. “Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon behind them…Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do or die: Into the valley of death rode the six hundred”.
The staggering sense of independence is straightening out more and more people. What’s the use of getting drunk on cavalier nonsense when you can get plastered with a mount gaping with common sense? This means that the patriotic looser can now rest assured that the country will forever be in safe hands. These are not the grasping hands of any politician. They are the critical minds of independent thinkers. These are the ones that will shine the light towards the right part and party.
But wait a minute! Following the independent thinker is not real independence. Everyone must follow one’s own lodestar, from incandescent fluorescent to iridescent flambeau. This disparate light brigade will atone for the desperate, idiotic Charge of the Light Brigade 150 years ago. Welcome to our second, true-fu-true Independence, where we will be strong and firm in peace or danger to safeguard our native land.