Passing the buck on gun violence

EDITOR, The Tribune.

I must concur wholeheartedly with letter writer Zephaniah Burrows’ respectful view that the targeting of US gun manufacturers for what is a very homegrown phenomenon is misguided to say the least.

In fact, taken from a slightly different angle, it amounts to Bahamian politicians looking for outsiders to blame for something for which they (and Bahamian judges) are largely responsible.

High rates of gun crime in The Bahamas are the direct result of two matters that lay squarely at the feet of Bahamian judges and politicians.

Firstly, unlike almost anywhere else, people charged with murder in The Bahamas are quickly bailed out onto the streets to be victims or reoffenders - accounting for a significant portion of both. One recent example was apparently out on bail for six murders. And even where bailees admit to deliberately removing their ankle bracelets they are seldom committed.

Secondly, penalties for the possession of these same firearms that apparently so horrify our politicians as to make them want to take on the US gun industry are so light that it is not unusual to see one individual serve two separate terms for firearm possession before graduating to murder, all within a 5-year period. In Cayman, Jamaica or Britain, the penalty would be ten or fifteen years, while in Barbados, it would be life imprisonment on the second offence.

What message do you send to the world when you take umbrage at a neighbouring country’s gun industry for flooding your streets with these unacceptable items of death, then set penalties for the possession of these same items that are so low as to normalise their repeated use?

Answer: not a very convincing one.



March 22, 2023.


bahamianson 2 months, 1 week ago

Gaslighting all the way because guns are violent and should not kill people. We need to.stop car violence , also. I hate it when cars kill people.


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