Barbados Must Deal with Unfinished Business

The Caribbean Is One Nation.

                                                         Barbados Must Deal with Unfinished Business



Robert"Bobby" Clarke
      By William Skinner
 We often speak of unfinished business and sometimes this saying takes on very interesting twists. Back in the late sixties and seventies, a progressive group of black Barbadians, spoke about the unfinished business bequeathed to us by our decadent colonial masters. They told us that failure to radically reorganize the society, would eventually lead to the marginalization of the poor black citizens.
Of course, the then political class adroitly led by Errol Barrow, in an attempt to appease the fears of white Barbadians, moved swiftly to destroy the black nationalists movement by going into parliament and passing the dangerous Public Order Act. This vicious piece of legislation brought tremendous comfort to those citizens who opposed the true emancipation of Black Barbadians. Ironically, there were Black Barbadians who also opposed the Black Nationalist movement and they heralded the passing of the Public Order Act as a master stroke.
As the old people used to say: Time longer than twine. Hence after almost fifty years of independence, we are faced with the same issues including the rights of the poor black Barbadian workers, who are feeling the full weight of the almost totally black political class. While the workers representatives vacillate and negotiate, the more progressive forces within the society, know that the time for talking has long passed.
With no real dynamic leader from within their unions and the callousness of the political class covering the land, the masses needed a voice. They could not find one anywhere because most of them have either been silenced by the political masters operating in both the Barbados Labour Party and the Democratic Labour Party or simply are not interested in the plight of their struggling   brothers and sisters.
Fortunately for those now feeling the full weight of economic austerity and unemployment; the voice that has come to their rescue is from the group that once told them about the need to settle some unfinished business. That is why I am extremely supportive of the efforts of Comrade Robert “Bobby” Clarke, to be that voice. His message rings as louder and truer now as it did over four long decades ago. The voice of truth can never be silenced.

As long as the faces being laid off and marginalized are black; there will be need for progressive and enlightened leaders to challenge the political class. We are still dealing with some unfinished business and the sooner we finish it, the better it will be for our society.  The race is not o’er and the battle is far from won.
Thank you, Comrade Clarke, for continuing the march toward equality. When the true history of Barbados is written your prominent and earned place will not be forgotten.

William Skinner is a social commentator


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