This week as we marked the 72nd anniversary of the 1949 March, when our ancestors walked Main Street saying, “Enough is enough,” we find ourselves having to stand up against the injustices of our day and shout the same.
I was floored to read that the charges in the petition against the commissioner in 1949 are the same as 2021: “You have sinned against us, the people, in diverse ways, so that our grievances against you are sundry and manifold. You have left undone the things you ought to have done. You have done the things you ought not to have done. And there is no confidence in you.”
Our ancestors fought that we might have the privilege for a seat at the table of governance in these Virgin Islands, and we are here squandering it with immoral thinking and oppressive behaviour just like the “government” of that day. This needs to stop, and it needs to stop now!
It pains my heart when I look around at the unacceptable condition of our territory, and I know your heart mourns too. I am disappointed to see how lightly our leaders take the responsibility of governing ourselves by doing what ought not to be done and leaving undone what ought to be done!
If our ancestors, with the limited knowledge they had, set the stage for self-governance, then the least we can do is safeguard their legacy. I want to remind us that the people’s House of Assembly is one of our sacred institutions that is supposed to reflect the best in and the best of us. We are here to charge our representatives today to do what is right by and for the people!
‘Endured and endured’
As the 1949 marchers wrote, “We have endured and endured until our powers of endurance have failed us. We are to be freed from the yoke we have been carrying. We are asking for freedom. We are seeking freedom. We demand freedom!”
Let us continue their fight for justice and good governance so that our grandchildren will not have to do the same! Enough is enough! We demand freedom!