The robustness of political debate around the Cayman Islands
these days, and also the number and quality of candidates now seeking public
office, is encouraging.
However, we have noticed something of a disturbing trend
starting to creep into public statements of individuals seeking office,
particularly among candidates within the two established political parties –
presumably done to show they are “in touch” with the struggles of common folk.
This debate dynamic might be summed up in the following
statement made by former Premier McKeeva Bush on Tuesday night in Bodden Town:
“Others have lived it up, made their money, now they want to come and run the
country. They’ll put us where they had us in the [1940s]. You should not give
one of them a chance. As for those people who say that they don’t want parties,
you know what they want. They want you back where you were in the 40s, where
you ironed the clothes, where you cut the grass … no, a thousand times no.”
Voters should always be wary of what People’s Progressive
Movement Chairman Anton Duckworth calls “the bad old game of money buying
power”. People should be concerned if any individual without Cayman’s best interests
at heart seeks to get elected to further their own interest in despite of the
However, just because someone is successful and has made a
substantial sum of money should in no way be used to make the wild and
unwarranted accusation that they would somehow wish to put the less privileged
of society “in their proper place”. There is just no evidence that anyone
running for political office at this time is doing so simply to keep people
If candidates really do believe that all individuals in a
small society from the wealthy to the poor should comprise “one community we
all must live in”, it seems to us they wouldn’t then be making gratingly
divisive statements in the pursuit of votes.
We believe Cayman must be one society and that its diversity
forms a part of its strength. It is to be hoped that view never gets torn down
to service political expediency.