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Incident could inspire community to truly 'consider the children'

Posted: Thursday, April 24, 2003

It deeply saddens me to be writing this letter. I've lived here for more than 25 years and never have been so disappointed in my community. When anyone in our community thinks a 44-year-old male driving by throwing water on women, one carrying a sign saying, "Consider the Children," is patriotic and something to be proud of, we are truly in trouble. The fact that it happened more than once and a videotaping was staged is even sorrier.

Both this man's actions and his justifications are disturbing to the veterans with whom I have talked. They do not appreciate any implication that assaults on peace demonstrators somehow support their own military service or the country they have served.

When I began writing this letter it seemed pretty depressing, but in fact, I am hopeful that this senseless incidence of violence may serve as an example and a springboard. Perhaps it will inspire our community to seek out peaceful and respectful ways to address our differences, ways that will be a good model for our children to follow.

Perhaps "Consider the Children" is a message for us to act on locally so that our community's children will learn that there are alternative ways to respond when we disagree on issues, ways that build us up, not divide us.

Susan Smalley

Kenai



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