Eyewitness: Street Politics…

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…by the PNC
One of Eric Williams’s famous statements, when he launched the 30-year-long reign of the PNM in Trinidad back in 1956, was: “fighting in the streets is over, and politics in Parliament will now begin”. Sadly, for us in Guyana, his contemporary, Burnham, who’d escalated his “fighting in the streets” in Guyana to a literal racial civil war to get into power, never weaned his party to confine politics to the civilised rules of Parliament.
In fact, with the PNC and Burnham rigging elections from 1968 to 1985 by bringing in the army to seize ballot boxes and murdering civilians in the process, they expanded the arena of violence. Parliamentary democracy for the PNC was always interpreted cynically – with a wink and a blow to the solar plexus of the other political players. Some killings by Police “encounters” (Koama/Dublin), or with planted bombs in walkie-talkies (Rodney), or arbitrary torture after framed up charges (the De Willem 15) were examples of politics they practised while in power.
When they were ousted after 28 years, the PNC’s violent street politics returned without skipping a beat – and Guyana knew no peace between 1997 and 2008. Then there was hope they’d learnt a lesson – that violence can careen out of control and consume us all. They recalibrated, changed their name to APNU, went into a coalition with the AFC, and returned to power. But it soon became clear they just couldn’t keep on the straight and narrow. The folk wisdom predicts that once canines start “sucking eggs”, they just can’t stop!
And so the PNC returned to their rigging ways; and when that was stymied, have now refused to practise Parliamentary politics. Ever since Aug 2nd, if it’s not the courts, it’s the streets with their clenched fists and incendiary, race-based rhetoric.
In the last couple of days, they’ve been protesting outside of CID headquarters because the former Chair of the GL&SC, Trevor Benn, had been hauled in for questioning over some transactions the Police claimed were dodgy. He’d already been charged – like others – for some other transactions after the identical Police questioning. So, your Eyewitness can only conclude that the PNC have a problem when the Police follow their SOPs in dealing with suspected law-breakers. So, they want the Police to make an exception for Benn?
But we know what’s going on, don’t we? All of this simulated righteous indignation is just playing to the PNC’s gallery, to rile them up and precipitate the violence in the streets that’s been their trademark since the 1960s.
Your Eyewitness hopes that the PNC’s constituency have learnt their lesson after sixty years of being used as cannon fodder.
And launch a new democratic party!
…and serial killings
So, we have another serial killing in the US, this time in Atlanta, where a 21-year-old white dude shot and killed 8 persons – including 6 Asian women. “Oh no! So, when will this stop?” was your Eyewitness’s first thought. And his answer to himself was, “Not in my lifetime”, because this was a racial crime, and even after all the protests in the States over the past year against race hate, this ain’t going away soon. And this is the clear and present danger with the PNC racialising politics here in Guyana.
The fella said that it wasn’t “race”, but “sexual addiction”. And so, the next question is: “Why kill just Asian women?” Was he addicted to Asian women? And this is where race comes in. After the wars fought on Asian soil, starting with the Philippines in 1898, then Japan in 1945, Korea in 1950; Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos etc from the sixties, many white American males have a fetish for Asian women.
They’re seen as docile and pliable.
…and pavement politics
The Mayor met with vendors to get them to buy into his plan to bring some order into the pandemonium that reigns on the city pavements.
Your Eyewitness’s latest foray into town shows nothing’s changed. Next move?