Some National Service Could Be The Answer

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Given the level of crime in our country I believe it’s time we reconsider compulsory national service for our youth (young men and women). Perhaps we could split the participants evenly across the defence and police forces and rotate them at the halfway mark of a two-year programme. I think the potential benefits to our youth and country would be tremendous and include:

• Teaching conflict resolutions skills, health and wellness and CPR.

• Fostering a sense of responsibility, belonging and pride in oneself and our country.

• Bringing together our youth from different communities and socio-economic backgrounds, which would improve understanding and empathy for one another.

• Exposure to positive role models in the police and defence forces.

• The learning of one or more trades/skills for post service employment.

• Teaching our youth to make eye contact, communicate clearly and respectfully thereby increasing their opportunities for employment.

• Classes in reading, writing and arithmetic.

• In times of a national emergency we would have a ready and able group of people to deploy to communities in need leaving the police and defence force available to ensure public safety.

As for funding, perhaps the United States or China would assist in the establishment or support of a national service programme through monetary backing or specialised instructors or educators.

There will of course be those with a host of reasons why this couldn’t possibly work but we need to do something now before the next child that is shot or stabbed is yours or mine.



May 14, 2019.


DDK 3 days, 1 hour ago

This seems a good idea as long as the handling of firearms would not be included in the service as that would make those predisposed to crime more weapon proficient.........


DonAnthony 3 days ago

No, no, hell no. Have an optional program but it should never be mandatory. Why should my son who comes from a good family, and has great opportunities, waste two years of his life? Send your son leave mine alone to pursue his best future.


tetelestai 3 days ago

Um, cause your son is a citizen of this country and should be ready, at all times, to either defend the country or assist in capacity building at all costs. This is exactly the hypocrisy in this country. Everyone whines and complains about how "bad things are" and then when a reasonable solution is proffered, immediately try and find loop holes to get out of it. Btw, can you please explain who would be exempt from the program, i.e., what is the definition of "good family"? Income? Lineage?


DonAnthony 2 days, 23 hours ago

My son owes this country absolutely nothing. He is not sacrificing his life for any country period. Ask someone else to die for you. No need for exemptions, if this program is optional. In that case I am all for it, pay the participants whatever you want. This is a democracy, no one should be forced into compulsory national service.


sheeprunner12 2 days, 21 hours ago

Why are Conchy Joes so (generally) adverse to serving in our civil/military services??? They can benefit from mixing with black Bahamians, too. They make up 10-15% of the population, so no need to stay in a social box.


joeblow 2 days, 21 hours ago

No, no, hell no. Have an optional program but it should never be mandatory. Why should my son who comes from a good family, and has great opportunities, waste two years of his life? Send your son leave mine alone to pursue his best future.

... this response sums up perfectly why such an idea can never work!


moncurcool 2 days, 21 hours ago

You are on point DonAnthony. Why should parents who are taking pains to direct their children in the right path, be forced to send them through a national service because you have other parents who shake off their responsibilities?

The problem is not the child, the problem is the parent. They are the ones who need to be put in national service if they cannot direct their child int he right way.

And I am black and not conch joe or white.


DonAnthony 2 days, 19 hours ago

Thank you for your comment. This is EXACTLY what I was trying to articulate and it has absolutely nothing to do with ethnicity. Why some commenters feel the need to inject race into every discussion is beyond me.


Dawes 3 days ago

Most of the benefits are items that should be taught in School. What we really should do is fix our education ministry and then many of the issues should go away. All mandatory national service will do is create more issues. What would a kid who gets a scholarship to go away do? Would they be given an exemption, if so wouldn't that mean this services would just be for those who can't afford to get off the island at 18.


sheeprunner12 2 days, 21 hours ago

The template already exists ............. It is called the RBDF Rangers Programme ....... Just make it mandatory from Junior High School


DDK 2 days, 21 hours ago

That may be a better idea........


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