Our ‘Christian Nation’ Is A Criminally-Minded Society
The Bahamas is comprised of a population of about 350,000 people. We are known as a Christian nation. Let me repeat. We are known as a Christian nation.
A nation that is considered to be a Christian nation should be Christlike.
Being Christlike is to act in a peaceful and respectful manner towards your countrymen. But do we act this way? Do we promote peace in our country?
From 2002 to 2012, we have had over 800 murders in The Bahamas.
Yes, 800 murders. That’s an average of 80 murders per year. Remember that 2012 still has six more months to go.
The normal accepted standard for murder is five per 100,000. This means that if our population is 350,000 people, at most The Bahamas should be experiencing 17.5 murders per year. But we are recording 63 more murders per year than we should, or 23 murders per 100,000 people.
We have quadrupled international standards in this area. We are simply out of order.
To add insult to injury, during the campaign trail of 2012 the Free National Movement (FNM) and the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) exposed statistics on the conviction rates for murder.
From 2002 -2007, the FNM advised that the PLP convicted only nine people for murder in The Bahamas.
From 2007-2012, the PLP advised that the FNM convicted 26 people for murder.
Did the Bahamian people miss the message here during the election campaign?
Successive governments have collectively convicted less than 40 people of murder in the last 10 years.
Put simply, for every 100 murders that occurred in The Bahamas since 2002, less than five people are serving time for this serious offense.
Could this be one of the reasons why murders occur in The Bahamas unabated? Could this be a reason why young men would shoot a crowd of people in a night club without fear of reprisal from the established legal authority?
We have a criminally-minded society and there are hundreds of murderers walking about freely on our streets.
We have extended bail to serious repeat offenders, some of whom have not even been outfitted with ankle bracelets.
We continue to provide protection to criminals who can only be considered “Teflon Kings.”
Now a recent Nassau Guardian article states that the police are looking for a known thug who was released one week before the general election.
When I read these types of stories, I wonder where the real bottlenecks to fighting crime exist.
I wonder who is “pulling the strings” and why “good men” just sit back and allow wrong to continue unabated in our country and do nothing.
I have news for the Bahamian public. Murders in The Bahamas will not cease until good men start to stand for what is right and vigorously defend the laws of the country.
Residents must play their parts and report illegality to the police.
The police must continue to do their jobs and arrest criminals. Politicians must not interfere with the criminal justice system and if they are doing so they must cease and desist forthwith.
When it comes to prosecuting criminals, there must be no double standard. No name-brand street thugs or name-brand white collar criminals should be given any breaks.
I am a firm believer in the old adage that says, “If you do the crime, you need to serve the time.”
The eight people who were shot recently at a night club show the escalating level of criminal intent that is being harnessed in our young men.
If we don’t stop them, they will not be stopped.
They seem to be fearless when that illegal gun is in their hands and will not stop until they are stopped by a rival gang member or the long arm of the law.
Proper execution of the criminal justice system will put these thugs in jail and keep them there.
Eight hundred murders are more than enough to appeal to our sense of purpose.
The bloodshed on our streets is destroying generations of Bahamians and we must act now. This is no time for compromise and to be a coward.
The father of our nation, Sir Lynden Pindling, once said, “If you are not prepared to fight for your country, then you do not deserve to have it.”
We have 59 recorded murders so far for the year. Are we going to be content with another murder record this year? When are some Bahamians going to be alarmed by the murder rate in our country? Will they wait until it reaches their door steps before they act?
Dehavilland Mosscourt, crime, injustice, murder