Letters & Opinion

How can we change what is, to what can be?

Image of Carlton Ishmael
By Carlton Ishmael

In life we take many things for granted, because we seldom pay attention to the future. But it is so important to have a solid foundation, because having a plan of action can help determine your future.

Some children are lucky to have very encouraging parents, some are lucky to have taken their school work seriously, and for those who have parents who will help them pursue higher education or have what it takes to obtain a loan or a scholarship, all these are cherished blessings.

It is the wayward, careless and the non-focused ones that usually become the victims of poverty and in some cases unemployed, or fall behind, or fall between the cracks. Not everyone is blessed with the same luck or means to achieve, but most importantly, sometimes it comes from being focused and having an objective and a plan to achieve.

The system is supposed to ensure that there are support mechanisms to guide and help, give directions and opportunity, but in most cases, especially in our society, a lot is usually overlooked. There are always so many plans and proposals for futuristic growth and development, but for some unknown reason they never come to fruition, or if implemented there are always shortfalls or shortcomings. So many fall through the cracks and never reach their full potential and so many are forced to give up along the way.

Should the blame lie squarely on the shoulders of the individuals, or should we blame the infelicities of the system and by extension the Government? Should one have to migrate to realize one’s dreams and visions, or do we not have the capacity to deal with our own needs and problems? Is the job market sufficiently diverse, or are there limitations in our educational system – and for that reason we have the present outcome and that becomes the reason for the shortfalls?

Are there conclusive discussions, inquiries and consultations to determine the cause and effect? Do we ask why the Brain Drain or the lack of commitment? Or, why do we have so few success stories? What causes the divide? Why does one segment get priority over another? Why do the disabled or the elderly find survival means so difficult?

All these questions need answers, but who should I direct them to? Who really cares and how can we change what is, to what can be? Who can we depend on for meaningful change? Who decides how our state funds should be spent? How do we achieve a new St. Lucia if we keep doing things the same old way?

Can someone tell me who should get or not get what? Can you direct me to who should be criticized, or made accountable? Is there a special somebody, or institution, or policymaker, to direct my concerns to?

There must be someone responsible – and if no one takes the blame, then there will be no way to resolve the problems that consistently plague this society.

Change comes with action, talk is cheap and promises can remain a figment of our imagination, so, until the blame is accepted by someone, or some entity, or institution, then I am afraid that this New St. Lucia we keep hearing about will be just an illusion and no amount of extra time can, or will make a difference.

We have to become realistic and call it as we see it, as excuses just deepen and prolong the hurt and the consequences will be our burden to bear – and I mean all of us.

The sad thing is, though, it is not ‘the party’ to be blamed but us for accepting what we get or don’t get. No. It’s not ‘de party’ alone, but all of us. Yes, all of us have to accept that the blame is all of us own, or we will be fooling ourselves all over again.

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