Category Archives: Crime in T&T

The Dangers of Narcissism

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
March 15, 2021

From politician to the ordinary farmer, Hutus united to get rid of the ‘cockroaches,’ working together to exterminate their Tutsi friends, neighbors, co-workers and family members.

—Kennedy Ndahiro, “Dehumanization: How the Tutsis were reduced to cockroaches, snakes to be killed.”

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeI use to think that the motto of the Trinidad and Tobago Constabulary was “to protect and serve.” Unfortunately, it seems that its present mission is “to belittle and berate.” Listening to Gary Griffith, the Commissioner of Police, one would think he is at war with the society or anyone who criticize his opinions or performance.
Continue reading The Dangers of Narcissism

Who really are the monsters?

By Dr Selwyn Cudjoe
February 23, 2021

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeSome people described the killing of Andrea Bharatt as “monstrous”, “brutal”, “horrible”, and “barbarous”. Those responsible for her death were called “monsters” or “Lucifers in the flesh”.

An autopsy showed the horrendous manner in which Andrea was killed. Rich and poor, Africans and Indians, urban and rural folks, were all repulsed by the barbarity of her killers.
Continue reading Who really are the monsters?

Monsters & Monstrosities

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
February 15, 2021

“Freeing yourself was one thing; claiming ownership of that freed self was another.”

—Toni Morrison, Beloved

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeFaris Al-Rawi was in a fighting mood last Monday. He was not afraid to outline the depths to which we, as a people, had descended. Calling on the Opposition to support the Evidence Amendment Bill to deal with the “monsters” who had committed a heinous act against Andrea Bharatt, he declared: “Today, we have an opportunity… to stop monsters.”

Ascending to rhetorical heights, he chastised citizens who were trying to salvage a sliver of their humanity by speaking out against an inhuman strain that had arisen in our society:
Continue reading Monsters & Monstrosities

Do not pollute protests with politics

By Raffique Shah
February 15, 2021

Raffique ShahI was wondering how many more candlelight vigils that seemed to be a genuine groundswell of public opinion on violent crimes against women would be staged in the name of abduction and murder victim Andrea Bharatt before two-by-two politicians sought to hijack what they would see as a mass movement they could ride for narrow self-interests, from photo-opportunities and media coverage to the prospect of political power.
Continue reading Do not pollute protests with politics

Candles, tears and selected outrage

By Aileen Alexis
February 11, 2021

lettersThe kidnapping and murder of a young court clerk, Andrea Bharratt has evoked strong emotions from a wide cross-section of the Trinibagonian population. Protests, vigils and calls for legislation regarding the use of non-lethal weapons such as pepper spray and tasers, and the resumption of hangings have all become some of the manifestations of these emotions.
Continue reading Candles, tears and selected outrage

Be careful when you hunt rapists

By Raffique Shah
February 08, 2021

Raffique ShahTHE outrage expressed by many people over the most recent case of the abduction and murder of a young woman is understandable.

We cannot believe that there exist among us depraved people who are capable of committing atrocities, inflicting extreme violence on women with seemingly consummate ease and callous detachment. It’s as if they are cast in some science fiction horror movie, acting out their darkest obsessions and cruellest fantasies, except the victims are real live people who end up very dead, sometimes mutilated and tortured before they die.
Continue reading Be careful when you hunt rapists

Let them eat ‘old batteries’

By Raffique Shah
January 25, 2021

Raffique ShahIn my column last week, I questioned why the Government thought was necessary to exclude from scrutiny of the relevant authority details of Government to Government contracts. The point I was trying to make is that citizens almost instinctively do not trust politicians, especially when they are in office. Because countries like Trinidad and Tobago have been mired in allegations of corruption on a huge scale that spans different parties in power, suspicions of corruption will cloud every expenditure a government incurs, which leaves little room for getting things done.
Continue reading Let them eat ‘old batteries’

The Racial Divide

By Dr Selwyn R. Cudjoe
November 16, 2020

Dr. Selwyn R. CudjoeWhen T&T gained independence in 1962 we reveled in the possibility that we had set ourselves upon a path to deal with the problems of colonialism, particularly the sinful racism, that had disfigured our society. In 1970, disappointed that Black people were still being denied jobs and position because of their color, the Black Power Rebellion added the struggle of anti-blackness to the national agenda.

Fifty years after independence, we are still plagued with racial discrimination even though it has taken a different dimension. In the 1970s we were faced with white over black racism, today it’s brown over black, the former having inculcated some of the nastiest racial biases of the white ruling class.
Continue reading The Racial Divide

Periscope on Budget

By Raffique Shah
October 05 2020

Raffique ShahI am hopeful that Finance Minister Colm Imbert’s Budget 2021 will remain open to ideas that may come from ordinary citizens or professionals or anyone else even after he will have presented it to Parliament tomorrow. This is no ordinary Appropriation Bill. It is, or ought to be, an extraordinary document that contains the sum total of citizens’ prescriptions for rescuing and resuscitating an economy that has been battered and bruised by several governments over the past, say, forty years, and rendered semi-comatose by blows from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Continue reading Periscope on Budget