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News Article

April 13, 2012
Photographic exhibition introduced at NFIR

Standing around watching sloops sail at annual regattas could become a thing of the past. A complete package has been created, by members of the Regatta Desk at the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, to shed more light on the indigenous sport.
The new initiative is designed to educate all Bahamians through songs, jingles and photos. The exhibitions will be staged at all major regattas and the songs will be played leading up to the regattas and during the race week. Even though the first part of the new regatta outlook was seen at the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, a boat skulling competition, the official launch didn't take place until Thursday - just in time for the National Family Island Regatta.
The National Family Island Regatta (NFIR) will be held in Georgetown, Exuma, from April 22-28. All in attendance will get an opportunity to see the sport through the lens of photographer Nelson Ranger, the winner of the photographic competition. His work will be on display during the National Family Island Regatta at the Peace and Plenty Hotel, across from the regatta site.
Since there are some 19 regattas on the calendar this year, coordinater at the regatta desk Angelique McKay said different things will be done for all.
"It's because of partnerships with corporate Bahamas that we were able to introduce new initiatives to the regattas," said McKay. "We are relying on the cultural community because of all the new components. There will be a cultural spin seeing that
regattas are so much of the cultural and heritage of The Bahamas. The first regatta was the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, there we introduced skulling boats, so at the National Family Island Regatta which is the regatta in Exuma this month, we are introducing a photographic exhibition, works by an Exuma native photographer. The photographic exhibition is about regattas and it gives you an opportunity to see the races from another standpoint. You are able to get up close and personal as he captured what takes place before and during the races.
"What we are doing is trying to introduce something new to each of the major regattas during the regatta season. The regatta season literally runs from January 1 to October 14. There are like 19 regattas in between, so the next introduction will be the song competition. This is a partnership between the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture and Burns House. It is open to Bahamians only. It has to be Bahamian music, either Junkanoo, Rake 'N Scrape or Goombay."
Interested persons are asked to submit their work to the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, attention regatta desk. Application forms are available at the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture. The competition starts May 11 and the winner will be announced May 14. The competition will be judged by Bahamian artists 'KB', Colin McDonald and Funky 'D'. The winner will get to perform at the regatta as well as create a jingle for the Kalik beer brand. So far, more than 30 sailors have confirmed their participation in the annual Family Island regatta. Sloops will sail in the A, B and C classes.

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News Article

April 18, 2012
(Video) Pick up or Shut up community clean-up in Grand Bahama

Freeport, Bahamas -
Bush fires are prevalent in Grand Bahama, and after one burns itself
out, the usual sight, aside from the charred shrubbery and pine trees is
an abundance of trash, mainly bottles which have been tossed from
vehicles traveling down the roads.

A concerned citizen, Cathy
MacLeay has taken the initiative to do something about it, and along
with her own two children and a couple of their friends went out on
Sunrise Highway donned with gloves one Saturday to pick up the trash.
That first time they picked up 40 feet of bags of trash. This attracted the
attention of those passing by, and word got out, and the following week
the small group grew exponentially as a crew of divers from UNEXSO
joined the force along with other residents and friends.

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News Article

April 12, 2012
(Video) Wedding Photographers Continue Yearlong Fundraising Tour in Nassau to Benefit Human Trafficking

Johnny and Michelle Hoffner (Paper Antler Photography) continue
their yearlong

fund raising tour in Nassau this weekend raising money to
benefit the

fight against human trafficking

    

Two
Minneapolis-based photographers set goal to photograph 50 wedding in 50
states within 50 weeks raising $50,000 for victims of human
trafficking.

Minneapolis-based
husband and wife photography duo, Jonny and Michelle Hoffner, have
begun an epic year-long adventure taking them to all 50 states in just
50 weeks. The plan is to drive across the United States, photographing
one wedding per state, per week, while donating $1,000 per wedding to
the anti-human trafficking organization, She Dances...

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News Article

April 12, 2012
Junkanoo Dance and Music Workshop - April 14th

Nassau, Bahamas - You're invited to Junkanoo Dance and Music Workshop.
The National Art Gallery of The Bahamas is going to "dance to the
Junkanoo", "shake to the Junkanoo" and "jump to the Junkanoo".
Everybody join NAGB in a dance and music workshop. Learn either
Junkanoo choreography or the musical instruments that make it all
happen.

Date: Saturday, April 14th, 2012

Time: 10:00am - 1:00pm

Please RSVP by 4:00 PM Friday, April 13th, 2012...

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News Article

April 17, 2012
Rallies more important than the message

Dear Editor,

I have attended the rallies of the Free National Movement (FNM), the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) and the street meetings of the Democratic National Alliance (DNA). All of these political parties have one quest: to be the next government of The Bahamas.
The FNM has pulled out all of the stops. It has more commercials being aired than the other major parties combined. Its posters are much larger than its adversaries and it has the majority of airtime on ZNS.
The PLP has also pulled several hats out of the bag. Its rallies are jam-packed. It has the best entertainment that money can buy and it like the FNM is literally hosting major concerts and parties.
The Democratic National Alliance (DNA) seems to be a bit different. It is not having parties, but meetings and it is speaking only on the issues. Is its message falling on deaf ears though? Time will tell on May 7.
I talked to several supporters of the FNM after the party's mass rally on R.M. Bailey Park last Thursday. All I heard them discussing was color red and the thousands of people that attended. I didn't hear anything about the crime problem in The Bahamas, the unemployment problems and the social decay in our country. All I heard was talk about the red splash.
On Saturday past, when the PLP rally at Clifford Park was completed, I spoke with many party supporters. They were very enthused. As I listened to them talk all I heard was the Gold Rush and that they believe in Bahamians. There was no talk about how this gold was going to be attained and there was no talk of evidence of the belief in Bahamians.
Both the PLP and the FNM supporters seem to be more concerned about the crowd gatherings and who had the largest crowd as opposed to the message of the candidates and the leaders.
I attended the DNA street meeting on Carmichael Road and I listened to a well laid out speech by the party's leader. He spoke on a myriad of issues and solutions to move this country forward. There was no mudslinging, but rather a balanced critique on the successes and failures of successive governments.
Bahamians are inexplicably put in a trance after attending rallies of the FNM and the PLP. Most of them are only talking about numbers and the large crowd in attendance. I reiterate my stance that this election will be one for the ages. The election results on May 7, 2012 will determine our path for the next 20 years. I implore all Bahamian registered voters to please not only look at the numbers, but look at the message.
The message being delivered should be vital in your decision making process. Don't just vote for a party because you are impressed with a large gathering. Vote for who you truly believe can best solve our country's problems. Let's vote for real progress and show all these politicians that only good governance will impress us.

- Dehavilland Moss

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News Article

April 18, 2012
(Video) Put up or Shut up community clean-up in Grand Bahama

Freeport, Bahamas -
Bush fires are prevalent in Grand Bahama, and after one burns itself
out, the usual sight, aside from the charred shrubbery and pine trees is
an abundance of trash, mainly bottles which have been tossed from
vehicles traveling down the roads.

A concerned citizen, Cathy
MacLeay has taken the initiative to do something about it, and along
with her own two children and a couple of their friends went out on
Sunrise Highway donned with gloves one Saturday to pick up the trash.
That first time they picked up 40 feet of bags of trash. This attracted the
attention of those passing by, and word got out, and the following week
the small group grew exponentially as a crew of divers from UNEXSO
joined the force along with other residents and friends.

read more »


News Article

April 09, 2012
New health care facility on the way for Exuma

EXUMA, The Bahamas - The Bahamas Government in partnership with the National Insurance Board has signed a $13,9994,787 contract with Reef Construction Company Ltd. to build a 32,000 square foot Exuma Community Health Care Facility.
In his remarks at the signing ceremony Health Minister the Hon. Hubert Minnis said he was happy to be a witness to the continued improvement in the provision of health care services to the people of The Bahamas.
A large representation of the community of Exuma including Local Government representatives and other leaders also witnessed the outdoor event in Queen's Highway.
Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Hubert Ingraham, the Hon. Neko Grant, Minister of Public Works and Transport; Anthony Moss, Exuma MP; the Hon. Phenton Neymour, Camille Johnson and Colin Higgs, permanent secretaries; and other senior public officials were also in attendance. Members of the National Insurance Board and Public Hospitals Authority were also among the audience.
Minister Minnis said 12 years ago the Bahamas Government recognised that existing health care facilities were inadequate to meet the needs of a growing population, increasing tourist arrivals and expanding economic development. As a result, Dorsett Consultant Group was contracted to prepare a proposal for construction of new primary health care facilities.

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News Article

April 11, 2012
40-medal CARIFTA team returns home!

The most successful Bahamian CARIFTA Team in almost 30 years returned home to a grand reception at the Lynden Pindling International Airport last night. The team won 40 medals -- 14 gold, 14 silver and 12 bronze - to finish a strong second behind Jamaica which ended the 41st annual track and field championships with 78 total medals -- 34 gold, 25 silver and 19 bronze.
There's no doubt that there is still quite a way to go to bridge the gap between the two countries, but Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations' (BAAA) President Mike Sands is of a firm belief that they are on the right track, and with The Bahamas hosting the CARIFTA track and field event next year, that will be the perfect time to show the region that The Bahamas is indeed capable of challenging Jamaica.
The Bahamas won 40 medals this year, and next year the country turns 40-years-old as an independent nation. The time is now to make a statement, and Sands has a plan in place to do just that.
"We have to do a major talent search," said Sands. "With us hosting CARIFTA, there are definitely some areas that we are looking at. This is going to be the quick start of our rebuilding program, to ensure that we will have a good representation of field and track events next year, and ensure that our kids are performing at their best at home."
Sands said that there is tremendous talent in the Family Islands waiting to be discovered, and the BAAA has to tap into that resource pool deeply in order to make inroads in the national development program. This year, five of the CARIFTA athletes hailed from the Family Islands. Four of those five, namely Denzel Pratt, Keianna Albury, Kristina Knowles and Andre Colebrook, came from Eleuthera. The other, Tamara Myers, hails from Andros. Four of those five athletes won medals, three individually.
"It's all about being able to identify the talent and diamonds that we have in the rough," said Sands. "A lot more emphasis has to be put on the Family Islands. There are five athletes from the Family Islands on this team who are doing extremely well, but in the overall picture, this team is more than 90 percent Nassau and Grand Bahama.
"The young sprinter from Eleuthera made a meaningful contribution and there is the young man who finished third in the javelin, and there is also the Knowles girl just to name a few. We recognize that there are things that need to be done. We have to get the financial support so that we can get into the Family Islands and seek out the talent that is there," he added.
Over the years, a number of athletes who have excelled for The Bahamas, both in the junior and senior ranks, were from the Family Islands. There are athletes like Eleutheran Chris Brown, Savetheda Fynes and Troy McIntosh, from Abaco, the late Vernetta Rolle, from Long Island, and Androsian Carl Oliver just to name a few. Somehow the national program hasn't developed Family Islands as consistently as it should of, but there is little doubt that an abundance of untouched talent lies in the nooks and crannies of our islands.
Be that as it may, this year's celebration is all about this year's very strong team. The Bahamas last won 14 gold medals at CARIFTA in 1986, and hadn't won as much as 40 total medals since 1984.
What more can be said of Anthonique Strachan!
For just the fifth time since the inception of the CARIFTA, an athlete repeated as the winner of the Austin Sealey award. Triple gold medalist Strachan is also the second Bahamian to accomplish that honor, joining Laverne Eve who won the awards in 1982 and 1983.
The entire team lived up to its billing as one of the best Bahamian junior units ever assembled, and now the challenge will be if they duplicate that tremendous feat at home, inside the new Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium, next year.

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News Article

April 11, 2012
Avoid becoming a mangerial Frankenstein

Leadership seems to be topical at the moment, whether it be the impending 2012 Bahamian general election or the Diamond Jubilee, marking the sixty years since the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II and of her becoming head of the Commonwealth. But what makes a good leader?
It seems that terrible leaders are easy to find, including business "leaders" who have ruined corporations such as Enron and Lehman Brothers, damaging economies in the process. Likewise, political "leaders" have oppressed populations in the Middle East and North Africa, for example.
There is a wealth of advice and guidance on being a better leader. However, "The Terrible Leader", by Dan White, offers an irreverent, challenging and at times caustic look at leadership, by providing examples from Ivan the Terrible onwards and examining their motivations. As a leadership development consultant and global learning and organizational development director, White is well placed to apply leadership theories to actual practice. The result is a book for people who have been the victims of terrible leadership, or who want to be better leaders themselves.
White achieves this by creating his own managerial Frankenstein. This monster is autocratic, makes employees miserable, abuses his power and thrives in a blame culture. Creating this worst-case scenario of leadership allows us to first study "The Terrible Leader", learning what to avoid and illuminate what we should focus on. Key lessons include:
o Many leaders fall into the trap where they perceive their goal to be the enhancement of their career and personal success. This is not what great leadership is about.
o Leaders should take pride in what their organizations do for customers and staff. Many leaders attach too much pride in the wrong place e.g. market share.
o Leaders must avoid the misplaced belief that their staff will perform to a high standard because either they inspire them personally (hero leadership), or they are an intimidating prospect to deal with should anything go wrong (villain leadership). Donald Trump is an example of the intimidating leadership style.
A recent search on Amazon revealed that 160,194 books have been written about leadership. However, if you want a book to make you think about the importance of leadership, and the impact of bad leadership, then "The Terrible Leader" is it.

The Terrible leader by Dan White
Published by Marshall Cavendish Business
Available in hardcopy and E-Book from www.Amazon.com

*Keith Appleton JP, BA (Hons), N.Dip.M, MInstLM has extensive experience within a managerial and strategic leadership role. This is underpinned by his academic background and membership in the UK Institute of Leadership & Management.

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News Article

March 13, 2012
Clerics in politics

The recent brouhaha over Bishop Drexel Gomez's participation at a recent Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) rally raised important issues of the involvement of clerics in politics, and the relationship between church and state, more of which at a later date.
Unfortunately, these and related issues were obscured by all manner of uncritical thinking. This included slipshod editorializing by this journal in its March 8 edition entitled, "Reasonableness, family and politics".
The editorial weighed into the debate with rushed judgement and little historical context seemingly making judgements based on a simplistic reading of the daily headlines rather than a closer reading of history.
The editorial was a textbook example of making poor analogies. It attempted to support its sloppy conclusion by equating and forcing a false equivalence between the involvement of Rev. Frederick McAlpine in politics and the attendance of Delores Ingraham at political events on the one hand, with Bishop Gomez's participation at the PLP rally on the other.

Regulated
Mrs. Ingraham's attendance at such events is regulated by General Orders and long-held customs. Moreover, she is not a cleric or a religious leader. Further, this column has previously argued that clerics such as McAlpine should not be engaged in partisan politics for reasons similar for arguing that Bishop Gomez's rally attendance was an error of judgement.
This newspaper reported that Bishop Gomez stated of his participation at the political event: "I was there simply because I was invited by my brother, who was having the formal opening of his headquarters in Nicholl's [sic] Town."
The Nassau Guardian reported, "He [Bishop Gomez] pointed out that he stayed clear of political statements when he addressed PLP supporters." The paper quoted the bishop: "I felt I was the most appropriate person to make the presentation, as the older member of the family and the person who has been in the public domain."
Bishop Gomez continued: "I chose my comments very carefully. I only spoke about my brother and our family. I made no reference whatsoever to political issues or to political parties. My intention was simply to introduce him to the people at the formal opening of his headquarters."
The Guardian further reported: "Bishop Gomez said he exercised two rights when he spoke at the political event. The first being his constitutional right to speak in the public domain on public issues and the second being his religious right to comment on matters of justice and truth."
It is not the bishop's exercise of his right of freedom of speech that is being questioned. The concern is the poor exercise of his judgement in speaking at a partisan political event. Good judgement requires that one choose not only one's words carefully, but also one's appearances in both senses of the word.
Bishop Gomez also has a right to run for the House of Assembly, a right he is unlikely to exercise. Anglican priest Fr. Addison Turnquest once ran for the FNM. Though it was his constitutional right to do so, it was a poor exercise of judgement.

Duties
Constitutional rights come with duties.

This is captured in the adage that though a citizen has the right to speak, he or she does not have free reign to bogusly shout fire in a crowded theater. Moreover, our rights are exercised within the context of other obligations and the demands of prudence and restraint.
A priest has the right to go out dressed in clerical garb to nightclubs, drinking and dancing into the wee hours. But that priest risks giving confusion to the faithful and undermining his or her moral authority and the credibility of the wider communion he or she represents.
What The Guardian reported as Bishop Gomez's defense of his two rights, "his right to speak in the public domain on public issues" and "his religious right to comment on matters of justice and truth" begs for clarity.
What exactly was the religious right exercised by Bishop Gomez at the PLP rally? What matters of truth and justice did he address at the rally in light of his statement, "I only spoke about my brother and our family. I made no reference whatsoever to political issues or to political parties."
In pressing that he exercised his right to speak to matters of truth and justice, Bishop Gomez appears to be making an inference. Is the inference that his brother's candidacy as a member of the PLP will better advance the cause of truth and justice? Is this not an endorsement of his brother and the PLP?
Is it Bishop Gomez's contention that he in no way imagined that his remarks at the rally dressed as he was in clerical garb would carry any influence with voters in North Andros or The Bahamas in general? Is it his contention that his appearance would be seen as nonpartisan, even neutral, amidst a general election campaign?
All of this adds more holy confusion than blessed assurance for the faithful and observers seeking to understand Bishop Gomez's post-rally defense. The bishop's appearance at the rally in clerical garb added to the confusion for many.
Former Commissioner of Police Reginald Ferguson also had a brother in politics, Johnley Ferguson, who ran for the House of Assembly as a Free National Movement (FNM) candidate. Assuming that the former commissioner was in that post when his brother was running, would it have been appropriate for the former, dressed in his police uniform, to address a FNM rally to speak about his brother?
Of course, there is a prohibition against such a thing in General Orders. The reasons behind the prohibition are compelling. Among them, the risk of undermining one's authority and that of the institution one represents by giving the appearance of partisanship.

Doubtful
Would Bishop Gomez have spoken on behalf of his brother were he still the head of the Anglican Church in The Bahamas? It is extremely doubtful that even as the retired head of the Anglican Church that the late Bishop Michael Eldon would have spoken at a political rally to introduce a family member.
Suppose current Anglican head Bishop Laish Boyd had a sibling running for office. Would it be prudent for him to mount a partisan political platform in an election season to speak about that sibling and their family?
Bishop Gomez pleaded: "My intention was simply to introduce him to the people at the formal opening of his headquarters." In moral theology, as in normative ethics, one is judged by one's intentions and actions either of which or both of which may be flawed depending on the case at hand.
The four cardinal virtues in the Christian tradition are prudence, justice, temperance and courage.

Prudence is the virtue which helps to guide or balance the other virtues. A classic definition of prudence is the ability to "judge between actions with regard to appropriate actions at a given time". Restraint or temperance refers to "practicing self-control, abstention, and moderation".
For many, Bishop Gomez exercised neither prudence nor restraint by speaking at a partisan political rally. Before acting, a cleric must ask whether his or her actions will be an occasion of confusion for the faithful.
With the benefit of centuries of historical hindsight and chastened by its blurring of the lines between church and state, the Roman Catholic Church is clear about the restrictions on clerics and bishops involving themselves in the political process.
The likelihood of Archbishop Patrick Pinder even attending a political rally as the ordinary or as a retired archbishop of Nassau is next to nil. Any Catholic priest who went on a political platform with or without his clerical collar to speak about his sibling would make that mistake only once, if ever.
Adding to the confusion, were Bishop Gomez's comments after Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham suggested that Opposition Leader Perry Christie apologize for the attendance of the bishop at the rally. Though the prime minister's comments were not addressed to him, it was the bishop who responded in language that can only be described as bellicose.
As other religious leaders are calling for more civil dialogue and restraint, Bishop Gomez blustered that the prime minister would lose a fight with him. Is that the appropriate language and tone for the former head of the Anglican Diocese or for any religious leader?
In this entire matter Bishop Gomez has acquitted himself as a political partisan and combatant instead of as a moral leader. Many Anglicans are alarmed at his conduct. So too are many other people of good will and Christian faith.

frontporchguardian@gmail.com
www.bahamapundit.com

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