(Talking ‘Bout My Generation)
We have synchronised
our watches, studied our calendars, existed in minutes, and completely
forgotten to step back and see what we've accomplished.
Jodi Piccoult, My Sister’s Keeper
did all the great leaders go? The world used to have some pretty
I uttered these words
to a friend recently and immediately felt their indictment on me, my
nation, my generation.
look around me and often wonder where the deficiency in basic care and
concern for our fellow men went. Sometimes, it feels like the human race
has deteriorated into a mad pack of selfish seekers, each rushing to
attain lofty ideals at the expense of many others.
allusion to the past is not uncharacteristic. I frequently look back to
history for instruction and inspiration. And when I get overwhelmed, (I
try not to fall to pieces and freeze), I remember my ancestry of
slavery and struggle and remind myself that the same
thousand-warrior-strong blood of resilience flows through my veins. I
sometimes forget that I am more than meets the eye. But I’m sure I’m not
the only one.
So the question is,
where did the drive and push that propelled one generation to greatness
go? Did it get lost where it should have been transferred? Has my
generation lost the essential strength gene that characterises
Jamaicans? And as a result, have we entered an age of lackadaisical
nonchalance, disspirited resignment and growing resentment in our youth?
if all of the above is true, could we be sitting on a ticking time
50 Years of
August 6 this year will mark Jamaica’s 50th
anniversary of Independence. We will celebrate an age at which most
nations boast wisdom, experience, sagacity. Jamaica, like the rest of
the world, is in the throes of an economic meltdown. We’re an amazing
island full of vibrant and colourful people. But, like everyone else, we
have our fair share of hardships and struggles.
area of great concern for the nation is youth empowerment. Most of
Jamaica’s children formally enter the education system at the age of
four years old (early childhood institutions, more commonly referred to
as ‘basic schools’.). At six, most of these children begin
primary-school education, from which they generally matriculate by age
12. Then on to high school, for another five years, sometimes seven, and
after that, for the truly lucky, tertiary education for another three
to four years. So, on average, by 23/24, ???% of Jamaica’s youth would
have left a tertiary-education institution holding a bachelor’s degree
or diploma certificate.
This article is part of a writing assignment for Voices
of Our Future a program of World Pulse that provides rigorous new
media and citizen journalism training for grassroots women leaders.
World Pulse lifts and unites the voices of women from some of the most
unheard regions of the world.