I am a Trinidadian. A citizen of the nation of Trinidad and Tobago. I am twenty one (21) years old. As far back as I could remember, the debate concerning the causes of crime and the solutions for the problem has been ongoing since I was a toddler. Government administration after administration have lacked a consistent policy to tackle the issue. However, this is no excuse. The government is not the only variable in the equation. A government could only do so much. The onus is firstly on Trinbagonians to simply be responsible human beings, beginning firstly with themselves, their families and the wider community.
Although it is to be ensured that we as citizens firstly alter the narrative that has long been consistent within our society and place responsibility firstly on ourselves, there are some simple tasks that the government can do. The state's primary responsibility is firstly to protect our borders from external threat and to maintain a stable situation domestically. This internal state of law and order is ensured within our Constitution and the laws of the land. These include our freedoms and responsibilities as citizens and human beings and in some cases sanctions for our breach or lack of compliance. One such is the Death Penalty. The Death Penalty has been a debatable issue throughout Trinidad and Tobago and the wider world and has been defined in some quarters as inhumane while in other quarters as justice personified. Instead of the debate taking place in bits and pieces, I am of the view that such a debate should be fully initiated in our land and a referendum on the issue called. The purpose of a referendum would be to secure for the politically elected in our land, whether in Opposition or in Government, a clear mandate from the people as to what steps of action to take. Any work on this issue in Parliament would demand co-operation across the aisle and the intent of this 'Call for a Referendum' is to secure for our politicians a clear demand, in the most democratic of forms with regard to the Death Penalty.
Mikhail E.D. Byng was born in Trinidad. He is the author of Off the Island and a graduate student at the University of Belgrade. He speaks Serbian and English.
Trinbagonian. Traveler. Believer in God. Believer in Creation. Life long Student. Sports enthusiast.