It’s easy to com­plain

For all those look­ing for a bet­ter to­mor­row, here comes the hard­est part.

The Malta Independent on Sunday - - DEBATE & ANALYSIS - Ti­mothy Alden

For all those who know things can be bet­ter, that stan­dards can be higher, that the coun­try can be health­ier, fairer and more rep­re­sen­ta­tive, a chal­lenge lies be­fore you. Your dream can only come through if you fight your cor­ner.

Malta and Gozo are cry­ing out for you. A can­dle burns in­side you; it is a flame which has been sup­pressed. In your own way, you have seen the lit­tle in­jus­tices of life, of coun­try and sys­tem. Be­fore this over­whelm­ing ma­chine, which some call a sys­tem, and which oth­ers call life, you feel help­less.

The great­est pos­si­ble in­jus­tice, how­ever, is that you do not even try to con­trib­ute to the so­lu­tion. It is an in­jus­tice not only to your­self but also to oth­ers. Do not look only at oth­ers to save you, though you are not alone.

Many peo­ple have found op­por­tu­nity and suc­cess in the last few years, but a great many oth­ers have been left be­hind. I am one of those peo­ple that have been left be­hind, and I have spo­ken up so that I am not ig­nored.

I have been made to feel like I do not be­long – be­cause to be­long, I need to pledge my life­long al­le­giance to one big party or an­other, and to never ques­tion that things could in fact be done bet­ter than the leader’s vi­sion. To join one party and fol­low one leader, there is an unwritten rule that I must hate the other.

Per­son­ally, I just want some re­spect. I want to be treated equally in spite of my be­liefs, and to have a bit of peace and quiet. I do not want to have to leave my coun­try to look for it – this is my home. Right now, I feel like a per- se­cuted un­der­ground mi­nor­ity for be­ing an in­de­pen­dent thinker. If you feel the same, please speak up. If you do not feel the same, speak up too, be­cause oth­er­wise no­body will know what needs fix­ing.

Speak up in such a way which ex­cludes no­body, or we will not find that con­sen­sus on how to move for­ward and fix things. Let us agree to find the so­lu­tion to­gether; all of us – all Mal­tese and Goz­i­tans and for­eign res­i­dents.

I am open to talk­ing with you, who­ever you are. If you are un­happy, some­thing is wrong, is there any­body out there, you won­der. The an­swer is yes, you mat­ter, and democ­racy gives you as much right as any Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment to be heard.

If you do not speak up, if you do not make your­self heard, then the world will be less for it. If you have an ideal, fight for it with em­pa­thy. It is easy to com­plain. The hard­est part is to do some­thing about it.

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