National News

Elder Paul Joseph says suicides are another unfortunate trend

by: Jaimie Smith, News Reporter - Published Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Passionate in his plea to eradicate the unacceptable crime trend, most notably, senseless murders that has seemingly crippled the nation over the past few years, Elder Paul Joseph continues his fight in the Lord’s army to change the landscape of the nation. 

Not only has the murder rate escalated within The Bahamas of late, Joseph recently shared with this daily, based on his extensive record keeping of violent crime statistics, suicides within The Bahamas have also seen a startling increase as well. 

Having compiled a poster campaign eight years ago to pay homage to victims of murder throughout the length and breadth of the Commonwealth, he noted that suicide, or as he refers to it, “self murder” statistics are often left mum.  

According to Joseph, reflecting on his intricately detailed calendar for 2015, displaying both murders and suicides reported, he acknowledged, “In 2015 we had three suicides during the second week of January. Interestingly enough, in January of this year, we see another suicide trend; the same pattern is repeating itself. No one remembers suicide victims. 

“As a matter of fact no one remembers murder victims, which is why I started the poster campaign. I have highlighted the pictures of some of the victims. The saying, ‘A picture paints a thousand words’ is so true; when people see the picture they remember; that is the reaction I get all of the time. But, there is a disconnection from many, remembering these victims because they may have no relation to them. We are truly disconnected. People are still living their lives as if nothing has happened; heaven help us,” expressed Joseph. 

Quoting the Biblical scripture of Ezekiel 22: 30- 31, he expressed the passage clearly demonstrates where we, as a country stand. “I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.” (NIV). 

“This scripture paints a spiritual picture of The Bahamas. I am not giving up; I am not coming down off of the wall. After I read the paper and saw what happened to Evangelist Rex Major, a mighty man of God, he was prepared to die. 

“The question I asked myself and other Christians is, are you prepared to die for what you believe?

“If your faith is not worth dying for, then it is not worth believing. This is the place where we all need to get to, to die for what you believe. As a soldier in God’s army I am all out; this is where I am,” said Joseph.

Pastor Rex Major and his family were the victims of an early morning home invasion on January 14 at their Twynam Height’s residence in the capital. 

Following the horrific ordeal, Major stated that he would rather die than live with his wife or daughter being raped or hurt by anyone. 

Thankfully, the three victims survived the ordeal; however, the pastor was assaulted while protecting his family from the intruders. 

Joseph noted that the proliferation of crime is not only negatively impacting The Bahamas, but has also become an international concern as well.

Quoting a recent newspaper headline, which stated, ‘U.S. official: More must be done before jet ski warning is lifted,’ Joseph said, “Again, the United States has entered the national equation. The decadence is impacting all, those who live here, and those coming to visit here, all and sundry. The United States is too close to us, to allow this country to be destabilized. 

“No one is safe right now, but for the grace of God, you and I are alive today. The record  speaks for itself, that no one is safe, the landscape has not changed.”

Admitting that the fight, which he is determined to continue against the crime within the country, is indeed heart wrenching for him, Joseph adamantly stated that he will not give up on changing the nation’s landscape as it relates to violent crimes. 

“It becomes overwhelming for me when doing my research, because every picture represents a family. There are different persons attached to every family,” Joseph pointed out. 

Also mindful of the victims and their families following their demise, Joseph admonished persons to refrain from posting gruesome crime scene videos and photographs on social media; a trend, which, unfortunately, has become the norm in recent years. 

With no purpose of assisting officials to bring justice to those whose lives were lost; in actuality, posing more harm than good, as crime scenes are often tampered with prior to officials conducting a thorough investigation of the scene, Joseph made a public plea to individuals to remember those whose lives were lost.  

As stated on his ‘Arrest the Violence and Release the Peace Poster,’ “Please refrain from posting crime scene videos on social media. Respect the victims.”

 

Published  Wednesday, February 3, 2016

 

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