Crime is literally suffocating the life-blood from Jamaica, already just under 40 Jamaicans reported dead to authorities, and we are just about at the half-way mark of January. Whether we are at, or below the levels of homicide we were at lat year this time, the numbers are just shocking. Imagine if we had a natural disaster which snuffed out the lives of these people who were alive ,just celebrated Christmas a couple of weeks ago. They did not expect to be among the statistics of the new year. Some of them probably were not bothered by the numbers of last year. And even worse some probably felt they are not bothering anyone so the killings will affect the next guy, the next girl, not them. The problem with that thinking is that when we allow crime to fester it does not discriminate. Ironically that is not how it works, we are all at risk when we see something and we choose not to say something. We are all part of the statistic-in-waiting when we decide not to be informers. There are many ways to say something if you see something without endangering one’s self. Yet the (infama fi ded) mentality is so deeply embedded into popular culture that it’s not simply that many chose not to say anything anymore, they are active cheer-leaders and rationalizers at best and active participants at worse.
Crime is a debilitating cancer which eats away at the core of society. Apart from the more visible loss of life, and physical pain, it destroys quality of life and creates poverty for all except those who are active parts of that culture. When we consider how the informer must die notion crept into popular vernacular, it is almost laughable, weren’t it so toxic and dangerous. How can a people who profess to be smart be duped by uneducated dance-hall disc jockeys? If the disc jockeys’s are half-baked illiterates , yet they are able to have such an impact on an entire population what does that say about the people?
I am not saying Jamaica’s crime problem must be placed at the feet of dance-hall artistes. I am simply saying, why did something which had its Genesis in the dance-hall have such resonance. Why do Jamaicans go out of their way to show sympathy for the most despicable criminals, rather than empathize with victims of crime? Remove law-enforcement from the equation, there are still victims involved. They make all kinds of nonsensical and ignorant arguments about Cops, in their quest to cover up their affinity for crime. Seldom do we hear a word of empathy for the victims. Just yesterday one brilliant light-bulb on Face-Book sought to explain why people in the Chinese community are being targeted for criminality. she recited a litany of reasons which supposedly justifies the criminality visited on them. No one deserve to be singled out to be robbed beaten or worse. It is reprehensible and disgusting, yet our country’s crime problem has deep roots in the diaspora, many of whom are more than supporters on social media. Many are providing the means for the criminal acts being experienced back home.The Country desperately needs tough well thought out anti-crime legislation. This is essential so those who live a life of crime will think twice. If they chose not to, then they should be prepared for the consequences. No one piece of legislation will be a panacea. Yet Jamaica can ill-afford to allow the arguments for social intervention to dissuade it from passing tough meaningful laws which will over time cut and control crime. Tough anti-crime laws and social intervention are not mutually exclusive , the country must do both, one should not impact the other.
This Administration does nothing about crime unless it is dragged kicking and screaming to the table. Lets not forget they refused to support the Security Forces in their efforts to solidify their gains after the Tivoli incursion of 2010. En-mass the PNP voted as a unit, not to extend the already limited state of emergency which was earlier authorized. In the most ridiculous yet insulting spin imaginable, they told the country that they did not sign on to allow the security forces to do their jobs, because they were afraid they would abuse citizens rights. Never mind the Police Officers and citizens who were killed, stations shot up and burned to the ground. Never mind the effort it took for the Security forces to annex Tivoli Gardens to the rest of the country after it was hijacked by mercenaries from all over the country. I will not write what thoughts came into my head on hearing that garbage. What they did not tell the country and indeed the world which was watching, was that they weren’t about to allow the security forces to enter their zones of exclusions (garrisons) to remove the guns and the Dons.
Anti-gang legislation languished in Parliament while criminal supporters in both political parties allowed their cronies in the criminal rights fraternity like Jamaicans for Justice (JFJ) and others to water down the language in the Bill. I brought this to your attention recently and today I am reporting that Bill has been signed into law. I will not speak to the specifics of what’s in it, I haven’t yet seen it. Nevertheless the ink hasn’t dried before the usual bleeding hearts are already yelling that the sky is falling. This bit of legislation will hopefully further assist the Country’s existential fight against crime and terror.
With the anti-gang law in place, policing methods are likely to alienate more youth and more communities. The police will now be able to arrest and charge inner-city youth without needing evidence that they committed any crime. The flurry of arrests will no doubt bring about a lull in crime that will seem to prove that the new law is having the desired effect.Yvonne McCalla Sobers:http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20140114/cleisure/cleisure2.html
Yvonne McCalla Sobers
These people have no solution to the crime problem. They have no empathy for victims of crime. No appreciation for the economic cost to the country, neither do they care. Their business is crime, their relevance rests with high crime rates and the perception of police excess. Too many people are invested in crime in Jamaica (affi eat a food), That does not mean only those on the Island, but since the late 1980’s to date large parts of the criminal elements sought refuge on other shores. Many within the diaspora leads what appears to be normal law abiding lives in the UK, Canada and of course the United States, while they fuel the fire of crime back at home.