Time to embrace inclusion

Please allow me space in your newspaper to comment on the letter written by Mr. Ezzard Miller that was published in your 6 August edition.

Mr Miller is an intelligent man, which is why I find his views so surprising.

Cayman can learn a lot as a country from its successful neighbours. Does Mr. Miller honestly believe that Arnold Schwarzenegger – the governor of the state of California cares any less about California than an individual that was born in that state? Does Mr Miller honestly believe that Colin Powell, arguably one of the greatest military leaders and statesmen the United States has ever produced, cares any less for his country than an individual who was born in America that had one American parent? Does Mr Miller honestly believe that Mel Martinez, a US senator for Florida, cares any less about Florida than an individual that was born in that state?

The Governator was born in Austria. Both of Colin Powell’s parents were born in Jamaica. Mel Martinez was born in Cuba.

The aforementioned facts indicate that individuals who are relatively recent arrivals to a country, if allowed to fully participate in government can have a tremendously positive impact on that country as a whole.

Yes Mr. Mactavish’s letters can be described as obnoxious and if close scrutiny were given to his past business dealings in the same way he examines Cayman’s present day government one may uncover some rather interesting findings. But that is not the real issue.

Would Cayman be a worse off place if individuals such as Connor O’dea, Sara Collins or Angelyn Hernandez were permitted to run for office? I for one think not.

In Britain a racist comedian named Bernard Manning died earlier this year. He had a long career but as British society became more enlightened his views eventually became roundly condemned by the majority of the public. At a charity dinner where he once performed there were 300 policemen – all of them were white except for one black officer. He looked at the lone black officer and is reported to have said ‘They actually think they’re English because they are born here. That means if a dog’s born in a stable, it’s a horse.’

Now is this the type of mentality Cayman’s leaders, or former leaders wish to instil in our youth?

As an educated man the chairman of the PPM should be ashamed of himself for not speaking out on this issue. On both sides of the Atlantic, whether England or the US, there are foreign born elected representatives that are making a positive difference in their countries.

It would be a gross mistake for Cayman to arrive at a constitution that precluded certain citizens, for example a child born in Cayman to parents with Caymanian Status from running for office.

It is time for the politics of inclusion rather than exclusion to be embraced so that we can build upon the economic miracle that Mr. Miller so eloquently referred to. An economic miracle that I suggest can be explained by a better
analysis than simply the hard work and vision of Caymanian politicians.
Samuel Cowan

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