Imagine checking your pocket or pocketbook to find your wallet missing, coming home to find your front door ajar, or looking at your car and noticing that the back window has been smashed. We would all be appalled at such sights. In all of these situations, we would go the police and seek their assistance in getting to the bottom of the crime. We would expect the police to take pictures, possibly dust for fingerprints, increase patrols in the area, and generally exercise greater vigilance to prevent further robberies. We should juxtapose our own lives with this robbery scene. We have experienced way too many situations in which our voices, thoughts, and actions have been robbed from us in our quest for decency, success, and righteousness, and we have allowed these crimes to go unreported. We have allowed ourselves to be robbed due to inaction and acceptance of the status quo and mediocrity. We have known that circumstances are wrong and detrimental, and we have accepted our situation by maintaining silence and complicity.
There is currently a well-watched TV show built on the premise of “What would you do if …..”. This show is popular because it is asking a deep question. What would you do if you saw something wrong—that is, morally and/or ethically wrong? Would you let a crime against someone or humanity stand by allowing your thoughts, actions, and words to be robbed of their use because the situation is a challenge and asks you to “stand up”? We all hope that the answer for us is no, but we know that too often, the answer is yes.
Theft of positive lived experience must be allowed to stand no longer. We must recognize that there is no police station to go to. We are the authority, and our weapon is ACTION with COURAGE to right the wrongs we see. This police station is where we live, work, and play everyday. As you patrol, please be on the lookout for these unreported crimes of silence.