Today’s Editorial June 02: When ministers listen

We saw government at its best last week when Minister of Communications, Works and Infrastructure Arden McLean did what elected officials are supposed to do.

He listened to the people and acted accordingly.

Minister McLean heard the complaints about putting a road through the Ironwood Forest and stopped the plans, at the request of a majority of those who had a stake in the project.

We have seen demonstrations and marches against government action on several issues throughout the history of the Cayman Islands.

It is rare that a minister listens and does the will of the people.

Not all public protests are right; but they’re also not all wrong.

Throughout the week children and the agencies that support them will be recognised at various events.

Mr. McLean had to make a tough decision, and one that may cost this country more money in the end, but he did listen.

And that’s refreshing.

In saying that, we are not inviting members of the opposition party to accuse us of pandering to the sitting government.

We are merely stating our opinion on the issue.

And that is merely what this column is about – our opinion. It is not journalism.

We leave journalism to our capable journalists whose job it is to report facts.

It is only on this page that you will read our opinion of what is going on in our country.

We recently wrote an editorial stating that we must be doing something right because we have the government of the day accusing us of being in the back pocket of the opposition. To hear members of the opposition tell it, we’re doing the bidding of the leading government.

We aren’t beholden to either the PPM or the UDP.

We are beholden to the facts, which appear in our news articles.

Our opinion is strictly that; our opinion.

We realise and appreciate the fact that we live in a society that allows free thought and speech.

We are thankful that every day we are allowed to voice our opinion on this page about things that are good, bad and ugly, not only of government, but of life in general in the Cayman Islands.

There are many countries in this world where free speech is squelched because the government doesn’t want to be criticised.

Remember that what you read on this page each day, from the editorial to the Letters to the Editor and even the cartoon, is opinion; nothing more, nothing less.

What we try to do with our editorials is to get people talking about an issue and form their own opinion.

Ours is certainly not the final word, and it never should be.

In today’s editorial we applaud Minister McLean for listening to his constituents.

He did what many in government – on both sides – fail to do.

He listened and made a decision based on what the majority of the people wanted.

We’re pretty sure that decision went against everything he knows about the best outcome for the future of Grand Cayman and its infrastructure. But he listened.

It is refreshing to know that we have elected an official who takes to heart the wishes of the people.

All of our elected representatives could take a lesson from Mr. McLean.

It is the voters who put politicians in office to do the will of the people.

We’re told that a group of students were led to the Glass House demonstration about the proposed Ironwood Forest road and many adults said it was going to be a wasted trip.

Obviously it wasn’t and we now have a younger generation that knows government does listen to the people.

That’s refreshing.

Thank you, Mr. McLean, for listening to the people and making a very tough decision.

We are thankful that every day we are allowed to voice our opinion on this page about things that are good, bad and ugly, not only of government, but of life in general in the Cayman Islands.

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