Crime – Community Safety
I believe most crime is a consequence of not having respect for the rule of law. If you don’t respect it you won’t follow it. Respect is something that is learned and earned. If our leaders don’t follow the rules then people learn from them that rules and laws don’t need to be followed. If as parents we steal, lie, and cheat what do we think we are teaching our children? If as a youth there is no consequence for theft, vandalism, violence, what do they learn? When I was a teenager I was terrified I might get caught drinking a beer by my parents or the police. There were consequences and I learned. I believe that actions have consequences and when bad behavior is punished we will have less bad behavior.
I feel compassion for those that were treated badly and abused as children. I understand that addiction and substance abuse can be a coping strategy; however there is NO EXCUSE for criminal behavior. If you steal, vandalize or commit a violent act, you must be caught, arrested, prosecuted and punished severely, PERIOD. If we don’t criminals will only learn that crime is OK. The victims of crime deserve justice. In BC we can pressure the RCMP to investigate and arrest anyone suspected of a crime, charge them if there is evidence to warrant it and then pressure crown prosecutors to prosecute and punish with the maximum penalty. If they won’t then we need to lobby for different crown prosecutors. If we need to invest in more jail space then we need to ask the residents of BC if that is what they need. When criminals LEARN that the consequences are severe they will often stop or go somewhere else. The residents of BC DESERVE this. If we don’t act now this only gets worse.
Arrest the guilty, charge, prosecute, and punish. Small crimes often lead to bigger crimes, this philosophy Known as “Broken Windows” was used in the 90’s in New York City and it led to the plummeting of all kinds of crimes. Basically they said that if you have a broken window you need to fix it so that people don’t think it is OK to break windows. Small crimes are punished so that people understand that crime in any form is not tolerated. I understand it is not always that easy, however sometimes it is. Give the RCMP the tools and they can accomplish this. In the beginning it may be hard but doing nothing means this just gets worse. Where and when do we draw the line? I say we draw it now right here, no free pass, If you want to offer drug treatment for offenders OK, pick a number, 3 times for treatment after that you stay in prison. The rights of criminals should not be greater than YOUR right to live in safety, without fear of your property being stolen or damaged or you being accosted on the street. We have businesses that are losing lots of money every month to crime. These business owners, like you, deserve better.
If as a province we are unable or more precisely unwilling to make hard choices then we will slowly lose the ability to make any choices at all. When businesses close, tourists stop coming, property values fall, and revenues dry up, what then? Fewer resources (money) to combat crime, you get more crime and then a spiral downward. Not somewhere I want to live, would you? People will not tolerate this much longer. If our provincial authorities won’t do it, I believe that people may start doing it on their own and I wouldn’t blame them. I prefer that society tackles this problem though, not individuals. It is easy to make a mistake that could harm everyone involved. We pay the RCMP and our other police forces, let us instruct them as to what our expectations are and make sure they are doing everything they can to meet them. I could go on; however the most important thing to know is that BC should not belong to criminals, we pay for everything that we have in BC, let’s make sure we get what they are spending our money on.