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Operation Ceasefire: We need to spell out the goals

Spare me the wisecracks about great minds and fools but that was some coincidence Mr Acting Editor, two of your Friday columnists DJLT and JB separately and independent of each other, as you know, reflecting on the tragic events in Boston and each wondering whether Bermuda really has the necessary will to tackle gang warfare in the Island.

Well, we are about to get the opportunity to try again, this time with Operation Ceasefire. From all we have read, and heard, it looks like and sounds like it will not only take community-wide effort, but time and resources (read manpower and money) to bear fruit. I wonder though, if it isn’t too much to ask: whether we could be given at the outset, ie now, some clearly-defined goals and time frames which we can use as benchmarks farther down the road to actually measure what success the programme has had so that we might hold those responsible and accountable, not just for their promises but the expenditure of money in the cause.

It is a good cause, no question. For sure, given everything else that has been tried (or not) Operation Ceasefire is worth the shot — pardon the pun.

Reaction and response from readers has been mixed and varied — as opinions in Bermuda usually are. They were particularly swift and strong on your website, sir, especially in reaction to the story on Operation Ceasefire expert headlined: “Solution is simple, Just deal with it”. If only, Mr Acting Editor, if only.

Last word to DJLT who told me he thought the coincidence spoke volumes. He also believes the authorities have all the resources they need. His conclusion: “I will go a step further, call a spade a spade, keep it real and just state that our inaction on this, in spite of technology, contacts and expertise available, says that we do not have the political will to solve serious crime. And a change in Government has made no difference whatsoever to the problem. So, what are we going to do about it? That, ladies and gentlemen, is the question.”

Here are some excerpts of some of the comments I received as we encourage readers to come in on the conversation:

kathbell

Good article, John.

The circumstances and the players are very different to those we have here in Bermuda. But it was very, very clear that Bostonians came together because they were all deeply impacted by the attacks in their city on their citizens.

They were angry — they felt violated and they were going to do everything they could to help. And, they had the resources to film the perpetrators, track them down and still keep the general populace safe.

Here in Bermuda we need to feel similarly about the children and families in parts of Bermuda where Bermudians do not feel safe — where they are not safe, where they are attacked because of their address or their real or perceived affiliations.

We, too, need to consider the gang attacks here in Bermuda as personal. We need to insist on cameras, patrols and assistance. Every citizen in Bermuda is of equal value — police response should be equal no matter what the neighbourhood.

Derek AG JonesIf you want to fix it, you can fix it. If you don’t, you won’t.

Civil Liberty

Here is an honest answer. We don’t want to live in a police state. Really, I would not appreciate my door being kicked by anyone. Thug or cop. Most of the pictures and video came from the public. The CCTV did not stop any bombing. As the bombs were placed and detonated while CCTV was recording. So therefore CCTV does not prevent crime. They are a waste of resources. Is that logical?

Scarlet Onion

CCTV made quick work of catching them! I don’t know how you see that as a waste of resources ... Stop leaving it to chance or question or human failure! Force the club owners to pay for them or strip them of their liquor licences. Civil liberties are for people who act civilly.

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Published May 03, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated May 02, 2013 at 5:52 pm)

Operation Ceasefire: We need to spell out the goals

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