Letters | Let’s not lose our law enforcement, Carnation
October 18, 2011 · Updated 3:02 PM
My immediate gut reaction was to reach for the hunting rifle, channel the Libertarian ideals I inherited from my grand-pappy and yell “No more property taxes!” and “Let the bad guys come! I’ll fill their bellies full of lead!”
I was just asked to put a sign in my yard supporting Carnation’s upcoming levy lid lift, a proposition that would raise our property taxes $14 dollars a month (for a $250,000 home), but without which, Carnation would lose one third of its police force. Yes, that is one officer. The last time we only had two officers, we had three times the crime rate that we do now.
It’s easy to see the levy lift as just another footnote in the big book of national politics—the old battle of tax cuts against social services. But it’s not. It is real, it matters to our town, and it’s our police officers that we could lose.
On top of potential home invasions, there are some things like drug busts that citizens like me aren’t trained to do. If my child ends up on meth or cocaine because we weren’t willing to pay for drug enforcement in my neighborhood, then I’d be left wondering why I was willing to pay to go to Red Robin one night a month but not pay half that much for the police to take care of drugs in our town.
Shoot, if my garage gets broken into, I don’t want to have to dedicate the time and effort to investigate it, I just want the perp caught. And I’m certainly not going to be chasing down any speeders, breaking up domestic disputes or going after car prowlers. And if something really big and bad happened, I would want someone to handle it who not only has a gun, but who has better aim than I do. That’s just vital to keeping my family and my town safe.
So after much soul searching, I will vote “yes” for the levy lid lift, because I think police are a good idea, and worth funding to give us a minimum level of safety.
I know that times are tough. My family is down to one income—in construction. But the question now is: Do we want our town to be unsafe for our children? Do we want our streets to be dangerous? Our houses broken into? Vigilante justice isn’t the answer, either. Having a police force is. I will vote to pay the property tax increase.