By lex Quermorllue
Excepting for nuances in messaging style, the pitching themes of the various candidates for President in the upcoming elections have become so similar, it’s almost impossible to distinguish their strategies for electoral victory come October, 2017: Jobs & more jobs, affordable education for all, fighting & eliminating corruption in government, infrastructure building, improved healthcare delivery for all, increased food production, etc. etc.
These themes in themselves are all great for the country; but there’s a problem. They are NOT new. Former President Samuel K. Doe came out swinging with his Green Revolution to wean Liberia off the near 100% dependency on imported rice – our staple food; 19th President Dr. William R. Tolbert, Jr famously and eloquently declared war against ignorance, disease, and poverty – the bedrock of societal decay still pervasive today. Taken together, anyone paying minimal attention can easily conclude that the Liberian people have heard the music being played by today’s politicians before.
The Nation’s recent history calls for Bold Leadership, to dismantle and squelch all symbols and rhetoric of the “Us vs. Them” divisive mentality simmering just beneath the body-politic of our Liberian society. A great starting point is our National Motto: The Love of Liberty Brought US Here! This motto feeds into a discriminatory narrative against the vast majority of Liberians making up the fabric of our great country.
I challenge the present political landscape to inspire a paradigm shift in our political discourse to begin the arduous task of an all-inclusive nation building enterprise. Crafting a new motto that embraces and recognizes all segments of society will be a giant step towards healing the body-politic and ensuring that we boldly, and courageously continue the march to a sustained peaceful co-existence in the only country we can truly call HOME.