Khalid Wasi

See the world with a fresh perspective

  • Pick up the mantle: Swedish activist and student Greta Thunberg at the Climate Strike in Montreal on Friday

Greta Thunberg gave the world a dose of youthful vigour. If we are fair with ourselves, most adults will admit we, too, have been there.

Political expressions from youth are often either of utopias or of catastrophes. They speak purely and innocently to problems and just as simply at solutions.

Let’s look at the Sixties and the music, with songs such as All You Need Is Love or Give Peace A Chance. Those were youthful voices uttered at the time with real belief and conviction.

Somewhere in the passage of time, youthful vigour stumbles into pragmatism.

Or is it really pragmatism or an inability to innovate or break from the shackles of tradition and norms?

There is a philosophical principle behind the maxim “A child shall lead them and show the way”, or unless you become as a child, you cannot enter the kingdom of Heaven.

Somehow in those statements there is the indication that mentally we need to have the agility to “bounce” and not become too rigid in our thinking processes, be more fluid and spontaneous.

As we get older and progress towards an eventual death, it appears that, like osteosis, begins in our bones.

Similarly, as our minds and behaviours ossify, we are as though dead long before we die.

We should be thankful for youth like Greta Thunberg, who remind us of how we used to be.

We need to see the world with a fresh perspective and be constantly renewed by responding to dynamic changes in society and the environment.

There are indeed some constants in life, some staples around which we gain some sense of stability and continuity.

Principles such as respect for elders, being charitable and respecting the property of others are not subject to modernity.

I only hope and indeed wish that the youth in our country pick up the mantle and lead a charge to make Bermuda a better world in every sense.

When listening to and watching foreign news, one should not help but be intrigued by the levels of feedback, accountability and cross-dialogue that takes place in advanced democracies, such as the United States and Britain.

While it may be logistically impractical to have every feature, we should be able to develop the requisite module for our size that achieves the same principle ideals.

At this stage of my life, that can only be a hope.

My flame of youth has dimmed; only flickers of hope remain.