Can this society rid itself of the race albatross? Or heal its leaking, hurting, crippling race wound? It can do this May what it has never come close to doing before.
The year 1992 heralded a fresh start after decades of despair and loss. Many black Guyanese were in the thick of the struggle for change; disgusted, conscientious and patriotic black citizens participated in the resistance, despite the presence of a ruling black government, in effect their own.
Twenty-three blighted years later, there is acceptance in this society that it exchanged one devil for another, and ended with the worst one. Once again, this land finds itself in a dismal environment where the clamor and yearning for change grows irrepressibly; some change, any change. It is the turn of Indo-Guyanese to lay bare where they stand and what they represent, just like their black brethren did in earlier days.
Now those many Indians, who are quietly disgusted and severely distressed, have the occasion to parallel the efforts of their black brethren. They must no longer be satisfied to let the public Indian voices be just a few. If they are honest with themselves, and seek a better place for all, then the disgusted Indians must dissent publicly and join the call for riddance of a ruling party lacking in scruples, patriotism, and basic decency. They must step away from the emotional disgust and do more. They must vote for hope, for change, for renewal.
This is the time when younger, educated, and professional Indian citizens are faced with a stark choice: vote conscience; vote for change; vote for something different –even if it is only a shaky, barely tangible tendril. Standing by, sitting on the fence, disagreeing, and publicly criticizing are not enough.
History shows that change comes excruciatingly slowly, from unyielding pressure, and through unrelenting duress. Change can only unfold when thinking, feeling, caring citizens deny ethnic allegiance, and cross the ethnic minefield to take a stand for what is right and what promises to be fair and equitable.Discerning Guyanese, whether Indian or Black or otherwise-but especially Indian-must no longer allow themselves to be placidly manipulated; no longer permit themselves to be the objects of derision and dismissal at the hands of their own who use them to ascend, and then discard them. Be determined not to be used.
Here is a momentous opportunity for the two main races need to stop selling themselves so cheaply for mere survival; Indians did so pre-1992, and black Guyanese have gotten more accomplished at this same ugly selling since then. In this way the few take care of themselves; the many are left on their own to fend through a desultory barren subsistence. Today there is another point in time, another crossroad that tests the national mettle and none more so than that of Indo-Guyanese.
To reiterate, there is a dire need for citizens to separate from the herd and take stand. I plan on voting for the first time ever.