How does a new political movement of independents or a new party overcome the risk of being marginalized like others have in the past? Do Bermudians hold such a fear of the ‘other’ party being elected that when it comes to ticking the box they shy away from the alternative in favor of the ‘lesser of two evils’? What will it take for Bermudians to shed this fear and wholly support a new initiative?
As we’ve seen in our history the prospect of forming a divergence from our present political dichotomy is daunting. We’ve seen two dominant parties, a handful of elected independents and a whole lot of marginalized attempts at forming something new. Why is it that when it comes down to that final vote Bermudians get scared and stick with the status quo?
We’ve been told that not voting for the UBP will mean the PLP stays in power while voting for the UBP will mean a return to our treacherous past. In the end things don’t change and funny enough it probably wouldn’t matter which was voted in given how similar each party increasingly seems. Power and hanging onto it seem to take greater priority in our present political dungeon.
What will it take for us to break free of the historical shackles that bind us to this shallow fate? Does it need to be non-partisan? Can it be a strong independent or does it need to be numerous? Does it need to be a full fledged party filling every seat? Does it need to be primarily black, primarily white or somewhere in-between? Does it need to represent the young or the old? Does it need to pull punches or swing wildly? Does it need an Obama figure or can it be a group of well meaning people? The questions are many, the answers are few. The only certainty is that it won’t succeed if it isn’t change.
There is no Obama-like figure in Bermuda, or at least not one immediately visible (sorry Senator Marc Bean, you’re not it, either).
While there may be a few folks here who could be strong independent candidates, our current political system as it is dominated by the party machines, isn’t kind to them. But either an alliance of independents or a separate political movement of its own may get the interest of the skeptics and apathetic voters.
But it likely needs to start now and be prepared for the long haul. By that I mean stay the course of not just one election period but a few. The UBP is likely to continue in some form and the PLP not going anywhere. Over time Bermuda can indeed turn into an issues-based or idealogy-based political society instead of race-based.
“An allience of Independents or seperate political movement”. Now that boggles my mind. “Allience/Seperate”..?
I need a rum and think this one through, really.
Hey Denis, your post inspired me to write a reply – of sorts – over at Catch A Fire. I’ld appreciate your feedback.