Crime editorial was shifty

Rather than take the nation forward, as its overall tone suggests, the Sowetan editorial, "Murky debate on crime cheats all," on February 21 could have been more engaging.

Rather than take the nation forward, as its overall tone suggests, the Sowetan editorial, "Murky debate on crime cheats all," on February 21 could have been more engaging.

Among other things, the editorial states: "Officialdom has tended to sarcastically dismiss the nation's concern about crime.."

In spite of this being untrue, we would be better served by an editorial that rallies people to work with the police, report criminals, refuse to buy stolen goods, take part in community policing forums and talk more to our children about moral values. This would self-regulate us and lend a helping hand to one another at all times.

Bashing government or President Thabo Mbeki, however soothing some might find it, will not help fight crime or deal with any of our other challenges.

On the contrary, it will shift the focus away from the need for societal partnership to fight crime. It will sink us into the depths of cynicism and worse still, incite us to take the law into our own hands in the belief that "officialdom" does not care.

So, why not try John F Kennedy's aphorism: "Ask not what your country can do for you - ask what you can do for your country." After all, most African languages assert, "It takes a village to raise a child."

Mukoni Ratshitanga, President's spokesman, Pretoria

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