While we prefer to utilise our editorial/viewpoint space for more important and needed topics of discussion, such as the social and economic issues plaguing our country. We had to speak to the current drama between the Premier and the Cayman Compass publisher, who in his own words stated the Premier “…put a target on my back”.
To make any sense of this situation, one must first objectively look at the situation from a position of what was said- rather than who said it. Examining the Cayman Compass’s editorial on Wednesday, 2 June 2015- the editorial board writes the following:
“Perhaps that is one reason that our leaders have been so reticent to speak out on sensational allegations of corruption within world and regional football. To adapt the infamous observation of former US Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart (who was writing about a 1964 case involving the determination of what constitutes hardcore pornography), perhaps, when it comes to identifying corruption, people in Cayman truly ‘don’t know it when they see it’ — because they have been culturally steeped in it.”
The Premier took particular issue with the portion of the editorial that mentioned “…perhaps, when it comes to identifying corruption, people in Cayman truly ‘don’t know it when they see it’ – because they have been culturally steeped in it.”
The Premier in his own words stated:
“In an editorial that is as disingenuous as it is self-righteous and hypocritical, the Compass declared that corruption is too common in Cayman and went on to sweepingly accuse the entire Cayman Islands of being culturally steeped in corruption.”
The mere fact the editorial used the word ‘they’ rather than ‘we’ directly inferred that the Cayman Compass was pointing to a specific group of people, and in the editorial’s words, “people in Cayman”- which could be further interpreted as Caymanians.
The Premier also stated this sentiment: “The sad irony is that the Cayman Compass’s attempt to equate corruption with being Caymanian is not only disgraceful and insulting to the good people of this country, but it makes light of what is a very serious issue.”
The Premier went on to state, “the Compass editorial is not only reckless, it must be interpreted as a treasonous attack on the Cayman Islands and on all the people of Cayman.”
This is the statement that caused the Cayman Compass publisher, David Legge and his wife to seek police protection and flee the islands for fear of their lives.
We do admit, the Premier did use strong words when he chose to use the word ‘treasonous’. However we are quite baffled as to why the publisher felt threatened? First of all, if the publisher did feel threatened, that threat should have been of arrest. Ironically, he claims he was being protected by the very same people (the RCIPS) that would be responsible for carrying out any arrests if he were found to be treasonous.
Mr Legge also did a radio interview with Canadian Broadcasting Company whereby he stated, “The Premier of the country in effect accused me of treason and put a target on my back”
Although the publisher made comments that he stands by his editorial. Standing and fleeing are opposite actions and we are confused as to what the Cayman Compass publisher fears, or his intentions as a result of his recent actions over the past few days.
From where we stand the actions of the publisher appear to be very disingenuous. It is more than ok to point out corruption and call for greater measures to eliminate it from society. However it is not right to generalise and associate an entire people with such acts, especially when corruption exists in every country and among every people on this earth.