TESTIMONY: WE FIGHT Part 3

We have completed our negotiations cycle with the PP government. We have won many concessions in 2 National Budgets. Unprecedented historic promises to the Creative sector have been made- things we have fought for since Independence! We now have asked politely for implementation for a year and a half. That period of polite diplomacy is about to come to an end. Failing movement on these things we now will move to the next stage. This is how change is won. This is how a nation is built. This is how lasting institutional transformation will happen. It takes time, strategy, stubbornness, years of your life pushing paper uphill. But within that paper is the lives of tens of thousands of people. Within that paper is their ability to feed themselves and their families, to fulfil their dreams, to live their gifts to the fullest of their ability. Within that paper is the golden country- Iere– land of the hummingbird- the shining renaissance Trinidad and Tobago that must emerge out of the corrupt crushed egg that politicians and the greedy have made of this place…

Why do we do it? Because we must! Because no one else will…

The artworks that I have created for the 15 years have been: policy documents, feasibility studies, architectural ,programming and minimum spec documents for Museums, Community Centres, National Performing Arts Centres; draft legislation and National Cultural Policy documents that are supposed to go for public consultation; philosophical and operational parameters for missing national cultural institutions…  Each of these documents is a distillation of the Dream of our community- and is a weapon to make profound Creative and Cultural sector change. With integrity. With the agendas that generations of our ancestors fought for. With international best practice. To do this you have to confront those with Power-and against their will make them make change.

This normally means government. They control 75% of the economy and control the infrastructure, the policy, and the legislative and enabling environment.  This is the 5th administration we have dealt with. All politicians are the same, but not all administrations are the same… However, we deal with all administrations in the same way- as I was trying to explain to a PNM party supporter. I am hated by groups of PNM supporters who blame me partly for their party’s electoral demise because of my advocacy around NAPA. Most of them believe that I- and other activists- were somehow paid stooges of the then opposition. These party supporters cannot understand that there are people whose passion for country and truth run higher than blind allegiance to party. They cannot understand that there are people who cannot be bought and whose interests run in this order- God, family and nation, and world and ancestral battles. Politics doh even figure into our equation…

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Posted on June 14, 2012, in President's Blog and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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