* Photo by Kageaki Smith. Pressure: Two of the men expected to help ensure the violence dies down: Governor Sir Richard Gozney and Premier Dr. Ewart Brown, pictured at the swearing-in ceremony for new Commissioner of Police Michael DeSilva.
* Photo by Kageaki Smith. Pressure: Two of the men expected to help ensure the violence dies down: Governor Sir Richard Gozney and Premier Dr. Ewart Brown, pictured at the swearing-in ceremony for new Commissioner of Police Michael DeSilva.
The shootings make the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth this year. The fifteenth and sixteenth with hits. The death is the third. Am I callous about the deaths? No. Like every one else, I'm hardening. I'm getting used to it. Do I place low value on human life? I do not. But I recognize that others do.

I also recognize that for whatever reason - be it drugs, a woman or women, or 'respect' and 'street cred' - a new element of Bermudian society has formed and created a new sub-group or out-group or over-class or under-class or even in-class.

I applaud Dr Lou Matthews and the Caines brothers and their 'Rise Above' movement. I'll help them however I can. I hope that you will too.

But this island, through its bad public education system and its consequential inability to prepare ordinary Bermudians for taking their places in the social community and economic model that underwent such huge changes between 1990 and now, has been feeding the current problem much as an arsonist pours fuel onto the fire that he has just set.

This island pours effort and money into Mirrors-style programes for 15-23 year-olds. This island does not pour the same kind of effort into its 0-10 year-olds. This island only recognizes a problem when it gets to be a big expensive to fix teenage problem; because there is big money in 'fixing' these teenage problems. In this way, and others, this island routinely and regularly lies to itself about itself; and helps inflict damage on itself.

Mother Teresa spent her lifetime doing good works and got sanctified after death. Sanctification is much easier, in Bermuda. All that is needed is to get killed in a drive-by or ambush shooting. The dead man then gets instant sanctification. It has happened twice in the past months. It will happen again - this time.

As long as this community - and it is principally Bermuda's black community - carries on with this kind of public charade, this community - principally Bermuda's black community - will go on getting the same type of non-result that it has been getting and accepting from a fatally flawed, over-staffed, incompetent public educating system that consistently feeds new recruits into the now highly visible sub-group or out-group or over-class or under-class or even in-class.

Until the targets disappear, the killings will go on. Non-sanctification and public honesty allied with better police and prosecution work with better public support will help bring them to a stop.

Our Bermuda culture of hiding and concealing has allowed guns and now gunplay to reach current levels; and abets an inability to face systemic problems with things like education and poor early family care.

If the culture of hiding rises any higher then the pious words of serious-demeanoured politicians will be seen for what they are. Words with the same value and purpose as the words used to sanctify shot 'hoods' from the 'hood'.