Posted by: nastylittletruths | September 5, 2008

Where Will You Be On September 8th?

The newspaper ad was gently reminding me about the upcoming event of September 8th – not too flashy, just white on black asking me to stay home and reflect… The TTMA (Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturers Association) put out a communique that had them squarely on top of the fence supporting their members who decide to close and who decide not to.

The ECA (Employers’ Consultative Association) were emailing their members asking them to keep their business doors open with strong language supporting a “monied” position (read it carefully) and nothing else. Seriously? Honest and civil dialogue? With whom? In their haste to condemn the trade unions, they missed the point. This wasn’t meant to be action against them but a protest against government.

But the key to a shut down, as called for by the trade unions, lies in our hands. The only power we have is to withold our labour and if that is done, businesses and public sector offices will close. The business owners have to realise that a day of lost sales cannot be compared to the benefits of getting action from our politicians. We need for them to lose this contempt they have for us and it can only happen if we act as a cohesive unit and make a stand. And believe me, nothing speaks to them more than a country at a standstill. It has worked in every country, whether developed or developing, and in some cases brought the arrogant to their knees.

Me? I didn’t need to reflect too long – I am staying home. As said above, it is abundantly clear that the issue of crime is number one priority. So many things hinge on this one fact, it is mind-boggling the politicians can’t get it right. All you hear are excuses and how crime is “global”.

I write the above knowing full well that many people can’t afford to be like me to defy their bosses and stay home. I also know that they will be intimidated and unsure if anyone will be there to support them. But I detest the ones who make the comment, “wha’ yuh go do?” and “dem ting doh wuk”. Yes it can. It needs people to believe and it needs leadership that you can rally behind. In this case, it’s the trade union movement, but it could have been anyone else vocal enough to get the message out. I, personally, have been touched by too many murders to not show any support. I would be the worst kind of hypocrite…

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