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It's time to call for help!

Published:Wednesday | April 28, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Dennie Quill, Contributor

WHAT WILL it take for the Government to decide that it needs outside help to tame the crime monster? Five hundred murders in four months? Six hundred murders in five months? Ten murders a day? How many more families must bury victims of violence before there is action? These are the questions on everybody's lips. This week, I heard one woman asking whether a United Nations peacekeeping force could be called in to help us. She obviously believes that the locals have no answers.

The Commissioner of Police Owen Ellington appears to be a smart man who knows police work. He is visible and talks a good talk. But the Jamaica Constabulary Force has been impotent in preventing the widespread attacks on innocents from Negril to Morant Point. Many believe it is largely because some members of the force are corrupt.

State of anarchy

We are closer to anarchy now than any other time in recent history. For the past couple of years, we have been on one long killing spree, and it is time to stop the frenzy. Faced with rising crimes, we have swapped commissioners of police, and ministers of national security.

In advocating complete independence for India, the revered political and spiritual leader Mahatma Ghandi reportedly said to the British: "Leave India to God and, if that be too much, leave her to anarchy." And, perhaps, this is exactly how the current administration is thinking. No moral restraint is exercised by these dog-hearted criminals; they pour scorn on institutions like the police force and the strike wherever and whenever they please. If this is not anarchy, then what is?

People are very concerned about the lack of action and what appears to be a paucity of ideas to come up with suitable measures to deal with the situation. The police feel passing of appropriate legislation, including the crime bills, will help, obviously the Parliament does not feel the same way.

Domestic terrorists

It is the talking point everywhere Jamaicans meet these days, whether here on the rock or faraway places where people care about this country and its future.

Recent media reports of murders all across the country signal that we have found ourselves in a war with domestic terrorists. And how can Jamaica be expected to develop in an atmosphere when criminals can execute five men in one community without impunity; when people are cut down while having a meal?

Ignoring the current problems will not help. Effective management begins with a very basic step: understanding what is necessary to overcome challenges. Once that understanding is achieved, then one can move to implement corrective measures.

Dennie Quill is a veteran journalist. Send feedback to: