Bermuda considers itself to be a first world country – it has a fully functioning democracy, its infrastructure is basically good, it enjoys a standard of living that is, overall, also generally good.
It has developed legislation that, certainly in the case of international business, is often seen as world class. It is seen as a paradise island, a home to billionaires, and is the host of one of the world’s most prestigious sporting events, the America’s Cup.
It could be said that 90 percent of what it does, verges on the excellent. The problem seems to be that in some areas it cannot, or will not, reach 100 percent.
Take for example the on-going issue of a secure mental health facility. The Royal Gazette ran this recently: Magistrate Archibald Warner lamented the lack of a secure mental health facility, adding that for the time being society needed to be protected from Deroza.
A friend of mine emailed me point out that a judge in the 1970s had lamented the exact same thing. In other words, that particular discussion has been going on for more than 40 years.
This affects some of our most vulnerable people, yet where are the facilities that will not only protect the public but which could, one day, help them to become useful members of society?
A reader also pointed out the on-going crisis that is the decrepit Salvation Army shelter. Again, this involves incredibly vulnerable people many of whom are probably beyond being able to help themselves.
Again, many words are both spoken and written but we don’t see any action – not even a change in the color of our Facebook status. You are left asking: where are the priorities?
As regular readers will know, I have a thing about roadside sobriety testing. How many years has the discussion about that been going on? But how simple is it to solve and put in place? Very. So why isn’t it done?
As I have written previously, when it comes to same sex marriage, Bermuda organizes a $500,000 referendum, anonymous benefactors bankroll campaigns, millions of words are written, Facebook status are changed and now a costly court case is about to start.
The issue of same sex marriage is an important one, but in the overall scheme of things is it more important than curing the ills that plague society and lead to gangland killings? Is it more important than the murders on the roads?
There have been 127 fatal road collisions in the last ten years. How many murders? When they happen now there is barely a whisper any more.
What can change? The collective mindset. Who can change it? We all can. How long will it take? That’s up to you.