I am writing in reply to Mr. Lorenzo Berry who had his letter published in the 3 August edition of the Caymanian Compass.
I’m not quite sure how old you are but comparing yourself to Hitler, who was responsible for the murder of six million innocent people who happened to be born Jewish, is pretty stupid and indicative of your ignorance.
Are you planning to put expats in gas chambers as a quick solution to your problem, or are you planning a more tactical approach so as to not have every single human rights authority on your back?
Also, as I am a South African citizen I see absolutely no comparison between your country and mine. You live on an island, we live on a continent. You have a population of 40,000 more or less, we have a population of over 47 million with close to 10 different indigenous tribes within the population.
Now I have been trying to follow your thought process. Yes we white folk landed in South Africa in 1652. Indigenous tribes had been inhabitants since prehistoric times (one of the oldest prehistoric skulls were unearthed in the northern part of South Africa). So I guess what you’re trying to say is that we landed, colonized and massacred black tribes in our conflicting wars. I agree completely. I don’t see expats massacring anybody in the Cayman Islands.
Then, the white folk started farms, discovered gold and diamonds. The English thought it may be a good idea to get a hand in the pie. The rest is history. South Africa gained its independence from the UK but still enforced apartheid. We moved black citizens from their land in to townships. (I don’t see us expats moving any Caymanians into townships). Then we made the black folk use separate public transport, parks, benches and public bathrooms. Are we doing this to you here on this island? Apartheid was officially abolished and Nelson Mandela was voted as president, much to the relief of all straight-thinking South Africans, foreign investors and countries.
We then introduced affirmative action whereby a black woman, a black man, a coloured woman or a coloured man must be hired (in that order) before a white man or woman when applications are received for a particular position no matter the qualifications. Is that what you want to see happen here in Cayman? Hire a Caymanian before an expat? Fine, no problem, but just remember you are comparing a country of 47 million to a country of 40, 000, the human resource factor is not comparable.
Now you said and I quote: ‘OK we need doctors and nurses and some teachers, but not that huge amount.’ What if you or one of your loved ones arrive in the emergency room and bleed to death because there were not enough nurses or doctors to attend to you and save your life. What if your child wants to enter a job, but can’t because he or she was never given the proper education due to a severe shortage of teachers. I guess an educated expat will have to get the job then?
What if your life is threatened, your house broken into or your business robbed because there weren’t enough police officers or security guards? Will you still blame your Government?
You also say, ‘If they mess it up, it is their country.’ My question is: When hedge funds, mutual funds, financial investments and offshore investors pull out due to economic unstability, what will you do and where will you and your children work? In the tourism industry? Oh but wait, the ships just pulled out as well because Cayman is not a safe place, there are not enough police officers and security guards, as they were asked to leave. Unfortunately the native population of Caymanians was not a sufficient resource for those positions.
Last, but certainly not least, there are innocent victims of the rollover policy…more than 50 homeless dogs and cats in at the Humane Society shelter. Now don’t get me wrong, a stray is a stray until it get s adopted (it wouldn’t have been a problem if citizens were as conscientious about spaying and neutering as you are about getting rid of 5,000 expats).
Expats are hesitant about adopting pets as they may have to leave; they are also hesitant as newcomers to the island as they have only seven years. Who is going to help the Humane Society with their good cause as the animals have done nothing to deserve euthanasia.
So Lorenzo, with all due respect, your visions for the future are not entirely practical. You know the old saying ‘Patience is a virtue’ You should try practicing it some time. You will find that in due course the expat teachers, doctors, police officers and security guards will help to educate your children who will then be fully capable of doing any job and eventually there will be very few expats needed to fill the positions. Voila! You will have your island back to the way you want it.
Finally, in reply to your statement: ‘In the ’40s when Caymanians struggled to build this country amidst mosquitoes and maiden plum and ticks, where were the expats?’ Where were you after Ivan when teams of Jamaican men and women walked West Bay road and cleaned up debris in the hot sun so as to get the island cleaned for cruise tourists to return. They worked on the roads day after day without fail and I still remember them for doing that.
We’re not all bad you know. I didn’t come to Cayman to insult you or to take jobs away from you. I don’t send my money home. I bank it here in your banks; I spend it here in your stores. I have bought a house here. I have adopted two dogs here. I financially assist a Caymanian child weekly with his education, I help his Jamaican mom pay her rent.
I am part and parcel of your very healthy economy and I take it very seriously with all of my heart and soul. I care for your country just like I care for my own. When my time comes to leave I will do so knowing that I have done my best for your economy and your island.
When I leave I would like to remember the good, not the ramblings of a man who ignorantly compares himself to a mass murderer.