Students told vote counts

| 10/05/2009

(CNS): Less concerned with who they gave their ‘X’ to than ensuring they all went to the polls on 20 May, candidates at the Vision 3 debate on Thursday evening  at UCCI told the students that their votes were important and they needed to become part of the democratic process. Sandra Catron told them not to underestimate the power of one and of their vote. “People around the world have died for the right to vote,” she said. “I don’t care if you don’t even take a shower before you go, but just go and vote.”

Along with Catron the young audience heard from a panel of candidates comprising Derrington Miller (Indep GT), Justin Woods (Indep BT), Bernie Bush (Indep WB), Jonathan Piercy (UDP GT), Eddie Tompson (Indep GT), Burns Conolly (Indep GT), Oswell Rankine (Indep NS) and Rolston Anglin (UDP WB). There were no members of the PPM present although an invitation had been extended to them.

During the evening the nine candidates discussed their reasons for running, the environment, the critical issues facing the communities, health care, the constitution, the challenges they have faced in their lives and the disconnect between young people and politics. Offering some food for thought, all nine candidates presented some interesting thoughts about how young people could become more engaged. From bringing civics back to the curriculum, as noted by Conolly, to going to talk to them on their turf, as Piercy said, the candidates were all very keen to see young people become more involved in politics. Above all, however, each one spoke about the importance of their vote on Election Day.

Bernie Bush, who has been working with young people in the district of West Bay for almost 30 years, said he saw himself as a bridge between generations and, agreeing with Catron, he said they should cast their vote for someone. He warned them not to vote against someone because they are female or young but to vote on merit. ”Vote for someone and vote smart. Don’t listen to the rhetoric. Look at what people have done, look attheir track records,” he said adding that those from West Bay might want to vote no 2 there, to enormous applause.

Catron said they should never underestimate the power of one, and she warned them not to be disenfranchised because they saw themselves as only one. “You have a lot of power,” she added saying it was time for change. She said she didn’t care who they voted for so long as they did. “I am but one person and I don’t think you should listen to the rhetoric that one person can’t achieve anything.” Catron said that every day individual people are doing extraordinary things that make a real impact.

Derrington "Bo" Miller told the students he had enjoyed the debate and said he would like to come back whether he was elected or not. He told them that as much as he would like be 21 again he would not want to trade youth for his experience, which was what he wanted to share with his country. Offering his thoughts on the party system, he said that given there were 15,000 voters and as little as 2000 party members he wonder why any voter would join the 2000 when they could join the 13,000 by voting independent.

Also running in George Town, Eddie Thompson said that he believed Cayman was involved in an awakening and he had seen a lot of young people getting more involved in community. He said to them to makes sure they voted for the right reasons and not because people were friends or family but because they as voters felt the person could do the job properly. He said that no politician could be all things to all people and they needed to listen. “I’m welcoming any ideas for discussion,” he said. “We can’t be all things to everybody but what I do promise is, I will do the best I can to get what is right for these islands."

Rolston Anglin told the students that every election is important because democracy is important and they should get involved. He said he hoped in the future he would either be nominating or voting for someone in the room. When it came to making his bid for their vote, he said he had something to offer but that was a judgement for people to make. Above all, he said, his job as a politician was to listen and hear. “If you don’t you can’t be a good representative,” he said. “Exercise your vote, think wisely and make your voices known.”

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Category: Election 2009

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The PPM could have sent at least 1 person. The debate was over at the time they started their lunch (8pm).

    Come on PPM – you can do better. UDP also had a meeting that night in WB. So Rolston could not stick around but at least he showed up!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Come on people PPM has the youth atheart,the old at heart,the young at heart ,even the unborn. But dont you all remember that was the night they launched their manifesto which covered all ages get a copy and read I will deliver one to you all if you need it .Maybe your meeting was planned for that night as you all know they could not attend . I SMELL UDP ALL OVER THIS ONE .Young people just  remember one thing everything that glitters is not GOLD .There is alot glittering on UDP side but it is just as false as my grandmothers false teeth . 

  3. Truthfinder says:

    Well I can’t speak for all but Sandra works with youths all the time. I know she did several years of CISA and Junior Achievement, she donated a movie night at her place of business where the kids could do summer camps and food for free, she also did cyber camp and collected books/school supplies for many years for the kids. She has spoken at the middle school for career day on a number of occassions as well.

    So yea, some other candidates may have done stuff over the years that demonstrates their willingness.

  4. Know Better says:

    With the exception of Bernie….I hope these people don’t think that just because they show up a week before election for a forum that young people will believe they care about the youth.  Where have they been all along??  Stop taking us for fools!!

  5. Anonymous says:

    That’s right – PPM demonstrated by their acts how much they care!

  6. One Person? says:

    JP might as well being in WB after that load of caca I heard him with at the forum. What was he talking about a futbol team for?

    Too bad he did not bring the script that evening.

    I really liked the fact that UCCI did not give people a chance to use their scripts at this forum.  Really separated the real players from the wanna be players!

    Jon – you need more time to grow up and hopefully get away from Ellio and his grapple on you. We don’t even understand that but learn to think on your own 2 feet.

  7. CaymanLeamon says:

    PPM doesn’t think the youth of this country are important?

    They have 10 candidates including 9 MLAs — and they couldn’t send a single person to represent them to the youth of this country?

    Cry Shame!


  8. CaymanianFirst says:

    Dear CNS:

    "…the young audience heard from a panel of candidates comprising Derrington Miller (Indep GT), Justin Woods (Indep BT), Bernie Bush (Indep WB), Jonathan Piercy (UDP WB)…"

    As a point of clarification, Jonathan Piercy is a UDP member for George Town, not West Bay.

    CNS: Apologies to Mr Piercy for the slip. I’ll change it in the copy.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Maybe you should read the post more carefully – it says the BT PPM members!

    Gosh – these parties sure have a lot of ignorant people to vote for them. You can’t even read!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Its very poor that the incumbent govnt could not send ONE representative to the youth forum, which was well attended by young voters.

    The UCCI debate started at 6pm – the PPM Manifesto Launch did not start until 8pm so it would have been possible to send someone, anyone – even if the PPM rep excused themselves a little early to make the 8pm meeting.  

    How pathetic PPM. 




  11. Anonymous says:

    Where was the PPM in all this? No where to be seen. Also note that the PPM candidates for BT did not attend the Rooster debates (except for Chuckie).

    • Young Caymanian Voter says:

      In regards to PPM not attending the Rooster debates, that is simply not true. I listened to those debates as often as I could and know for a fact that in addittion to Chuckie, at least the following 4 attended…Arden, Joey, Kurt and Alden.

      • Anonymous says:

        It was the UCCI VISION 3 FORUM. If you had read the article closer you would have seen that it was not Rooster. And, as reported, PPM was not there. Again!!!!

      • A Very Intelligent West Bay UDP Supporter says:

        This was Vision 3 debate not a Rooster debate. So I guess you’re wrong again in your defense forPPM.

  12. Independents' Day says:

    Derrington Miller….Offering his thoughts on the party system, he said that given there were 15,000 voters and as little as 2000 party members he wondered why any voter would join the 2000 when they could join the 13,000 by voting independent.

    That is such a significant point! Let’s take this Country back from the grip of the two bullying parties. They are having a popularity contest right now. Whoever can shout the loudest, or perhaps who weighs the most will get the prize.

    Come on fellow voters we can do better than this. Don’t you see they are making a mockery of us. The amount of money the two parties have spent on this Campaign could have built houses for the trailer home occupants and made significant improvements to George Town Primary School.

    Alden should be ashamed of himself to deny that school the facilities they so need and then turn around in a matter of weeks and put on the most extravagant and frivolous political campaign to get re-elected.

    Shame on you Alden; Shame on you Kurt; I am a member of PPM and I am so hurt and disappointed by how you all have just blotched everything. So much started..not much finished…but you are sure going out in a BLAZE OF GLORY.  I would like to know the true cost of this re-election campaign but then again that would be way too much to expect from people who could not produce audited accounts for the Government for the entire four years that they were in charge.

    You could have done so much better…we expect this kind of behaviour from Mac and his stooges but not from you. So sad this is, many of us in this country are in mourning, we’re mourning the loss of our Beloved Isles Cayman.

    You should all be taken into Heroes Square, stripped and flogged!