Govt. Doing The Same Thing And Expecting A Different Result…


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.
We have!
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.

Image result for Jamaica's curfews, ZOSO's, AnD SOE's

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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