EDITOR, The Tribune.
I want to preface this message with a declaration that I do not campaign for or support any particular political party. I am simply a Bahamian who is looking out for the best interest of this country, and who is extremely concerned with the deterioration taking place. With travel advisories issued by the United States and Canada, it is obvious that deliberate remedial action must be taken before we arrive at a point of no return or recovery. With much concern, I take note of the dismay and defeatist attitudes being expressed and portrayed by key individuals that are responsible for national security in our country.
Unfortunately, from very early in this national security administration, it was clear there would be not improvement in the country’s crime situation; conversely, it has gotten worse. What many people forget was that shortly after the 2012 general election, it was allegedly reported by the local dailies that the minister of national security toured the prison, met with convicted criminals, and based on discussions with the criminals, it was concluded that the penalties enacted by the previous government were too tough. The laws were thereafter reviewed, and I believe, in some cases amended, essentially softening sentences for crime. Now people are not even safe in the sanctity of their homes. My fellow Bahamians, while we have become a sophisticated, modern and secular society, I prefer a simpler life; trusting and depending on things that have been proven to be stable, secure, true, effective, infallible, and unchangeable…the only thing that bears these characteristics is the Word of the Almighty God.
The Word of God has the answer to all of our problems, and it certainly has a simple answer for the crime problem; here it is Ecclesiastes 8:11, “Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil” (KJV). This may not be clear to some, so here’s the same verse from The Message Bible translation, Ecclesiastes 8:11, “Because the sentence against evil deeds is so long in coming, people in general think they can get by with murder.”
Criminals have been emboldened to commit crimes because there are no real severe penalties or consequences for their actions. Even prison terms are shortened by the indiscriminate grant of bail for ridiculously minimal amounts. The powers that be need to get serious about enforcing severe penalties on criminals to ensure there is a deterrent to crime; if this means capital punishment, then so be it, if it means mandatory minimum sentences for certain offences, then so be it; the laws must be enforced, and our country must be saved. My fellow Bahamians, the answer is simple, either we perform 8-1-1 from the Bible, or we will have to continue to call 9-1-1. God Bless.
PASTOR AZEAL J McFALL
November 20, 2014.