We, at Twocanview, would like to thank all of our readers for showing your continued support. We take the steady climb in numbers as an indication that we are doing something you want and need. Please help us to serve you by giving us feedback and if you know anything about any of the issues we try to highlight, please share. Our goal is to rip off the band aids and get to the real nitty gritty that is plaguing us as a people, as a nation. Thank you again and spread the birdflew!!!!!
We just started our blog a mere 5 months ago and so much has happened! To Aria and me…to Belize…none of it could have anticipated. BUT Aria seems to have assessed the political climate accurately at least. Check out one of her first pieces: Tell me what you think!
by Aria Lightfoot
“If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could then better judge what to do, and how to do it.”
In the ad lib words of President Lincoln, to get to where we are going, we must know where we are. 2011 is fading; 2012 is approaching fast and Belize faces municipal, city council and general elections. The implications are for a positive financial outlook for the Belize voter. The money for votes exchange is off to a head start and the political warriors are gearing up for battle. At this juncture it is difficult to determine what the future leadership of Belize will look like, I have my own speculations, however in politics, the only certainty is uncertainty. Voters are fickle and needy; political parties’ popularity fluctuates between love and hate. Hate while in government and love while in opposition.
I predict in 2012 that it really doesn’t matter which party holds the majority in the House and municipal elections. Crime, poverty, corruption, inefficiency, apathy of leadership, politics of patronage, special interest politics, the growing divide between rich and poor will remain constant. Are the major political parties reluctant, stubborn and arrogant? Or are politicians merely a reflection of our corrupted society? The voting patterns in Belize suggests a yearn for change; however the inability to articulate it has resulted in major changes at the polls with little changes to much else. What does corruption even mean to the average citizen? Does the average citizen know that hustling on the side, hooking up family members and friends, pushing friends to the front line, erasing the professional and personal line, selective enforcement, turning a blind eye, paying tax paid government officials to complete work, accepting money for votes, buying anything on the black market, inflating contracts to benefit friends and family, hiring and promoting due to relationship rather than skill; educating friends and family and supporters, denying access to qualified citizens, special favors of any kind…equals corruption? Lets us begin the arduous journey of reflection on the impact we make on the society.
According to a survey of criminologists in 2008, 88% of the participants asked whether or not the death penalty is a deterrent of crime said NO. They also said that while politicians argue for it to appear tough on crime, this ongoing debate on distracts from actually developing solutions. http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/study-88-criminologists-do-not-believe-death-penalty-effective-deterrent Why then do we continue to demand the death penalty?
This really is a reflection of a lack of basic understanding of the psychology of the criminal. A criminal simply weighs the pros and cons of breaking the law. When the price is small, the criminal chooses to pay the prize. When the price is steep, the criminal only becomes better at what he is doing and he becomes organized- he forms a gang. It is a simple cost-benefit analysis like any other business organization. Over and over again, it is observed that in states with the three strikes law, these criminals tend to be more ruthless by killing their potential witnesses rather than face going to jail for the rest of their lives.
What this scenario fails to again for however, is that people who are in a gang are also part of other entities. Decisions are not made in a vacuum. When criminals are educated about the effects their actions have on other parts of their lives: family, neighbourhood, community, this moral dimension seems to have more of an impact on deterring criminal behaviour than the severity of punishment. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/ulterior-motives/200906/crime-and-punishment-moral-deterrents-crime
So what does this say to us? Instead of only focusing on punishment which is the end of one criminal career only to begin another one in jail MOST of the time, we need to intervene at the point of the DECISION making. Providing alternative motivations, as the article suggests, seems to be a step in the right direction.
ENGAGE. EDUCATE. ENLIGHTEN. EMPOWER
Would all the real men in the world, please stand up??????
I don’t know what the hell happened but somewhere along line, our expectations for our male counterparts just keep getting lower and lower to the point where when a friend says “But he doesn’t beat me”, we are supposed to think that it is a wonderful qualification!
There is a place for everyone. It takes all kinds: a little bit of weird, mixed with straight laced, a dash of goofy and a pinch of impatient equals adventurous, determined, innovative, human. Oh and cute doesn’t hurt. But lately, we hear heartbreaking stories of young men killing each other; “upstanding citizens” using their position and power to intimidate and abuse; the elderly being beaten and conned, their pittance of a social security stolen. Then, there are the fatherless children living in abject poverty as their mothers struggle to provide just the basics. And, what about the middle aged married man hooking teen mistresses with promises of a better life only to leave them broken and worse off than when they started?
We need to move the bar, man. Don’t lie anymore just because people desperately need to believe you. Don’t steal just because you have the keys to the safe. Don’t have children you have no intentions of raising just because you have an itch you gotta scratch. Don’t sell yourself short by not living to your best potential. YOU deserve better. You need to feel your three year old’s arms wrapped around your neck. You need to see the admiration of your teen daughter in her smile, her look. You need to feel the respect of your wife/partner as you leave for work everyday. You need to walk with your head held high because you are honest and hard working.
I promise that the greatest feeling you will ever feel is the feeling you get from serving others. True fulfillment will not come at the bottom of a bottle, the end of a blunt, in the morning after an illicit rendezvous, or sporting that new bling. Get involved. Commit to doing more and doing better. We need you. We welcome you.
The sweetest lives are those to duty wed,
Whose deeds, both great and small,
Are close-knit strands of unbroken thread
Where love ennobles all.
The world may sound no trumpets, ring no bells;
The book of life the shining record tells.
The love shall chant its own beatitudes
After its own life working. A child’s kiss
Set on thy sighing lips shall make thee glad;
A sick man helped by thee shall make thee strong;
Thou shalt be served thyself by every sense
Of service which thous renderest.
Are you people listening with you logical and analytic brain, the front part, or just the reptilian brain, the back paat whe responsible for “aggression, dominance, territoriality, and ritual displays”?
I hope it is the former for your own benefit because what these politicians are trying to pull is just insulting. They want us to believe shit that is easily disproved and verifiable. What am I talking about? The Schakron Shennanigans of course! (notice ah lawn fi spell shi name karreck! :))
Yesterday, Ms. Schakron was declared ineligible to run in these elections because of her dual citizenship with the US and Belize. So far, I don’t see the problem…there is a law, and it was followed. O wait. Is that the problem? Have we become so used to just doing whatever the fuck we want that when somebody actually has the audacity to follow protocol, we react with shock and despair and hollah “INJUSTICE”?
HOLY SHIT BUCKET!!!! The irony is not lost on me and it better not be on you or else you need fuh get back anda di covahs, sleep so mo and den wake up again! Ms. Lisa Shoman went on tv, so will forever have her statements documented, and said that an injustice occurred and that some people da Belize nuh like democracy. BUWAHAHAHAHAHA WHAT THE FUUUUUCK?????
Lookya Lisa, nuh ehm yu mi look convinced bout dat one. How can an injustice be claimed when infact it was merely a decision reflecting the law of the land? O you nuh like di law? Change it den! O wait. Dah yu mi seh no right?!
Sorry mein. Ah nuh mean fi di laff so haad but that is what I do. I laugh at downright idiocy and simpleness. You guys are truly just handing me fodder for the exploiting. I’m laughing all day, everyday.
And den night falls and the laughter drifts away and it is replaced with real true sadness.
How can we hope for anything different when you guys insist on act exactly the same? You have Ms. Shakron hollerin and screamin like a goddammed banshee http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=QevJI9JE8r0
and Lisa Shoman, a woman of the law, acting outraged that the law was followed http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=xCRuOw9XGy0
Holy what frig is this? You guys took no responsibility for your errors. You point the finger squarely at people who had nothing to do with your inability to read simple English and realize the requirements were not going to allow for her candidacy. Why couldn’t you simply have acted in the best interest of your party and the people you serve and behave like law abiding citizens?
I will tell you this. I hope that you guys are not allowed to take leadership roles anymore, not in this arena. I love the causes Ms. Shoman champions and I absolutely would love to the see the women’s agenda put into action but after thisya rass, your credibility is on the line and I frankly, cannot trust in your abilities to fight fair and fight right. I question that you will able to represent my needs as a woman and make good decisions in my name. And I sure as shit don’t want either of you representing me in the diplomatic corps either.
These emotional outbursts and hollerin and screamin may have worked on a people used to being screamed at and put down in the past by their colonial masters, but hopefully , not on this generation. We are smart, informed and on to you. Stop trying to insult us with your condescending attempts to pull the wool…we aint no bloody sheep. Dem days dun!
So…it’s Friday. People are yaking yaking about Shakron dis and Shakron dat. Frankly…I feel sorry for her. She is being used by both parties, yeah…I said it.
PUP is telling Ms. Shakron “UDP fraid fi yu gial…dats why dey di go awn soh”, bolstering her ego so she can continue to run for them and help stave off collapse of a party which has been plagued by infighting and candidates dropping out.
I suspect the UDP doesn’t care all that much about the effect Shakron will have on its chances of winning. UDP is only using this whole Shakron ting to further discredit the PUP, call hypocrite and wipe Lisa Shoman‘s face with her own words. The UDP is simply having a free for all at PUP’s expense.
I don’t know you Ms. Shakron but I sure as hell would not be giving up my damn US citizenship for dis here bunch. And before anybody jumps me from behind, this ain’t about love of country…this is about love of self. You bettah love yourself more than any country and any people, BECAUSE at the end of the day, these fuckers ain’t go be nowhere round, come March 8th and she didn’t win or PUP happens to lose. It’s just tooooo much of a gamble and it must be difficult to put her life in such jeopardy, much less the lives and future of her kids at risk. Because, that is what it is people. See, what people don’t tell you is that once you get into politics like this, there is no turning back, EVER.
I hope you really have only the strongest convictions Ms Shakron, because at the end of the day, they will be all you have.
We have all heard the religious rhetoric surrounding Sec 53, you know (in lowered voice) the gay law. Pastor Dis and Bishop Dat decided that they would just ignore the fact that we are NOT, I repeat NOT a religious state BUT a democracy. See, people get sooooo confused with the word DEMOCRACY but in simple simple simple words, it means “the freedom to call something into being which did not exist before, which was not given… and which therefore, strictly speaking, could not be known.” This type of freedom, which is connected to human “natality,” or the capacity to begin anew, sees democracy as “not only a political system… [but] an ideal, an aspiration, really, intimately connected to and dependent upon a picture of what it is to be human—of what it is a human should be to be fully human.”
Not simple enough? Mek ah try: it is a process by which what nevah exist before, could exist NOW!
While there is no universally accepted definition of ‘democracy’, equality and freedom have both been identified as important characteristics of democracy since ancient times. These principles are reflected in all citizens being equal before the law and having equal access to legislative processes.
And then some more:
Majority rule is often listed as a characteristic of democracy. However, it is also possible for a minority to be oppressed by a “tyranny of the majority” in the absence of governmental or constitutional protections of individual or group rights. An essential part of an “ideal” representative democracy is competitiveelections that are fair both substantively and procedurally. Furthermore, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press are considered to be essential, so that citizens are adequately informed and able to vote according to their own best interests as they see them. It has also been suggested that a basic feature of democracy is the capacity of individuals to participate freely and fully in the life of their society.
AHHHHH CRAAAAAAPPPPP!!!! NOW I SEE WHAT THE PROBLEM IS!!!!!
Ok. Now that we have an idea of what democracy is, let’s look at RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. People like Pastor Dis and Bishop Dat feel that because God is on their side and they believe in Jesus that for some reason, they are superior to everyone else. At this point, you should all be raising your hands and asking the teacher, “But, Miss? Doesn’t that contradict what you just said about democracy?”
Ahm, frankly YEEEESSSSS! People confuse the right to practice religion with the rest of democratic principles. And don’t worry, it’s not just in Belize. I am not picking on you but I won’t let you get away with it just because al Qaeda blew up a couple a buildings and does it worse that you. The following is a case that explains it perfectly. And YES I know it’s an American case, but they’ve been doing this whole independence/democratic nation thing a lot longer than we have so…they could teach us a thing or two:
In Employment Division v. Smith, a pair of men who were fired from their jobs for ingesting peyote during Native American religious ceremonies sued when their applications for unemployment were denied because they had been fired for cause from their jobs. The US Supreme Court ruled that since the prohibitions on drug use is a neutral law of general applicability that the religious freedom argument didn’t come into play. From the decision:
“Laws, we said, are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious belief and opinions, they may with practices. . . . Can a man excuse his practices to the contrary because of his religious belief? To permit this would be to make the professed doctrines of religious belief superior to the law of the land, and in effect to permit every citizen to become a law unto himself.”
In other words, lovers, lovers of Belize, we have the freedom to practice our religious beliefs BUT CAN’T HOLD IT SUPERIOR TO THE LAW OF THE LAND!!!!!! Soh dem weed smokers whe seh dey do it because a JAH…dem Pastor Dis and Bishop Dat whe seh that homosexuals should be prosecuted because dat dah whe GOD seh? Dem Muslims whe mutilate girls, cutting off their sexual organs to keep them pure because ALLAH seh soh? YOU CAN’T DO THAT IN A DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY AND IF YOU DO YOU ARE SUBJECT TO PROSECUTION AS ANYONE ELSE IS.
Now…I am hard pressed to understand why the hell a country run by a bunch of lawyers couldn’t figure this one out and make a stand for the development and progress of our democracy…buggery..I tell you…just plain old buggery. Bend ovah and insert bukut.
You can have free speech as long as you agree with me ’cause if ya don’t, ahma sue yo a$$ for slander and libel.
O come on now, put yo big girl panties on and pull on your big boy draws and step it up…all dis childish ego maniacal flish flash (I know that ain’t no real word so don’t write me about it) is making me tyad. And the Belizean people tyad…caz while you pullin’ rank, we still waitin’!!!!! We still want bread and medicines and education.
Can we have some good role models up in here? We got enough school yard bullies running around, bitches.
Double edged sword is what it is…what is? This politician/god thing we got going here. Of course, it stems from our complicated colonial/buccaneering history. As much as we hate to hear it, we do live it. People are still very much stratified according to colour of skin and position in Belize. To an onlooker, it might be impossible to imagine. We all look brown, right? We all ain’t white, right? So, what is the problem?
Well, actually I think that makes it worse because it pits brother against brother, grandchild against grandmother. Is it any wonder then, that we glorify our leaders?
Our socioeconomic situation creates intense desperation and fierce competition for the few opportunities and resources available, so when one of us “makes it” in politics, we clamor for his/her attention and favour. This may flatter and appeal to our “hero complex” but that doesn’t last long, I’m sure. Soon enough, there is too much to deal with, not enough time, money and manpower and before you know it, people get frustrated, disappointed and then, resentful. That leader we thought was better than free cheese and sliced bread becomes in our estimation, greedy, self serving, “out of touch”, hypocritical and downright demonic. We vote them out. Rinse. Repeat. And we are in the hole we are in.
Look people. Don’t give politicians qualities best reserved for saints. Politicians, don’t make promises you can’t keep just to win temporary adoration and votes.
We need to mature as a nation. We have to stop this codependency we got going on among our constituents and our politicians. That politician will not solve our problems and our constituents can’t pull themselves up by their bootstraps if they don’t gats no boots! We have to find a medium where politicians just do their jobs i.e. overseeing the appropriation of funding for beneficial projects; negotiate loans and settle border disputes. Politicians need to insist that our judicial system is sound and that our streets are safe. AND WE THE PEOPLE need to realize that WE ARE THEIR BOSS, not the other way around.
We, the people, need to understand our rights, our responsibilities and start taking ourselves seriously. We need to understand what a politician is really obligated to do. We need to set up firm boundaries between what is his/her job and what he/she just can not and should not do . What is unethical versus illegal? What is within the realm of government versus what is beyond?
While we figure it out, I appeal to your sense of decency and fairness. Display decorum and respect. It is the only way to make progress. And politicians… smdh…admit you fucked up. You have no idea how far that will go to restoring good faith and confidence in your abilities. It takes great courage to admit one’s mistakes and people really are just waiting to hear you humble yourselves and for once, do the right thing. We have been on borrowed time. The bottom will fall out. Let’s try to avoid that please. We have so much to gain if we work together and not against each other. And while we are it, throw some bitches in jail.
OWN YOUR VOTE. OWN YOUR FUTURE.
*Sigh* uno mek me tyad inuh….Why do we have brilliant, articulate women defending dastardly crimes committed by men in power???? WHY? WHY? WHY? How can you rally behind leaders who have proven that they are corrupt and self serving and misogynistic? I mean, it just defies logic! Why would you put your head on the block for people who don’t even respect your gender?????And that by the way, is the LEAST of their offences. What about the bastards who pay rapists to terrorize and threaten women who dare to raise their voices? HOW CAN YOU STAND BEHIND THEM??????? What about the bastards who take the bread out of your mouth because you choose to oppose, instead of condone??? How about the ones who give preferential treatment to their own children or children of their lackeys and give them scholarships and positions you or your children worked for and deserved??? How about the ones who steal your land and give it to someone else? How about the ones who bribe magistrates to get their sons out of serving jail time while you can’t get justice for crimes committed against you? The police doesn’t even want to take your statement? DON’T MUDDAHFUKIN TELL ME IT’S IN THE PAST! Da snake only shed ih skin! Da still a snake, poisonous as evah. And we the people, don’t forget, can’t forget. Some of us NEVER recover.
You call upon us to serve. You call us apathetic. You call us lazy. BUT YOU ASK YOURSELF: how many good people have you squooshed in the dirt, broken and devastated, having lost everything; and, then you kicked them when they were down, after they just lost everything standing behind you, for you and with you????
Sad truth is: if you can’t kill your roots of evil and corruption…you will grow the same weeds, long and tendrilous, choking off any possible growth and progress. We can’t be for you when you are for them. Period. We want to. We might admire some of our new politicians. You love Belize. You are dedicated and passionate. But you lose every ounce of credibility when you excuse obscenely unethical and straight up thuggish behaviour. We appeal to you. We need people to vote for and right now, we can’t trust anybody. Please give us a reason to believe. Perhaps, if you kicked out your criminals; prosecute a few; make reparations by returning stolen property and giving the deserving their hard earned scholarships and jobs; make solid plans instead of quick fix band aids…and maybe, just maybe, if you start listening to your people, we might start believing.
Don’t you understand we are afraid of you? Don’t you understand we are ashamed of you? Don’t you understand that we are paralyzed by your intimidation and condescending ways? And most of all, don’t you understand YOU WORK FOR US? WE PAY YOUR SALARY. YOU OWE US YOUR RESPECT AND CONSIDERATION. DO NOT TALK DOWN TO US. DO NOT INSULT US WITH YOUR ARROGANCE AND CAVALIER DISMISSAL. You keep pushing a people who are very close to having nothing to lose. You are asking for anarchy. People can only take so much. And while Belizeans seem to be extremely resilient and accommodating of their own rape, we do have a breaking point. Don’t find out where that is.