The reckless behaviour continues—from Tobago’s huge beach party, with many patrons not wearing a mask, to Trinidad’s birthday bash, with the same type of conduct.

It is clear many citizens either think Covid-19 is not real, or blatantly do not care.

There will always be those who have to be burned to learn; T&T is no exception. Now when the Police Service decides to put its feet down on the situation, it will face backlash from some citizens.

Why can’t we follow simple instructions for our own good?

Are we not seeing what is taking place around the world?

The infections and deaths?

Soon, a vaccine will hit our shores, but we are encouraged to follow the basic protocols. Let us stay the course and do what is required of us, according to the law.

This is not about you—but the population in general, including family members and friends.

I would like to suggest a simple way to deal with those stubborn citizens: an increase in the fines for those who are not wearing a face mask in the public domain, and for all who continue to break the restrictions, including parties.

Hit where it will hurt the most: in their pockets.

I am sure you will see a change in attitude.

The citizenry has been warned for months and, on many occasions, some individuals were let off with just a warning, yet some simply do not care. That needs to be addressed seriously, for the sake of others residing in Trinidad and Tobago.

It is sad when you have to deal with adults in this manner.

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Carnival pores now raising up. Driven in part by the regret of pockets not filling, there are calls to do something to mark the spot normally occupied by the Carnival season.

But Sekon Sta (Nesta Boxill) is smarter than all of those who are belatedly rushing into the headlines. In the words of Sparrow, “Ah wish I coulda go and shake he han”. I might invite him to change his name to First Sta, in recognition of being the first to re-jig a Carnival product for pandemic times.

The judgment delivered by Justice Frank Seepersad on Wednesday in favour of this newspaper, its editor-in-chief and publishing company underscores the urgent need for strengthening legislative protection of press freedom and journalistic sources.

Tribalism has dominated the politics of Trinidad and Tobago since self-government, with our two major political parties having their support bases in the two major races in the country.

Last Thursday, in his response to a letter written by 23 Afro-Trinbagonians about the placement of black pupils in our secondary schools, Kamal Persad, coordinator of the Indian Review Committee, responded: “It is clear the under-performance of Afro-children in the education system is still at the top of the black agenda. Accordingly, these 23 persons of African descent adopted an unmistakable black race position.” (Express, January 14).

The urgency with which this nation must address the issues that threaten to throw us back into the Stone Age cannot be over-emphasised.

We were already in deep trouble when Covid-19 struck with pandemic force in early 2020, sending us reeling from blows to the body, the mind, even the spirit. The energy and petrochemicals sectors faced grim circumstances, the availability of natural gas, the key feedstock of the latter’s operations, being of grave concern, and the markets for their products saturated and dampened.

Some say that in our diversification thrust we should choose distribution and sales of products/services made by others, as opposed to manufacturing. The justification for this is that such companies are among the highest earners in the world, and that Trinidad and Tobago is too small to compete globally in manufacturing.