It’s not enough to pontiﬁcate every time a horrendous shooting like the one that took the life of an infant takes place. If it were, we would be the safest place on the face of the earth. What we need is for our community to come together, look at what we have and are already doing, identify gaps and how they could be ﬁlled, each sector claim their part of the solution, develop a comprehensive plan and implement and monitor it.
A while back a few of us in St. Croix (led by Democrats but inclusive of others) decided we had enough and it was time to act! Together we developed a proposal and began reaching out to local and national leaders and resource persons early this year. To ﬁnance the meeting we ﬂoated it by several national foundations and public and private entities in the Virgin Islands. We have so far been unsuccessful, but we are ready to give it another try.
But we have no pride of ownership. We just feel strongly that government entities, churches, neighborhood and community organizations, the private sector, our young people and others need to sit down for a series of guided meetings with each sector making commitments to doing their part to begin to stem the tide of gun and other violence in our Territory. So please, you don’t have to wait for us.
As I have said to several: any branch of our government, any relevant government agency or any organization that has the wherewithal and inﬂuence to bring everyone together, just do it! The reward being offered may help this time, but it won’t stop the next shooting and the next loss of a precious life!
State Chair, Democratic Party of the Virgin Island Islands