The Commentator                                            www.thecommentatorjm.com                                April 2012 Edition

 
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*** WHAT'S INSIDE ***

SCIENCE

Space technology comes to Latin America

Read about Latin America's space programmes


Religion

Easter mystery solved!

Read why the stories concerning the resurrection could not be true


HISTORY/CULTURE

Alfred Nobel: Controversial Man, Controversial Awards

Read why some of the Nobel prize awards over the years are controversial


Foreign Affairs

Ending Human Trafficking

Read what the National Association of American People is doing about Human Trafficking


Ideas

An alternative to hanging?

Read why executing people is a waste of time - and bodies!


Politics

Poor communities held hostage to gang violence and government neglect

Read Amnesty International’s report on why Jamaica’s communities are so crime infested


Life style

The Hip Hop Mindset

Read why hip hop is a negative influence


Mystery

Did the universe really begin with a big bang?

Read why the soundness of the Big Bang is questionable


Letters

Read what our readers are saying


*** PLUS MORE! ***

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The evolution of morality

Michael A. Dingwall (michael_a_dingwall@hotmail.com)

While turning the dial of my forty-odd year old stereo over the weekend, I stumbled upon two supposedly different programs. One was a story about a Quaker in the United States who went against social norms and admitted a black girl into her school. The other was a discussion about the recent vote in New York allowing gay marriages.

 

    History proves nothing is absolute about morals...

What struck me most was that even though these were supposed to be two different programmes, on two different stations, they sounded remarkably similar.

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Obama: A Rebirth of America

Paul Williams (pwill36849@aol.com)

The architect of one’s destiny is often defined by great wealth. Longevity quite often is bestowed upon extraordinary men and women decades into the after-life of their perceived greatness. For one man, however, the spirit of greatness-at least for now-is less about the kind of leader he will ultimately become, and more about the ideal that he has come to personify. Barrack Obama’s ascension to the presidency embodies the very fiber that our nation holds so dear. It represents the reality of the pros so eloquently stated in our Constitution. Obama’s win is perhaps the best example yet that America is truly the land of opportunity: a land where hope frolics shamelessly emboldened so by the notion that the essence of that which is possible shall never be abridged or perish from our consciousness.

    Barak Obahma

   

 

  "For some people-many black Americans, in particular-the reality of a black president is something they thought would never come to past in their lifetime"

For some people-many black Americans, in particular-the reality of a black president is something they thought would never come to past in their lifetime. Who can blame them? After all, it was not so long ago that blacks were colored, forced from entering many establishments including some bathrooms. It was only a shot time ago that many blacks were being lynched, burned or hosed to death. Yet, on the night of November 4, 2008, a black man, born to a Kenyan father and American mother, took to the stage in a Chicago Park with the confidence and gravitas so reserved for a Lincoln, Jefferson or a King ushering in a new day in American politics, and, with it, a renewed sense of optimism.

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Let justice be done

Allan H.F Palmer (info@thecommentatorjm.com)

It is with interest that I have been following the allegation of rape and sexual assault that was brought against the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph E Gonsalves. I am not particularly interested in whether or not the PM is guilty but what particularly holds my interest is whether or not justice will be done.

  "The action of the police department and that of the office of the Director of Public Prosecution have lead me to conclude that; these two offices have lost its independence; their heads are incapable of acting professionally, and in the best interest in the community."

It is important to note that justice is not the conviction or acquittal of the PM but if the justice system would be allowed to take its natural course without any impediment or interruption as it is legislated for according to the Laws of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

But the things that trouble me most is the manner in which the two supposedly independent bodies (The Police and the office of the Director of Public Prosecution) that are entrusted with ensuring that justice is done at all times; without any such impediment or interruption, is doing all they can to aid in the miscarriage of justice.

Let me take the opportunity to qualify this statement by explaining the duties of these two institutions.

The duties of the police are to:

* Protect life and property

This is simply saying, it is the police primary duty to protect law abiding citizens from criminals and criminal activities. In the event the police fail to protect any of its citizens from the criminals that prey on the community, they must move to their second objective which is to:

* Investigate, apprehend and arrest offenders

It is the duty of any police department to launch an impartial and unbiased investigation into any allegation of criminal activities that were committed against any member of the community. If such investigation reveals that a crime was committed, then the best investigator should be placed on a quest to ascertain how, where, when, why and by whom the offence was committed and then the apprehension and interview of the offender.

* Charge and prosecute

If enough evidence is found that can justifiable proved that the offender had indeed committed the offence then that offender should be charged and prosecuted.

These are the duties and responsibilities of any police department. It is the procedure that every ordinary citizen goes through when there is an allegation of a criminal offence brought against them, and no one, is exempted from this process.

However, there are members of the diplomatic core to whom the laws of the land offer limited immunity from prosecution. It is important to note that diplomats can be prosecuted but certain diplomatic protocol must be observed before any such charges and prosecution can be preceded.

The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP):

The office of the Director of Public Prosecution is a public, independent, judiciary body. This office is supposed to be free from external or other influences and his (the DPPs) office and anyone that has been assigned by him should be allowed to perform their functions without external influences or personal biases. The DPP or/and his assignees are responsible for prosecuting matters and offenders on behalf of the state. He is also the chief legal advisor to the police departments. They are responsible for ensuring that the evidence are collected and collaborates and that the criminal procedures are followed etc. He also has the power and the right to make a “professional” determination as to which matters should be prosecuted by the State and which matters should not be prosecuted.

Our founding legal minds were not ignorant to the facts of abuse of powers, and the prejudice that existed in our society. They knew that people will try to use their powers, offices, and other influences to aid in the miscarriage of justice, where the State is concern. Hence this is the reason why they built into the system, a legal means through which individuals can seek redress when they have been wronged by someone. The offending individual(s) may see it fit to use his influence to cause State officials to aid in the miscarriage of justice; hence we can have private criminal matters being brought against an individual.

The DPP does not have jurisdiction over criminal matters that were brought privately. If this is and was so, then certain people would be above the law.

We have seen Richard Nixon, the then President of the USA and the most powerful man in the free world at that time, was made to resign his presidency and was indicted on conspiracy charges, in the Watergate scandal. Richard Nixon did not commit the crime that lead to the Watergate scandal but he was a part of the planning, yet he was indicted. This shows that it matters not your office, your position and the type of power one wields; no one is above the justice system.

I am holding fast to the opinion, which can be proven, that the DPP stepped outside the realms of his lawful power in an effort to aid in the miscarriage of justice when he confiscated the case file from the registrar’s office and attempted to kill the private matter.

The action of the police department and that of the office of the Director of Public Prosecution have lead me to conclude that; these two offices have lost its independence; their heads are incapable of acting professionally, and in the best interest in the community.

I am also of the opinion that the head of these two departments is acting in cohesion with the Prime Minister to aid in perverting the course of justice. I am very sorry that I have to say this, but their actions have left me with no other alternative but to hold fast to my new conclusion.

I once thought that we were a Christian society. I was also of the opinion that Christians were strong people, whose characters exhibit honesty, integrity and strong ethics. All this wheeling and dealing in the effort to aid in the miscarriage of justice have brought to my mind the Bible text that says “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven”.

The PM, like every other citizen, if summoned by a magistrate to appear in court is obliged to show up, with his counsel, and if he thinks that he has no case to answer, then his counsel should put forward a no-case submission and have the magistrate rule on it. This is what is expected of each and every one of us. If the PM refused to show up to court then I am expected that an arrest warrant be issued for his arrest. And he must be arrested on sight to be taken to a magistrate at the police earliest convenience. The justice system is so designed to ensure that absolutely no one is above the law and beyond prosecution. We must, at all times “Let justice be done!”


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