It is not the role of the government to craft crime strategies. Government’s role is to consult with law enforcement on whats best to aid them in their efforts against lawbreakers. That is not to say that law enforcement should be the only interest group consulted on legislation, having wide consultation generally result in better more balanced legislation. Too much consultation and deference results in bad laws. No input from law enforcement officers is ridiculous, disrespectful and bound to fail as have been the case in much of the laws passed in Jamaica in recent times. When politicians craft strategies politics gets involved and the results are generally slanted in their own interest.
One of the underlying problems in our country is the general disrespect which lawmakers have for members of the law enforcement community. That is true of both political parties. That disrespect may be traced to three bullet points. (1) Politicians need the police to fail in order to maintain control of existing garrisons and grow others. (2) Politicians are generally arrogant self-absorbed narcissists who believe they and they alone have all the answers. (3) Members of the Police high command from whom sensitive information and critical data would be expected in detail, pros and cons included, have allowed themselves to be lapdogs to the political class to the extent that they have no authority.
A similar example of the disrespect and demagoguery of which I speak are playing out in the United States today. In order to break the laws with impunity, those who seek to tear down the structures of democratic nations must first destroy the confidence of citizens in those structures and institutions to be effective and trustworthy.
As I have said before the issue of violent crime in Jamaica has long passed the stage where it is merely crime, the country is in an existential fight for its very soul.
A few days ago I wrote that the militaristic assaults the nation is experiencing from the gangsters are a precursor to a larger event to come.
Stunningly a day later the Prime Minister In a release Friday afternoon said, “Jamaica is now beyond a public order issue or street level crime“.
This has been my argument all along, the Prime Minister wants more anti-crime laws, unfortunately, there will be no change in the number of killings with more laws, what is needed is a 180-degree mental turnaround.
Jamaica is a criminal loving society, there is no denying it, as a consequence, it is incredibly difficult to break the backbone of crime.
Even those who reap no benefits from crime are hugely sympathetic to crime figures, the more infamous the murderers, the more segments of the society clamor for their attention. Even the so-called educated make excuses for them, they teach college courses justifying their behavior and in some instances, they actively sanitize their sordid history by blaming the police for their demonic actions.
(see the: http://www.oberlinlibstaff.com/omeka_projects/exhibits/show/radical-thinkers-and-movements/rastafari-and-reggae/oppression–the-coral-gardens-)
They even bring them into their university to give lectures, thereby raising their profiles and giving them legitimacy.
The society then wonder why the vast majority of young men are not getting an education but are choosing lives of crime?
Why would they, when the can become rich overnight, have immense power derived through the barrel of a gun and have all of the creature comforts and trappings of modern society by becoming gangsters?
As a consequence, those who are tasked with uprooting the criminal empires are automatically viewed as public enemy number one. This Orwellian concept of the rule of law has seen our country devolve from a genuine Utopian paradise, the pearl of the Caribbean, into a dystopian nightmare from which over 90% of its citizens want to flee.
I must acknowledge the Prime Minister for this statement, I hope this is not a flash in the pan, hopefully, the Prime Minister and others around him are finally opening their eyes to the grim reality of what is happening.
The statement was making reference to what Jamaica House calls a threat to the very foundation of the Jamaican State and the peace and security of citizens.
This writer has been saying this for years, long before the events of 2010, it is now 2018 and the Jamaican Prime Minister seemingly is just awakening to those stark realities.
This administration came to office without a feasible crime plan. The PNP Administration never cared about crime. The party and its functionaries are far too heavily invested in crime and it’s bulwark as a means to state power to care.
As such the nation should expect that the PNP will continue to make strawman arguments about human rights as the reason they cannot support strong meaningful legislation which will empower the security forces to deal effectively with this scourge.
The PNP has consistently used that logic, understanding full well that- that argument has much resonance with the criminal underworld, many residents of underserved garrison communities and the huge phalanx of criminal rights lobby on the Island.
It is now time for intelligent and patriotic Jamaicans to demand that the People’s National Party support the Government’s lead in saving the country, failing which the party must be sent to the dustbin of history.