How much are we worth?

Dear Taxpayer, 

How much are 4,000 college-educated Bahamians worth?

Are they worth $30 million?

How much are all the doctors, nurses, teachers, commodores, commissioners, parliamentarians, bishops, CEOs, CFOS, government ministers, vice presidents, engineers, architects, sculptors, journalists, poets and accountants produced by The University of The Bahamas (U.B.) worth?

Are they worth $47 million?

How much is a balanced university budget worth? Is it worth more than tens of thousands of college-educated Bahamians? Is it worth more than a Bahamian middle class?

How much are peace, health, safety and prosperity worth?

How much is upward mobility and competitiveness worth?

How much is the Cabinet of The Bahamas worth? How much is it worth to be able to cultivate men and women who can serve in that Cabinet for decades and decades to come?

How much are thinking, responsible citizens worth?

How much is a college campus worth? Is it worth less or more than a road? A bridge? An airport?

How much is a college president worth? Is he worth more than a prime minister?

How much is a college in a city worth? Is it worth more or less than a hospital to that city?

Is it worth $4 million? Is it worth $8 million or 12 million? And is that 8 million or 12 million over one year or seven?

How much are 50 working mothers and fathers worth to that same city? Five hundred or 600 students to that same city?

How much is a college course worth? What does it really cost to deliver it and who should cover that cost?

How much is retraining people who’ve lost their jobs worth?

How much is believing in your own people worth? And what does it cost to doubt them and believe more in what outsiders can do?

How much is a plan worth, a vision? And how much does no plan or no vision cost?

How much is your right to speak up for yourself worth? And what does it cost when you are denied that right?

How much does it cost to stifle people and how much is it worth to let them fly?

How much is a painter worth? Or a graduation ceremony? Or a nicely manicured lawn? Or ceiling fans that work?

How much is a place to call home worth? And what does it cost when you have no home or your home is taken away or denied you?

How much is space worth: space to meet, space to run, space to join hands, space to create, space to make a memory and space to imagine? And how much does it cost to be denied such space?

How much does a bad choice cost and how much is redemption worth?

How much is dignity worth? And gratitude? Loyalty? Sacrifice?

How much is tomorrow worth? And who gets to decide?

How much is U.B. worth? And U.B. North?

How much are you worth?

And how much am I?

 Ian Strachan 

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