By Letter to the Editor on February 20, 2020.
I know that you’re not Ann Landers, but I’m hoping you can help me mend my heartbreak. The heartbreak occurred when the city I knew and loved was taken from me. How do I get her back?
My city had her issues, but she was, for the most part, a beautiful, safe, friendly and clean place. She was taken from me when her leaders chose, without consulting her residents, to build a place that would bring all sorts of new people to her that she had no ability to heal. Those people have been left feeling hopeless and desperate and without the means to care for themselves.
My city has become their victim. She’s no longer beautiful. She sadly watches many homeless, helpless people wandering her streets. It breaks her heart that her citizens are no longer safe in their own homes, nor walking her streets. She misses them terribly. She’s certainly not as friendly as she once was. She’s guarded and unsure about the direction she’s heading. She’s no longer clean. Her streets are littered with garbage and drug paraphernalia.
I know, some will think I’m overreacting or lacking compassion but I can assure you neither is true. I’ve resided in my city for 40-plus years. Until the past two years, I never had the pleasure of having a drug-compromised person enter my home and take my wallet from my purse. Until the past two years I’ve never gone to climb my ladder to paint my house É oh, no, I can’t climb the ladder … it’s been stolen. Until the past two years I never had to chase out the squatters from my neighbour’s house as she vacationed.
And then be further blessed to be able to clean up the drug paraphernalia, used condoms, knives and clothes that were left behind in her home. The bikes are gone. The power tools are gone. We’ve added locks to everything. The police can’t keep up. But please remember, these are someone’s children that are stealing, squatting and generally throwing their lives away; and, but for the grace of God, they are not my children. They need help. They need to be in their own communities surrounded by and supported by their families and their friends.
In my city they are anonymous faces who are being victimized by a failed social experiment rather than being supported to become the best they can be. So, now you have the information. How do I get her back? Please help me.