EDITOR, The Tribune
In October 2013 I wrote that Bahamas Christian Network CEO Silbert Mills had posted on his Facebook page that there were 1,000 murders committed in The Bahamas up to that point since the state execution of David Mitchell on January 6, 2000.
Since Mills’ Facebook pronouncement a little over five years ago, there have been approximately 600 murders. This means that 1,600 people have been murdered since the demise of Mitchell nearly 19 years ago. The Bahamas has the dubious distinction of making geography and travel’s 25 countries with the highest murder rates in the world this past February.
The Bahamas is listed at number 12 with a murder rate of 29.8 per 100,000. Honduras, Venezuela, Belize, El Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Lesotho, Swaziland, Saint Kitts and Nevis, South Africa and Colombia are all ranked ahead of The Bahamas with higher murder rates.
Regional countries such as Trinidad and Tobago, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Dominican Republic, Saint Lucia, Mexico and Dominica are ranked behind The Bahamas. Tourism is our main bread-and-butter. The criminal elements have sullied the reputation and image of this country on the international stage. Amnesty International, the United Nations, Rights Bahamas and other freethinking, liberal organisations as well as the Privy Council have tied the hands of the government with respect to carrying out the death penalty since 2000.
Hence, the bloody carnage in Nassau. Whatever one’s position on the death penalty debate is, the 1,600 murders are incontrovertible evidence that the laissez faire method of the foregoing organisations has miserably failed this country. Their method does not serve as a deterrent. If nothing else, it is the complete opposite.
The Free National Movement and the Progressive Liberal Party must stop shirking their governmental responsibility in dealing with the violent, incorrigible criminal enterprise.
I know that The Bahamas, as a member of the international community, finds itself in a bind. In the eyes of most western and European democracies, the death penalty is viewed as barbaric. But the past 19 years have shown us that giving hardened murderers the kid glove treatment isn’t working.
As the recent double murder at Sandilands Rehabilitation Centre in Fox Hill has shown us, murderers are becoming more brazen. They no longer fear the state. At this rate, these criminals will eventually start an all-out war against law enforcement agencies with the aim of establishing anarchy. The Bahamas is currently on this course.
The government has the biblical mandate to carry out the death penalty.
In the Old Testament Book of Genesis, Cain murders his brother Abel and is reprimanded by God, Who informs the first ever murderer that the blood of Abel is crying out to Him from the ground. Abel’s blood cried out for vengeance. Cain’s descendants slid further into moral apostasy and were subsequently wiped out in the Noahic Flood. I believe that the blood of those 1,600 murder victims is crying out to God for vengeance. In an effort to appear politically correct before the international community, successive governments have failed them. In light of the fact that successive governments have failed to administer appropriate retribution over the past 19 years, I believe God will eventually step in and take matters into His own hands. What those measures will be is anyone’s guess. But someone will have to pay for ending the lives of 1,600 human beings.
December 9, 2018