Re: The question of culture
Well said Mr. Editor, I totally agree with you. Our culture - the Fa’aSamoa is a proud culture and even though I live overseas these days, I am still Samoan because of my pride in my culture.
Like hundreds of thousands of Samoans living overseas, working and sending remittances to our dear families in the islands, we have to practice our Fa’aSamoa and culture while living under the guiding principles of another culture, it’s tough but we have to make compromises so that we can be part of the community.
Our forefathers gave us this culture (Fa’aSamoa) because everything was about honour and community, there were no outside influences dictating their lives or their decision-making. Our Fa’aSamoa when practiced in its entirety without western interference gives people justice and you won’t find poverty in the community as well.
It’s quite different now; our culture has been hijacked and manipulated by western educated people in Samoa. The palagi system which is dominating our lives right now is a system of written laws based on Christian values.
Samoan culture also puts emphasis on law and order but Samoan culture has its limitations when dealing with foreign issues like white-collar crimes. We can’t call this limitation inadequacies or discrepancies because these deceptions and manipulation of palagi written laws should be dealt with by palagi written laws - not the Fa’aSamoa.
We from overseas are law-abiding citizens (some of us) because we know the boundaries of both Fa’aSamoa and Democracy and we cannot apply the Fa’aSamoa when written laws of our adopted country are in dispute. Samoa is quite different; people that violate palagi written laws in government can get away with it because they use our Culture as a sanctuary and therefore nullifying palagi justice, which is required to uphold law and order in our modern society.
Honour comes first in the Fa’aSamoa and if a well educated and well respected member of the community begs for forgiveness, the Fa’aSamoa will not deny these perpetrator/s their honour and dignity even when palagi laws have been abused by the perpetrator/s.
Does the common man in the village council understand the findings of O.P.C Report 2010? I don’t think so and I don’t think it matters much to them, because if a man/woman asks for forgiveness with reparation; that trumps everything even crimes committed under Democratic laws.
Think electoral petitions, which was a valid procedure of the palagi system and was required by palagi laws to identify any voting irregularities during that election.
Guess what, almost all petitions were settled out of court using the Fa’aSamoa. Did any election candidate gain unfair advantage during the election period? We will never know because Fa’aSamoa was used to mediate instead of arbitrate, but the voting system is palagi system not Fa’aSamoa.
So when I see injustices and I make noises about, why do you accuse me of irresponsible behaviour when all I’m talking about is the naked truth?
Mr. Editor, when Stui calls people (you and me) “idiots” and “fools” for talking about corruption and injustices, do you call that ‘respectful’ and ‘responsible’? You are from a proud and honourable family, Stui is not just calling you and me “idiots and fools” he is desecrating the honour of our forefathers and disrespecting your family and mines too.
When Stui refuses to address injustices and corruption in O.P.C Report 2010, he’s not just thumbing his nose at law abiding citizens like you and me, he’s brazen like a hardcore criminal living outside the boundaries of law and order.
But isn’t Samoa a country of laws, which means everyone should be living under the law? Isn’t that ‘disrespectful’ and ‘irresponsibility’ Mr Editor?
When Stui refuses to address corruption in government, which is sucking millions of dollars out of the economy, he is basically denying you and me and our families the opportunity to have better lives, basically he’s ignoring our people.
Is that the main reason why we are experiencing ‘poverty’ in Samoa Mr. Editor?
Don’t you feel angry about the subtle manipulation of our culture by white-collar criminals in government and how they’re destroying the cultural values?
Why do you need to focus on a “man that hides behind a pen name” when there are more pressing issues that needs addressing?
Mr Editor, I urge you to focus on what matters most, I represent 0.0001% of the population and therefore I will always be different and should be insignificant in the eyes of the world.
Believe me there are many ways to deliver a message and if the message is about the truth and addressing corruption, then we have to overcome all obstacles and make sacrifices because evil will work overtime to hide it’s ugly face anywhere he can dig a foxhole and in Samoa.
There’s no better hiding place for white-collar criminals than the Fa’aSamoa and you know that. So how much disrespectful and irresponsibility can a violator of society’s written laws do before you can have the strength to say enough is enough?
Should we respect those who have decided to violate our rights to a better life or should we be tearing our clothes in disgust at the repulsive nature of these well-educated, well respected members of society? Should we respect them when they can’t even respect our human rights as citizens, or respect our culture and customary lands and rights, or respect the honour of our forefathers and families?
Le Mafa P