Wed | Jul 17, 2019

TalkbackTuesday

Published:Wednesday | July 10, 2019 | 12:12 AM
Prime Minister Andrew Holness (left) points to crime data, at a press conference at Jamaica House last Sunday, to announce a state of public emergency for the St Andrew South police division. Standing beside him are Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang (centre) and Chief of Defence Staff of the Jamaica Defence Force, Lieutenant General Rocky Meade.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness (left) points to crime data, at a press conference at Jamaica House last Sunday, to announce a state of public emergency for the St Andrew South police division. Standing beside him are Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang (centre) and Chief of Defence Staff of the Jamaica Defence Force, Lieutenant General Rocky Meade.

#TalkbackTuesday: In just over 18 months, Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced five states of public emergency. The most recent was declared on Sunday for the St Andrew South Police Division. Do you think this is an effective approach to crime fighting? #GLNRTalk

Twitter responses

Private Figure: “No it is not, unless we are going to unleash it on the entire country at once, which would make us a police state. All the criminals do is migrate to another parish or nearby town not under SOE and terrorise more innocent Jamaicans.”

Queen94051314: “Yes, yes and yes. Thank you, Andrew, at least you have approached the situation and you are doing your best. You are not a superhero, just a human being like anyone of us.”

Shekeynah Smith: “No, it is a temporary fix. It’s treating the symptoms and not the causes. More must be done to address the causes.”

Youngveteran: “Definitely not … we were told we would sleep with our windows open … now we’re making more grilles, only benefiting the welders.”

TheUptopdon: “Let’s see if this makes sense ... A high murder rate and the government makes it harder for people to move around freely, even to escape these crime-filled areas, and u want to know if it’s helping?”

Instagram responses

Iamdonisha: “Unemployment, mental health, disillusionment with the system, homelessness, lack of proper nutrition, illiteracy and undereducation, lack of employment, trauma, destitute living conditions ... Any state of emergency plans for these core causes and contributing factors to crime? Or we just gonna continue to kill people to feel safer? These times call for critical thinking and insightful applications of a mutlitude of methodologies to heal our nation. Each ministry should be thinking about what they can do, too.”

p eaceisofbianca: “Really wondering about the criminology we learn at UWI and where the people advising are and who they are, and where they live. Most never even been in a ghetto, I’m sure.”

t estedandproven876: “It is said that the numbers never lie. What are the numbers saying? How did crime reach to these ­levels in Jamaica? Who were/are the main supporters of gangs? Who endorsed garrisons and the lawlessness that exist in them? Some of the answers/solutions to crime are with the people with influence and/or power, who are themselves and their friends ­‘benefiting’ from crime, not necessarily the poor who are the main people detained and affected in the states of public emergency. The poor are but foot soldiers; until the masterminds and financiers are stopped, crime and lawlessness will continue to run wild.”

d arrenhogarth_writer: “The whole island needs to be in a state of emergency. That way the thugs find it harder to hide. He’s just relocating the crime areas.”

Barrycongo: “Obviously, it’s not working, hence the number and the frequency. I think he will make it to the Guinness Book of Records as the prime minister who declared the most states of emergency.“

s heara50: “Given the circumstances, yes, but more needs to be done to raise people out of poverty by creating an environment for people to be trained, earn a living wage. In the meantime, corruption must be stamped out and discipline instilled. Jamaica has had 1,000-plus murders a year now for more than a decade. This is not normal and should be considered an emergency.”