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Letter to the Editor: All are involved! Why we must act to save T&T from bloodshed

“[Wayne Chance] made the point that when, in a community, an individual loses relatives either: by police/criminal violence in spirals such as brother(s), uncle, cousin, when an individual rots in jail awaiting trial, when prison means perennial persecution instead of prosecution, and when one is cut off from family and community—release sees an embittered person.”

The following Letter to Editor on the recent murders of supposed gang leaders Kerlan “Miceman” George and Shameel “Kazim” Ali was submitted to Wired868 by Rae Samuel and first published on the National Workers Union website:

Photo: A hooded thug shows off his weapons. (Courtesy Wehearit.com)
Photo: A hooded thug shows off his weapons.
(Courtesy Wehearit.com)

“But none who leave here are unaffected. None who leave here are normal… They will never count me among the broken men… I’ve been hungry too long. I’ve gotten angry too long… I’ve been lied to and insulted too many times.”

George Jackson—Soledad Brother, April 1970

The day after the shootings in Maracas/St Joseph, the chair of the “Vision on a Mission” was on the radio putting the incident in context. No, he did not re-iterate the incident or circumstances… That happens de rigueur in the establishment media, which manages to give three versions of the same incident in different outlets, electronic or print…

In this case, the shooting apparently occurred around/inside/near to the charge room/station/parking lot. Mr Wayne Chance, who in prison argot would be described as being ‘for real’, made some critical points.

Maybe because he was surrounded by the usual gaggle of media journeymen—who see this all arising from the last administration—his knowledge, awareness and prescience shone through. And a passion that indicated how well he imagined/knows what lies ahead.

Mr Chance seemed to be telling us that there is a well defined community out there living a certain way. We call their communities ‘hotspots’ or ‘gang hideouts’ and they have developed a culture and lifestyle in response to the way they are perceived and treated by those in power.

Photo: A thug shows off his weapon.
Photo: A thug shows off his weapon.

In response to the brazen attack, occurring in broad daylight near a police station on active duty, Mr Chance pointed out that there are individuals and communities so ‘hurt’—to use his own words—that they have moved/been moved beyond reason. A mad desire for vengeance trumps every other consideration when one is brutalised psychologically, socially.

He made the point that when, in a community, an individual loses relatives either: by police/criminal violence in spirals such as brother(s), uncle, cousin, when an individual rots in jail awaiting trial, when prison means perennial persecution instead of prosecution, and when one is cut off from family and community—release sees an embittered person.

As George Jackson said: “The broken ones are so damaged they will never again be suitable members of any social unit.”

What’s next? Next is here already.

Murder is the extreme expression of social disaffection. And its frequency, seeming randomness and ease with which it occurs are terrifying.

But alongside the murder is the exploitation, overt and institutionalised theft, and irrelevance of most of the institutions and systems headed by a political leadership which insists that ‘national security’ is the only answer to social challenges.

Photo: Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley.
Photo: Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley.

Just listen to what the PNM leader was speaking about in Tobago even as we took another step in the direction of the Colombian and Mexican model of State.

Just imagine the Minister of National Security stating that he is fed up.

Pessimism? No! Fear? No! Panic? No!

We went past the point where those sentiments could have served or saved us a while now. Among the affected/about to be affected, we have to find courage and determination, based on collective organised activity which leaves out the political establishment.

“All are involved. All are consumed.”

Martin Carter—You are Involved, 1952

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13 comments

  1. Don’t expect to play mas and afraid of powder.
    How you make your bed ,so you shall lay.
    Don’t have glass house , and throw stone at other ppl own .

  2. It will only get worse an worse sorry to say it is written

  3. Wired868 you’ll making sound like Wayne Chance is the first or only person to speak on the reality of the crime situation that is now well embeded in to the society, this has been going on so long it shows a lot of people have had their heads buried in the sand!

  4. This is so true. We are all involved, all affected.

  5. What I don’t quite follow is that the so called hot spots are not the poorest or most neglected parts of the country, (If the censuses are correct). Places that were once quiet, (Carapo and Enterprise) are now hot spots. Seems like somethings are being omitted in the discussions

  6. Earl Best

    And I don’t suppose you share martin Daly’s contempt for the big pappies and don’t expect us to get any assistance from them either, do you?

  7. Earl Best

    Rae,
    is there going to be a Part Two which spells out the modalities of the popular organisation, the “collective organised activity which leaves out the political establishment”? Or is it your conviction that the politicians are being paid to do that work and so you wil leave that up to them?

    What is clear is that you aren’t looking to the mindless “establishment media” for any help in that regard, an obvious feather in your cap.

  8. This is one of the best views I’ve read on the subject of crime “murder is the extreme expression of social disaffection “. Idiotic use of national security means to address social concerns. This writer is on point. That’s why I remain in the minority of Trinidad saying police should stop crime. As I’ve always argued police by definition come into play when the crime has been committed but they are not at the point of causation. Their role becomes one of solving and by which time in most cases the social and personal consequences have been effected. Again as I’ve said, the fish Rita from the head and in our case the medium in which all this is planted is in the failure and corruption of our major institutions and then we exacerbate that by defining crime as only murders and rapes etc