‘Public safety’ means more than law and justice

So much happening in lives right now: so much fear, confusion, concern and anxiety. In this kind of circumstance we tend to forget that as human beings are we reasoning creatures; we know we know. Yet when things seem to be falling apart we often regress to our lesser selves.

When we are in this mode, reasoning can fail; we are human, after all. I would submit that these times should remind us of the fact that we seem to be at our best when things are at their worst, and that according to our media we are going to be given lots of opportunity to gather and discuss things like public safety; and what this should look like.

I believe that a redefinition of the term “public safety” needs to be considered. Over a period of time this term has come to mean using the law, justice and corrections continuum to “keep us safe.” Where in reality, I believe we, our society, more often create our own problems, e.g., a person who is without a job, can’t afford adequate and safe housing, or is unable to support his/her family’s needs including necessary health care, is pushed by circumstances to consider ways to survive. What would we do under these circumstances?

I believe we need to understand that “public safety” is more than just law and the justice system and that that discussion be part of our time together in the upcoming months. Plato is quoted as saying that “Ignorance is the root of all evil.” Come now, and let us reason together.

Jim Bloss


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