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Breaking News:

The Bahamas is hard on children


Published: Aug 19, 2017

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Dear Editor,

 

The Bahamas, like many nations in the Western Hemisphere, is under the rubric of Christianity due to the ubiquitous presence of the church. Like the United States of America, most Bahamians say that they trust in the God of Judeo-Christianity. This country, like our neighbors to the north, defines itself as Judeo-Christian, despite the spectre of multiculturalism and other religious and secular world-views. Notwithstanding the sheer dominance of evangelical and mainline churches, it is deeply troubling that children are being systematically abused in this country at an alarming rate.

These are the kids God has entrusted to us in order to nurture and care for. The Tribune stated that there were a staggering 856 cases of child abuse reported to Social Services in 2016. Out of that tally, there were 478 cases of neglect, 180 incidents of child abuse, 130 cases of sexual abuse and 33 incidents of incest. Undoubtedly, there were many other incidents which had gone unreported for whatever reason. In 2014, there were 597 cases of child abuse reported, while in 2013, 487 cases were reported, according to The Tribune. A close scrutiny of these disturbing figures would reveal an upward trend in child abuse, with an acute increase in 2016 from the 2014 and 2013 figures. It is alarming that in the three years cited, 1,940 incidents of child abuse were recorded in this small country. As a purportedly Christian nation, The Bahamas is a walking contradiction, when you look at the aforementioned child abuse figures. For a country which prides itself in being Christian, The Bahamas is very hard on children. Jesus told His disciples that they must not prevent children from coming to Him, for of such is the kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 19:14). The church must work in tandem with the powers-that-be to curb child abuse. Pastors should use their pulpits to educate their parishioners on how to properly raise and nurture children based on a biblical world-view. Bahamians must be taught the importance of not ruthlessly taking away the innocence of their kids. When abused, these kids typically end up harboring deep psychological and emotional scars that society pays for in the long run. If a child who is abused cannot confide in a parent for whatever reason, they should be encouraged to report the matter to a pastor, teacher, guidance counselor or the police. This social monstrosity must be dealt with ASAP.

 

– Kevin Evans

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