Hundreds of people accused of committing some of the most heinous crimes against their fellow-Bahamians are somewhere ‘out-there’ on bail.
They are waiting – we presume – for the word that their matter has found itself on the agenda of someone’s desk and has been labeled ‘For Action’.
Evidently, some of these matters may never ever reach even this stage; this because record-keeping has been so bad and so terrifyingly delinquent.
Sadder still is the very real possibility that some public servants have been corrupted; they have taken bribes and other inducements and have become complicit in law-breaking.
The time is now for those in political control of this nation’s affairs to be up and doing with finding viable solutions to this and other crises now facing the Bahamian people.
For as long as we can remember, there has never been a time when the Bahamian people have had so many problems as they do in this dread period of World Economic Recession.
With unemployment high and possibly rising; with the state itself having to face a massive fiscal crisis and also with civil society in turmoil and conniptions due to an ongoing onslaught from thugs, deviants and others such – with little hope for immediate relief some among us are despairing.
There is also a sense that we are getting that suggests that there is no real desire on the part of this nation’s elite classes – especially those with deep vested interests in the maintenance of the status quo – to break with ideas and policy level prescriptions that have demonstrably failed.
And so, we all wake to find that our school systems are broken and that in the meantime, the promise remains that things will remain the same with them.
We also wake to find that our criminal justice system is broken and rise to find that, there is talk and more talk about who did what to get us in this mess. So, things remain essentially as they have always been.
Saddest of all, the way we worship, the way we serve remain such that very many of us routinely ignore the stranger in our gates and we also routinely fail to love our neighbour as we so exuberantly love ourselves.
Today the question also arises that asks and ponders whether or how this nation of ours will survive in a time when things seem to be trending in a direction where crisis piled upon crisis seems to be endemic.
It is therefore against this stark background we take a look at some of those things we can and should do, moving forward.
From where we sit, we do believe that any such change agenda should include local level governance for New Providence, land reform and a speeded up agenda aimed at the empowerment and animation of any and all projects aimed at deepening Bahamian ownership and investment not only in the Bahamas; but in places as diverse as Jamaica and Haiti.
Such an agenda for change could and should involve putting in place policies aimed at increasing not only food production in our country, but also a policy aimed at resolving our country’s persistent dilemma regarding so-called undocumented migrants living and working in the Bahamas.
Even as we wish out aloud for leadership that would help realize these ideas, we do so cognizant of the fact that crime and the fear it spawns – if allowed to run unabated – can upend even the best as they try to do their best.
There remains that other pesky reality – the national debt.
Thanks to the burgeoning national debt, there is today no gainsaying the fact that generations of Bahamians – with some not yet born – will find themselves struggling like nobody’s business to pay it off.
Clearly, this nation is in need of new policies and a brand new direction.
Business as usual just will not do.
Were things otherwise, those who now govern might have been minded to meander along as most of their predecessors did with such finesse and aplomb in decades past.
Today the fact of the matter is that we all have to get used to the idea that things are going to be tough for quite a while yet.
It therefore also follows that those men and women who now run things in today’s Bahamas may very well wish that things were otherwise; and they could patch a little here; do a little there and otherwise hope for the best.
They have no such choice.
This is that one time that comes around in life when radical remedies must be considered. Things that must be done should be done quickly – and done well.