Letters & Opinion

The Revolution is Coming

The Independent Eye - By Kensley Peter Charlemagne

The Independent Eye - By Kensley Peter Charlemagne

JUST last week I asked: “What is it that would cause Saint Lucians to revolt against government?” Little did I know that the answer would present itself so soon.

One may ask then: “Where is the revolution that I see?” Well it’s in the case of vigilante justice that was meted out to a thief caught in the act in Careille Gardens recently. I have contended before that we are where we are because we have hoisted human rights over civil rights and morals.

I fully condone the treatment that was meted out, if the thief has no broken bones or life-threatening injuries. I can hear the arguments bellowing everywhere by our modernists and new agers. I remember getting a lot of tamarind whip when I was small and am I thankful for it? I sure am. My mother once apologized for her actions but I told her there was no need. I would have been happier if she were better trained in disciplining then, but regret? None at all. Some of our children can do with a bit of that disciplining. “It takes a village to raise a child.” But in this day and age you can’t tell anybody’s child anything. Human rights, they say.

And here comes the human rights voices bellowing on the media. Attorney Alcide and Marcus Day taking to the airwaves and planting a seed that the brazen thief brings a case against the violated residents of Careille. The mere fact that the residents would go the way they did is an indictment against a failed justice system that has let us down. So has the education system.

Just this week, I was speaking to a teacher who felt that the Education Act has left teachers defenseless. As a nation, we have signed on to world conventions that have left us drowning in a sea of troubles. Our children misbehave everywhere and anywhere but would you dare not tell them anything. This reminds me of a policeman who sometime aback raised his hand lightly on some deviant students at a game shop. Oh, the out cry!

We want to take out capital and corporal punishment off our law books but to what end. “Spare the rod and spoil the child.” This island is heading to chaos but we want to close a blind eye.

But where is the revolution? I say go ahead and charge those men and bring it on! They say that Saint Lucians stand for nothing. Cost of living skyrocketing. Nothing.Ministers salaries increasing.Nothing.Murders rates out of hand.Nothing.All our land being sold to foreigners.Nothing. What will it take to wake us up?


  1. I think the author is conflating a few issues with regards to human rights/civil rights etc. human rights are there to prevent an overbearing State infringing on what are supposed to be inalienable rights such as privacy, right to fair trial etc. As these rights should be accorded to everyone, it means ensuring that some unpleasant characters are afforded some basic protection. That’s the whole point of it – they are available to everyone.

    There is a fine line between apprehending someone for the proper authorities to deal with them and dishing out an unreasonable beating. The homeowner has my great sympathy but once the line is crossed, they have sunk into the gutter as well. If people had faith in the judicial system then I would suggest people will not go down the vigilante route. This is a symptom of a failed system.

    Lucians are very short sighted and see issues through a red yellow lense. This partisanship blinds everyone to genuine leadership and wisdom. People can’t/won’t see if shit is done as long as it’s their team doing it.

    You also cannot blame foreigners for wanting to buy land, there is a framework there for it and the government is going to accelerate it even further with selling passports (awful idea). Lucians are quite happy to sell land – often because they want a higher price – no favours for locals! There is a balance needed for people coming in with jobs and skills versus swathes of land being developed at the exclusion of the population.

  2. We have too many darn white-lipped hungry lawyers. Liars, you said. Yes. Same ting. And with no money coming in, some have been taking to the airwaves to get clients. After all, it is a lot easier to do wrong that to do good. They will get some. Cheap ads. That was what this all boils down to. “Oh Maria-Maria call the cattle home,” is always calling out to her bovine population telling them she is at their service. Her “good office” and good graces are always ready and willimg to defend heinous crime and pure evil.

  3. BUT
    ANARCHY always comes full circle-in a regressive arc!!
    The Bolshevik Revolution gave us CZAR PUTIN-
    more sinister than Czar Nicholas.

  4. Thanks all the healthy feedback which I hope will turn into a healthy discussion. I love intellectual stimulation.

    @Cardinal Richelieu. We must ask what brings about a revolution. I forward that it is due to failed system(s). I alluded to two failed systems in my articles. I am not asking for the revolution, though I think it solidifies and shapes our collective identity. I would rather an evolution.

  5. @Yeah
    I like to do some profiling of contributors and I have nothing but your writing on which to do my evaluation. I have metaphored truth to giving yourself away on paper.

    You must be a lawyer and that is not meant to be deflamatory. I love your writing and argument. I love that your argument is not caste and abrassive. “I ‘think’ that the writer is…” “what are ‘supposed’ to be inallienable rights… ”
    “… ‘unpleasant characters are afforded some basic protection.”
    Question: what right was being denied when the homeowner meted punishment on the burglar?
    Question2: by what measure do we determine that the beating was unreasonable? (I think that this “unpleasant character” who was taken to the court last week spitting on a reporter and making indecent gestures at the camera deserved a beating) Over morals have gone to the dogs.

    We have some points that we agree on and while i agree that saint lucians are politically divided I did not think that generally the reactions to the incident were political.

    On another note. I am not blaming foreigners for wanting to buy land. I am arguing that we need to protect our patrimony. Only this week the prime minister is gloating about some interest in the citizenship by investment programme(bad idea) to buying several acres that heaven had us regain. I was not one for the Paradis Development in Praslin. We lost more that we gained. I dare say we have gained nothing there.

    Thanks for reading and for the feedback. Keep the discussion bouyant.

  6. Mr C – Your deductions were correct!

    The apprehended individual did not suffer a breach of any of his human rights as it was not committed by an agency of the state. The moment he was sufficiently incapacitated that is when the law has to take over.

    The guy spitting should have been in handcuffs walking in. I agree with your initial reaction. However if the state did all the things expected of proper law enforcement, standards, good policing etc then people would see the benefits immediately. It’s the lack of progress on issues like policing which causes the greatest distress – more than the economy. If justice isn’t seen to be done then it can have a deep and lasting impression.

    When people have the liberty to move about their business freely and safely, they will invest in their business and hire people. People won’t spend if their things aren’t secure.

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