Caymankind: Don’t believe the hype

| 19/05/2020 | 315 Comments

Expatgirl writes: Cayman has long been a hotbed of anti-expat feeling and the rhetoric in the wake of coronavirus has only served to amp this up to new levels. Comments and posts on social media see increasingly vocal comments which for the most part call for anyone who has an alternative opinion to those promoting anti-expat feeling to “leave if you don’t like it”.

One example is the recent publication of an article (in the Cayman Compass) by human rights law specialist James Austin-Smith, who quite rightly pointed out (in his role as a specialist on the matter) that the government had not evidenced that they had followed the correct protocols and paperwork to enact some of the laws restricting movement and advising them gently that this could lead to court-based challenges to their legality.

For some reason unknown to most citizens who believe in fair and just democratic rule, several Caymanians then proceeded to attack the lawyer, the newspaper that published the article, and of course anyone who agreed with the lawyer’s viewpoint in the comments.

“Rethink” and “Leave, go and live somewhere else” comments were rampant and seemingly the only response that some could think of, although one man went as far as to say, “Scrap everything, sack them, we don’t need human rights here.”

Quite the bold statement and one which invites curiosity as to how that person might really react if there were no human rights on the island. Presumably the rights to equality, freedom from slavery, freedom from discrimination, freedom of speech, a fair public hearing, to be considered innocent before proven guilty (I could go on) are all unnecessary (unless you are a selfish expat, in which case, go somewhere else).

Seemingly, the same applies to the need to hold the government accountable in times where laws restricting human rights and civil liberties (albeit for the best of reasons) should be handled carefully.

Many of the comments were focused on those who question the lockdown on beaches and that this is hardly the time to care about going to the beach. Of course, those moaning about not being able to fish or use their boats are exempt from such criticism, presumably because they are Caymanian and those wanting to go to the beach are not (at least in the minds of those writing the comments).

I cannot believe that there are no Caymanians who miss the beach, who miss the soothing of the water and the release from the hardships of a day’s work when walking along watching the sunset. Those who do not don’t realise the gift that they have here, which is presumably why they sold it all to developers.

Equally there are expats missing fishing and the emotional and physical release it gives them. Everyone is suffering in different ways. Everyone is impacted in different ways. Everyone has fears and dreams and hopes, but not everyone is unkind. This is not top trumps of suffering. This is people struggling to find their way in a world turned upside down in a matter of days.

Back to that article. At no point was Mr Austin-Smith criticising the government concerning the need for restrictions in order to curb the spread of coronavirus, in fact quite the opposite – he specifically stated that he was full of praise for the government’s swift actions and response.

All he did was give them a heads-up that they should be transparent about how they both chose (based on the need to stop the spread of the virus as opposed to just allowing a day off for essential workers on a Sunday or other reasons not connected with the prevention of the spread of the virus) and enforced those restrictions in law.

To date, the government have still not produced the paperwork on the hard curfew on a Sunday or the restriction of marine activity, despite having been asked for it for weeks by all of the local news media even before Mr Austin-Smith wrote his article.

Truth is not always mutually exclusive of other truths. Did the government do a good job at the beginning of the coronavirus scare? Absolutely I believe they did. Did they follow the correct protocols for enacting restrictive laws that infringed on human rights? Probably.

Should they have to prove that they did? If any Caymanian does not think that they should provide evidence that they have kept their promise to uphold the Constitution of the Cayman Islands as elected officials of the government and servants of the people, then it is they who are short-sighted and they who do not have the best interests of the island at heart.

So yes, they should. And you should be grateful that someone was willing to put their reputation and job at risk to highlight the issue. That’s what being a professional is – acting ethically, with integrity and doing the right thing regardless of the potential personal implications. You might want to take a leaf out of his book.

An example from a work colleague and supposed friend in a post on Facebook: “Time to tell ppl about they backside when they try to paint us all with the same brush… Time to embrace our history and culture before it disappears completely because ppl have already started rewriting that for us and we’re letting it happen. The more we keep our head down the more they’ll be pushed down.”

Who exactly is pushing your Caymanian head down? As a Caymanian, you have all the opportunities – you get free education from the government, you get scholarships and sponsorships to support further learning, you get first dibs on any job that you are qualified for, you get to pay no stamp duty on your first home, you can borrow from your pension to buy property, and you are the only ones that can hold positions of power in the government.

Let me clear, I am not stating that this should be any other way. But what I am saying is that if you are not lazy or ill you should be succeeding. As in all countries around the world, there are those that want to work and those that do not, those that are too ill to work and those that require assistance.

Nowhere, even a beautiful tropical island, is spared a proportion of the population that fall into these categories. And just as not all Caymanians are lazy or uneducated, not all expats are trying to destroy the Caymanian way of life. How about not tarring expats with the same brush?

So for the record, expats want both Cayman and Caymanians to succeed too. We actually want the same things we all want at a human level: a safe environment, a loving community, a strong and compassionate leadership, a fair and equal society and laws that are upheld for and by all.

So why can’t we build a community together? No expat is coming here and wanting to exclude or hold back Caymanians. Most people know, and it has been shown in a multitude of studies, that diversity brings success in both business and life.

A personal example is that a Caymanian work colleague, who used to work for me but has since moved up and onto bigger and better things in the company, recently invited me to her college graduation as a thank you for supporting her in both work and in her studies.

She is a Caymanian who exhibits pro-activity, independence and a strong work ethic. She has two businesses as well as her main job. She did an amazing amount of hard work, putting in the hours at class, studying at home, and she has accomplished so much for herself and continues to push towards higher goals both in education and at work.

I really could not have been prouder of her as a friend and colleague and was so excited to share that graduation experience with her and her family. It was simply wonderful to celebrate her achievements together. I wish it could always be like this, but alas, it seems like a rare moment right now.

The most public and official example of the anti-expat sentiment is the recent decision by the CIG to make work permit holders pay for their isolation for two weeks at a cost of approximately $2,000 should they leave the island and then wish to return. Caymanians and permanent residents still have to quarantine if they leave island and return, but the government will pick up the tab.

The government is, of course, free to act as they please and many Caymanians are in support of this measure, stating that if employers want them back so badly then they should foot the bill.

It seems to have escaped their attention that employers of work permit holders are often businesses owned by Caymanians who have been unable to find a suitable Caymanian worker in their industry (as most of those eligible to work were already working before the virus hit) and have resorted to employing a work permit holder.

Someone said on the article comments that they hoped that all the negative comments would be being kept along with notes of the names. Presumably because keeping a list of dissenters and then black-marking or black-listing them with the intention of making their lives as difficult as possible and then kick them off island as soon as the situation allows seems like a well-worn path that has worked excellently for other authoritarians in the past.

You’re right, you don’t need human rights with this kind of list.

Some comments on the article say that work-permit holders should just stay away if they cannot afford to re-enter the country because Cayman doesn’t need them anyway.

One would be curious to know what Cayman would look like if there were no expats. Who would rent their properties? Who would serve the drinks and food in restaurants once they re-open? Who would stock the shelves at the supermarkets? Who would do all the beauty treatments? Who would be nurses and doctors and engineers,?

That is not to say that Caymanians cannot or should not do those jobs; of course they absolutely can and should. But in reality, this is a numbers game and Cayman doesn’t have enough people with the right skills (at the moment) which, by the way, is not the same as saying that they don’t have any people with the right skills because that is also not true.

Nevertheless, there is a reason you have expats here in the first place. Not to mention that it is unclear who it is that Caymanians think are spending their hard-earned money, earned here on island, at the local supermarkets, ordering food deliveries, buying local homemade products and masks and still paying their domestic workers so they can still eat without being able to work at the moment, supporting local business (Caymanian businesses). It is not just Caymanians, that’s for sure.

Another example, take the family who found themselves stranded on a boat in Cayman with the lady being pregnant. With borders closed, they are having to stay a lot longer than they expected. So far, they have been offered a condo to live in, a car to drive, food vouchers so they can eat, baby clothes and toys for the impending arrival and not one of those things has been provided by a Caymanian. Presumably because she is a dirty foreigner who shouldn’t be here and Caymankind really only applies to Caymanians.

Fortunately, there are other examples of the community working together. ARK is supporting those who need meals with the help of local businessmen from Deckers, Abacus, sponsored by numerous companies on island.

Such a shame then that the general message to expats is simple: we don’t want your hard work, your skills or knowledge, your economic input, your community involvement, your charities, your social initiatives or your help. We want your money and then you can leave, and if you do manage to stay and get permanent residency, you will always be a second-class citizen.

Caymankind is a myth. Don’t believe the hype.


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Comments (315)

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  1. You get out of it, what you put into it. says:

    Hey Expat Girl, Caymanian guy here. I’m a 3rd generational Caymanian, born in US, and I have had the pleasure of calling Cayman my home for almost 40 years. Having grown up in the US as a person of color, I was so incredibly shocked to discover that people of different races got along so well here. I went to school with both expats and Caymanians (back when the public schools were integrated. Thanks for screwing that one up politicians!) and everyone lived harmoniously. I’ve have 40 years of both expat and Caymanian friends and we’ve all gotten along just great.

    The thing is Expat Girl, you get out of it what you put into it. You too can live harmoniously here with Caymanians. You just have to meet us half way.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey, Expatgirl.

    Articles like this just exemplify why many Caymanians don’t even want to talk about these issues with expats. They either genuinely don’t get it or refuse to get it. I stopped reading after your line mentioning “no expat Is coming here and wanting to exclude or hold back Caymanians.”

    Talk about a tone-deaf comment! This flies in the face of the many Caymanians who have been discriminated against and marginalized (and I’m not even including the Caymanians that can “pass” for something other than Caymanian – many of them hit a glass ceiling too).

    I really think you should change your name from Expatgirl to “Johnny-come-lately.” If you’re going to write an article about an issue, (And If you’re interested in us taking you seriously) at least try to give us the impression that you know what you’re talking about.

    – a paper Caymanian.

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  3. Anonymous says:

    For the $8K per month spender, I can assure you that it’s not anti-expat sentiment. If you recall, they didn’t like you from when you came either.

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  4. Just me. says:

    Haters gonna hate. Lovers gonna love. Respect is earned. Everyone of us is different. What we do as well as what we see. Some see good where others will see bad. some do good while others do bad. No matter where you go on God’s earth this will hold true. What do you do? What do you see? That is what should matter to you. What someone else see’s or does. Not so much. If the opinion of those around you matter too much to you then you will be torn apart by the differences. Trust in what matters to you. The rest is just the world in which you live. When I see these comments and viewpoints that is what I see. I know everyone else we see it differently. What do you see?

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  5. Anonymous says:

    This article is not entirely understanding the perspective of what a local endures at hands of a select few but powerful expats. I have to acknowledge that most expats that come here are honestly just trying to make a better life for themselves and their families and in doing so contributes tremendously to Cayman.

    While all this is true, lets not be naïve to the systematic oppression of locals at the hands of those who come here and have no regard for the people. They build their own little exclusive communities, do not integrate and do everything in their power while in position of power keep Caymanians down in their place of work.

    Lets stop pretending that this is not happening .

    Put the shoes on the other foot and lets say Caymanians were migrating to Canada, Ireland and UK for example and when they get there they import their own people and ignore the locals and oppress them.

    Would you think that is fair game?

    I do not endorse some of the comments from locals towards expats but I understand where it is coming from as I see with my own two eyes how badly Caymanians are treated by expats and as I said before it is not a majority but a select powerful few.

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    • Anonymouse says:

      Take note Irish people – there must be enough Irish people acting the bollox here in Cayman and being disrespectful for this comment to have been made. Just a couple of bad apples will rott the whole barrell. This is not us and be careful to remind yourself of that and call out anyone you see behaving that way. Irish people have always had a close bond with Caymanians and have been coming to live, work and holiday since the very early years of Cayman’s development. Lets keep our reputation of being supportive of the community we live in.

  6. Anonymous says:

    20/05: 7.19pm – “Yeah right……” and I suppose no Caymanian is ever castigated, insulted, mocked, looked down upon, treated with disdain and indifference by any expat??!! The ill-feelings are only one-way. Right?!

    See, expats like you also display entitlement mentality that some Caymanians are accused of. “We’re here to bring you out of the dark ages so we’re entitled to your gratitude and you must accept our imposing attitudes, no matter what”. Bwana mentality!

    Since “Expatgirl’s” post, there have been numerous responses from expats who have never had rejectionist experiences in Cayman because they have embraced our society and ventured to meet and befriend Caymanians. However, undoubtedly expats like yourself will continue to experience rejection because what you sow is what you reap!!

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Hey $8000/ month expat spender – a person like the late Mrs. Olive Miller would NEVER be considered “driftwood” by any Caymanian! Mrs. Olive embraced Cayman, assimilated, made Cayman her home and contributed to the betterment of Cayman, not herself! Shame on you for desecrating the memory of that dear departed lady by your suggestion. You should apologize to her family and Cayman in general! But will you? Condescending b*****d!

    Although I personally don’t condone the term, I would strongly suggest that it is more suited to expats like yourself who believe how much you “spend in Cayman”, for the “benefit” of Caymanians is the be-all and end-all. Those who arrive on our shores to get and get. I imagine that if you can spend $8000 a month then you’re earning a really nice tax-free salary HERE! How about trying to make such a living from where you came? Therefore, I would venture that Cayman is better for you than you are for us, and that’s the only reason you’re here.

    It’s that kind who perhaps the “driftwood” term fits, if it’s to be used at all!

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  8. Anonymous says:

    I would like to commend the poster ‘Do You Eat Rundown or Watch It?

    A well written piece of good ole truth. I recommend all Non-Caymanians/Expats to read it.

    I have lived in North America, Europe and Latin America. Never have I have been more grateful to have found my final resting spot.

    Thank you Cayman Islands.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    As an expat who spends more than $8000 a month locally … the anti-expat sentiment is mind boggling … just this morning in the LA, there was a glowing obituary for what you would call “Driftwood” …

    A woman who cant trace her line back 4 generations, a woman who came here in her 20’s and died here 60+ years later … A woman who clearly from the tributes this morning had contributed immensely to the fabric of Cayman Life … Therefore, the same respect accorded to her ought to be the same respect afforded to all expats, if the country did not need our skills we would not be here.

    It is this negative “crab in a bucket” …the “them vs us” mentality which mars the beautiful landscape of these islands.

    All expats whether one earns $6.00 an hour or $25,000 a month serve a valuable purpose, we must reach a place where the only divide is between the normal person who lives on these islands and the a…..e !!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      You’re comparing apples with oranges. Ms. Olive is an example of someone who came here from elsewhere and invested 60+ years in the community. She assimilated. To compare her with someone whose sole intentions are to spend maximum ten years here, make as much money as they can and leave, is grossly misleading.

      Please don’t use Ms. Olive’s legacy in comparison to a set of cliquish people who have no intention of making Cayman a home.

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    • Anonymous says:

      As a member of Olive Miller’s family I take umbrage at you invoking her memory. She was a stalwart woman who integrated into our society fully. Please do not compare her and the myriad of contributions she made to this society to those who turn down their noses at Caymanians.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Olive Miller earned the respect of Caymanians. Unlike you who and the many other expats who demand it.

      Please do even dare to let anyone hear you compare yourself and other expats her. The gall.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You clearly did not know the woman of whom you speak. Mrs. Olive Miller did everything to lift up ALL people (including Caymanians). You seem to not know that she married into a Caymanian family.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The main issue is integration. If an expat does not integrate into local society then you choose to remain an expat in mind and spirit and the locals will treat you as such. If you do integrate, the locals will treat you as family.

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    • Anonymous says:

      True, but she moved here and became one with the community and essentially became caymanian. You know nothing of her life and what she did here, only what you’ve read. She despised gated communities and separation of class. Which is what a lot of wealthy expats have created here so they could have a piece of paradise with they’re fellow countryman. I’ve owned properties in cayman where I was the only caymanian owner and I’ve always felt like I didn’t belong. If someone too dark that wasn’t an owner swam in the pool, the next day I would get threatening letters from strata. Don’t be a fool to think that there isn’t too sides to this story

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    • Anonymous says:

      Well you can certainly trace her very Caymanian decedents 4 generations deep.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Do you think that because you spend more than $8,000 monthly here that that alone should command the respect of the local people without any other sporting reasons? Olive Miller didn’t have money to spend like that in the economy and she did more than you’ll ever do to advance Cayman.

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    • Anonymous says:

      What ignorant and pathetic post.

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    • Anonymous says:

      How dare you! Let’s get one thing straight! Ms. Olive was no driftwood!

      You might be driftwood, but not her.

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    • Anon says:

      Can you please ask a friend who is not an entitled a-hole to review your comments before you post? Comments like these make me (an expat) want to hate expats…

  10. Anonymous says:

    Expatgirl – I invite you to review today’s CNS bio of the late Mrs. Olive Miller MBE, OBE, who passed yesterday. A lady of honour, humility and filled with God’s spirit. Take a cue from her life!

    She was a true “expatgirl”!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Actually she was a true Caymanian in spirit and action.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Mrs. Miller involved herself in things local and brought her brilliant ideas to teach the local youngsters worthwhile activities. She involved herself without having to be asked and helped wherever and whenever the need arose. That’s called intergrating Oneself and being a part of the community we live in. In fairness, some expats try their best to be a part of and offer help when needed, but not that many either. Kindness and friendliness begets the same. That’s the Caymanian way.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The next election is a great opportunity for Caymanians to elect a nationalist government to free them from the abuse they have suffered at the hands of foreigners for far too long.

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      • Anonymous says:

        We don’t elect governments. 200-300 of us elect a village spokesperson that in many cases the majority of the village don’t want.

        That is a custom many of you expats pushed for (because it was more akin to your system back home) and something which we Caymanians are living to regret.

  11. JTB says:

    In ten years living on this beautiful island I now call home, I have read a great deal of anti-expat invective on forums like this, but I have never come across it in real life.

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    • Anonymous says:

      It’s really been ten years. Tempus fugit

      I guess it’s ‘no longer raining over my building’

      Lime Tree Bay is a far cry from where you are now. Enjoy the island.

      The Old Man and the Sea.

    • Anonymous says:

      Ditto. Almost 15 years. Until the last couple of weeks when my Caymanian partner of 13 years actually spat some of that expat vitriol at me when his temper flared over something trivial. That was a deep shock for me. I had always credited him with more intelligence than that.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    I arrived here from the US back in the late 90s. Assimilation was easy for me, practically instant. It might be because I’m from a small town with similar personalities. I’ve always got along great with Caymanians and I think they like me too. We laugh at and get pissed off about the same things. In more than 20 years I’ve not once had an expat vs Caymanian type of argument with anyone. I have on plenty of occasions had problems with the new guy from up north that arrives and 2 days later starts complaining about the way things are or how things need to be done. The words “he’s not gonna make it” have been said more times than I can count and been proven right every time. I happen to agree with the phrase, “if you don’t like it, leave”.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Yea right, until you are subjected to the visceral hatred of expats that is always just under the surface in certain corners of Caymanian society.
      Just because you don’t happen to hear it, don’t be so naive as to think it’s not there.
      I’ve been on these islands for almost 30 years and have contributed much more to this country than most Caymanians. The contribution made in all quarters of society by expats is unquantifiable, yet still we are forced to swallow the racist, xenophobic and bigoted rants of those who think that they are the cause of the problems caused by their own mismanagement and incompetence.
      And to the idiots who claim that colonial rule is alive and well. Last time I checked history, these islands were first founded and colonised by the Europeans they hate so much. The British turned these mosquito infested rocks into a homeland and have remained here ever since. Slaves from Jamaica were bought in to work on small holdings and care for homes etc… amounting to approximately 50% of the population at one point. But this was never a conquest, it wasn’t a white mans imperialist trophy either, so drop the re-writing of history by inferring that the poor natives have been over-run and beaten into submission.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Everyone keep calm and do not feed the troll.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Sounds like you stayed 29 years too long

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      • Anonymous says:

        Typical expat attitude. wish I knew who you were so I could buy you a one way ticket back to wherever TF you came from.

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      • Anonymous says:

        And the same British robbed america from the Natives, even falsely naming them “Indians” as they assumed they had arrived in India, and have never left since. But we refer to the great society as we know it today as united states of america.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Most of the slaves who came here were from Africa and were bought from the slave market by English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh settlers. Some were rich and others were poor. But the treatment of slaves was different here as oppose to other areas in the Caribbean. We didn’t have the violence, rioting, the hangings, etc., So people of all races have always been respectful, loving, religious, etc. So most people have married into each other race. We have had other people from outside of the country that their great-grand parents did encounter those problems in their country. Unfortunately they have brought those issues here.

  13. Anonymous says:

    So, expat girl, I’m wondering if you feel your comment served a useful purpose in lancing a festering boil or did it merely assist the boil to spread elsewhere and fester even more?

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  14. Anonymous says:

    The problem with pieces like this is that it comes from the same place that started this mess in the first place. Entitlement. Yes here is anti-expat rhetoric. Perhaps if you had lived here as long as I have you would understand how that came to be. I do wonder how many times you correct your expat friends when they are insulting my people amid their claims of superiority.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I find it very hard as a Caymanian, not being critical when I see the performances of our Minister of Health and Minister of Education. I fully understand why expats get upset when they see such disgraceful performances from what is suppose to be Caymanian leadership.

      We really need to look at ourselves more critically and question who leads us.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Yes. Nothing is wrong with calling a spade a spade. But be careful when you join in the criticism.

        I am sure no expats at your place of work ever screw up right. If that isn’t true, what you and other Caymanians need to carefully note, they cover for each other when someone screws up.

        Just remember that the same criticism they use on others will be used on you. Your mess will not be covered up.

        The narrative for many of them is…None of us are good enough!

  15. DO YOU EAT RUNDOWN OR WATCH IT? says:

    Are you under the impression that I owe you gratitude because you work here? Should I expect gratitude if I were an expat worker in your home country? I remember being an expat in a EU city. The gratitude I was shown was being called a nigger (for the first time in my life) at a metro station. But let me not digress. Let us imagine that your home country is in Canada. The only gratitude I’d be given there now, is if I paid my taxes on time and didn’t break any laws. Canada is a very beautiful country. I’ve been to several Canadian cities and the lovely backcountry of BC. But just like their policies ensure that radio stations feature a % of Canadian artists per week, Canada looks out for Canadians where it counts. I know Canada is vast. I know they’re looking for educated expats to take up posts in those far-flung provinces. But Cayman is a tiny island. And this isn’t the 60s anymore. We’re no longer the islands time forgot. In fact, there’s not enough opportunities for educated Caymanians and successive governments continue to pass policy after policy that provide concessions to the expat class/expat owned corps like this is still a mosquito-infested country of 1952 and we gotta beg people to stay here! We actually never did. Even with the lack of development in the early 50s/60s, Cayman was a paradise. That’s why the first developers set up shop here. And we, of course, the ever grateful Boo-Boos, were on bended knee signing off major industries and creating generational monopolies and policies that lay the ground work for unchecked foreign ownership of residential property that Caymanians can no longer afford.

    But let’s get back to you, view point writer. No one has asked you to be here. You received a job opportunity and took it. Anti expat sentiments? It’s because successive governments have appeased the expat class ( i.e. lawyers, bankers, accounts etc.) for far too long. It goes beyond just providing Caymanians with education. You have to create an environment for them to thrive and in the case of 2020, find a job! But if you’d taken the time to delve into the history of the country, particularly the economic policies that have shaped the present day, you may have written a different piece. You may have directed your ire at your own community and of course successive governments that have sold Cayman out. It’s interesting that the only example of a GOOD CAYMANIAN you can give is one who works “for” you. Do you have any Caymanian friends? What do you know of our history beyond what you’ve scanned on Cayman Resident? Do you know who Aunt Julia or Aunt Sookie is without hittin’ Google? Have you heard Sam play the violin? Do you eat rundown or watch it? (Hint, that’s a trick question.)

    How you integrate yourself into a community goes far beyond a few hours of charity work. You may live here, but I’m pretty sure you don’t really “live” here. What I mean by that is, I’m pretty sure you haven’t assimilated. If you had, you’d know not to get so defensive about comments on a website. You’d also know that no Caymanian owes you gratitude or politeness. Personally, I follow laws just like you. I’ve served and continue to serve my community. I love the beach. I’m a diver. Love boating. But I’m a Caymanian born and bread. What I expect of my government, is not what you should expect as a foreign worker. Citizens of a country should always be given the best opportunities or concessions to ensure they thrive, because guess what? No other country is going to do that for them. When I thrive as a Caymanian, we can all thrive. Resentment is lessened and everyone can carry on. But what I don’t have to do is show you gratitude. What our government doesn’t have to do anymore— for God sake CIG stop the pandering expat-first policies of yesteryear— is show you gratitude. You have a job. You have a clean and comparatively safe environment to live, work and play in (at least pre pandemic). You have access to comparatively good health care. You have people who work “for” you. You my expat friend, have a lot to be grateful for. Where’s your gratitude? Caymanians are dealing with generations of marginalization at the hands of nearsighted politicians who conceded to the expat class for generations. Caymanians have a right to their anger. Resentment. Frustration. Instead of scolding us and whining, why don’t you dig a little deeper before you hit post. Thanks!

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    • Anonymous says:

      But they’re doing it for you!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Well said!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Oh my god! Whoever you are, I want to kiss you right now. Well-said!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, as a foreign worker you have no right to complain about the DUMP, the destruction of the marine environment, the building of the new port, the terrible education system with no trade school, the traffic, the health insurance, or anything else. We have everything under control as we sell our best properties to expats. Then we and only we will complain because our own government allowed all of it to happen.

      Your opinions don’t count here and you have nothing to offer. So shut up and enjoy the sun. Our brilliant political leadership will lead the way.

      We are an entitled people so don’t ever forget that fact.

      Now find out about Aunt Sookie, Aunt Julia and eat our turtle stew.

      Thank you.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Really prefer the rum cakes. Not thrilled with turtle stew. I ask my Caymanian friends about eating turtle stew and they laugh at me and tell me they can’t stand the stew.

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      • Anonymous says:

        It might be private, but there is a very good trade school in the making and scholarships available with Inspire Cayman Training. They are perfectly placed to train Caymanians into all the jobs vacated due to Covid.

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      • Anonymous says:

        I know it serves your worldview to imagine that the poster at 2.26pm is a turtle stew ‘nyaming’, lazy, uneducated dullard who’d love nothing more than to see the GT reef a carcass and the DUMP continue to spew noxious fumes. Do you think Caymanians don’t have credible concerns about the environment or how the country is being run? Or are such concerns only for the expat mind? Go ahead and spin the sarcasm to fuel your false-sense of superiority.

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        • Anonymous says:

          So if Caymanians have credible concerns about the environment or how the country is being run then why do you keep electing the same group over and over and over? The old boys and girls run the political show and the status quo prevails. 20 years talking about the DUMP and absolutely nothing is done.

          So continue with your sense of entitlement and keep the status quo.

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    • Anonymous says:

      2:26, Time for your colony to go for complete independence. Sorry to say you are not a country you are a colony or Overseas Territory. So go for independence and really be masters in your own house. I think I know what would happen.

      Just look at what happened with the new proposed port. So much for the will of the Caymanian people.

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      • Anonymous says:

        6.34pm here’s a few definitions of a country:

        -an indefinite usually extended expanse of land
        -the land of a person’s birth, residence, or citizenship

        I know you think country *only* denotes sovereignty, it doesn’t. Elected Caymanian officials write and pass laws that govern these Islands in a locally led parliament. This is no different than any other democratic nation in the world. That’s why it’s common to refer to Cayman as a country. Understand the political structure before you volley these common tropes. Start with Cayman, but check out Bermuda or even BVI. I assure you they are all self-governing countries, sorry OTs, no I meant colonies. (I know many prefer the latter designation.)

        I know looking down on Cayman feels good on this thread, but not all former “colonies” have fallen apart after gaining sovereignty. Barbados is still standing, so is India, Canada and NZ. And no, I am not an advocate for independence, but I am tired of people throwing this go-independent thing around like it would result in certain doom. It’s as if Cayman’s not already self-governing. Yes, like anywhere else in the world, we’ve had good leadership and poor leadership. No different than our sovereign neighbor up north. Look at what the leadership is doing there. Cayman doesn’t need independence. It just needs effective leadership that serves and protects its people, which was what the 2.26pm commenter was underscoring.

        And please don’t bring the port into this discussion. It’s not a credible argument unless you believe every Caymanian wanted the port.

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    • AJ says:

      2:26 We need people like you in our Government. I try and let people know your vote does matter and more of us need to vote! Hope to hear more from you!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Almost entirely agree, but not with the statement that there are not enough opportunities for educated Caymanians. There are plenty of opportunities, but perhaps not in the holy trinity of law, accounting in finance, which may be your point. But, per capita, I’ll bet Cayman has one of the highest numbers of citizen lawyers of any place on earth – and that’s even without the status Caymanians. Not everybody can, or should, be a lawyer or an accountant. If educated Caymanians would start taking up positions in other kinds of companies, you’d have more companies run by Caymanians, like CUC.
      As for rundown, it’s a trick question in another way because both are actually rooted in other Caribbean cultures, Jamaica and Guyana, and assimilated by Caymanians. We all came from somewhere and brought our tastes in food, entertainment and sport with us. With the diversity we have here, Cayman is Jackson Pollock painting of global culture. We should actually be celebrating that canvas instead of resenting each other. As JBT said though, you don’t really see it in the community. You just see it here where people on both sides can vent their resentments anonymously and find like-minded resentful people to give them a thumbs up. Right now, with people feeling frustrated, angry, scared or desperate, this forum has gotten even more venomous that it had been in the past. Maybe we should all have a timeout on this thread.

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    • Anonymous says:

      But it was your Caymanians who marginalized you. You let it happen to you. Why always blame the expats?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Where do you get that the writer wants your gratitude? That is not implied or written anywhere? noone wants your gratitude however highly you seem to value it with your snarky ‘trick-question’ about rundown. oh no, the expat doesn’t know my secret joke, that makes her an outsider, an outcast, doer of unspeakable evil…. or maybe you could educate instead.
      Yes, she took an job opportunity and was not asked to be here – does that make her responsible for the issues facing Caymanians? no. it doesn’t. As you have pointed out yourself its the successive governments who have failed to properly provide for Caymanians. not those who come now, like most migrants, for opportunity of a better life of some kind. Isnt the point not to assume bad intentions or hold people responsible for the sins of the father as it were? no one is saying Caymanians cant or shouldnt be angry or resentful about events of the past or present but maybe it should be directed where it belongs, to the all powerful cayman family conglomerates and the ineffective mismanagement of the governments you all voted for (seriously, stop with McKeeva already, its a joke.) and not used as a weapon against people who have no control over those things whatsoever and mean you no harm. feel like you missed the message and just replaced it with your own narrative.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    I am not sure why CNS gives a platform to anonymous contributors; there is no hypocrisy in me replying anonymously then.

    XXX (CNS: The reason I keep deleting this theory of yours is because it is wrong. I have spoken to the author. Stop it.)

    Anyway whoever it is should know by now that there is good and bad all over the world and I am sure that where she is from immigrants are not highly favoured by some people. Doesn’t make it right but don’t we all know that by now? Why would Cayman be any different? Inhabited by the same species nonetheless.

    So suck it up buttercup, flights to Miami soon.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Ah, the entrenched imperialist sentiment is coming out strong in some people! I would hazard a guess that the majority of people complaining are foreigners of European heritage who are struggling as their privilege isn’t affording them the same level of automatic respect that they have come to expect from their home countries.

    Anyway, big ups to all of you on your paternalistic civilizing mission towards the natives even though settler colonialism fell out of fashion a while back (you totally missed the bus). I never fail to be impressed by some people’s perseverance in trying to maintain Euro-centric economic and cultural hegemony.

    Tip: You’d probably find your psyche feeling less persecuted and paranoid about the Caymanian plot to remove you and strip you of your rights if you took some time integrating into society at large. However, I guess remaining in the comfortable enclaves of cultural normativity and engaging in on-screen complaining is more suited to people whose only purpose of moving here was to economically better themselves and be accoladed by those at home who aren’t afforded the luxury of living an extremely comfortable life on a beautiful Caribbean island.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You racist, ignorant ingrate. You have absolutely qualified everything this eloquent and educated poster highlights.
      Good for them and shame on you.

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      • EXPAT ENTITLEMENT RUN AMOK says:

        Racist ingrate? Really? The poster of 1.54pm is not only eloquent but probably just as educated, if not more, than that view point writer and you. Shame on you if the commenter’s very spot on points has reduced you to ridiculous name calling. Your response actually proves the resentment that some Caymanians feel is valid. Particularly towards expats who lack social awareness and historical context. Go back to sipping your Pimms and cool down.

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    • B. Fuddled. says:

      1.54pm I sincerely hope I do not exhibit “entrenched imperialist sentiment”, or try to “maintain Euro-centric economic and cultural hegemony”.
      However you have me on “remaining in the comfortable enclaves of normativity”, perhaps you can clarify what this means.
      Poor plain speaking expat.

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    • Anonymous says:

      The ‘natives’ are actually those of British heritage as they are known to be the original settlers. Bodden, Watler, Ryan, Ebanks, Miller, McLaughlin, Scott, Kirkconnell etc…..
      All identifiable as British family names who are known to have come direct or via Jamaica to settle Cayman. And of course, there are many more.
      It’s hilarious to listen to other immigrants judge those who come here now.

      So, who ya daddy is?

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      • Anonymous says:

        Caymanians love to disregard their Jamaican heritage. Why? It is such an integral part of their culture.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Ah, now you’ve gone and brought racism into this. I never knew there were different social classes of blackness until I came here. And it’s not just between Jamaicans and Caymanians, but between Caymanians themselves. Just look at the situation in Cayman Brac!

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        • Anonymous says:

          By focusing on heritage you have completely missed the essence of being Caymanian. Whether our forefathers came from England, Jamaica, or undeniably Africa, it really doesn’t matter. They came to a mosquito infested swamp and called it HOME. They didn’t come with the intention of spending a short time, making their fortune, and then returning. They told their children this was their home, and they made no attempts to recreate facsimiles of the places from whence they came. Each successive generation called it home, and slowly built it from what it was into what it now is.

          What Expatgirl and many others believe is that they could make it so much better if they were in charge for a short while. This is my home. Expatgirl will never live here long enough to have that feeling. Many of those whom were granted Caymanian Status do not have the same feeling of “home” that I do, but if we are lucky their children will call it home and try not to turn it into that “other place” their parent(s) reminisce about in happy, if not entirely accurate, stories of their childhood.

      • Anonymous says:

        Bodden – Cheshire, UK;
        Watler – Norfolk, UK:
        Ryan – Ireland;
        Ebanks – Durham;
        Miller – Dumfrieshire, Scotland;
        McLaughlin, Kirkconnell and Scott – Scotland.
        Webster – Derbyshire, UK.

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        • Rick says:

          And all via Jamaica. No one can name me one of those families that arrived here directly from Jamaica, unless of course, they are among the many revisionists who seem to accumulate in the history classes.

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          • Anonymous says:

            A number of typical “caymanian” surnames did not arrive via and have nothing remotely to do with Jamaica.

            Lazzari for example, Originally of Italian origin, its progenitor was reportedly shipwrecked off Cuba and settled in Cayman Brac to establish the name there. Also known for introducing tanning.

          • Anonymous says:

            Many came through Cuba, Honduras “Bay Islands” also from Bermuda.

        • Anonymous says:

          Eden- Devizes, UK also. Whats interesting is Watler-Norfolk. If so then what on earth was Eric Bush doing in Wales/Cornwall looking for “ancestors” in 2018 ?

        • Anonymous says:

          Henning – Greenock Scotland
          Rivers – England
          Jackson, Chisholm, Parsons,Hinds, etc, etc

  18. Anonymous says:

    You will always have a vocal minority, but most Caymanians don’t hate expats, as an expat we should remember that, many are welcoming.

    Best thing is to try an not base your opinions on Caymanians as a whole by some haters and trolls. Base them on your own experience from interactions with them.

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  19. Bertie : B says:

    Cayman : THE Best country in the world i have ever had the pleasure of staying in . Cant wait to come back forever . Love all the people i have met over the 25 years of long visits . God Bless Cayman Forever .

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