0

Why I Will Be Voting No

EDITOR, The Tribune

WEDNESDAY, March 2, 2016 has been hailed as an historic day by FNM and PLP parliamentarians, because of the passing of the four Constitutional Amendment Bills on gender equality in the legislature.

Thirty-seven of the MPs present voted in favour of the first bill. Marco City MP Greg Moss was the lone MP to reject bills two and three. Thirty-four MPs voted “yes’’ to bill four - a bill which seeks to end discrimination based on sex.

Prime Minister Perry Christie, in an address to Parliament, assured the nation that this bill has absolutely nothing to do with same-sex marriage. notwithstanding what some pundits claims to be its sheer ambiguity.

Bahamians, especially those of the religious spectrum, are ambivalent towards bill number four. They never want to rue the day of the referendum if the judicial system in the future were to legitimise gay civil unions based on the passing of bill four.

The PLP is lobbying for bipartisanship for the upcoming constitutional exercise. In 2002, then opposition Leader Perry Christie pledged his party’s full co-operation with the Ingraham-led FNM administration for the 2002 referendum. Five questions were put to the Bahamian people. The first bill concerned the removal of gender discrimination from the Constitution. Of the approximately 88,000 Bahamians who voted on bill one, a whopping 58,000 plus or 66 per cent voted “no,’’ this writer included.

I voted against it because the PLP, along with the late constitutional scholar and parliamentarian Paul Adderley, advised the Bahamian public to do so. Adderley was cogent and persuasive. His influence on me was massive. And I am not even PLP. I supported the FNM in the 2002 general election as I have done in 1997, 2007 and 2012.

Most Bahamians, particularly men who only have high school diplomas, were terrified by the prospect of the massive influx of university educated foreign males into The Bahamas after marrying Bahamian women. We were afraid that these educated foreigners would literally take over the country, relegating the uneducated among us to the back-burner. Most Bahamian women who have been educated abroad will most likely settle for a foreign male who has a college degree, rather than a Bahamian plumber, cab and jitney driver, waiter or construction worker, which is her God-given right.

Like many among us, I am apprehensive at the prospect of Bahamian men siring children with illegal immigrant women, whose only aim is to require some sort of residential status in The Bahamas. I am wary of bill number three because of this very reason.

I am not xenophobic, nor am I misogynistic. The same can be said for the overwhelming majority of those who rejected the referendum in 2002. I am as ambivalent today towards bill numbers two, three and four as I was towards the first bill in the 2002 referendum - which is due to Paul Adderley and the PLP’s mesmerising influence on my attitude towards any adjustments to the constitutional regarding citizenship.

Therefore, I will be voting “no’’ to three of the bills. The PLP thoroughly persuaded me to reject the 2002 referendum. Twelve years later, I am still fully persuaded in the PLP anti-referendum message.

KEVIN EVANS

Freeport

March 3, 2016

Comments

Economist 4 years, 3 months ago

"Most Bahamians, particularly men who only have high school diplomas, were terrified by the prospect of the massive influx of university educated foreign males into The Bahamas after marrying Bahamian women. We were afraid that these educated foreigners would literally take over the country, relegating the uneducated among us to the back-burner. Most Bahamian women who have been educated abroad will most likely settle for a foreign male who has a college degree, rather than a Bahamian plumber, cab and jitney driver, waiter or construction worker, which is her God-given right."

How sad is that?

I will be voting "yes" for the Bahamian woman.

2

SP 4 years, 3 months ago

Most Bahamians will vote no simply for the pleasure of putting a nail in Christie's coffin

0

empathy 4 years, 3 months ago

"Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me." Sometimes we get a second chance to fix a glaring mistake.

As a populace we should be ever vigilant of folks who want to manipulate us for their own agendas. In part it requires us to do our homework and analyze issues more succinctly so that we can support policies that move us forward onward and upward as a country and fight against those that do not.

The changes passed in our parliament this week gives us an opportunity to do just that and I hope Bahamians will seize their opportunities.

1

TigerB 4 years, 3 months ago

Who is to say if it passes they will implement it...they said if the gambling referendum had fail they would abolish it, but they still went ahead and made it law anyway... heck!! their words have no creditibility!

0

themessenger 4 years, 3 months ago

Re-post. "I'll say it again. Every time I think that the level of ignorance in this country can sink no lower my people always manage to surprise me. If this attitude isn't the clearest indicator of disrespect for and dismissal of our women then what the hell is??"

A no vote to spite the PLP is like throwing out the baby with the bath water. When will Bahamian men get over the fact that the days when the worth of a Bahamian woman was measured by her ability to fry fish and give comfort are over. Vote YES for our mothers, wives, sisters and daughters then next year VOTE NO an run Perry and his gangsters outta town.

1

sheeprunner12 4 years, 3 months ago

If it was as simple as your post suggests, it would have been solved since 1973

0

themessenger 4 years, 3 months ago

If we weren't as backwards as we are we would have progressed a tiny bit in the last 43 years instead of continuing to live in the dark ages. But I forget, real Bahamian men like to beat their women and keep them barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, fix my food den go fix yaself.

0

sheeprunner12 4 years, 3 months ago

If Bill#4 goes down to a "NO" vote ...... will that kill the other Bills???? ...... I need the legal experts to comment on this question ........ after all, Article 26 is the substantive article on the issue of gender discrimination

0

jackbnimble 4 years, 3 months ago

The writer is clearly being sarcastic.

0

Sign in to comment