EDITORIAL: Get to root of problem
There is something fundementally wrong with the thinking of some of our people when not only do predial larcenists stalk our agricultural land, but a culture of destroying publicly owned property even away from the farming domain seems to be taking root.
Of course, predial larceny is never to be encouraged, and is the product of a criminal mind. As such, it is not mindless crime because some miscreant has allowed his deviant inclinations to so possess him that he breaches the law and takes his chances.
He is often in it for the evil profit that he reaps, and he ought to be vigorously deterred by the infliction of appropriate punishment when caught and found guilty.
Now it seems that other equally criminally motivated persons are wreaking havoc on Government property in and around The City.
The sight of senior personnel of the National Conservation Commission touring the centre of Bridgetown and surveying the damage done to the beautification project at the Montefiore Gardens, literally facing the old Supreme Court Building and within striking distance of the Central Police Station, is not heart-warming.
We mention this location to emphasize the blatant effrontery and mindset of the perpetrators.
The distance away from the police station is one thing, but this project at the Montefiore Gardens is meant to complement the designation of Bridgetown as a Heritage Site.
It can only be a person of very low mind who would seek to so desecrate the capital city even as the authorities try to capitalize on the recent designation by enhancing our historic monuments and other locations.
But this latest incident is not some isolated event for we now know that Hastings Rocks, another well-known and frequently visited site inhabited by both tourists and locals, and the external environs of Government House have similarly suffered loss of plants.
It is indeed a sad commentary on the values and practices of some of us, because the more common crotons were uprooted and left at the site while the more expensive and rarer crotons were taken.
We find ourselves agreeing with Mr Colin Forde, the senior field superintendent that these thieves are very bold.
And, if Mr Forde is also right in his belief that given the numbers taken in a single raid, the plants are being used in other projects, then this behaviour is probably akin to predial larceny, and is equally a criminal enterprise worthy of the highest condemnation by all sensible people.
We urge the authorities to deal quickly and vigorously with this matter. It has to be nipped in the bud.
Predial larceny is very bad, but this is perhaps worse.
Neither practice is to be tolerated in our land.