BASSETERRE, St Kitts, December 27, 2007 – Dr Denzil Douglas has expressed concern about slipping moral and societal values and has called on his government and members of the society to return to those days of caring and respect. He also called on youths to shun negative influences.
“I urge that we reach back to the days when there were far sharper lines between acceptable and unacceptable behaviour, when respect for self and respect for others was the order of the day, when rules and regulations played far more important roles in our consciousness, when we understood that there was behavior that was public and there was behaviour that was private, when the behavior of every child was the concern of every adult, when parents and grandparents and neighbours and strangers constantly talked to children about right and wrong, when children went to Sunday School and adults were in the Sunday schools teaching, guiding, shaping the children – and therefore the nation,” he said during his Christmas message.
The prime minister made a special appeal to the church community to ensure that their services capture the appeal of young people and lead them back to Sunday school and to leading youth services so that they may lead exemplary, wholesome and productive lives.
“We must reach back to the time when we were more tolerant, respectful and mindful of each other, because those habits and those practices are the bright shining star that we need, the bright shining star that we seek, the bright shining star that holds the promise and the power to guide us, as our nation forges ahead towards our twenty-fifth anniversary of independence,” he said.
He noted the challenges of crime and violence, especially among the young people and used the opportunity to call upon the youths to shun negative influences and practices.
He told them that they all had “vast potential” which the nation needed in this “critical period of its transformation”.
Douglas not only called on society to give but also said his government would also lead in this respect.
“I also address you in a spirit of commitment – a spirit of commitment to demand more of you, and more of myself, more of the opposition, and more of my government, more of the wealthy and more of the poor, so that we may all be guided, not only on Christmas Day, but every day from this point forward in Matthew 1:23 which explains what the birth of Christ, and therefore, Christmas, really means.”