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Eddy Smith.
Eddy Smith.
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By Eddy Smith

When we hear about a homicide or some other traumatic event, it shakes us to our core. People start living on edge, constantly worried about who’s next, which family will be affected, whose life will be turned upside down. It’s a heavy burden to carry, and honestly, no one needs this kind of fear in their lives. We all hope for peaceful ways to resolve our differences, so waking up to news of another murder is like a punch to the gut.

This fear can be overwhelming. The rise in violent incidents over the past five years has been shocking, making us question if this is really what our nation has become. These events stir up so many questions that we can’t easily answer, adding to our sense of helplessness. That’s why I’m asking everyone to focus on what we can actually do to help and then let go of the rest. Constantly dwelling on these fears only drains our will to act. We need to remember the importance of finding peace, having the courage to make changes, and knowing what we can’t control. Fear shouldn’t silence us or stop us from protecting our peace and security.

No one source will ever have all the answers. This feels like one of those times when we really need to come together as a nation and fix things. It’s easy to say there’s strength in unity, but this time we have to mean it, because the darkness slowly creeping over our country is blinding. We can’t afford to bury our heads in the sand. Comparing our situation to Trinidad or Jamaica won’t help us; we can’t pass the responsibility to someone else and hope for the best.

We need to take the affairs of our country seriously. It can’t be business as usual. Churches can’t just meet, sing, and pray for a miracle; they need to strategize, figure out where they’re failing, and how they can help fill in the gaps. Schools should be teaching emotional intelligence, empathy, conflict resolution, and anger management skills during Monday morning assemblies. Entertainment venues and promoters must be responsible with the messages they put out and the conduct they encourage. Conscious entertainment can thrive, and being mindful of how much alcohol is served is crucial. Knowing when to stop serving someone who’s had enough can make a big difference.

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Public transport can help set the tone of the day by being mindful of the music they play, especially in the morning and evening. Radio stations share this responsibility too. These are just a few ways everyone can contribute. We must all recognize our responsibility in guiding our nation toward a brighter future. It is imperative that we take ownership of our actions and make a positive impact now, before it’s too late.

It bothers me everytime I hear someone jokingly say, “Vincy is not a real place.” I understand the sentiment behind it, but in my humble opinion, this phrase can be a way of detaching ourselves from the reality of our responsibilities. A way of avoiding the recognition that we all play a significant role in shaping the kind of place we want Vincy to be. This moral high ground we’re so quick to take isn’t helping; it’s a distraction from the real issues at hand. Instead of distancing ourselves, we need to acknowledge our part in both the problems and the solutions.

What we need right now is unity. We should be asking, “How can we fix this?” instead of pointing fingers or shifting blame. Save the blame for when someone gets our food order wrong, not when the safety and well-being of our beloved nation are at stake. It’s crucial that we come together, each of us contributing in whatever way we can to create a better future for our children. Let’s make sure that the most important question on our lips is about finding solutions and working together to implement them.

Consider the account of Liberia’s Women of Peace, and I hope it inspires you to action:

In the early 2000s, Liberia was torn apart by civil war, leaving the country desperate for peace. Amid the chaos, a brave group of women led by Leymah Gbowee came together, crossing religious and social lines to demand an end to the violence. Wearing white as a symbol of peace, they held daily sit-ins, peaceful protests, and even a sex strike to draw attention to their cause. When asked in an interview why she thought the strategies employed in the movement would work, Leymah Gbowee replied, “We didn’t think about success, we were just determined to be out there for as long as it took.” Their creative and non-violent actions showed the world the power of ordinary people standing up for what’s right.

One of their most impactful moments was organising mass prayer vigils and community meetings to bring people together and promote dialogue. These efforts helped build trust and encouraged cooperation among the warring factions. The women’s relentless dedication didn’t just help end the conflict; it also paved the way for a more stable and inclusive Liberia. Their story is a powerful reminder of how collective action and unwavering commitment can lead to real, lasting change.

While the challenges we face in Saint Vincent may not compare to the horrors of Liberia’s civil war, the lesson remains the same: change requires us to get organized and take action. We cannot afford to be paralysed by fear or divided by anxiety. Just as the women of Liberia came together to rebuild their nation, so, too, must we come together, return to the drawing board, and devise innovative solutions to our societal issues. Unity, action, and creativity are our best tools for a progressive and peaceful future. Let this story inspire us to take bold actions and work collectively towards the safety and well-being of our beloved nation.

The opinions presented in this content belong to the author and may not necessarily reflect the perspectives or editorial stance of iWitness News. Opinion pieces can be submitted to [email protected].

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1 Comment

  1. PERCY PALMER says:

    I agree with your sentiment. My question is where we start. Right now there is no communication between the prime minister and the leaders of the opposition. That’s where the finger pointing has to stop.
    Everything is SVG is political and the people are divided. It will and must take the leaders to show the people how to have a dialog that benefits the people and not the political parties.

    Reply

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