Deliver us from evil

By Raffique Shah
January 27, 2016

Raffique ShahIt occurred to me some hours after I heard the news that gunmen had murdered two Laventille schoolboys that I felt no emotions over the dastardly act.

I was not saddened or consumed with anger. I was not even outraged over the manner in which the youthful victims were grabbed from their ride home, much the way Hitler’s Nazis separated Jews from Gentiles, or how Israelis now separate Palestinians from Jews, marking them for death, executing them right there in public.

Almost in horror, I realised that maybe I was losing my humanity, which is a frightening prospect for any human being.

The sheer savagery of criminal acts that have engulfed the nation over the past three decades or so, psychologically strangling us like a debilitating disease that grows progressively worse as it numbs our senses, has reduced me, and, I’m sure, many others, to borderline sub-humans.

When man no longer feels deeply the atrocities meted out to his fellow human beings, be it in his backyard or ten thousand miles away, when he finds himself losing compassion for others, he must question his existence.

This is the crossroads to which crime in my country has brought me.

When good men (and women) feel nothing and do nothing about the mindless murders that have numbed their minds to what can be described only as savagery, when crimes are reduced to statistics, then we might as well abandon all hope for salvaging the society.

Last week Sunday, in this space, I sought to rally my countrymen to wage war in the face of an onslaught on the economy, a war that I think we can win.

But what are our chances of winning the war against crime?

We have descended into a hellhole in which guns have proliferated, with seemingly every second person owning a “piece” or two, with unlimited supplies of ammunition, and confident that they can kill anyone without being arrested, charged, convicted or penalised.

Governments come, governments go, ministers with the responsibility for national security play musical chairs by the month, ace police crime fighters emerge and fade, billions of dollars are expended in the process, all for nought.

The Police Service has been expanded, furnished with impressive combat outfits and awesome arms. The military has been co-opted to add muscle. We are told that hundreds of CCTV cameras monitor our every move. There is a well-equipped operations centre and every manner of intelligence agency-SB, SSA, SIA, maybe even CIA.

Yet, we are no closer to curbing crime today than we were ten, twenty years ago.

Ten years ago, in July 2006, I wrote, “…It’s a chilling state of affairs, and nothing National Security Minister Martin Joseph says to us about his latest crime plans can soothe pains of countless victims of crime who will never get justice…Not when hitherto relatively safe-areas are subjected to daily raids by marauding bandits…Foreign governments update their ‘travel advisories’ on T&T, making us look like Bosnia of yesterday, or today’s Gaza, a virtual war zone overtaken by criminals…”

Then in July 2011, shortly before the PP Government imposed a state of emergency in a frantic bid to rein in runaway crime, I wrote, “Let’s be realistic about where we are in this crime-ridden country…The forces of law and order cannot conceivably cover all the killing fields at the same time…Indeed, even if they rotate their crime clampdowns, they face mission impossible…

“Criminal gangs have sprung up in just about every community…gunmen parade openly with their ‘hardware’… in some crime-nests these guys conduct ‘range practice’ in broad daylight…

“…What we are dealing with is a hydra-headed monster…the only way to kill it is to sever its many heads-simultaneously, if that is possible…”

Desperation, exasperation, frustration as the monster kept growing to the point where, today, it has “turned beast” on the very people who helped create it.

Let us not mince words or matters: every murderer is born of a mother if not a father-the latter having planted a seed and moved on.

And while it is true that parents “make the child, not its mind”, it is also true that all parents, in some measure, mould their children’s minds, instil in them values, be they negative or positive, and most of all, see and know if or when they are going astray, if they are becoming menaces to society.

A parent, a family, a community, has a responsibility to deliver the wider society from the evil she or they may have helped create.

I leave it to their consciences to determine how they can restore peace to crime-ridden districts like Laventille, allow their own neighbours to enjoy the peace and normality they deserve.

And help me regain my humanity.

3 Responses to “Deliver us from evil”

  • Policing is a complex issue and it will take some time to have the right mindset when it comes to understanding the nature of conflict and how to deal with it. Long ago if you call for a police officer, let us say there was a dispute about land or a wife being assaulted the usual response was “we have no vehicle”. Only if there was a murder a few hours later the police will show up to clear the body.

    The police is a mediator meaning when two parties are engage in a conflict they step in to negotiate a settlement. Therefore ensuring there is peace. When they let the two parties escalate the conflict and blood is shed they have failed to do their duty.

    The nature of policing demands a shift in attitude towards the execution of duty. The superintendents in these divisions must be held to a higher standard because they direct the officers.
    In North America if you call for the police they show up, they do not say “we don’t have a vehicle”. So crime is deterred by their response.

    As for the gang warfare in the nation’s capital, that can be the offshoot of ghettoe culture meaning turf need to be protected and money extorted from businesses. The police have to identify the gang leaders and bring them in for a serious talk, letting them know who is in charge. Today with intelligence cell phone conversations can be intercepted to prevent a blood bath.

    With the coast guard receiving interceptors guns can be stopped along with drugs the chief export from Venezuela. It is an on going battle…

  • Shah you seem to be losing HOPE. Like most ah we you need to understand LIFE. If you had a dog and you refuse to feed it or care for it…. two things CAN happen…the dog dies from lack of care or the dog turns against your wishes and will run away. If a government refuses to see to its people needs the same will happen. KLEEN RITE in PoS suffered a fate recently PECOS suffered twice in the last two years and the same fire struck three times starting with PECOS Arapita Ave in Feb 2014. DiD GOVERNMENT LEARN FROM THE PROBLEM. CLEARLY NO! The dog suffered also. What is it all about? Its simply lack of proper care for those you need to care about. Jobs went up in smoke. Families are suffering. AND one government will of course blame the other government. BUT DOES ANY GOVERNMENT CARES? WE ARE THE ONES THAT SUFFER. AND I CAN UNDERSTAND THE LOSS OF YOUR HOPE. But Shah take a little look at the bigger picture. Next year is another USA Presidential Election. The wrong guy gets to be President and the USA goes burst and our TT dollar goes up in smoke. WE MAY ALL BECOME CANNIBALS THEN. YOU KNOW WE WERE ALL GIVEN A FREE WILL BY GOD. AND YOU KNOW NOTHING IN THIS WORLD HAPPENS WITHOUT GOD. Hence we need to grow our faith and believe that GOD always works for our good. But we must take our free will and work for GOD. Hate destroys and so most of your bloggers are full of hate. BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY OUR SINS TODAY ARE TWOSOME…. SELF ORIENTED AND FULL OF CONSUMERISM. WE ARE PLAIN GREEDY AND SEES ONLY WHAT WE WANT…THERE IS NO SERVING OF GOD. CAPITALISM IS POISONING US. WE NEED TO WAKE UP AND OPPOSE WHAT IS NOT OF GOD. WE NEED TO GROW OUR FAITH SO THAT WHEN THE DEVILS REALLY BREAK LOOSE AMONG US WE WILL BE SAVED.

  • Karmla’s NEEGAH!
    ‘Flipsee’ is a perfect example of a well trained N##%@/. Observe ‘it’ well, and you will understand the mind of a self(ancestry) hating SLAVE. FIVE YEARS+…FIVE LOOOOOOOONG+ years of abuse, marginalization & apartheid against people whom he looks like, and he was happy as pappy, as long as his belly & pockets were filled…NOW…as SOON as the train ride is over, he goes back to PUBLICLY antagonizing & belittling the people whom he looks like, under the ruse of ‘nation building’ & ‘words of endearment’ songs…….WHAT A N##^@%!
    it definitely takes the decimated Psyche of a self hating, foot shuffling, lip tembling slave to team up with racist members of another, opposing ethnic group,against one’s own people,then, in order to UNDERCUT his DUE CRITICISM….Karmla’s N%%/^* then spins around and accuses the said victims of the racist oppression from his masssas, as being the architects of their own misery….could you imagine the gall?…akin to an oppressive drug dealer in an african community, criticizing the said victims of his trade, of not doing enough to ‘uplift’ their community(that he has a heavy hand in destroying)…ALSO…pay attention to the tactic…as soon as you F%€# up the country’s financial integrity among other things, you start to point fingers at Dr. Williams (1911-1981)…STINK,NASTY, DUTTY,CHILDISH politics!…Kamla’s NEEGAH!….even his own Family member, PUBLICLY chastized him for HATING his own, but lovi g the indian community (as a slave)….what a DISGRACE!
    I am tired of self hating N##^@*s, who in order to cover up & camouflage their collaboration with those who seek to destroy african people, by saying “…you need to respect yourselves more…you need to do this….you need to do that…” it is a HATEFUL act…designed to raise the dysfunctional issues of the african community (of which he is apart of, but hates) in an attempt to SHAME them into not being critical of his collaboration in the WICKEDNESS against his own People! Imagine that! Collaborating with characters like karmla, deviant, seweruj, coonilal, SHAT,…..BUTTTTTTTTTTTT, in 2016, blaming Dr. Williams and dysfunctionalities within the african community for the mess that HE & His Bastard massas JUST finished creating!….A SELF Hating N##^@*!….just look at his FACE and you can see there isn’t ‘much’ behind his eyes …..except self hatred……,this guys offspring are “not so little” “blackboyz”…..

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