Opinion: Sen. Daniels On Tackling Gang Violence

December 16, 2014

MARC DANIELS[Opinion column written by Senator Marc Daniels]

Recently OBA Senator and Junior Minister of National Security Jeff Baron stated that, in his view, “we are stronger than any gangs, stronger than any sub-communities, stronger than any root causes.”

While I accept that the Senator’s contribution is filled with good intentions, I humbly think that these remarks demonstrate a complete disconnect from reality and our society’s problems.

First, the entire community is afraid of those busting guns and engaging in gun violence. The community is afraid of the gangsters who walk with almost relative immunity among us.

Grown men give respect, touches and even free drinks to many within the gang culture for fear of being extorted, robbed or injured for any sign of disrespect.

Fear grips the mind and certain members of our society have a complete disregard for what others think. The use of weapons may mask their own fears but the use of weapons sends chills through the remainder of us.

How do we reach those willing to pick up guns?

How do we reach those willing to shoot at police?

How do we reach those willing to continue to kill others?

We can only reach them by direct communication and engagement which can only be fostered on a one on one level. No slogan or program will adequately combat decades or centuries of systematic dysfunction which we have all turned a blind eye towards.

These sub-communities do not feel a part of the wider society. They do not feel embraced, wanted, or loved. They do not feel any form of ‘One Bermuda.’

Contrary to what many think, these men are crying out for love, for a sense of purpose, and belonging and value. Those black men who are willing to kill other black men do not see a value in themselves. Neither do they see value in other black men.

For if they did they would not hurt their blood, plot to kill their friends or take out the very same associates they once ran the streets with.

Those living within certain communities surely abhor violence and the constant sound of gun shots and police sirens or the trade of narcotics. However fear grips them to remain silent. We are disjointed and fractured. No longer can your neighbor ‘whoop your butt’ for acting out of line.

And as far as the root causes, it seems we all like to ‘dig our heads in the sand’ and act ‘colour blind’ in a world which sadly has yet to come to grips with our racist past and racist present.

Yes, there are more mixed race babies in 2014, but when my parents dated in the 1970s, schools were still segregated.

This simply means that this is not some ancient memory. Yesterday’s problems have manifested into today’s hearts and minds. If we keep suggesting race doesn’t feature in our daily lives and is some manufactured creation of politics then we will continue to delude ourselves and watch systematic problems veer its head as we attempt to move forward.

The entire community has been unwilling to engage in the big conversation. The entire community has been unwilling to address our racist legacy with honesty.

So no, our community cannot win this war for a few simple reasons:

  • We are not on a level playing field economically
  • We are not viewed as equals socially
  • We do not communicate with each other openly and honestly

Recently, I made a remark in the Senate that instead of confining America’s Cup celebrations to Front Street alone, the opportunity to celebrate from Front Street to Court Street would have gone some distance to demonstrate a ‘One Bermuda mindset.’

Not surprisingly, this was scoffed at by many in society. Ironically, a few former UBP and many current OBA members approached me individually to say that they all were thinking the same thing and knew in their heart this to be true.

We have a very serious choice to make as a country. We can continue to stick our heads in the sand. We can continue to find slogans. We can continue to watch the genocide.

Or we can actively engage with those on the front lines who are disenfranchised and excluded from society.

The choice is clear. The time is now.

- Senator Marc Daniels

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  1. Alex M says:

    Hey Mr. Daniels,

    How about blaming the fact that many kids here grow up without a father figure? Why not address the fact that under the previous administration, you did absolutely nothing to try to help those in need? The PLP had 14 years to put together a platform to use to fight back against this scourge to our island.

    The only way to stop this is to remove the financial reward. These gangsters operate using the fear you speak of, as well as the economic factor. These sons, boyfriends, nephews etc cover household costs using the proceeds from their illicit activity. Legalise weed and take the main income stream out of the hands of those who shoot instead of email. This in turn will probably keep 10′s of millions of dollars on the island for a start!

    The PLP had the chance to start a true vocational school. Not everyone can be a doctor or a lawyer, we need plumbers and electricians. Instead the PLP encouraged a lifestyle that means that half of those turning 20 are already hamstrung by having kids.

    The OBA need to step up to the plate, but be honest about the problem. This is not due to racist politics or policies. This is about stopping the rot and if it means kicking in a few doors then so be it.

  2. Alex M says:

    Also, Front Street is Bermuda’s. Not the white peoples. Not the black peoples. Not the Portuguese peoples. It is everyones, just as Court Street, the 42 and Parkside belong to us all. It is the governments and police of the last 50 years that allowed this perceived segregation to happen.

    • Sally says:

      “Ironically, a few former UBP and many current OBA members approached me individually to say that they all were thinking the same thing and knew in their heart this to be true.” -Sen. Daniels.

      Like it or not there are some great disparities between Front Street and Court Street as well as between the various families in Bermuda. There does exist soci-economic disparities, one only has to look at Bermuda Statistical data. That is the reality no matter how much many would like to dismiss it, or overlook it.

      Furthermore, a little Bermuda history speaks to the Racial problems within Bermuda. Racism and segregation has been around for a long time in Bermuda, and still exist in some form. It has had a major impact on where we are today, but many like to overlook it because perhaps the truth is easier to dismiss, rather than address it. Nevertheless,today we see more of Institutionalized Racism. Structural and social changes have had a huge impact upon our youth.

      Sen. Daniels is correct to point out the sociological, psychological, and economical factors which are preventing Bermuda from dealing with our most serious problem of Gang Violence. We must address these key areas if we want to address Gang Violence. It is not an easy problem to fix, but it must be addressed or we will see the consequences down the road.

      Bermuda has to stop thinking this problem does not belong to them. It belongs to all of us, and we must work together as a country to fix it. Pointing fingers will not be the solution.

      I think Sen. Daniels to have us look at this problem from a wider perspective was a good approach.

    • lol says:

      Racist isn’t about color, it is about the rich and less fortunate. Front st. already has while court st. is tryna make it. Put them together and everyone has. That’s the point he tryna make.

  3. aceboy says:

    Crying out for love?

    When they cry for this love they have been CAUGHT.

    Before that they will rob you, beat you and run you down without even giving it a second thought.

    How many times did ANY of these fools stop and think that a stray bullet might kill a small child or any innocent unfortunate enough to get in the way? By pulling the trigger they proved that this number is ZERO.

    You are suggesting a softly softly approach. Your fellow PLP members did this while in government. It didn’t work. In 2008 and 2009 there were far more shootings…it became almost a daily occurrence.

    It is time for some TOUGH LOVE.

    • watching says:

      Their actions may not look like that at this stage because it has gone too far, but the friendship and association that they gain from being in these “gangs” acts as a family for those that are lacking in some way in their own lives.

    • JAWS says:

      If it’s time for some “TOUGH LOVE” as you put it, why hasn’t any UBP/OBA/PLP did this? What are we voting for every 5 years? Government needs to Govern and stop wasting my vote.

      Look at the current prison. The place is one of the best hotels we have in Bermuda for gang members. Prison is a place you are afraid to go. Accept in beautiful Bermuda where I can bake a cake and play cards with my boys at $80,000 a year.

      Lets be honest we need more elaborate methods of deterring gang members. If most of these 175 lbs little boys went to prison, a real prison in the USA for murder the big boys in prison would have them change their name from Bob to Beyonce with heels and skirt to match.

    • BETTTY TRUMP says:

      “So no, our community cannot win this war for a few simple reasons:

      We are not on a level playing field economically
      We are not viewed as equals socially
      We do not communicate with each other openly and honestly”

      Well said Senator Mark Daniels. You have highlighted some key points, and outlined the real historical and sociological factors impacting Gang Violence in Bermuda. Until folks become real and except the facts this problem will be difficult to resolve. There are some real factors that must be addressed in Bermuda, even if it makes many uncomfortable. Sometimes the truth is “UNCOMFORTABLE”, but we must move forward to deal with it.

      A great summary and step towards moving forward to address Gang Violence in Bermuda Senator Daniels, we need that brilliant Senator Team of the Opposition to continue to stand up and make and take bold steps forward for Bermuda.

      • BETTTY TRUMP says:

        Or we can actively engage with those on the front lines who are disenfranchised and excluded from society.

        The choice is clear. The time is now.

        - Senator Marc Daniels

        Yes, Yes, Senator Daniels I been saying this for years. We must take personal steps to reach one and teach one. It is important step to addressing this serious problem in Bermuda, if not we will not move forward, and it will have a long-term impact upon our society. We can no longer ignore these individuals and continue to make them feel disenfranchised, this has to be turned around, by putting into place things that will engage them, such as providing educational and job opportunities.

        Brilliant Senator Daniels.

        • Stunned... says:

          Or we can actively engage with those on the front lines who are disenfranchised and excluded from society.

          - By engaging – seems the first step would be dialogue within a structured environment toseek understanding why they feel disenfranchised in their words. Secondly, would be to invite their solutions to their issues. Evaluate the solutions within our legal and moral framework and then seek to be understood.

          We cannot effect a viable solution going forward without credible input from ALL stakeholders.

    • rs says:

      Why is it always about race? I am tired of seeing these opinion columns on how to tackle gang violence when not once in this article is there a plan or proposal to curb the violence. Sorry, but including Court Street in the Americas Cup celebrations is NOT going to stop gang violence.

      The first question is why do gangs exist in Bermuda, and like all gangs what is their source of income? Drugs. The gangs get their income from drugs. Bermuda needs to look at what funds these gangs, we have some of the toughest drug laws in the western world and they aren’t working.

      For example take alcohol prohibition in the US during the 20’s, people did not stop drinking they just bought their booze via the black market which was run by the mobsters. This is exactly what has happened with the drug trade in Bermuda and these gangs are profiting from this. Bermuda needs to rethink these draconian drugs laws, we all know the war on drugs has failed. Once Bermuda realizes this and adopts a 21st Century drug policy we can then move the drug trade out of the black market and stop this downward spiral.

  4. LiarLiar says:

    Nonsense. I know of several ‘gang members’ and others caught up in this ignornace that attended private schools and attained degrees from overseas while all of them had access to education and opportunities.

    It appears this article is typical in the terms of laying blame at the feet of others as opposed to laying it a the feet of the perpetrators. If you think a hug or an America’s Cup trophy unveiling on Court Street will stop these guys then you are more deluded than I originally gave you credit for.

    And I, personally, think that labeling our current gang problem as ‘genocide’ is completely disrespectful to the victims of actual genocidal behaviour. This gang warfare cannot be compared to the Rwandan genocide, Pol Pot’s actions, Idi Amin’s murders or Hitler’s attempt to rid the world of Jews. While the loss of life due to the actions of these idiots is absolutely tragic and sad, it cannot be categorized as genocide. Completely off-base comparison designed simply to rile emotions.

    Lastly, as the Senator blames the Government (as if the shootings didn’t start or occur under the previous Government), the past and certain segments of society he does not provide one solution to the problem despite the title of this piece alluding to the opposite. Typical and to be expected.

  5. Enough is enough says:

    “We are not on a level playing field economically”
    “We are not viewed as equals socially”
    “We do not communicate with each other openly and honestly”

    You are trying to simply the issues to one of race or disconnection. Please as a politician you need to do more homework on this. This is why the PLP messed up dealing with this and why the OBA are messing up now. You use it to push your political agenda – missing the entire point.

    A gang is a group of two or more individuals who have an on-going relationship with each other and support one another individually or collectively in the recurring commission of delinquent and/or criminal behavior.

    Gangs vary widely in their make up. They may consist of as few as two people who exhibit little organization in the gang and commit minor delinquent acts or crimes to highly organized crime gangs (organized crime, crime networks, etc.) involving scores of members involved in sophisticated international crime.

    Gangs are a conscious product of young people organizing their lives on the streets. They usually begin as unsupervised male or female peer groups within defined urban spaces. Some, but not all, evolve into formal organizations with social, economic, or political functions, and have older members. Gangs also organize within certain institutions, such as prisons and the military, with variable ties to outside street gangs or organizations.

    Two friends playing cricket may not fit the image most people have of a gang, but they have the potential of forming one. Left alone, the behavior of the two boys may turn to other violations of law (i.e., loitering, disturbing the peace, being a public nuisance, theft, experimenting with drugs) and, were it to do so, more people would see them as a gang.

    It’s all a matter of degree, and the sooner we recognize what it is that is potentially developing, the more likely we are to “nip the problem in the bud,” to use an old expression. If the two boys are willing to violate the law and be truant, and they know what they’re doing is illegal, they have an incorrect mind set. They need attention and supervision. They need help. Without it, things could get worse.

    The causes of the waves of street gang and wanna-be group activity can be loosly attributed to flight from abusive family circumstances; material gain; the attraction of supportive peer groups; and economic and ethnic marginality.

    American psychologist Abraham Maslow (Maslow, 1970) categorized human needs into higher and lower levels. He referred to this as the “hierarchy of needs.” His is a widely accepted model for understanding the biological, psychological, and social needs of human beings. Lower level needs, he believed, must be at least adequately satisfied or met before an individual may successfully pursue the higher level needs.

    The lower level needs are physiological(hunger, thirst, shelter, sex, and other bodily needs) andsafety related(security and protection from physical and emotional harm).

    The higher level needs are: belongingness affection, belonging, acceptance, and friendship, self-respect, autonomy, achievement, status recognition,and self-actualization (the drive to fulfill one’s potential and self-fulfillment).

    According to Maslow, as each lower need is satisfied, the next level becomes dominant with self-actualization being the ultimate goal. Where a need is absent, movement to the next level is impeded. From this point of view, lacking a sense of security (a lower level need) at home or in school, a youth may join with similarly situated youths who provide the needed security. Absent a sense of belonging (a higher level need) at home or at school, a youth may join with similarly situated youths for mutual support, acceptance, and friendship. The same situation may develop in order to satisfy the other higher level needs.

    Families should be a place where a child can get unconditional love, set goals and parameters of behavior, be protected. I don’t think the kids in gangs are getting those things from their families. These kids have not experienced success – and neither have their parents.

    How do such similarly situated children meet each other? Children who are abused at home or who are tormented at school may, because of their behavior, be singled out by school officials for special treatment. Placing these children in special classes, tracks, or programs puts them together.

    If the behavior these at-risk youths exhibit leads to police custody, they are likely to meet in detention centers. Upon release these youths are sometimes shunned and, intentionally or not, placed in a situation where their only friends may be others who have misbehaved. The beginnings of a gang are not difficult to see in these scenarios. A lack of security or sense of belonging at home, however, is not the only reason why gangs form.

    “The gang is an important social institution for low-income male youths and young adults from newcomer and residual populations because it often serves social, cultural, and economic functions no longer adequately performed by family, school, and the local market.” (Spergel, et al., 1991, preface)

    Why gangs form and why some youths join them are two different questions, but their answers are inextricably intertwined. If you read the professional literature on gangs you will find the topic “Why youths join gangs” discussed far more often than “Why do gangs form”? It puts our focus on the forces which pull or push some youths into a gang rather than on the youths themselves.

    Gangs are an adaptive social mechanism for satisfying the needs of some youth which are not, or can not be, met through traditional and socially acceptable avenues. Gangs form to satisfy needs which are going unmet in the families, schools, and neighborhoods in which they live or which are perceived of as unavailable to the youths who join them. Moore (1998) encapsulates the multi-causal perspective on gangs when he suggests that four community conditions often precede the transition from typical adolescent groupings to established youth gangs. First, conventional socializing agents, such as families and schools, are largely ineffective and alienating. Under these conditions, conventional adult supervision is largely absent. Second, the adolescents must have a great deal of free time that is not consumed by other healthy social development roles. Third, for the gang to become established, members must have limited access to appealing conventional career lines; that is, good adult jobs. Finally, the young people must have a place to congregate – such a well-defined neighborhood.

    “Gangs are nothing more than a perversion of what contemporary society is all about – money, power, sex, consumption, status, leisure, amusement. People who have the resources have those things. How they get the resources determines whether we see their behavior as legal or illegal.

    The behavior may be different between gang members and members of a traditional businessmen’s organization, but the objective is often the same: strengthening the organization, generating income, securing new members, honoring outstanding and/or long-time members, and so on.” (Rosenfield, Therapist Interview)

    There is no one all-encompassing reason for the formation of gangs, although there may be some reasons which are more significant than others in their initial impact.

    The causal role of social disorganization (as measured by the weakness of social institutions of informal social control – family, school, faith institutions) on gang formation lies behind several of the explanations.

    All the roots of ours current problems arose in in the late nineties early 2000′s. PArents started disconnecting with their kids and their kids found their own connections. The PLP in my view messed up in dealing with this issue – the OBA are falling into the same trap. Let me spell it out.

    EDUCATION – FAMILY – REGULATED SOCIAL ACTIVITIES

    Fix these and we move in the right direction

    • @ Enough is enough: You could not have been more explicit. The old timers use to say: ” Show me your company and I’ll tell you who you are”. It still stands.

      • Sally says:

        All the above reads like what is written in the book of Gang Violence. We know what it is and how it got started, folks are seeking solutions, that would be more helpful than a overall history notes.

        • Enough is enough says:

          Well thanks for your contribution Sally….

          But actually quite a few people dont know wht it is and how it got started – Marc Daniels clearly being one of them. You need to understand the issue before it is addressed, though I am glad you do.

          Though this said I did address it. Education – family – regulated social activities. This is what money needs to be diverted into.

  6. Claudio says:

    While I respect Sen. Daniels remarks and his intention on the situation, has he or any other politicians who speak on how to tackle gun violence ever lived was ever raised in those communities in the past 25 years?

    It is one thing to interact with these individuals when you are their legal representatives or in a high social position(they put their best foot forward) but when you live or come from such an environment things are not so cut and dry.

    I do believe that some of these individuals need a bit of love and respect, but there are others who had much love and opportunities yet choose a different lifestyle. Whether it was because of peer pressure, media etc.. who knows.

    You CANNOT lump all them as crying out for love etc…

    The problem I have is that you have few individuals who think they speak on behalf of the whole community and try to mass psycho-analyze all of us. Human nature and psychology (key word is human) is complex. Furthermore, where do we place responsibility on ourselves? Whose fault is it when we don’t teach our men the value of being a father to their children? Who’s responsibility is it to teach our women the value of themselves and choosing their mates wisely? Who’s responsibility is it to teach our children their history and show them they will face adversity but they must persevere find a way to overcome?

    Part of the issue I find is members of our community that already have telling others of why they can’t succeed instead of showing them ways in which they can succeed. No emphasis is ever on ways to overcome.. Its as if some of our own is determined to keep us in mental slavery. i.e. You cant do this because massa has a system that will prevent you from succeeding.

  7. Jackie Chan says:

    Mark,

    I know your heart is in the right place, and we should also accept that all of Bermuda, Black, White, Mixed and other agree that those that have been disenfranchised need an avenue to join in on opportunities for a brighter tomorrow. Clearly this initiative has to happen on so many fronts. I’m always in a state of despair because when I have had the chance to talk with some that have been left behind, I’m often told that they can’t get out, even leaving Bermuda is not an option for many. So I ask you, is this true? If we could identify everyone who legitimately wanted out of the gang lifestyle, could we develop an individual plan for each of them that could bring them out of this dead-end, could we keep them alive? What would happen to the crabs whose purpose it is to make sure that no one climbs out of the bucket of doom? How many want help and surely there are enough of us that genuinely want to help that it can be done, but then what about those that don’t know that they want help, that are thriving in their crab bucket and wouldn’t give it up for anything? And how do we stop them from affecting the next generation? There are groups all over this island, from Mirror’s and Chain Reaction etc, and I remain hopeful that with this continued effort we can reduce the numbers that find themselves sliding into the bucket. So I guess my question is, what legislatively can be done to turn this bucket upside down? I think that certainly reducing the numbers of our people incarcerated for minor marijuana possession could help, but what do you want our Government to do? Our Communities are engaged and ready to help, and we acknowledge that the problem is ours, regardless of whether it is on our doorstep or not.

  8. Shmh says:

    Ooo….you are a lawyer who defends these fools and when they walk free.(yes you are a great lawyer).. They continue their maddness… Become a prosecutor !

  9. In quoting aceboy: “It is time for some TOUGH LOVE”. The fact is them that wish to be a “make believe gangster” need to be punished hard enough to knock that thought right out of their heads! Why should the vast majority of Bermudas population allow them who are “wanna-be gangsters” to intimidate us?
    “Spare the rod we spoil the child” That wasn’t said countless years ago for nothing…

  10. hmmm says:

    “First, the entire community is afraid of those busting guns and engaging in gun violence. The community is afraid of the gangsters who walk with almost relative immunity among us.

    Grown men give respect, touches and even free drinks to many within the gang culture for fear of being extorted, robbed or injured for any sign of disrespect.”

    Daniels, if you know something you’d better report it to the police, otherwise who are you protecting??????

  11. agatha christie says:

    Aceboy has a valid point. I would like to hear the Senators explicit plans, he talks of communicating but gives no other idea on tackling this issue.

  12. hmmm says:

    “Recently, I made a remark in the Senate that instead of confining America’s Cup celebrations to Front Street alone, the opportunity to celebrate from Front Street to Court Street would have gone some distance to demonstrate a ‘One Bermuda mindset.’”

    How big do you think the party was?? Did you even go…. If everybody held hands they wouldn’t have reached the back of town.

    There was a mix of people there on front street. where would people park if it was held in the back of town….

    There is a ONE Bermuda mindset in the OBA. OK, How come the Bermuda Day parade never went up Court street?

    • Sally says:

      Recently, I made a remark in the Senate that instead of confining America’s Cup celebrations to Front Street alone, the opportunity to celebrate from Front Street to Court Street would have gone some distance to demonstrate a ‘One Bermuda mindset.’

      Not surprisingly, this was scoffed at by many in society.

      “Ironically, a few former UBP and many current OBA members approached me individually to say that they all were thinking the same thing and knew in their heart this to be true.”

  13. Oh,I see now says:

    So no, our community cannot win this war for a few simple reasons:

    We are not on a level playing field economically
    We are not viewed as equals socially
    We do not communicate with each other openly and honestly

    As long as they are selling drugs that was the only economic field they cared for.
    As long as they could sit on the wall in there own neighborhood they cared not for the social fabric of the community.
    As long as they holding court with the ace boys I don’t see them engaging in any form of race relation talks making life better for the next generation.

    These young men have no ambition and are lazy,plain and simple I hope my play on words wasn’t missed just now.

  14. Sigh says:

    Don’t be fooled to think that the reason for less shootings has ANYTHING to do with who our current Government is. It has to do with the ACTUAL people who are directly involved and they are either going to jail or going to the UK, lets be real. Pointing fingers at the Government doesn’t help the issue period so let’s just dead that from the start. We love to knock the next person for their speaking their voice while the mass majority remain silent. I didn’t get the “soft approach” from this article, I didn’t get much from it at all but that’s not relevant to ME personally. Everyone needs to get tough, the regular people in the community, the Government, the Police force etc, it isn’t a game out here. U can’t get to the root of it because the majority of these boys don’t even know why they don’t like each other and want to kill each other. I’m not sayin I have the solution because I definitely don’t HOWEVER, I can appreciate someone speaking out while others remain silent.

  15. inna says:

    So you say all of that to say what again?

  16. Unbelievable says:

    I don’t know why the PLP and its members are still espousing the same ideas and tactics that cost them the 2012 election.

  17. ImJustSayin says:

    Other than all the lip service from all the politicians who don’t really have a clue. Here are a few suggestions. We can reduce the menace of gangs in our society by participating in various anti gang programs such as: Organizing sports for youths Organizing drama and activities that offers alternatives to gangs.Provide gang and drug prevent guides and training for youths.  The youths youth to know about gang related problems, death statistics resulting from gang fight and gang crimes and what the future have for gang members (negative gains of being a gang member) The government have a lot to play in stopping gang problems in our society.  The government should provide support services that will help to counsel gang members who are willing to denounce their gang membership and also offer protection for such persons.The government should setup a community policing patrol system or a neighborhood police watch program that will inform people of graffiti, gang members and territories. This will in not small measure help to stop the spread of gangs in our society. Parents have a big role in the fight against  gang in our society.  Parents should try and educate and open communication with their children to stop them from joining violent gangs or hanging around with gangsters.

  18. Know it all says:

    I agree that the reasons you listed are valid in that they exist to some extent and create undertones and issues within certain parts of the community, the individuals you initially refer to in causing violence do not appreciate or understand these in any way. They are more concerned about tit for tat retaliation than creating a better Bermuda.

    I confirm that racial views still exist, and I am a white Bermudian. I confirm they exist as I have been a victim of it, yet have never belittled or viewed someone in that light. The big conversation you talk about has struggled to gain traction, as it only looks to invoke memories of the past….the real conversation is how to do we ensure that this never happens again and move forward. But it is more than just about race, it has to be about all discrimination, as we as a society still discriminate daily, whether on education levels, sexual orientation or nationality.

    Whilst the celebration of America’s Cup is happening on Front Street (which I note you wanted to have Court Street included), what is the other headline that grabs attention: shooting on Cedar Hill. Shows that the criminal element really has the best intentions for Bermuda in mind, and I doubt that inclusion of Court St would have changed anything. The more beneficial impact will be including Court Street in the grand events with true economic benefit, rather than a hastily put together celebration of the Cup, which I would say Front Street is better, since it is on the Harbour for no other reason.

    It is hard for some of the general public to take someone serious about stopping gang violence yet makes a living representing the same people he is talking about. If you want to show you truly mean what you preach, then you would limit the cases you take on, show by example you are a representative of this country.

    • Truth Teller says:

      Oh I get it “Know it all”…racism exists in your view but is really subordinate to issues of sexual orientation; nationality and education.

      Really????

      Why don’t you just come out and say what you really mean which is that racism in Bermuda is not a major issue…

      Notwithstanding the fact all the various data illustrates that racial disparities are wide in this country and in some cases are growing.

      We have a country that is bi-racial (35-40 white) yet virtually all of the victims of gang violence are black as are the perpetrators. I mean correlation is not cause by a long shot but come on.

      And what do you mean by your statement that “I have been a victim of it…” Are you saying like your cousins in the US that you as a white male have been the one of the new victims of “black racism” against privileged whites such as your self.

      In other words with liberals like “Know it all”, who needs friends?

  19. js says:

    logically speaking

    if you were educated in a segregated system in the 70s

    if you are now in a position of hiring others

    you may unconsciously continue that system

    pretty much sums up Bermuda’s employment problem 2014

  20. sage says:

    I for one don’t live in fear of these clowns, and I don’t buy drinks to buy friends in high or low places.

  21. Terry says:

    Starts in the home Senator.

    Can’t fathom what mixed race has to do with it.

    Been St.Davids in the past 400 years.

    Shalom.

  22. One Love says:

    It’s a shame that someone with Marc’s talents chooses to defend (in court) those that are alleged to be involved in gun/gang activity…and on many occasions, earns them the freedom to roam the streets again. I know that I couldn’t do it and still keep a clear conscience.

  23. Truth is killin' me... says:

    Excuses and dribble. Time to start cleaning house! Crack kills!!

  24. animallover says:

    Marc Daniels and all the PLP people can say what they like, they did nothing to solve this issue and I don’t believe that the OBA can either, I know that may sound negative and I hope a solution can be found, but I am a realist and look around the world, these gangs just get larger and stronger. So how in the world can we stop them. Hard to solve unfortunately.

    • Truth Teller says:

      Well, well…The Bermuda “Tea Party” types are out in force on this one seeking to place the genie back in the colour blind bottle from which it came just like their ideological cousins in the US.

      Marc Daniels was right and needs to be commended for his comments.And please note that like Obama he too is of mixed racial heritage.

      It is just strange that whites in Bermuda for the most part are in such denial.

      But that is what unearned privilege produces…generation after generation!

      White racism (white supremacy) exist every where on the planet except here. Our whites (anglo and portuguese) are different.

      Hell they even vote for black candidates. They can’t be racist. They have black friends and their children attend private schools with black children.

      Go figure!

  25. Outsider says:

    Two words: Legalize It!

  26. Coffee says:

    Two suits for every gang member . One grey , one black . Wear the gray one when twelve jurors of your peers send you to prison for life .Wear the black when six of your friends carry you to your grave . You WILL wear one of those suits BEFORE you make 35yrs .

  27. STILL A SAD DAY says:

    Once again we are flooded with comments and not ONE solution.

    How do we reach these men directly?

    Can we provide any solutions to their lack of skills?

    With no real education budget how can we create a program for all young men in this lost generation?

    How can we provide a support system to keep them focused?

    If the drugs they sell provides the roof over their heads who will pick up the housing cost while they get their education?

    What shadow program do we have for grown MEN? That does not feel degrading?

    The powers that be need to stop bickering at the coulda shoulda wouda and write off yesterday cuz tomorrow a new young man is signing up to be in this gang. What are we as a society doing to work on tomorrows gang members and more importantly TODAYS.

    This nit pickn is immature. Sort it out…

  28. Oh,I see now says:

    Capital punishment are the two words I’m thinking about.

    • Dr. the Hon. Ewart F. Brown says:

      Thanks Senator for your thoughtful piece. There will be many Bermudians who will think more deeply about the subject having read your opinion. Sadly, there are still too many bloggers and others who see the problem as the product of political parties, etc. These people will guarantee our country a painful course over the next decade as a result of their shallow thinking.

  29. Truth is killin' me... says:

    How does one get capital punishment BACK ON THE BOOKS!? Only the knowing need reply.

  30. Naaa says:

    This guy has no clue of what he’s talking bout

  31. Steve Davis says:

    Who defends these guys in court? Gets them off and back on the streets where they can do more harm?