Saturday, February 24, 2018

James passing up a great opportunity

 I offer a comment on  Winford James’ article (Express, September 4) in which he suggests that the run-off amendment infringes on his “freedom of expression” since in his opinion, having voted the first time for his favourite candidate, he is being “forced to vote a second time”. His logic completely eludes me. Perhaps a parable on wheat and chaff might be enlightening. 

Consider the voter to be someone like Mr James who finds himself seeking to buy wheat set out in nice-looking heap by different farmers competing for the sale of their produce at the market. Mr James, inexperienced as he is, or influenced by those he thinks are his friends, chooses a heap that looked good to him or that its producer fooled him into believing was of high quality. Poor Mr James  recognises the error of his choice only when he returns home and is preparing to cook when he notices that he had bought not wheat but pure chaff. He grumbles and complains to the market manager but cannot remain simply dissatisfied because he is hungry. The market manager hears his complaint, empathises with his dissatisfaction since producers habitually engaged in that type of dishonesty. 

Gracefully recognising that Mr Winford’s choice was ill-informed, gullible as he is, poor fellow to the sweet-talking vendor who looks like him, and comes from his district but who recognised Mr Winford’s complete ignorance of wheat quality and knew that Mr Winford habitually paid high prices for inferior wheat, the manager condemns all the heaps of chaff to the dustbin and offers Mr Winford a second opportunity to choose a quality heap from just two or three heaps of high quality wheat so that his hunger canw be fully satisfied.

Mr Winford is being offered an opportunity to choose good food, secure in the knowledge that each of the two or three heaps from which he has to pick comprises for the most part high grade wheat from which most of the chaff has been removed. 

Most of the people who purchase produce at Winford’s market would surely be happy that they can be assured of a quality product when they buy and could stop being unnecessarily anxious when they go to market as they are assured that they would no longer be fooled by unscrupulous producers who repeatedly try to dupe them with rum and roti over useless chaff.

I ask Mr Winford: who does he think is likely to grumble more about the market manager’s act of good faith toward the purchaser? Alas, the producers of chaff for sale cannot share the same camp with those seeking quality wheat.

Steve Smith

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