An AmchairMayor.ca editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
WHATEVER HAPPENED to our neighbourhoods?
They used to be peaceful places, where kids grew up in safely and everybody could depend on everybody else. Father Knows Best, Leave it to Beaver, Happy Days.
You don’t have to drive very far before you see a do-it-yourself “Slow Down” sign. Some are the kind you can find online or in hardware stores, others are painted on a piece of plywood with a spray can or scribbled on cardboard with a marker pen and nailed to a tree.
They’re there because people are afraid for their lives and the lives of their kids due to speeding drivers paying no heed to the fact there might be folks out for a walk or children playing on the streets.
So, they do the only thing they can — they put up a sign. Those signs may or may not do any good, but it’s a certainty they can’t hurt.
I don’t recommend the methodology of a resident in one neighbourhood who has apparently resorted to placing branches and large rocks on the road as a local version of the speed bump. That’s a dangerous way to deal with the problem but it shows how serious it is.
Unfortunately, it’s my distinct impression that people don’t pay enough attention to school zones, either. Though the zones are clearly marked, some drivers are just so anxious to get where they’re going that they either ignore the signs or don’t even notice them.
And speaking of schools, I see that several syringes were discovered the other morning in the playground at a local elementary school. We all know the dangers posed by used needles — just one more thing to worry about when it comes to keeping our families safe.
And how about this one? Someone complained on Facebook on the weekend about finding beer cans in their driveway, obviously tossed there by a passerby in a car. Who among us hasn’t experienced that bit of rudeness? I certainly have.
Nope, the sanctity of the neighbourhood isn’t what it used to be. All we can do, it seems, is put up signs.
I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.
Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on ArmchairMayor.ca and CFJC Today. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.