Letters & Opinion

Things that make me cringe!

Image of Carlton Ishmael
By Carlton Ishmael

So much of today’s behaviour depresses me.

I do accept that change is inevitable and wonders never cease, but so much of today’s way of life or behaviour of this generation, depresses me.

Starting with their dress code, I remember the period from the sweet-sixties into the eighties, how elegant and classy local Black People dressed, with coat-tails and robes, shining shoes and button-up cuffs, especially as entertainers, nothing short of a cut-above-the rest. That, to me, was impressive, but the changes we now see are just all rebellious.

I admit that was “back in the days”, but fast-forward to today and it’s all about low trousers with underwear showing and torn-up jeans, as if the less clothing you wear, or the more naked you are, or the skimpier you dress, is fashionable. Now, that makes me cringe.

When I see children of school age roaming the streets at odd hours of the night, I also cringe. When I see a whole lot of people caught on only communicating by gadgets rather than being physically engaged, this also cringes me more.

Back when the likes of me was growing-up in Castries, it was sailors who wore earrings and had tattoos on their bodies. Back then, they were the people who looked radical and different from the rest, because they too had borrowed from other cultures on their travels. But, fast-forward to today, we have added tongue-rings and rope hair, coupled with sneakers and badly torn-up jeans, which are so very different to my era, which is so outside of the ordinary and so disgusting to me.

It was not unusual to find men with big guts in front of them due to what we said was the constant beer drinking, but now women seem to see big bellies as no big deal.

When I drive in the city in the early morning and see the lines of men and women now drinking hard grog very early on mornings, I cringe about that too. I see how every fast food outlet is overwhelmed with patrons and home-cooking has become old fashioned, I cringe and get worried.

It’s like all the values and good behaviour we had has been thrown out of the window, with only poor standards left. When I drive at night and have to be confronted with high-beams and fog lights on speeding vehicles with blinding lights, it also makes me cringe to know that courtesy is no more.

I would have thought that wearing protective gear when riding a motor cycle was a good idea, but today all that seems non- essential. Today, it looks like every other young man and woman is high on something and sex is rampant at all ages.

Almost everybody is now a gunman or a rebellious person. Killing someone is as easy as drinking a glass of water, with no remorse, no sensitivity, no respect, no care in the world, so when I have to digest the thought that this is the tomorrow’s generation, that also makes me cringe.

To me, the good or better or best in us have all vanished and what exists, or is to come, is frightening.

With the time I have left, I have little hope of seeing a better or brighter future. All the laws of the land, or the discipline handed-down by our parents in times gone seem to have gone with the wind.

I almost feel pity at what I see and notice, and usually have to remind myself that every generation has to determine their own values and trends.

But I still question what good examples are left, who is responsible for these new trends, why and when we abandoned the values we grew-up with and where are our knights in shining armour.

Can we ensure that what we leave behind is sustainable, or is everything on the verge of collapse?

I also question if I am too old-fashioned or redundant, so backward or maybe retarded, and my thoughts redundant.

Am I the only one seeing or thinking that we are on the wrong path, and should not be bothered?

Only time will tell, but to me, we have got to wake up and smell the coffee, because if things remain as is, or we do nothing to reverse that trend, be it through education or example, then I have a good idea of our tomorrow.

I, We and Us are all responsible, but the billion-dollar question is: who will bell Our Cat?

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