A knife in the heart; a heart-warming gesture

A knife in the heart; a heart-warming gesture

Thursday, January 16, 2020

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Two items of news carried in yesterday's edition of this newspaper have gone straight to the heart in portraying, at one and the same time, the evil that men do and the goodness of which people are capable.

We feel deeply with the principal of the Windward Road Primary School in Kingston, Mr Noel Pennant, who described as “a knife in a heart” last Thursday's theft of the school's bus from its compound, after almost 20 years of scraping together money for its purchase.

Mr Pennant said the institution had held numerous fund-raising events to buy the Toyota Coaster bus, licensed 0074HG, after a plan hatched in 1998 and supported by students, many of whom have long since left the school.

The bus was used to transport students and staff to events and competitions and cut down significantly on the cost of transportation, which made it a vital component of school life.

“…For it to be taken from us like that, it is really just a hard case for us to be bearing,” Mr Pennant bemoaned. “…Our students are in distress, our parents are in distress, our teachers are in distress, our past students are distressed; just about everybody associated with the school is distressed because of the theft of that bus,” he lamented.

What do we do with such scoundrels who could so easily deprive a struggling and trying school of such an important facility for students of the community? We certainly hope that individuals who have information which could lead to the apprehension of the culprits will inform the police forthwith.

After that dastardly news, we are encouraged by the action of the Iranian people, which forced the authorities there to make several arrests over the shooting down of a Ukranian passenger plane, killing all 176 people on board.

Despite their personal agony over the killing of their top military general, and the trauma over the downing of the plane, the people found the courage to demand accountability of their leaders who at first dismissed allegations that an Iranian missile was responsible for the disaster.

Through people power, and in the face of mounting evidence, officials acknowledged three days after the incident that Iran's Revolutionary Guard had shot down the plane by mistake, as the force braced for a possible military confrontation with the United States.

Our readers know we don't support war as a means of resolving disputes between and among nations. Too many innocent people have to suffer for the actions of a few, as in the case of the 167 passengers and nine crew members of the ill-fated plane, which was en route from Tehran to the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called the incident “a painful and unforgivable” mistake and promised that his Administration would pursue the case “by all means”.

We wonder if the people had not stood their ground whether this admission would have been made. The lesson in that is that citizens who care about their country must be prepared to stand up, even against the most tyrannical leadership.

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