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Tuesday, June 22, 2021
Home Features Disappointing and complicating things

Disappointing and complicating things

After the recent tragic, shocking death by gunshot of a senior police officer on San Pedro, every mind here wanted to know exactly what happened. Initially there were as many angles as there are letters in the alphabet, but today the angles are considerably less than before. I’m not about to input there, but I’m reading and listening to what everyone has to say, and I certainly share in wanting to know how the police are going about finding out what transpired and making their case.

This matter isn’t going away anytime soon, and I prefer to use my space today to look around, and the second thing that pops up here, after the tragedy, is what bad luck for the new government. It’s an economic blow. It’s also a test of their “good governance.”

Last week a soldier of the new, ehm, regime acted terribly in a police station, and he was disciplined by the new government. Give them a point. From self-government days, our political leaders have been sliding and taking Belize down the drain with them, so it was good that the new government didn’t take a page out of the old book. And then, like just to test them further, here comes the San Pedro tragedy.

Make no mistake and think the executive can wash their hands here. It should be so — that they could; it would be so if our country hadn’t been corrupted from top to bottom.

The other day I heard Brother Pere echo a sad statement made by Brother Sylvester before him, that statement being that we only want justice when it isn’t our family members involved in wrongdoing. I have to say, these lawyers go overboard to defend their profession. The statement is almost absolutely true, but to utter it makes absolutely no sense, unless you’re a disciple of that utter nonsense that the entire world can go to hell to prevent a single miscarriage of justice.

We all benefit from living in a society, and 99.999% of persons prefer living in a society than going total hermit; that’s why we give up some of our God-given rights. See, we can live like dogs, we can walk around nude, we can curse bloody hell, we can play our music all out, we can spit wherever and whenever, we can say whatever we want and do whatever we want, if, if we go solitary.

The society having so many benefits, we try to round our square edges to fit; it is ridiculous to ruin such a good thing to protect a single person. Of course, we must try very hard to protect every individual, but we can’t erode the society to do so. We have done that. By the way, we don’t hang people for the most heinous crime anymore, so our errors don’t end in the ultimate penalty. I think putting a man behind bars is really tough, but in most circumstances that is a whole lot better than being hanged. Shame — a less-than-10% conviction rate for the most heinous crime, the ones we manage to make an arrest for!

I am one who absolutely believes that BTL must remain in the control of the people, and it must be governed by a board that has representation from all over. Neither the politicians or any business person or group should control our information. Ahem, a friend at BTL once interrupted my call, to protect me. I pointed that out to let you know, if you didn’t know already, that human ears listen to our calls whenever they feel like.

There was a registering of cell phones the other day, so that they could track our calls. There are so many planes flying around, and so many of us involved or interested in being in the mix, so we are being monitored. You don’t have to tell me that some of those people doing the monitoring should be monitored themselves.

Because our privacy is a sacred thing, because reading mail that isn’t directed to you or listening to phone calls that aren’t made to your number are criminal acts, but necessary in some instances to safeguard the society, it must be handled with the utmost care. Guess what. The applicants for jobs to listen in and read other people’s business should all be priests, people who appreciate the sanctity of the confessional.

Ah, every sensible government knows that individuals or businesses absolutely cannot be allowed to grow to a size where they are too big to fail. If you dig deep enough, you will find that people who owe huge amounts of taxes have that status. If you touch them they warn of the repercussions, so the government’s hands are tied.

In that country up north that we like so much, they have a thing called anti-trust laws which work to keep companies from growing too big, especially in areas like telecommunications and energy production. One side argues that allowing capital to come together increases efficiency, but the better side argues that if you allow anyone or any business to get too big, they will create a monopoly. Then they become too big to fail.

Bah, wealth has access to information, and information is power, and if you are interested in using it, and in a case where you are in a real spot, you quite likely would…hmm.

We can’t forget the story of precedence. That tale is that everybody walks or gets a pat on the wrist if they can afford a lawyer. The foreign reporters are no strangers to that.

Years ago Sedi Elrington, he’s not always wrong, said we needed a foreign police commissioner, and he was accused of not being nationalistic. In high profile cases, the people almost always call for foreign investigation, because they know every stone must be turned. That works to pin the crime on the guilty party, and it also works for the innocent. If you are innocent of the crime, would you be satisfied with a nolle pros? No, you will want your peers to know that no stone was unturned, and all were clean on the underside.

We can’t ever stop complaining about our woeful justice system when it comes to the world’s most heinous crime. Bah, Belize’s lawyers…and us, we are so wrong to be fascinated with lawyers who specialize in getting not-guilty verdicts. Bah, too many technicalities and lawyers who are hell-bent on getting the not-guilty verdict instead of looking heavenward to how they can help let justice reign.

Our lawyers, they are no relatives of Mr. Perry Mason. He and his team worked together and got respectable not-guilty verdicts through proving the innocence of his clients, and oftentimes they exposed the real guilty party. Our lawyers ride fear of witnesses to testify, fear of juries to convict, and failure of governments to invest serious money in forensic science.

Allow me a lee interruption here. Did Faber stomp down that door? Ai, that boy, I bet his parents neva give him a good tayring out. How quick he was to sell us out to the anti-sash-kaad money!

My, many things come to play in this case. I said at the beginning that there are many angles from which to look at it, and it is to be hoped that the investigators turn all the stones, and if they have they would have thrown out all the speculative angles and are now settled on a couple or three stories that explain what happened, and the why for, for what happened.

Ah, if our lawyers weren’t so disappointing – they are the architects of this failing system: lawyers were our leaders between 1998 and 2020. Because they have so corrupted the system, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Police had to declare that they were hands-off.

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