Today’s Editorial for February 15: YCLA important

Several of the 2010 Young Caymanian
Leadership Award finalists said recently, when speaking with the Caymanian Compass,
that one of the reasons YCLA was important is that it promotes positive
messages.

Two of the finalists pointed out
that the media is often filled with negative messages, which, to be honest, it
is.

However, old newspaper adages like
‘bad news sells’ and ‘good news is no news’ weren’t invented in the Cayman
Islands.  The truth is that the volume of
good news far outweighs bad news in most places on earth, making the good news
more commonplace and less newsworthy. In addition, there’s often an element of
conflict in bad news, leading it to be more dramatic and well… interesting.

The problem is that with the high
volume of bad news reported, the public can get the perception that there isn’t
much in the way of positive news.  This
is especially true in times of hardship.

There’s no denying that the Cayman
Islands, like many other places in the world, are going through a time of
challenge right now as a result of the global financial crisis. The resulting
local financial pinch has led to a government budget crisis, unemployment,
higher crime and rising animosities between Caymanians and expatriates.  These are, without a doubt, some of the most
challenging times Cayman has ever faced.

This is why the Young Caymanian
Leadership Award is important to the community, especially this year.  It celebrates the positive work and accomplishments
of five outstanding young Caymanians and promotes the idea of being a good role
model. And, as one of the finalists pointed out, they are just a small
representation of the fine young people who are giving back to the community
and trying to make a positive difference.

In a time when it is easy to get
caught up in all the bad news happening, The Young Caymanian Leadership Award
gives us a chance, if even for one evening, to celebrate good news for a
change.