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December 28, 2012
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Let us turn wishes into reality

Every year around this time we start to wish for bigger and better things for the new year. It's almost like we forgot about the last 360-something days that, for the most part, were a nightmare and just refuse to accept that things may very well be the same - and given that this is Jamaica, perhaps even worse - for the other 360-something days to come.

But hope springs eternal, they say, so we approach the end of every year hoping for one last present from Santa, or whichever mystical and mythical being we believe in, desperately hoping that at least one of our many wishes comes true.

I happen to be one of those people, who desperately wish for many things even though, deep in my heart, I know that in this country they may never become reality; but I continue to hope. So, for 2013 there are a few things I would like to see happen.

Among the first things I would like to see happen is that we somehow start to embrace wisdom. For too long now, we have embraced stupidity, crudeness, this anything-goes attitude that has only served to lead us down this path of instant gratification, no matter the consequences. What that has led to are an upcoming generation of dumb kids guided by dumber parents and a society that no longer respects some of the simplest of social graces and, more importantly, are not equipped to take advantage of a rapidly changing world.

Something else I would like to see change for 2013 is the death of this 'informer' culture, that is only serving to make us nothing but lambs to the slaughter to this growing wave of crime that has taken over our lives and made us prisoners in our own homes. Whenever I travel and return home it strikes me how much our homes resemble prisons. We literally cower behind burglar bars and security systems that would rival maximum-security prisons elsewhere in the world. In addition, we blame the police from not doing enough.

crime under control

Here's the thing. The way things work on CSI is not the way things work in the real world, and even if they did, here in Jamaica we don't have the kind of equipment to help the police solve major cases in an hour. Right across the world in countries where crime is low, the police tend to get pretty decent help from the citizenry. When that happens, criminals tend to be a little more selective because they know people will spill the beans on what they heard or saw. In other words, if we want to get crime under control, we have to do our part.

And speaking of doing our part, how about we finally decide to stop allowing politics and social class divide us? When Usain Bolt or Alia Atkinson or Chris Binnie or Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce do well, aren't we all euphoric? We are, because we are all Jamaicans and the success of our athletes makes each and every one of us proud. Why then do we need to go back to being PNP or JLP, or uptown or downtown, or black or white once the euphoria subsides? The bottom line is that we are all in this together and if we work together we can make Jamaica a great place to be for all of us, not just some of us.

That being said, I am wishing you all a happy and prosperous New Year 2013. Think about these things I've said, because should we all decide to do the right thing our best years could actually be ahead of us and not off in the distant past.

Come on, let's all work to make a better Jamaica a reality and not just a wish.

Send comments to levyl1@hotmail.com

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