Garth A. Rattray
The number of people killed daily in our little country is extremely troubling. Crime, especially murders, leaves Jamaicans feeling very vulnerable and unmotivated, and it blights all our economic recovery efforts.
Shockingly, even though 'bad men' stalk, murder, rob, mutilate, rape and burn, a few dancehall deejays and singjays big them up with their lyrical renditions: "If yu dis bad man, yu get shot"; "bad man nuh tek back chat"; "bad man nuh punk", "bad man nuh flee".
These 'bad men' and their cohorts inspire fear by terrorising their own relatives, other individuals and entire communities into becoming mute witnesses to their repetitious, nefarious deeds and atrocities.
These bad men feed off fear and wallow in the blood of their victims, be they ministers of religion, the elderly, infirm, men, women - even when pregnant - and children.
Bad men slither, sneak, skulk and sometimes masquerade as decent, law-abiding citizens to catch their prey unaware. They trail, stalk or stake out their victims and then pounce when least expected, attacking at very close range.
Hiding behind weapons
Our so-called 'bad men' use the advantage of weapons to intimidate and kill (often) unarmed, defenceless or un-prepared victims. And, if their prey has a firearm, bad men will craftily get close to them before striking. They will even shoot defenceless people in the back. They kick in frail doors and shoot vulnerable men, women and children in their beds.
There is absolutely nothing brave and bold about such cowardly and depraved acts. Any idiot can squeeze a trigger, but it takes true bravery and real smarts to choose not to.
Bad men inspire fear only because they have no heart or conscience. No bad man is ever truly be respected. No one can admire someone who uses a deadly weapon to commit murder. No one who has to be surreptitious to catch their defenceless or unprepared quarry off guard can command true respect or admiration.
When bad men are disarmed and/or denied the means to use others to kill for them, they are powerless and afraid. They go from being empowered by their weapon(s) and/or henchmen to being weaker and more fearful than the average human being because they are stripped of their only source of (pseudo) power.
Therefore, bad men are certainly not brave, bold or powerful; bad men are warped and lack the attributes of rounded and good human beings.
These defective men lack many other things. They lack morality, they lack any sense of right and wrong, they lack any sense of justice/fair play, they lack love, they lack compassion, they lack common sense, they lack a good upbringing and, most of all, they lack any appreciation of God.
Where do they come from?
People often wonder where our barbaric killers come from. Some speculate that committing such awful violence requires the aid of illegal psychotropic drugs.
Many posit that the heinous crimes are foreign imports from criminal elements deported from other countries. The sad truth is that the vast majority of our killers are home-grown - our own shameful creations.
Our society is ultimately responsible for the preponderance of these bad (defective) men. When we ignore our under-privileged/needy, we cannot expect them to ignore us when they attain the weapons to prey on us, inflict pain, spread their suffering and exact revenge. If we don't care about them, they won't care about us.
The supremacy of politics has made disposable pawns of our underprivileged citizens, who, in turn, see us as disposable also. Politics has fostered dependency, poverty, tribalism, segregation, hostility and even hate. We have a lot of social re-engineering to do if we are to stop producing defective men and rehabilitate the many who already exist.
And now that several women have turned to gun crimes, we have an entirely new social subset to tend to.
Garth A. Rattray is a medical doctor with a family practice. Email feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.