Published On: Mon, Oct 16th, 2017

Loose wire

dekker_0A political leader of Statia, Clyde van Putten, called on the population of Statia “to kill and burn Dutch Marines in the streets.” He was specifically targeting marines who delivered about twenty million US-dollars worth of emergency supplies after the September hurricanes. Van Putten’s hateful call for murder is not unique and was received by a cheering crowd.

The average murder rate in the entire Caribbean is about 20-30 times that of the USA and EU. It runs at 20-80 per 100,000 inhabitants. Honduras is the absolute champion with 82/100,000, followed by Jamaica at about 42 and the rest. The narco industry seems to be the number one culprit.

The chances to get caught and be convicted in a Court of Law are less than 10%; more than 90% of all murderers walk around free and many go out and kill again, out of personal revenge, or simply for money. Murder for hire is a rapidly growing business as became evident in the Wiels murder case.

Efforts by law enforcement to bring the killers to justice are often labeled by locals as discrimination, stemming from racism and colonialism. No matter how criminal incidents unfold and who is the real victim, the population seeks and finds a victim role at all times.

Even those convicted by law see themselves as innocent victims of a neo-colonial repressive legal criminal system. It is hard to follow their train of reasoning or to understand their conclusions since they defy all logic and are mostly based on an illusionary history and fabricated facts. Families of murderers will tell you with a straight face that someone, meaning a neo-colonial proxy, pushed a loaded fire-arm in the hands of their innocent son, that went off, all by itself, and therefore that their son was set up and is the real victim.

Empathy by the local population with black brothers, who risk their lives to supply white Europeans with their daily dose of drugs, is also beyond imagination. The local narco-trafficking boys are heroes in their own communities and can count on enormous sympathy.

Crime has become a strong deterrence to all foreign investment and economic growth, but every bit of economic decline is outstripped by growth in the shadow economy of narco-trafficking and money laundering.

Locals will tell you that writing about, and reporting crime, is the cause of disinvestment; not the criminals are guilty but the messengers.

The remarks by Van Putten need to be placed and understood in this kind of distorted reality perception.

The Dutch Minister of Kingdom Affairs filed charges against Van Putten for hate speech. Efforts in similar cases were all a waste of time, Van Putten will be able to continue his hate campaign undisturbed.

His illusion that a 3,200 inhabitants island can be autonomous or independent, is a delusion in every possible way. The present status of a municipality of The Netherlands, since 2010 after a referendum, rescued the island from severe poverty.

Unfortunately, extensive corruption by political leaders of Statia caused the supervising Minister of Kingdom Affairs to tighten fiscal controls, set up check-and-balances and perform auditing procedures. The locals who were cheering on Van Putten did not seem to understand that such measures were to protect them as citizens.

The perplexed Minister of Kingdom Affairs reacted with a remark, that “ (Van Putten) was suffering from a loose wire.”

Note about the same number of Statia-born as present island inhabitants live in The Netherlands by free choice, the country, Van Putter labeled as “ the most cruel neo-colonial power in the world."

By Jacob Gelt Dekker
Columnist for Curaçao Chronicle

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