Today’s Editorial for December 29: Thinking selfishly

There’s no pleasing some people. You can give them a gift and they’ll complain that it’s not enough.

That is how some people who receive ex-gratia payments from government feel.

For the previous two years, the People’s Progressive Movement administration gave the seamen and veterans, along with those people receiving poor relief, a Christmastime bonus of a payment equal to their regular monthly amount.

It appears that some of the recipients believed the Christmas bonus was to be a permanent thing, and felt insulted when the current United Democrat Party government only gave them a $100 bonus this year. We’re not sure the Cayman Islands could even afford that at the present time.

While we’re on the topic, we’re not sure why all seamen should even be getting ex-gratia payments from government.

Seamen chose their careers and they were paid for their work, just like people in other lines of work. Yes, the Cayman Islands has a traditional tie to the sea and the seamen played a vital role in the development of this country, but so did many other people – teachers and nurses for instance – who aren’t given money from the government.

However, we aren’t without compassion. If an elderly seaman now finds himself struggling to eat or have shelter, we have no problem with him receiving government aid.

But there are some seamen who don’t need the money and there’s no good reason for them to receive it, especially in a time when the government desperately needs to find ways of reducing its expenditures.

We don’t begrudge anyone for taking what is given to them, but we’re disappointed some people feel they have the right to complain when they aren’t given additional gifts by government during an economic crisis.

We sincerely hope this selfish decade of ‘me, me, me’ gives way to one of ‘us, us, us’. If it doesn’t, we better all get used to the idea of paying income taxes so all the ‘mes’ can get what they feel government owes them.