This letter is in response to the overwhelming injustice that is happeningto Del Norte County children by subjecting them to thehigh risk of being preyedupon.

By tolerating injustice or unsafe acts for fear of retaliation, we are excusing ourselves from our civic responsibility by doing nothing to protect our weakest members of society.

If this is the andquot;Year of the Childandquot;then we, as a community arefailingat showing our children that they are valued,safe and loved in their community.

As parents, extended family, teachers,neighbors, and care providersby whatever name we give ourselves in relation to our childrenwe should do all we can to protect our children from those whowould murder, orphan, molest, maim, abuse or neglect them. A child's security is priceless and we need to step up and show our kids, not just by teaching them a defense, but by dismantling the cycle of violence we are all a part of, as a giver, receiver or bystander of abuse. The complacency that our leaders at times display cannot be placed solely on their shoulders, for we have allowed apathy to breed contempt for the system.

We have become paralyzed into inaction and stagnation.

What must our kids think of their own safety when one after another, they've seen and heardof the incidents that make the news? Ofthe high rate of sex offenders roamingthe county, of the hit-and-runmurder of a child onhis way to school, the maiming of babies, orphaned as they witnessed their parents perish in a DUI hit and run car accident, the incest and molestation of their classmates, theindecent exposure happening in parks and public places, the unlawful transient activity, the common-place neighborhooddrug abuse and next-door domestic violence and all the otherinjustice that robs them and us of the pursuit of happiness?!

I believe we have the responsibility of choosing not to tolerate the misdemeanor public nuisances caused by criminal activity.Our common community thread is that we cannot escape the injustice or unsafe actions of others who choose to put us all at risk for harm or injury.We eachhave the free will to chooseour own behavior, good bad or indifferent.

To tolerate a criminal act is to allow it room to grow. Our laws exist for the common good of society. They are a set of standards that govern all civil, decent, hard working folks.

I urge this community to no longer toleratesuspect criminal activityin any form.

To no longer ignore offenses,to call upon our authorities for the petty public nuisances or loitering or what wesuspect to be criminal activity. Only our constant vigil will deter the criminals from becoming comfortable and setting up shop and eventually preying on our children. As the recent headline touted(andquot;Fugitive caught after 7 years,andquot; Aug. 21, 2007) we have plenty of work to do right under our very noses.

Yvonne Fickbohm