This weekend has been one of the bloodiest on record with murders and other shootings. Most of the murders, attempted murders, armed robberies and other violent crimes in this country happen using a gun. Guns are flooding our streets. Bahamians are crying out for stiffer gun laws. When the current government came to office, they abolished the mandatory minimum sentences they met in place for gun and some drug offences. By doing this, persons convicted of gun crimes may never see a prison cell as their penalty. The mandatory minimum sentence was 4 years, meaning once you got convicted of the gun offence, you would automatically have to serve at least 4 years prison time. As soon as the Minister of National Security was sworn in, he told the media he went to visit CONVICTED CRIMINALS at Fox Hill, and said the convicts complained about their jail time being too long. He said HE AGREED WITH THE CONVICTS, and that his government would “review” the penalties on the books. AND THEY SURE DID REVIEW THEM – THEY KEPT THEIR PROMISE TO CRIMINALS AND MADE LIFE EASIER FOR THEM BY LESSENING THE PENALTY FOR THEIR CRIMES.
Crime shouldn’t be politicized, but calling on legislators to do what they can about our crime problem is not politicizing crime. Governments have the responsibility to do everything in their Constitutional and lawful powers to adequately address the staggering and frightening violent crime surge in this country. Serious crime is getting worse and everyone with eyes and sense knows that. Our laws must be a relevant reflection of the times we live in. Illegal firearms are the number one weapon of choice, but you wouldn’t know that by looking at our laws today. Our laws today would make you think we don’t have a gun crisis in The Bahamas. Certain judicial opinions would make you think that as well. If the laws go easy on serious crimes, what message does that send to criminals and their victims? If the laws are not tough and not enforced, criminals take their criminal acts lightly and the entire country suffers and is left to live in fear of when they or their loved ones might be next. CRIMINALS GOT THEIR PROMISE MADE TO THEM KEPT. WHEN WILL THE PROMISE TO LAW ABIDING CITIZENS & RESIDENTS TO TRULY TACKLE SERIOUS CRIME AT ALL LEVELS – BE KEPT?