By most accounts, 2010 was a bad
year for the Cayman Islands.
Besides the dismal economy, 2010
saw a significant contraction of the population. Instead of reducing
unemployment among Caymanians, the loss of local spending increased the jobless
rate to unprecedented levels.
Then there was the crime. Armed robberies and home invasions, once
virtually unheard of in Cayman, became commonplace.
All of this led to an angrier, less
patient society and Caymanian-expat relations sunk to new lows.
Thankfully, 2010 is almost over.
The fresh start of a new year is on the horizon.
As we look to 2011, we should
accept that certain things – like the economy – are beyond our individual
control. However, there are other things that we can, and should, try to
improve on. We can all do little things to help Cayman regain the friendliness
that has been its trademark.
If 2010 taught us anything, it
should be that this society needs Caymanians and expatriates to thrive. In many
ways, it is Cayman’s rich diversity that makes this country such a special
place to live. We must strive to bridge our differences and to live together in
harmony. This takes effort from both
sides, just as it does in any relationship.
Let us strive to be friendlier to
one another. A smile here, a nice gesture there and a simple “good morning” go
a long way in building better relationships.
Let us stop painting the other with
a single brush; there are good and bad members of every society and the actions
of one shouldn’t reflect on all. Let us instead take each other on our
Let us avoid the mob mentality that
accentuates differences and instead let us try to find commonality.
Let us try to understand each
other. For most Caymanians, this is the only home they will ever know; it’s
only natural they would feel threatened by the influx of foreigners who outnumber
them. On the other hand, expatriates have not “invaded”; they have been invited
here because they can or are willing to do particular jobs and they should be
made to feel welcome.
Let’s do all of these things to
make the Cayman Islands a better place to live in 2011.