Monday, Jul 13, 2020
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An uncouth leopard gets knighted

Dear Editor,

Someone ought to write to Buckingham Palace to convey our extreme displeasure at Her Majesty the Queen for having the audacity to wait so long to knight the most modest man in the Bahamas, Godfrey Kelly.

The Queen waited until he was a crotchety old man before elevating him to the rank of KCMG. Normally, that stands for Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George, but Sir Godfrey wants us mere mortals to know that it means “Kindly Call Me God”.

The Queen will be 94 this year, but that didn’t spare her being upbraided by the doddery 91-year-old Kelly who obviously begrudges the late self-effacing statesman Sir Geoffrey Johnstone who got a K in 1993 back when Kelly was a mere youth of 64.

Presumably in 1993, Kelly’s chest was bloated enough to support the weight of the giant K bling he intended to wear, much like a cow wears a bell, and just as loud as the Junkanoo instrument.

Kelly came across as obstinate, crass, ungrateful, incorrigible and entitled. He served in government at a time when that club excluded the majority of its citizens who, as it now turns out, were pleased to recommend to the sovereign that he be knighted. Her Majesty graciously acceded to our request.

Kelly successfully acquitted himself in the business and sporting arenas. He sailed with the likes of Sir Durward Knowles who, until the day he died, was grateful to all Bahamians for his knighthood, and never asked what took us so long to give it.

The dripping sense of entitlement from Kelly was palpable.

He obviously took offense at the tacky CMG honor that we awarded him years ago, and probably had to constrain himself from flinging it back at the queen.

Honors ought to be given for exemplary achievement and service to The Bahamas.

They ought not be bartered for with big donations to political parties, although this seems to still be the case in all parts of the Commonwealth where this ancient practice of chivalry still exists, most especially in Britain.

Kelly has done some good deeds over his lifetime and obviously the powers-that-be felt that they overshadowed his transgressions.

It is sad that the memory we shall preserve of him is his thanklessness and his over-arching sense of privilege.

At 91, we cannot say that he mis-spoke. After nine decades on this earth he has earned the right to speak his mind without filter. Apparently, none of the old spots have fallen off this leopard.

Don’t look for the knighthood to awaken a sense of noblesse oblige in this old sea wolf. No doubt he is still awaiting an apology from the queen for her dilatoriness.

– The Graduate

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