The alleged murder of a Canadian citizen in the Spice does call for deep introspection into the soul of Grenada and its worrying impact.
Her brief tenure at SGU came to a gruesome end by tragic means, a body found in a hastily-dug and shallow grave. What was the motive? Was it an accident by the driver falling asleep at the wheels in the wee hours of the morning?
Could it be impaired vision at the darkest part of the night prior to dawn?
What of the possibility of substance abuse, whether it be alcohol, marijuana, cocaine or other. These are among the questions to which the RGPF will be striving to find the answers to in the days ahead.
This scenario brings to question the state of mind of some of our people living amongst us, in our villages, communities and in our parishes. A mindset motivated by taking the victim to a place other than a medical facility, hastily making a report to the police or driving to a burial agency, that mindset speaks to fear and an attempt to cover-up. How widespread is this type of mentality, in particular among the youth?
The term, Right Guidance comes to mind with the fallout from a lack of adequate parenting in many homes which are devoid of it. One night stands, absentee fathers, single parenting or the leave-it-to-Granny age-old scheme are some of the maladies faced everyday. Which of the agencies have been failing to come to terms with the conditions mentioned, be it the school system, the religious institutions, the village, the town or a government agency?
To some extent, this is the result of broken homes lacking proper guidance through joint parenting.
Where have the strong moral values of forty years ago gone? It is not the TV or overseas influence, rather one can expect with a weakening religious establishment, dwindling numbers of positive, proactive role models, growing disregard for authority in addition to increasing levels of intoxication with its attendant abuses, the influence of explicit lyrics, the freedom to access porn plus the imitations imbibed from visiting bands of musicians in tandem with the sexual exposition on the street of St. George’s in the second week of August, all combined as a testament to the alarming state of decadence and degradation we have earned.
No more do we hear stern reprimands from our sectoral leaders, for it is as though they are a part of the problem for their laxity and not a means to the solution. And where the important role of the judicial system is concerned, it seems quite apparent that judgements meted out to serious offenders are merely a tap on the wrist.
Since Hotel Richmond Hill serves good food, comfortable cells and generally interesting company for extended vacation periods. Why not? A “tap on the wrist” which in itself magnifies the ambition of the offender to carry on regardless and in a manner that fires a greater tenacity for a well entrenched bravado.
Bringing our security apparatus to bear in resolving and bringing closure to this horrific event is one scenario, another being a blitz in damage control to stem any expected fall in airline seats from Canada.
For whilst Canadians are among the most accommodating people in the whole world, they will be looking on quite attentively for a high level of efficiency in dealing with this case. Which should remind us that Canada will take in twenty five thousand Syrian refugees, both Muslim and Christian. How many is Grenada willing to take in?
If we are to “Let our conscience be our guide”, what arrangements are being made to house and care for the growing number of zombies, from drug abuse, seen walking aimlessly in various parts of the island. Is the national conscience alive and in good working order or maybe it is aloof?
It is now time to redefine this country’s moral stance which cannot be left to the de-facto leaders alone, but for the youth and civic pioneers outside of the political realm to speak for the betterment of Grenada without fear or favour. To be a doer not a dozer, to advance individually as well as communally and to achieve by the sheer will to engage in selfless service.
We are using the term “Pure Grenada” as a means of promoting tourism to the Spice, which is all well and good, but how does the word “Pure” equate to the slippery slope of immorality moving madly in a descending order. Pure Grenada needs a massive infusion of spirituality in marriage with our national pride, for one without the other is as the likeness of a bird, with one wing, trying to fly. Sometimes we find ourselves having to reverse to get a better view of the happenings.
Finally, the father of our nation, the charismatic, inimitable Sir Eric Matthew Gairy on his campaign rounds across Grenada would begin with these words, “Bind us together, Lord, bind us together.” We need it now more than ever before.
Zaid Azam Rahaman