Despite the public outcry less than a month ago when someone in West Bay butchered a female turtle that had came ashore to lay her eggs, another egg-laying female was carted away for butchering last week.
This time, however, not only was the turtle saved just in time, but a suspect has been arrested in connection with the matter.
The 350-pound female turtle was released back into the water and will most likely come ashore again in West Bay to lay her eggs in the near future.
Although the odds are still against the long-term survival of one of her hatchlings, they are infinitely better than the zero chance of survival there would have been had the turtle been slaughtered for her meat.
Cayman might have a long turtling history, but the time for that has passed, just like the times of horse and buggy, smoke cans, and wattle and daub houses.
We might enjoy our farm raised turtle stew, but we no longer rely on wild turtle for sustenance.
Our grocery stores are packed with high-quality meats from here and overseas; we have no need to slaughter wild green sea turtles anymore.
Wild green sea turtles are now almost a thing of the past, and if every one of them that lives today isn’t allowed the chance to reproduce, future generations of Caymanians might only be able to see or learn of these turtles in textbooks.
This turtle was saved because someone in the community saw what was about to happen and notified the authorities.
Because this person acted, the female turtle could conceivably continue to lay eggs for years to come, giving the endangered species a better chance of survival.
What happened last week is what should happen more often: people should get involved in the process of maintaining law and order.
More often than not, some law-abiding citizen is aware of illegal acts when they are being committed here on the island.
Cayman is a small place and it’s difficult to keep things a secret. But because of fear, apathy or a misplaced sense of loyalty, these crimes go unreported. This is wrong. As the saying goes, if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.
Few people like to hear or read about robberies, burglaries, assaults or murders.
Most people want law and order, but what are most people willing to do to achieve it?
One person in West Bay did something about it and we’re a better place for it. This country owes that person a debt of gratitude.