Minister of Culture, Stephen Lashley. (FP)

"Crop Over is not an excuse for lewd, wanton and downright irresponsible behavior!"

This was asserted by Minister of Culture, Stephen Lashley, as he addressed the Crop Over 2012 Awards Ceremony, which took place at Frank Collymore Hall, last Saturday night.

Underscoring the need for the younger population to understand the true meaning of Crop Over, Minister Lashley urged Barbadians to "set the right examples for our young people".

"We need to reach deep inside ourselves for the pride and industry that underpins the success of this wonderful country of ours, and not allow ourselves to be lured into descending behaviour that threatens and indeed destroys that image of which we have been so proud for so many years," the Culture Minister stressed.

He further encouraged Barbadians to focus on the positive aspects of the festival, pointing out that: "It is a time when we must reflect on the many things for which we should be thankful… [and] when we should reflect on why it is that we celebrate an annual Season of Emancipation."

The Minister noted that the festival emerged from the hard work and sacrifices of our Barbadian forefathers, who "contributed to the development of this nation…so that we, today, could be free, independent and enjoy one of the highest standards of living anywhere in the world."

He highlighted the contribution of 2012 King and Queen of the Crop, Grantley Hurley and Judy Cumberbatch, stating that: "While ???King Sugar’ may no longer play the dominant role in our society that it once did, the spirit of pride and industry that these two persons represent should neither be forgotten nor underestimated."


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