The meaning of the word “stupid” according to one definition is, ” having or showing a great [lack] of intelligence or common sense”.
But there is another definition for “stupid” which may be more easily relatable, at least to us Jamaicans, that is “doing the very same thing over and over and expecting a different result”.
And so may the efforts at confronting the endemic crime situation in Jamaica be characterized.
Over the years I have taken the liberty to characterize the methods employed, as “whack-a-mole”. Since then that characterization has been validated over and over by the implementation of new Zones Of Special Operations and the declaration of State Of Emergencies.
Despite the clear evidence that even within the ZOSO’s and SOE’s there are shootings, murders, and other serious crimes, not to mention the migration of criminals to other areas where they set up shop, the powers that be still continue to employ the same strategies.
Realistically, the strategies being used cannot represent a continuüm in the minds of the governing authority for sure?
The political opposition as have others, have argued that the continued use of ZOSO’s and SOE’s is not a long term strategy. Or as they say, it is not a feasible crime elimination strategy.
None of the critics, including the political opposition, has articulated a rational reason why the strategies being employed are unsustainable.
Insofar as the political opposition is concerned I have dismissed them from this conversation on crime. The opposition is a part of the problem, therefore I am not [stupid] enough, to believe they will be a part of any workable solution.
This is not a party-political position for me, it is a rational decision based on the fact that the political opposition has had more than enough time to shape and direct the nation’s policies, including setting the stage on how the nation’s security would be handled.
Eighteen and a half (181÷2) years to be exact, and look at the condition of our country.
In the time since they have been in opposition, nothing has changed in terms of their awareness, their only preoccupation seems to be a singular focus on regaining state power.
On the other hand, the government should take no comfort in the foregone, it has been over three years since this administration took office.
In that time, not only has crime continued to increase unabated, but clearly, the administration has demonstrated it has no idea how to handle it long term.
If the strategy is to put large groups of security personnel in places where crime numbers attract the attention of the government… The government must be aware that they will either (a) run out of security personnel bodies, (b) will work to death the already overworked members of the security forces, and © that the strategy will have a negligible effect on the problem.
Without assigning motive to the government’s strategy, it does appear that (as I have said in previous articles), the idea is to simply contain the crime statistics enough to hold and retain power, rather than a serious attempt at remediating this existential issue.
The most recent iteration of this regressive strategy is a new curfew, just instituted (North): Along Deanery Drive from the intersection with Fourth Avenue to Mountain View Avenue; (East): Along Mountain View Avenue from the intersection with Deanery Drive to Langston Road; (South): Along Langston Road from the intersection with Mountain View Avenue to Fourth Avenue; (West): Along Fourth Avenue from the intersection with Langston Road to Deanery Drive.
Without contemplating the nuanced and complex reasons why these announced strategies will do nothing to alleviate the problem, it is at least clear to even the simplest among us that all the violence practitioners have to do is step outside these lines of demarcation.
That is exactly why the ZOSO’s and SOE’s have become a laughing stock.
Strategies aimed at effectively dealing with serious crimes cannot be suppressant strategies. Anything suppressed will eventually break free given time. And so it is the definition of stupidity that this administration has stubbornly continued on this charade while the number of murdered Jamaicans continue to soar.
If the government is serious about dealing decisively with this monster, the government must seek help from other countries, (not England).
I understand the Administration has no respect for the police, I get that, the police have hardly acquitted themselves in a manner deserving of admiration.
Even so, that does not preclude the government from asking for help. Clearly, the administration cannot be willing to bet the future sovereignty and solvency of our country on the altar of political expediency as the opposition party has?
The nonsensical rebranding of the JCF as “a force for good” flies in the face of every good officer who ever served in that agency.
It is an affront by this administration to curry favor with voters, by subtly insinuating that the JCF of yesteryear, “was a force for evil”.
Many members past and present may have missed that slight I have not.
And so I am calling on the government to set aside its petty grudge against proper policing.
Allow the police to pursue the gangsters wherever and whenever. The government must extricate itself from its garrison connections and put the interest of the nation above its own long-term political aspirations.
So too must the opposition party.
No life is disposable or expendable. The lives of ordinary Jamaicans should not become logs in the furnace of political expediency.
Stop playing around and fix this problem now.
Mike Beckles is a former Jamaican police Detective corporal, a business owner, avid researcher, and blogger.
He is a black achiever honoree, and publisher of the blog chatt-a-box.com.
He’s also a contributor to several websites.
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