THE EDITOR: Suddenly Police Commissioner Gary Griffith and his team are under siege, and for what? Taking extraordinary measures for an extraordinary crime situation.
You don’t have over 60 homicides in less than two months and twiddle your thumbs while Rome burns. And by this I mean using all the “conventionals” such as spruced-up policing, protest marches, seminars, consultations, quizzes, art competitions in schools and the like, useful as these may be in ordinary situations.
Here criminality has gone awry with little or no sense of deterrence evident in the mindset of the criminal, for as he would say, if the priest could play who is me. And by this I mean those in the upper echelons or in high office can ply their “white collar” trade with impunity.
And what if the system allows me, like not being caught, due to ineptness or collusion in the force or rank incompetence in the way it operates. Or, if caught, being allowed to go free for lack of evidence which I have means to snuff out and which my greedy, smart lawyers can easily exploit, to which judges are vulnerable?
And don’t forget the media which are ever willing to highlight my plight, all in the name of equal rights (quietly aside), never mind that I have virtually abdicated my rights in trespassing on the rights of my victims and have no moral authority to make such a claim.
And keep in mind also that not despite my criminal behaviour but because of it, I am allowed to feed on state-funded generosity in the form of contracts et al for the politics of appeasing me so that the crime situation will not look so bad and for my power and influence on would-be voters in my domain.
And even with all that to my benefit, let’s say I am caught, which is highly unlikely, I can still ply my trade by phone from behind the prison walls, through collusion with officers and with the support of families, even whole communities, for I am their Robin Hood no matter who the victims.
So where does the impenetrable wall of criminality leave Griffith and his team: their efforts “full of sound and fury signifying nothing?” Maybe, maybe not.
But even as the naysayers talk about rights and excessive force, legitimate as these are under normal circumstances, let them visit a mother who pines over the mementos of a once beloved, or a sister with a river of tears for her young brother “gone too soon,” or a young son returning from abroad to witness his 75-year-old mother and father locked in a bloody embrace to defend themselves when he was nowhere around to come their aid.
Let one of the above be a “moment in time” (heaven forbid) for these naysayers and then they will understand where Griffith is coming from.
DR ERROL BENJAMIN via e-mail