In commentary we often speak to what government should do to help with the crime fight. It is trying. Time will tell if its efforts will work.
We have set a third homicide record in four years and there is still a month to go in 2010. It is concerning that we are setting so many homicide records.
But instead of focusing on what our taxed government should do to help solve the crime problem, we shall spend some time on the role of citizens in this effort.
The surge in violent crime in recent years is related, in part, to the settling of the violent drug culture in more and more Bahamian communities. In the drug economy disputes are settled with guns. Violence and killing are dispute resolution in this world.
Bahamians have to reject the easy money that comes with the drug dealing. If we do not, we will lament homicide records each year around this time. Mothers and fathers must demand more from their children. Kids should be taught that most who decide to make drug dealing and killing careers end up either dead or in jail.
Rather than encouraging young people to make money by any means necessary, the virtue of honest work must again be taught.
Bahamians also need to embrace planned parenthood. Biology is not destiny. The Bahamas has too many young mothers and fathers unable to raise children. Consequently these children grow up on the streets.
There are other things that can be done by citizens to help with the crime fight. Business owners can give a second chance to truly reformed offenders. If you have served your time, and have changed, staying on the right path is difficult when no jobs are available in the legitimate world.
After being rejected at every turn, some return to the old way as the only means of survival.
Calling into talk shows and writing letters to newspapers also help advance the democracy, putting pressure on the relevant stakeholders when it comes to crime.
Forming a new, or participating in a current think-tank is also a good idea.
Being available for jury duty is another small, but important, part of engaged citizenry. Testifying in court is as well.
The government has its role to play. But outside of government, citizens must become more involved.
Each of us can do a little more to help reform The Bahamas.
The Freeport News