Editorial: Choosing to be in the solution

Feb. 18, 2013 @ 03:51 PM

One week from tonight, residents of Henderson and Vance County get another opportunity. We’re hoping for standing-room only.

The event is an idea generation session, expected to last about an hour, to discuss community safety and the safety and protection of all youth. The event is sponsored by the community and business relations committee of the Vance County Schools Board of Education.

Rollins Elementary School will be the host at 7 p.m. The participants’ list is long, and thus, likely not all will have speaking parts.

Representatives from the community at-large, businesses, law enforcement, churches, city and county government, schools, courts including lawyers and judges, Vance-Granville Community College, Henderson-Vance Recreation Department, the NAACP of Vance County, and several civic clubs and organizations are listed as participants.

A second meeting is also planned, with formulation of plans from the first-meeting notes and ideas to address the most needed concerns. Meetings thereafter will become planning sessions.

What the school system wants to do is commendable. But implementation of any ideas and goals will require the participation of the community served.

When it comes to neighborhoods and communities, nobody knows them better than those who live there. Their input is vital to the equation of solving problems, no matter the kind of problem.

To guess where the emphasis will land is beyond our imagination. We know the streets of Henderson and the highways of Vance County have some fine people contributing to the good of the place we call home.

We also know those same places have unfortunate circumstances leading some to commit crimes, to target the weak, to battle constantly with anything that comes near. Good or evil, it doesn’t matter, their life revolves around conflict.

This isn’t about having school-age children and feeling that determines our attendance. This is about Vance County and Henderson, being a stakeholder in all that encompasses our community.

Crime will never totally go away, and to believe it will is unrealistic. But to have a safe environment, to figure a way to achieve it — yes, that can be realistic.

To not contribute to the meeting is to be a part of the problem, not the solution.