80.3 F
Charlotte Amalie
Tuesday, July 16, 2024


Dear Source,
The public has the mistaken notion that the Executive branch of government is to be blame for most, if not all the ills of our government, that is not true. Apparently a large number of persons in this community fail to understand how our republican form of democratic government is designed to operate. Our government is made up of three equal branches, namely, the judicial, the executive and the legislative.
There is a particular reason the legislative branch is called the "first branch of government," it is charged with expressing the will of the electorate through legislation, that the executive is charged with the execution of the laws and the judicial is charged with the interpretation of the laws. When a branch of government fails to fulfill their statutory duties, the system suffers and the quality of life deteriorates in the community, due to the deterioration of the quality of the government, of the deficiency of the government in delivering required services. We in the U.S. Virgin Islands are experiencing such deterioration of government and consequently the deterioration of services the taxpayers are entitle to receive. Which branch is responsible for the current state of our government? In my view, all three branches, but the primary responsibility is that of the "first branch of government," the legislature.
Due to the quality of representation we have in the legislature, that branch of government appears unable or unwilling to assume control of the government, as it is outlined in the Organic Act(acting constitution). There are Senators who have been in the Senate over a decade and have failed to advance comprehensive and progressive legislation to correct the major ills of this government, they should be held accountable. Currently the Democratic Party is in control of the executive branch and have the majority in the Senate. Previously, we have had the Democratic Party controlling the executive branch in the Farrelly-Hodge administration, for eight years, two terms. What have they as a majority party to show for their control of the government for so long? We are now experiencing the consequences of their deficient administration of our government. Do we want to continue with such type of administration? Is there any alternative? I believe if we the people stand up and search for alternatives we will find them. We the people need to seek out qualified persons in our community to represent us, based on shared values, shared political philosophy, on shared goals. It is time to stop the popularity contest and rely on the character and leadership ability of the candidates when we elect representatives. We need to elect a team of individuals who are committed to work as a team on a common platform to lead us out of the state of stagnation we find ourselves in presently. Are we up to the task of regaining control of our government? Are we willing to campaign and promote our team of candidates and the platform they represent? Remember, in a democratic society such as ours purports to be, the people get the government they deserve, because they elect their own representatives. Our representatives should reflect our views, our values, our aspirations as a people, anything less than that dooms us to continue the current spiral of decadence. I have been resisting the cynicism that has been afflicting so many of our residents, to the extent that many have chosen to flea rather than stay and fight for what is right. Only the courageous deserve success, only the faithful deserve victory, only the hopefuls are entitle to the prize. I invite all persons of goodwill to join with me to be a part of the movement that seeks solutions rather than remain with those that perpetuate the problems. May God-Allah give us the courage as we exercise our faith and in unity seek to overcome the present state of depression in our community. I invite all persons of goodwill to join me in the Citizens Coalition for Better Government, a civic organization seeking more citizen's participation in government.
J.J. Estemac

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