Tuesday, April 23, 2024

OUTSIDE THE PULPIT: We need to obey the rules

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Jerusalem the golden/ With milk and honey blest/ Beneath thy contemplation/ Sink heart and voice opprest/ I know not, oh, I know not/ What joys await us there/ What radiancy of glory/ What bliss beyond compare. – Ancient and Modern, Hymn 228, Verse 1.
While listening to the radio programme Down To Brass Tacks last week, I heard a caller complaining that he was not allowed to use his cellphone while at a certain Government department. Because he had to turn it off, he was cut off from his family and was expecting a call.
I found his excuse to be a very poor one. The question that must be asked: What were we doing before there were cellphones? These days we will find all types of reasons for breaking the law. People must learn to do without them sometimes. It can be a discipline.
Recently, I visited the United States embassy in order to have my visa renewed, and let me tell you, that place is something else. The security there is very tight and there are many stages one has to go through before reaching the visa officer.
It is a place where you do as you are told. At first, one has to leave all personal belongings to be checked, including cellphones, keys, you name it. And people complied with the American rules and did not create a scene.
What I did was to leave all my personal belongings (including my cellphone) in my car.
As I sat there in the waiting area, I witnessed those who were there to get visas obeying all the embassy rules and believe me, they did as they were told! To me, it was a situation where adults were treated as children and they dared not open their mouths and say a word.
Why was that type of behaviour? It was because they wanted to get the visa in order to go to the United States which they believe is a land of milk and honey.
Believe me, the United States is no land of milk and honey; it has its problems like all countries in the world. It has unemployment and high cost of living like all of us. But what I like about there is that if the price of an egg goes up by even one cent, people will protest and will not buy.
How is it that while we are on American soil, we know how to behave and carry out their rules but refuse to obey and carry out ours in Barbados?
Come, one and all, in order to have a better society, we must learn to obey. Can you imagine living in a society or world without rules?

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