Our Children – Knowing Cents from Sense

Submitted by William Skinner

Recently in a submission to BU, I mentioned a story appearing in the local press about a six-year-old citizen, selling her first piece of art. In the interview, her mother said that she was conflicted, in exposing her daughter to such activity at a very tender age. She did not want to send the message that everything is about money. However, she concluded that her daughter’s passion, came at the cost of some expensive art supplies. In the end common “cents’ became the reality.

We stupidly believed that the world would have waited on us, to embrace the emerging technologies. While we waited, teens in other countries, were already becoming millionaires by creating and selling computer programs /apps. We wasted almost twenty years boasting about “punching above our weight”.

Our children were therefore denied the excellent opportunity of mastering basic computer skills, and many have left school lacking the competence to turn on a computer. Edutech was a monumental failure. And to this day, the architect of that calamity has never explained the disaster.

Our children must compete in the global market. Countries with limited resources must have educational institutions that impart knowledge and skills to navigate their local, regional, and international challenges.

An honest assessment of successive administrations reveals their innate ability to prefer presentation over content. They always fail to deal with the issues and challenges we need to face within our educational system. The latest fallacy being promoted, suggests there are no “good or bad” schools. We should ask our children what they think about that! We are trying to convince ourselves that the system is not elitist. We are still contending that each child, who sits the Common Entrance, has an equal chance of “passing” a “fair “examination.

Many citizens are asking what will replace the Common Entrance. Almost two years have passed since the current administration informed the public that it would be abolished.

We continue to blame the parents and those teachers, whom we think are not the best ,for the failures of the system.

Our children are not responsible for poor parenting or teaching. No child chooses his or her parents. Our children should have at least one daily nutritious meal and be exposed to the best educational institutions. We must ensure that they are provided with all the means to enjoy a happy, healthy childhood. They must be protected from all forms of abuse.

Very urgent and comprehensive legislation is needed to give our children protection. For example, adults who are accused of abusing children, must be removed from the home immediately; children under the age of fourteen should not be required to give evidence at trials where they have accused adults of abuse. Once the state determines there is a case, there should be no need for the child to be a witness and be cross examined. The accused is at the mercy of the court and his innocence or guilt will be determined by a jury.

Those found guilty should be placed on a public record as molesters and be not permitted to reside or frequent anywhere where children gather this will include play parks, schools, and other places. There should be a minimum sentence of twenty-five years for anybody who rapes a child. Penetration could be any object.

As a nation, we must protect and develop our only natural resource. We are all parents and guardians of all our children.

As we embark on the new Republic journey, we need to ask ourselves: how seven of ten children in the nation’s care, from the Girls Industrial School, became patients, at the psychiatric hospital on suicide watch. The next question is are we collectively doing right by our nation’s children.

The alert parent mentioned at the beginning of this piece, knew, the difference between reality and illusion. Our children have all the inner resources to make the future of our country greater and like that parent, we need to always know the difference between cents and common sense

121 thoughts on “Our Children – Knowing Cents from Sense

  1. “…..children under the age of fourteen should not be required to give evidence at trials where they have accused adults of abuse.”

    @ Mr.Skinner

    Although I understand the point you’re trying to make, any individual charged and brought before the Court for committing a crime, remains innocent until he (she) is proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt, based on the evidence presented at his/her trial.

    In my opinion, your suggestion to place “the accused at the mercy of the court, thereby allowing his/her innocence or guilt to be determined by a jury,” would essentially deprive that person of a fair trial.

    I cannot remember if children under 14 years old are allowed to give sworn testimony.
    But, because of their age and vulnerability, they could be manipulated by inappropriate questions.
    However, when properly interviewed, they may provide the Court with accurate and reliable testimonies.
    As such, interviews should be conducted in private with certain procedures in place to prevent lawyers from harassing or badgering them during cross examinations.

    I remember a case years ago, where a young girl accused her step-father of sexual assault. The girl and him were home alone one day. She tore her dress and ran to the door crying just as her mother was about to enter the house.
    Investigations revealed that she was not fond of the guy and decided the ‘frame’ him so as to end his relationship with her mother.
    She subsequently admitted the guy did not assault her and he was ‘good’ to her mother and siblings.
    Had this case gone to Court, surely this innocent man would have been found guilty by a jury, based solely on ‘one sided,’ circumstantial evidence.

    There was another case in which a youngster, who was a ‘family friend,’ was arrested and charged for sexually assaulting an eleven (11) year old girl.
    They were watching television a Friday night when the incident allegedly occurred.
    Her mother reported the matter to Police on Saturday afternoon and the victim was subsequently taken for a medical examination.
    The victim was not questioned in Court, but there were inconsistencies in the witnesses’ testimonies.
    The youngster was found not guilty.

    Perhaps your suggestion requires further explanation and discussion.

    I’m not the ‘blog police,’ nor do I want to dictate how people should discuss issues. However, I prefer analyzing the ‘pro and con’ so as to facilitate a reasonable and rational discussion.

  2. @ Artax
    My understanding is that some jurisdictions(USA$, do not demand that children under sixteen have to give evidence because those jurisdictions accept hearsay evidence. That is what the child might have told others.
    It’s a very thin line between what is a fair trial and what is not.
    Most of this is done, to protect the child from being manipulated under cross examination by the defenses.
    I have landed on the side of not only accepting hear say evidence but not cross examining very young children.
    I do however agree that it can be considered as a disadvantage to the accuser. Some suggest. however, that children not going on the witness stand is better for the accused.

  3. Had a wonderful rest and now I’m wide awake!

    No lie you tell will steal my joy.

    Poor, nasty you!

  4. Artex

    Are what do you mean children under age of fourteen should be forced to testify in a case involving abuse of an adult?

    Do you mean that the child shouldn’t face his or her abuser in court?

    In the United States that is a direct violation of the Six Amendment which states that the accuse has a right to face his or her accuser.

  5. With today’s technology it takes more than hearsay even if for whatever reason a child is not allowed to take the stand
    Evidence of physchical or physchological abuse can be acquired through various means medical or technological testing

  6. NY State of Mind

    “Straight out the fucking dungeons of rap Where fake niggas don’t make it back”

    White people have several different languages and cultures but are considered as one race spread out over the world.
    Their inherent biases consider themselves as the dominant race in the human race and have awarded themselves first place and superior while all others are inferior based on the complexion of their skin colour.

    The Black Diaspora is the African race, their culture is disseminated through the storytelling of Griot poetry and their music.

    Blacks are not as good as Whites are at recording and archiving their history.
    Whites catalogued their version of history spirituality and music which was stolen from blacks for their own agendas.

    How the Griot of the Hood Became a Rap Storyteller for the Ages

    April of 1994 equaled 30 days, from start to finish, of emotional highs and lows for those of African descent. The fourth month of that year saw the start of hundreds of thousands of Tutsi being massacred in the Rwandan genocide. On April 29, South Africa held its first interracial election, in which Nelson Mandela was voted president. And during all of this, on the 19th day of a month known for bringing showers, Nasir Bin Olu Dara Jones sprinkled the world with intelligent spit by dropping the five-mic masterpiece Illmatic.

    His unforgettable debut was hip-hop’s gritty version of the New York Times, filled with clearly colored commentary on life in the hood. Nas was an unapologetic master weaver of mental visions illuminated on pieces of paper. Effortlessly, he sewed together the ills and black epidemics of generational incarceration rates, project crack whores pining for more, and fatherless boys fast-tracked into becoming emotionally numb men.

  7. Zambian/Botswana newcomer Mwanjé has released her second single this week titled ‘Wildones’ which is a beautifully crafted neo-soul/alt-RnB release that boasts a very special guest appearance from her sister, Sampa the Great, and it also comes with a visually stimulating cinematic music video that is said to represent the duality of youth and wisdom.

    “Wildones expresses the notion of seeking personal freedom. In a more abstract light, it expresses the fact that we are all branches of the same tree. The visuals were inspired by the duality of youth in action guided by a deep sense of wisdom and knowledge that’s almost otherworldly. I vividly remember the first Zoom meeting between Micheal (co-director), Calvin (producer) and I, in which one of my main requests was that they found a way to make me levitate, and that’s exactly what they did.” – Mwanjé


  8. Black • Atlantis
    I am me and everything that made me
    Past, Present and Future all existing at once in what has existed forever

  9. Lack of identity is dangerous

    History is a clock that people use to tell their political and cultural time of day, it is also a compass people use to find themselves on the map of human geography. History tells a people where they have been, what they have been, where they are and what they are. Most importantly history tells people where they still must go and what they still must be.
    – Historian John Henrik Clarke
    I have great respect for the past. If you don’t know where you’ve come from, you don’t know where you’re going. I have respect for the past, but I’m a person of the moment. I’m here, and I do my best to be completely centred at the place I’m at, then I go forward to the next place.
    – Poet Maya Angelou
    The best way to predict the future is to create it. – Management expert Peter Drucker
    At the recent launch of the second phase of the collaboration between the National Transformation Initiative (NTI) and the online education provider Coursera, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley made this statement to highlight the personal and national development courses available through the initiative. She said, “Knowledge divorced from identity is a dangerous tool.”
    Identity is knowledge of self, knowledge of where you come from, where you are and where you want to go. I agree with Peter Drucker that the best way to predict the future is to create it. That creation can only happen in the present moment. And so, as Maya Angelou suggests, it is important to remain centred in the present moment.
    But the raw material and tools that you use to create the future and anchor yourself in the present moment are the identity you’ve developed from your experience and understanding of the past.
    Paraphrasing John Henrik Clarke, a sense of history tells a person or people what they must be and become. It gives you your identity.
    Understand yourself
    Identity is how you see and understand yourself. Your identity can be made
    up of a number of elements, such as your race, gender, nationality, religion, occupation, social status, education, to name a few. So much of what we do, think and feel is influenced by our identities. This is why identity is an important issue.
    Whatever influences your sense of identity influences the decisions you make.
    A key strategy for building an economic system based on the brutal exploitation of African human beings was to try to strip those human beings of an effective identity and replace that identity with one which was ripe for exploitation.
    One way to achieve this was first by withholding education, and then by providing forms of education which shaped identities to suit.
    Enslaved Africans were educated with knowledge and skills to the extent that this knowledge and skill served the economic system and did not threaten the system of exploitation.
    Effective identity
    We need an approach to education that provides our political and cultural time of day, and a compass to find ourselves on the map of human geography. That is, an effective identity. Without this, our sense of who, where and what we are is still geared towards being exploited. Our view of the present moment is skewed. We will decentre ourselves in it. The future we predict and create will be too much like the past, which, not well aware of, we are doomed to model. Knowledge without identity, without an appropriate sense of self is truly a dangerous thing. It is knowledge that will be used against you.

    Adrian Green is a communications specialist. Email: Adriangreen14 @gmail.com

    Source: Nation

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  11. Dompey May 15, 2022 5:22 AM

    Please indicate to me where in any of my contributions I MENTIONED “children under age of fourteen should be FORCED to TESTIFY in a case involving abuse of an adult?”

  12. I do not know which is worse… taking things at face value or engaging in speculation. I sincerely believe that there comes a time when some noise is preferable to silence; there comes a time when the ugly (if it exists) need to be exposed instead of having an uncomfortable silence; there comes a time when questions must be asked and answers be provided.

    What the hell is he carrying on about?

    Things like having young boys and girls disappear and then reappear bothers me. I understand we can have troubled or challenged youths and I hope this is an explanation. The children must be protected. However, the silence that follows the reappearance worries me. We need need to protect and to shield these children from a prying and gossipy public, but at times I wonder if we are also shielding miscreants.

    Things like having all three complainants in a trial die bothers me. I am not accusing anyone of anything but some things weigh heavily on my mind even when I am silent.

    I would prefer to speak and be wrong than be silent and let wrong flourish.

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