In the regional news last week we learned about an entire class of grade 10 boys at Cornwall college in Jamaica who were arrested over a missing school bag. The drastic action by the police can be debated from several angles, the one which pricked BU’s interest is the value which students today place in brand – in this case – a brand name bag.
Just a week earlier Barbadians read a media report which detailed that brand name backpacks for school are being sold for as much as $350. Further investigation by BU turned up that one of the more popular and expensive backpacks is the JANSPORT brand. The bag is retailing in Barbados for more than $200.00. An online search suggests that the same bag retails in the USA in the price range of BBD50.00 to BBD75.
It is a dark place we find ourselves. Our societal values have plummeted to a level where parents succumb to the wishes of their preteen children to outfit them with backpacks of such great value. What can we do if our parents have relinquished their responsibility? The chickens are coming home to roost.