Wade Chase and son Alexander Chase visiting the Barbados 50th Anniversary Monument at the Historic Garrison Savannah last month. (Picture by Ricardo Leacock)
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THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY of Independence National Monument still seems to be creating quite a stir.
Some Barbadians recently told the MIDWEEK NATION that the very presence of the large 30-foot by 20-foot flag was enough to kindle their patriotism.
A visit to a City nail salon revealed that despite the Christmas and end-of-year festivities, the feeling of national pride was still strong.
“The flag is beautiful and I love the colours and how vibrant they are,” employee of Republic Bank, Shakeila Baptiste, said.
“When I was at horse racing the thing that caught my eye was how big the flag was and how it was swaying in the wind and I was, like, ‘Oh my God’,” she added colourfully.
“I took so many snaps and pictures.”
Owner of the Diva salon in Bridge House, Andrea Franklyn, while admitting that she was not a patriotic person, said: “The monument is nice but the flag is what caught my eye. I’m always tempted to get out my phone when driving past to take a picture with the caption – This flag at the Garrison though.”
Designer of the monument and third-year art student of the New York-based Pratt Institute, 22-year-old Taisha Carrington (right), said that she was humbled by all the compliments. “My aim was really to promote patriotism to give back something to Barbadians to shout about,” she said smiling.
‘‘I love visiting the monument [unrecognised by] others just for that honest feedback I would overhear,” she explained.
“It’s really satisfying to hear people making these comments.”
Outside of the nail salon, other comments from locals echoed the sense of patriotism.
Independent member of the Barbados Youth Parliament Ade O’Neal, had this to say: “I think our flag is the quintessential symbol of patriotism, and the fact that you have the oversized flag flying daily at arguably one of the most historic spots in Barbados builds on the pride and love for the island,” he said.
“I also admire the flags outside of the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation as part of their Guardians Of Our Heritage [programme].”
However, he expressed the view that more could be done to increase levels of patriotism on the island because the emblems are purely at the surface level.
“I only wish that Barbadians would recognise that we are now celebrating 50 years of nationhood and that all the hype that was showcased leading up to this milestone must continue.”
Construction worker Theodore Medford described it as a commendable effort but called for local artists to remember the simple countrymen in their work.
“It was a reasonably good work of art by the young lady, but just remember our cane cutters and the everyday Barbadian making their own contribution,” he said. (MR)