Independence Day Orator Asks The Hard Questions

2020 Independence Day Orator, Pst. Dr. Simeon L. Dunbar

This year’s July 26 Independence Day Orator, Pastor Dr. Simeon L. Dunbar, has elected to ask the hard questions in the face of a nation described by the previous Independence Day Orator, Leymah Gbowee, of having three types of groups: ruling position, opposition and no-position.

   Pastor Dunbar, who spoke on the theme, “Standing Together In Time Of Pandemic”, said this year’s Independence Anniversary celebration presents some complex questions for everyone’s consideration: “What does it mean to stand together? Where do we stand together, when there’s no equal platform for all? While some are standing in the trenches of Bokon Jeadea, others are standing in unmerited riches and stolen wealth. While majority are standing in the swamps of Gbayhdin, others are relaxing on the top of Mount Nimba.”

   He said, “In Liberia, we have a common saying… ‘Empty Bag Cannot Stand’. How do we stand together when some bags are empty and other bags and bellies are full and overflowing? Is it possible to stand together when some are standing on the sandy beaches of West Point and New Kru Town with daily sea incursions and growing cases of homelessness, while others are standing in luxurious hotel lobbies and reporting to work on Monday afternoon? How do we stand together when everyday our future female leaders are crying and living in constant fear of abuse? A country where rape is no longer an abomination but now a culture and way of life.”

   He asked, “How do we stand together when at 173 years old as a Nation we are still dependent on donor monies that are no longer coming in, and meanwhile corruption has become the standard way of life for the vast majority? And most importantly, how do we stand together, when we are one nation, very divided with no liberty or justice for all?”

   According to him, “We’ve sung numerous songs as a people over many years of democracy that align with our national situation. Even to the most recent electoral process and smooth transition of power to a new government, our people sang the praises of our leader and the very famous slogan, “Change For Hope”. Your Excellency, indeed the change has come; now where is the Hope?” See full speech on The Platform.

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