The BU Murder Tracker confirms violent; gun crime has become endemic in our tiny society. The 40th murder occurred last Friday and it is possible with about 6 weeks to go in 2022 two more murders to surpass the 2020 number of 41 maybe reached. It is a stretch to suggest Barbados will ‘challenge’ the 48 murders recorded in 2019, the highest recorded in our history.
There is a resignation by the blogmaster that the Barbados leadership at the policy making AND non governmental level lack the nous to successfully implement effective monitoring, enforcement and social approaches to revert to a norm where a murder was big news on the island. One only has to reflect on our helplessness to stop the minibus culture that has taken root since the 80s, our inability to address concerns repeatedly raised by the Auditor General, a contentment to maintain landfills instead of executing an effective waste to management program, growing traffic congestion and lawlessness on the roads, the sloth to wean the country from fossil fuel consumption AND last but not least our burgeoning court system.
It seems several of the murders that have occurred were committed by individuals out on bail. Many Barbadians have asked why those ‘known to the law’ routinely receive bail from the courts. In simple terms, it cannot be assumed that a person with a criminal strike is automatically guilty. There is the presumption of innocence by the system of jurisprudence practiced. In 2019 Attorney General Dale Marshall attempted to amend the Bail Act to refuse bail to anyone facing a murder charge unless 24 months had been spent in custody. A case of a slow justice system forcing lawmakers to amend the law that was eventually and predictably deemed unconstitutional. Relevance of Newton’s 3rd law?
Where do we go from here?
It would seem that at a time unprecedented events are taking place in our country bold and equally unprecedented interventions must occur. Although Newton’s third law doesn’t apply to the man made predicament Barbados and many global societies are having to battle, we have reached a tipping point where there are unprecedented opposite reactions occurring to the inability of society, whether government, NGO and PEOPLE to manage an orderly society.
If it is possible at this late stage to win back our little country from the battle against ‘flesh and blood’ and the war against the ‘unseen’ then extreme measures will have to be aggressively taken from yesterday. We do not have the luxury of continuing to procrastinate and vacillate.
On the occasion of International Men’s Day the blogmaster listened and read the usual platitudes delivered by the usual talking heads and there was an overwhelming sense of déjà vu. We are going nowhere fast as it pertains the quality of society we have the responsibility to fashion for our children. We do not deserve to wear the label of being an intelligent people and be happy to figuratively and literally engage in revelry while BIM is burning.
The PEOPLE clamoured to reject the initiative to replace Independence Day with Barbados National Day. Could it be the PEOPLE will become equally outrage to demand and force a course correction with crime now at an endemic level?
Thank you David. Still waiting to see the country mobilize to march against gun violence. Perhaps, I may be expecting too much from a country where most are politically polarized.
Gun violence is not an issue Barbadians will march. In fact we are not a marching people. What some of need to do is to exert leadership at the household level, share important information with police, there is the opportunity to do it anonymously via TIPS. We have take civic responsibility seriously. This applied to the profits motivated private sector as well.
““It is not the police force’s responsibility only. It is an all-country responsibility. I am asked from time to time, ‘What is the police force doing about the violence’. Well, the police force did not raise your child. It starts in the home,”
““We observe every single day children across the country seem to be on autopilot seemingly without parental control. What we have done in the force, is that we have the Juvenile Liaison [Scheme], the Prince’s Trust Programme and several parenting programmes and we are trying to do our best socially to explain to the adult population that the children need their support and need it badly.”
‘Griffith pleaded with the audience to take on the individual responsibility to manage their offspring.”
I am going to reach here and try to connects dots that seem quite separate, but are all linked together
(1) The state cannot hold parent responsible for their children actions and then undermine the parents by not asking their parents for permission to question their children. If you will tell a 11-year old that the government’s responsibility trumps parental responsibility, do you think they will listen to the parent at 11, 23, 13 … 19. You cannot deny the parents their authority and then blame the parents when the children misbehave.
(2) I wonder if those who would now attack the parents were ever children. It seems as if Barbados has a lot of people who were born “big and elderly’. Why focus on the warts and not mention the jewels; the thousand of parents who are active in their children lives and are producing successful citizens. It may be too much to ask officials to say “we cannot get the job done”, but I will ask that they also comment on the successful parents.
You know as well as I do, that when they are playing the blame game, only a segment of the society is flashing through everyone’s mind.
In the US, people often speak in code. They use a thousand phrases, but a sensible person knows these are coded phrases for ‘blacks’ or ‘the blacks’. The structure of Barbadian society is quite different from that of the US, but sometimes I believe that coded words are being used for ‘them’ and ‘us’.
if it is, that is one of the reason why the police initiatives fail.
MOST are politically polarised?????
Do you see the small numbers who belong to the political parties?
What percentage of Barbadians attend political meetings?
What percentage of eligible voters even vote?
I don’t even know the political views of most of the people I meet.
The majority of Barbadians are disengaged politically. They will vote if and when they can see and feel an impactful change in their lives, either positive or negative.
Good points! The negligence of the whole society but especially successive governments actually contributed to this situation.
Not to mention the “Man who employed my Son” the topic of a poem on the CXC English Literature syllabus.
These big “respectable” men in the shadows are not a part of the equation in these narratives.
This is yet another reason for the little foolish black boys not to pay the authorities any mind.
Unfortunately, they do not perceive that it is also yet another reason that they should not allow themselves to be used by these big “respectable” men.
Lord, I cry!
Nuff respect to the Blogmaster.
It has to be a major effort to continue to play the part of an eternal optimist in the midst of a developing Hell…
As Bushie indicated some time ago, this should have been no real surprise. We have been planting the seeds for decades now, if anything it required patience from the Boss – for us to have reached as far as we have…
Sadly, it makes no sense changing course, even if we had the capacity (and wisdom) to do so… How would a change in course have helped the Titanic?
…unless of course the captain had the wisdom and foresight to do so BEFORE the iceberg impact?
Our ‘impact’ has been cemented in history, and it is signified and commemorated at the Garrison.
This is why the whacker ‘get tek way’ …..to make room for the D11 CD that is now here…
Wouldn’t a change in course have avoided the iceberg?
“David” should publish that article as a separate blog, Bertie Hinds didn’t pull any punches. I would expect some pushback from the political directorate, but we have a useless AG who has a retired Commissioner (whose role is undetermined) as a consultant. I would speculate that Hinds still has associates within the Force who would have relayed the information about low morale.
The Blogmaster referred to comments by Bertie Hinds in one of the other blogs. The police force has become mired in a political cesspool as well. The BLP will not listen to Hinds and you know why. It is a Dottin versus Hinds scenario.
I believe some people love to ‘grab at straws.’ Hinds referrence to “low moral” in the police service is not a recent development, as he and other persons seem to be suggesting. It also existed before Hinds became a gazetted officer and continued during and after his tenure as Deputy Police Commissioner.
Speaking of ‘grabbing at straws’ Artax…
Where did Hinds say that low morale was a recent thing..?
…asking for ac 🙂
Bush Tea, please indicate where in my contribution I mentioned anything that suggested “Hinds said low morale is a recent thing?” You have a penchant for purposely misrepresenting the comments of certain individuals as the basis to launch your snide attacks. But, yuh know, I’m “asking for ac” as well. Under these circumstances, her simple, appropriate response to you would’ve been…… “ya old boar” or “bush shite.” …. “LOL”
On those salaries, top excepted, my morale would also be low.
But in many instances, we are getting who and what we pay for.
There are police officers who cannot even write a coherent report or take a decent statement.
That deficiency could also be one of the reasons for the frequent delays in presenting evidence to our courts.
But….Peter Laurie says we have been blessed with visionary leadership from Barrow to Mottley.
Just as faith without works, the Bible declares to be dead, so vision without implementation is equally dead.
I believe our stick shift vehicle is rolling backwards down one of those hills you lot were on about on the other recent blog.
Sweet talking the clutch will not persuade it to balance. It requires fancy footwork.
Wunnah pelt out God outta wunnah lives so TEK DAT. All de policies and procedures wunnah implementing, and all de finger pointing ain gun help. Tings will get worse until wunnah do de rite ting.
@ Artax asked…
Bush Tea, please indicate where in my contribution I mentioned anything that suggested “Hinds said low morale is a recent thing?”
“…Hinds referrence to “low moral” in the police service is not a recent development, as he and other persons seem to be suggesting….”
Asked and answered –
….compliments your friend ac
Rwanda introduces road tennis inspired by Barbados!
If the criminal element in tiny Barbados is prepared to defend their turf you have a problem.
A course correction would imply some form of navigation was in place.
We have a captain who many believe intends to bail before we run aground.
A feckless first mate and a ragtag crew more interested in posing for pictures with passengers than doing their jobs.
The passengers are now in charge.
Crime committed by passengers is a symptom, so is the illegal survey, also corrupt vaccine deals, also the illegal acquisition of Ms. Ram’s property and on and on.
Renaming the ship won’t change a thing, handing out medals to the crew won’t change a thing and putting passengers in the brig won’t change a thing
I must admit, you are correct.
But, this is a rare occasion where I’ve made such a ‘slip up.’
Nevertheless, ‘yuh got me good,’ something your new found friend ‘ac’ has never been able to achieve.
no biggie Artax…. We Good!!!
Bushie got your general point, …but just wanted to get in a little ‘dig’ in ac’s memory…
Certain lawyers and judges are working against the law and thus against the leader, the state and the party.
Our Supreme Leader is called upon to take serious criminal cases into her own hands from now on. As the all-ruler of our island and trustee of the people’s will, she is by nature empowered to take every case to herself and decide according to the people’s will.
I call this the National People’s Court (NPC).
@ Bushie, @ Artax
That’s what mature debate /discussion is all about.
Keep up the good work guys.
“David “Kojak” Callender is appealing to “the powers that be” to instil in the hearts of the young men who want to be killers that they cannot win.”
The article indicated that former ASP Callender made some very interesting comments.
Callender, who was popularly known as “Kojak” ‘back in the day,’ is from an era when many people respected police officers through fear. You’ll notice he mentioned former officers such as ‘Rap Browne,’ ‘Track Suit Top,’ ‘Dirty Harry,’ Watson and Whittaker.
I’ll add ‘Fancy Basket,’ ‘Lion Man,’ ‘Johnny Salt Bags,’ ‘Bill Johnson,’ ‘Starsky,’ ‘Hutch,’ ‘Invader #1’ and his brother, ‘Invader #2,’ to the list of cops whom people feared.
I’m sure people from the 1940s, 50s and 60s could also mention the names of police officers who fearlessly maintained law and order in those eras.
I remember as a youngster in the early 1980s, the older folks talking about ‘cowering in fear,’ when they saw plain clothed police officers in unmarked vehicles such as ‘The Big S,’ (referring to a dark blue Toyota Crown…S2548), M2555 or E511.
The history of policing in the Caribbean region is very interesting. Many Caribbean police forces were established during the early 1840s, a few years after the abolition of slavery in 1833.
Obviously, former slaves and plantation owners shared different social and economic interests. As such, the priority for police was to ‘serve and protect’ the safety of plantation owners and their properties.
Since the British colonies adopted a centralised and authoritarian colonial policing structure from Britain, law and order were often maintained by unfriendly, coercive methods.
Over the years, there weren’t any significant attempts to reform those structures.
As a result, we’ve seen, for example, police corruption; brutality and torture, especially to solicit confessions from accused persons; biased and discriminatory law enforcement practices, where the minority and the influential majority segments of the population seem to have ‘diplomatic immunity.’ There is also, in some cases, where police officers failed to follow procedures governing due process.
Nowadays, people have become more aware of their constitutional rights and will not allow anyone, including police officers, to infringe them.
Good comment, your observation about the impact of the fear factor then compared to its irrelevance in today’s Barbados spot on.
” The police have appealed for information regarding the 63rd murder so far this year with residents of the area indicating that Wilson may have been heading home from work when she was killed.”
Independence Message: Think about how to transform Barbados
Stabbing at Parkinson School!