Wednesday, December 17, 2014

End of 2014 wrap up! What happened this year?

Well, as we end the year 2014, the obligatory wrap up of this year's events must be conducted.

First of all, I thank everyone for reading my submissions and sending me feedback. I thank all of you, from the bottom of my heart. It's not often the average citizen, like myself, gets a chance to communicate his thoughts, ideas and feelings with a broader audience, regardless if people care about my topic or not. But, I truly do appreciate it and I thank you for being a part.

Well, this 2014 has been a relatively mundane year. Perhaps it's me that's getting older, and the regular things that used to titillate and excite me just doesn't anymore? But, in all honesty, this year seems like a continuation of the regular. Sad, I know.

The first thing that comes to mind is the upheaval in the Ukraine and the standoff between that country and their former colonizer, Russia when under the former communist bloc, the USSR pre-1991.

The upheaval was bloody, unnecessary and very much avoidable. The situation was also embarrassing for the United States, and particularly to president Barack Obama leading NATO during the crisis.

President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, flipped the entire Western world the bird and said that as a result of this crisis, he will annex Crimea- a territory within the Ukrainian border- and no one would be able to do a blessed thing about it.
Russian President, Vladimir Putin.

For those thinking that president Putin was "punking out" president Obama, forgot that Putin did something more egregious back in 2008 to former US president GW. Bush. Not only did Putin induce a war in the sovereign state of Georgia, but simply took massive tracts of land on the North Eastern border of Georgia. That time his intentions were more clear and decisive than in the case of Crimea, because it was a direct response to US defence systems being placed in Georgia as installations of first response in the event Russia and America were to ever go to war.

Another thing that has happened, and still happening, is the revelation and current scandal that comedian Bill Cosby is embroiled in as it pertains to his years and years of alleged rapes of Hollywood starlets.

Over 20 women have come forward and stated that Bill Cosby raped them. What was so startling and shocking about this entire affair is the length and time some of these rapes took place. Some women claim to have been assaulted as far back as the late 1970's.

Bill Cosby, loving the pudding pops.
Further concerning about his entire affair is that almost all of the women have the same story: They were invited to Cosby's home, given drink and in some instances narcotics, drugged to sleep and then woke up and found themselves in compromising positions, with a taxi-cab waiting on them outside and told to get out.

Also, and it seems to feed the stereotype of the ravenous, sex-starved black man, who is only hungry for the poor and defenceless white woman, most of Cosby's accusers are Caucasian.

Whatever ends up as a result of all of this, it appears as if Bill Cosby is not "Dr. Cliff Huxtable", the beloved character and father figure he portrayed on his hit television show of the 1980's. We wish him all the best during his time of trial.

Another major event, albeit very subtle, was the current position of the Catholic Pope Francis. He has taken some very interesting positions that were once anti-religious and anti-Catholic: He has become more and more vocal in his warmth and understanding towards homosexuals and their lifestyle. Something that has angered Bishops within his own ranks, and also provided tremendous criticisms world wide, both pro-gay and anti-gay.
Catholic Pope Francis
Whatever the end game Pope Francis has in mind, his pronouncements are taken very, very seriously. He has a following worldwide and influences not just Catholics and Christians, but people that look to him as a guiding light of morality and voice of reason.

Something also very, very important happened this year, and globally dangerous issue for us as peace loving citizens, and for my case, as a follower of Christ, and that is the emergence of the radical Islamic terrorist group, ISIS.

This group of radicalized Islamic terrorist are responsible for the murder of hundreds of Christians and non-Muslims within the Middle East. They have displaced thousands of people inside Iraq and Syria, and sent them on the road to no-man's land and to their slow death of starvation and elements.

Who or whatever started this group is unimportant at this time. I condemn their actions, and so too should you. I condemn their radical form of Islam. And anyone that stands with them are too condemned and should be rooted out, eradicated.

I say that because, oddly enough, there were not only American citizen that went to fight with ISIS, but there were European men and women in addition to, and most puzzling, Caribbean nationals that were reported to have joined ISIS in their Jihad. This puts the peace and conscience of Caribbean people on edge, as we do not have the security or response measures to combat a major terrorist attack on our soil.

Baroness, Patricia Scotland
of Asthal
Further with regard to the Caribbean, there were a host of issues that resonated with me region-wide. The kerfluffle with the Dominican appointee to head the Commonwealth Secretariat, Baroness Patricia Scotland of Asthal, sparked major controversy. An appointee that was a British parliamentarian, which was the primary reason persons around the Caribbean cried foul. Foul because how can you have a British parliamentarian, sit on meetings for the Caribbean nations and other former colonized nations, and at worst be the head of such a grouping with Britain, where her current allegiance lies, as the former colonizer of all of the English speaking Caribbean- the predominant Caribbean nations.

Folks in these meetings, meetings that are very important because they are few and far between, for obvious reasons, like and need to talk shop. Talking shop means issues sensitive to our former colonizers. Not that anything damaging would be discussed, but some things we just don't want the British government to know.

Speaking of politicians, former premier of the Turks and Caicos, Michael Misick, was given bail for his corruption charges and is walking around to many a warm reception by his people in the TCI. For whatever that's worth. We wish him all the best.

Also, and this takes me back to my opening salvo that 2014 seems to be a year filled of more of the same, the current upheaval in Haiti. The prime minister, Laurent Lamothe, has been forced to resign amidst allegations of corruption that spurred these protests.

Former Haitian Prime Minister
Laurent Lamothe
Several other ministers have resigned with him. This has put the spotlight back on president Martelly, as he is now the only other person Haitians can blame because things aren't going right. To me, he was doing a fairly decent job as president of Haiti, barring his lack of formal skills and training.

Whatever has Haiti bound by this spirit of upheaval and chaos, I pray that one day, and one day soon, it all will be solved. For their sakes.

With that, let's look to the new year, 2015 with vigour, new resolve and committed spirit to do better.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year. Thank you for reading, God bless you all and I wish to see you again soon.
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