Use of the word ‘honorary’
A boy who saves his little sister from a house fire is made an Honorary Fireman; a foreign visitor to a sister city is made Honorary Mayor; a businessman who helps a local Indian tribe in Canada or the US is made an Honorary Tribal Member; a college drop-out who goes on to become successful or prominent in a given field is awarded an Honorary Doctorate in that field. Itâs a handshake and a pat on the back; a mark of respect and nothing more.
Winston Churchill was made an honorary citizen of the US by President John F Kennedy. Churchill was not thereby empowered to vote, hold elective office, serve on a jury or exercise any other right of a US citizen. It was “Honoraryâ: a recognition and appreciation for services rendered. It may be a “thank youâ or may be simply a courtesy. Mr Eustaceâs proposal to grant Honorary Citizenship to the Garinagu seems to be nothing more or less than that: it is symbolic, it grants no power or function, simply honour and recognition. Whatâs so complicated or difficult to understand about that?