Over the last few days since the violent rioting and mayhem of “RETRUMPLICANS” in the capital of the United States of America, a few loud DLP radio media personalities, primarily on Kari FM and despised DLP social media propagandists, have been attempting to draw a deceitful, wild and unfounded comparison with the personalities of the Leader of the United Workers Party of Dominica with the individual with a narcissistic personality disorder, who currently occupies the high office of President of the United States. The offensive comparison is made with the patriotic conduct of the opposition forces in Dominica vs the outrageous, disgraceful, contemptible, unlawful, riotous, mutinous mob of racist bigots, dogmatists thugs, and a bunch of white supremacist “HAITRIOTS,” who engaged in a seditious act incited as it were by the President and members of his government.
According to the pious and self-righteous DLP propagandists, who seem to thrive on a diet of lies, deceit, deception, and manipulation of truth in creating an alternative socio-economic-political universe in Dominica, “the same ones who are pretending to be disgusted with Trump’s flaming of the fire the burned in Washington, are the very ones who have been doing the same thing in Dominica…….they claim that anarchy almost reigned in Dominica because the Leader of Opposition– who is unflatteringly described as an “egomaniac fool,” could not get himself to accept defeat following the elections in Dominica in 2014 and 2019. They suggest that the claims of Hon. Linton and UWP mirror that of Trump’s insistence on his electoral victory, allegations of massive electoral fraud and his refusal to accept defeat, citing that a year has now elapsed since the disturbances prior to our election in December 2019 and to date no one has been charged with treason neither has the Opposition Leader conceded defeat.
Listening to the Senior Counsel and others on Kari FM Heng today is disheartening and saddens the patriotic spirit, aware that the comparisons being made are false and are only made to further advance the narrow, malicious, partisan interest of the DLP, especially the outrageous attempt to find similarities between Hon Lennox Linton and President Donald Trump.
Trump vs Lennox
Without entertaining a detailed description of the character or lack thereof of the US president, it suffices to refer to him as an abnormally sadistic, selfish, egoistic, racist individual suffering from a narcissistic personality disorder with a severe mental imbalance, that renders him incapable of attending to any issue beyond his own personal need for recognition and adulation. Trump is a self-loving, unpatriotic leader, who promotes hate and violence. He is in a league of his own and cannot be compared.
On the order hand, the Leader of Opposition of Dominica is an honourable gentleman with unquestionably high integrity, who holds the best interest of the small developing Island state of Dominica close to his heart. As Joshua Francis, the then deputy leader of the United Workers Party reaffirmed prior to the last general election, Hon. Linton is a success-driven leader, who only desires to make Dominica a real success. He has a futuristic vision and intends to turn his ideas into real-world success stories for Dominica. He is intelligent, creative, and innovative. He is a deep and conscientious thinker, who generates unique ideas. Linton has impeccable decision-making skills and does not fear being held accountable. His credibility is intact and he is always prepared to take a little more than his share of the blame and little less than his share of the credit.
Mr. Linton is a good orator with a deep passion to lead Dominica into a better place- the best place to live, work, and to enjoy life. He is an embodiment of integrity laced with confidence in doing well. Therefore, one begs fellow Dominicans not to entertain the chatter of our DLP detractors who are seeking to compare the Leader of Opposition to the lunatic President of the United States. Although our Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit exhibits dictatorial tendencies, inefficiencies in governance, engages in questionable corrupt-like conduct and repeatedly lies to the people of Dominica like President Trump, this writer hesitates to suggest that PM Skerrit is like Trump. In fact, he is not. He may not be a principled and transparent leader who cherishes good and accountable governance but he is not a horrible person as Trump. So please, do not compare Lennox with Trump either. Don’t. That is grossly unfair and offensive.
Events in Washington DC vs Dominica
Now, let’s compare the socio-political realities that the overzealous DLP pundits and propagandists are citing as similarities between the situation in the United States and the Commonwealth of Dominica. What we witnessed in Washington DC a few days ago was the culmination of months of open incitement, unnecessary provocation, presidential agitation, and violence baiting of lawless, white supremacist thugs fueled by no other than the president of the United States. Just imagine! It was the head of the executive branch of the US government who was encouraging insurrection and disorderly conduct of a few misguided souls. He summoned his supporters to go on a rampage in the political capital of the United States to attack members of the senate and legislature seeming already procured the conspicuous and suspicious absence of an untrustworthy “law enforcement” in the vicinity.
The comparisons of what occurred in DC on Wednesday, 6 January 2021, the nature of the struggle and the methodology of raising awareness by the opposition parties fighting against injustice, inequality, inefficiency, bad governance, and a myriad of socio-economic-political ills in Dominica is equivalent to comparing different planets in an alternative universe. Any attempt to do so is a political stretch from Earth to Pluto.
What the world witnessed in The United States was a full-fledged riot inside the Capitol building. It was an attempted but failed coups d’é·tat,while the joint-session of Senate/Congress was considering and accepting the confirmed votes from states to confirm the election of a new president and the Vice-president. This fits squarely within the classical definition of the crimes of incitement and insurrection- shamefully orchestrated by the president of the United States himself.
In the US, lawless right-wing, “RETRUMPLICANS” thugs were encouraged for months based on lies, manufactured conspiracies, and unsubstantiated fairytales by an unhinged president and his supporters. This so-called move to reclaim the country from the people, who freely and fairly expressed their will via the ballot, was always bogus. The American people have spoken clearly, loudly, freely, and fairly. The courts and socio-political institutions have spoken expeditiously, loudly, and forcefully. The judiciary acted in haste and dealt with matters that came before it with utmost dispatch.
For weeks and minutes leading up to the event, the president used his bully pulpit and his social media accounts to taunt, lie and fabricate stories about a fraudulent election that he claims he won contrary to all evidence that he lost. Wednesday, 6 January 2021 was a culmination of four years of lies and incendiary messages via Twitter aimed at inciting rage, division, and violence in the United States. Clearly, the election was not stolen from the president. It was not. This was only a thought in his dangerous, unstable, and undeveloped mind.
The conduct of the hoodlums, who showed up in Washington DC was not a proud exercise of people’s power in a democracy. This was thuggish and it has absolutely no place in a democracy. Those who attacked the US capital were not representing the true voice of the people. They were motivated by hate, prejudice, lies, and not love for country. There was nothing patriotic about the violent riot of drugged MEGA hooligans.
Unfortunately, this has never been the case in Dominica over the last 20 years. It has not happened in Dominica after an election, where the people are frustrated with unfair election results, and recurring undue and inordinate delays by our courts in rendering justice.Currently, Dominicans are still awaiting the start of a civil matter filed by a few patriots following the 2014 general election. A petition filed following the December 2019 election has been struck out and is yet to be entertained by the ECSC of Appeal unlike the 62 law suits filed by the president’s unethical and unprofessional legal team that have all been dealt with utmost dispatched in the US court system.
Moreover, what we saw in the US was “allowed” chaos. For had it been a peaceful Black Lives Matter (BLM) protest for justice and equality – “law enforcement” would have not failed to use the cover of the law with tear gas, guns, and bullets to scatter and disperse the crowd with full force-trigger happy shooting maiming and killing. The outcome would not have been the same. Most certainly, as Senior Minister Austrie boasted on KairiFM, the Skerrit’s police force in Dominica would not have allowed such a reasonable small mob to do so much damage to parliament and the reputation of the country. It would not happen unless the masses…not the fringe were on the streets protesting in earnest.
The Leader of Opposition in Dominica is leading an opposition that is repeatedly oppressed, prosecuted, and persecuted by the militarized police force of the DLP administration. A force that is more interested in defending the government against the people unlike the federal police, who appeared to have allowed a few crazy people on the fringe to attack the entire government. In Dominica, neither the government nor the police cares about the plight of Dominicans. They are only focused on keeping the status quo of power. This continues to frustrate the citizens, who have repeatedly been cheated of their will, votes, and resources over many years, and who are only interested in good, transparent, and accountable governance and the development of the country.
Unlike the situation in the United States, from way back on 29 May 1979 to 7 February 2017 and December 2019, the peace-loving people of Dominica have taken to the streets not to undermine democracy as was done in Washington DC but to enhance and protect it when the respective DLP governments disrespected it. It is only after the government unleashed the police force, who unjustly confronted and manhandled the poor people, who were peacefully exercising their right to protest that limited/controlled violence ensues in reaction- thereby descending in chaos. In any event, in each of the above occasions, the people were justifiably outraged about the action of the administration.
On February 7, 2017, the UWP opposition was holding a lawful meeting in the streets of Roseau with the goal of airing public concerns of bad governance and lack of confidence in the 17-year-old DLP government- as all decent, civic-minded citizens normally would be so engaged in a democratic society. This peaceful meeting was not a riot and there was no intention of the people gathered to cause harm to anyone or property. There was no such intention to overthrow the Skerrit government by a music truck contrary to the procedural and violent coup conducted in the United States. The UWP had no such intent as Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit and his gang have maliciously advocated the point of maliciously prosecuting the Leader of Opposition. On that day, Mr. Linton was merely addressing a crowd of supporters and requested to continue delivering his speech, while the police prematurely attempted to bring an end to a legal gathering. Mr. Linton was not preaching violence and the people at the meeting were very peaceful and respectful of the police. However, once the police started overreacting, some elements within the city reacted angrily, which unfortunately caused some damage to property. Later, Mr. Linton was initially accused of planning a coup against the DLP administration with a music truck but was subsequently charged with incitement of a tame statement – motivated by political reasons. It is now approaching four (4) years and the matter is experiencing a slow excruciatingly painful death in the Magistrate court.
The DLP fears Mr. Linton. UWP supports Mr. Linton and remains grateful for his efforts in bringing change to Dominica as a sincere and reasonably honest politician. He has been wrongly accused, charged and is being unfairly prosecuted by a handsomely paid imported SC from Trinidad for charges of sedition, attempting to overthrow a corrupt government with a music track at huge expense to the state. The DLP government blames him for everything. It has repeatedly tried to prevent him from speaking in our parliament. Repeatedly accusing him falsely, yet he keeps standing and fighting with and on behalf of the people. His spirit is not broken and therefore his followers continue living in hope because in spite of all attempts to demonize, prosecute and ostracize him, he stands strong and therefore his followers and Dominicans can continue living in hope, proud of Mr. Lennox Linton and what he has done and continues to do.
The fact remains, although the UWP has been unsuccessful at the polls in 4 consecutive elections, and has challenged a few election results before the courts, we have always enjoyed the peaceful transfer of power in Dominica. The UWP opposition has always acted within the confines of the law, with a clear understanding that democracy is indeed a fragile affair but necessary to maintain -something that the great United States can learn from the responsible opposition in this small Island Banana Republic as its beacon of democracy darkens in shame.
Clearly, neither Trumpism nor Skerritism will prevail. Both the American and Dominican democracies are currently under severe stress tests by their respective leaders to a varying degree but democracy in its true form or even in a deformed state is resilient and will survive.