EDITOR, The Tribune
I would like to go on record and disagree with all of the talk show hosts and media personalities who think that we have a crime problem; to listen to them pontificate you get the impression that this situation is something new.
It is not new and we have brought it upon ourselves. What we are seeing is the manifestation of a deeper social problem linked to a particular demographic inhabited by the Bahamian male; his true ethnicity may be in question, but he is Bahamian.
He is a member of the “majority” but he is treated as an ethnic minority; almost like the men of African descent living in America. Ours is a “social problem”, punctuated by the fact that those who should be speaking for the communities where most of our prolific offenders come out of, are silent on the matter.
Their only concern is the gerrymandering of constituency boundaries and the decimation of the “historical districts” in this nation. It is heartless that they dig deeper into the areas most affected by crime to secure their political futures. It is safe for them, but not safe for the persons who have to live in these areas.
The data before us reveals that “murder” in this country is a localised event, in the sense that 90 per cent of the perpetrators and the victims are known to each other. Therefore what we call a crime problem is just a social problem in its manifestation stage.
The police can often predict with accuracy where the trouble will be with every person released from prison. The Commissioner could have chosen a more tactful way of telling us what we already know, but the fact that we as a society are disregarding what is in our faces may have lead him to adopt a different strategy.
Murder in this nation is adversely affecting a particular demographic and perhaps our history of slavery has supplied us with the tools we need to keep each other down; there is a penchant or norm for us in that we can only be up when another person is down and the three cardinal traits of our culture lend themselves to that dynamic; this culture is personality driven, event focused and crisis orientated.
It is evident that these three aspects can be found in every thing that happens especially in politics and religion. Do not think it strange that you only hear from some politicians or pastors when there is a crisis; that is the only way that they know how to operate, but you, like me are surprised that they are not out in front on this issue.
We will attempt to get our problem fixed when what is happening in a particular demographic spills over into the lives of those who think that what is going on really does not affect them. Until that time, the Commissioner of Police and his staff have their hands full.
February 14, 2017.