Neighborhood Watch. Strength in Numbers

Neighborhood, USA
Neighborhood, USA
drifting off to sleep
drifting off to sleep

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Welcome to the neighborhood. What place do you call "Home?" As you lay your head upon your pillow at the end of the day, what sounds might lull you into dreamland? Is it maybe total silence?

Some of us may hear the clickety-clack of cargo being hauled along the distant tracks or the sound nearby of Mr. Owl, hooting into the night outside your window. Others listen to the traffic whizzing by and the occasional bass booms blaring out an open hot rod's window. The sounds are fleeting and we adjust to them.

Inner city life might not be so pleasant......bedtime, not so soothing. Adapting to the danger and fears in some neighborhoods doesn't come easily. Crime can be expected as sure as sunrise. Feeling safe in your own bed, inside your home, on the street where you live, may not be an option.

Far too many inner cities have been literally taken over by gangs. This debasing culture is the result of a complex mixture of every negative societal woe imaginable. Poverty may head this list but the backlash of its devastation can permeate an entire city. School drop-outs is the norm as well as single-parent homes, the vast majority supported by Social services. Teens as young as thirteen within these ghetto communities run wild in the streets, no direction, no goals and no hope for a future but a date with prison.

While our politicians are busy throwing money and attention at foreign countries for their own greedy agendas, here in our own country, neighborhood deterioration abounds. The senseless solution for us is more prisons.



Growing presence in American neighborhoods
Growing presence in American neighborhoods
mob riots
mob riots

Our Brother's Keeper?

I do not know when the concept of Neighborhood Watch was born. Nor am I aware of the first place and time average citizens came together to conceive of this idea, then proceed to put it to action.. Neighborhood watch groups have cropped up in numerous cities and towns throughout our country and continue to grow in strength and numbers.

With community support and law enforcement cooperation, Neighborhood Watch appears for the most part to be a welcome and appreciated organization.

In far too many cases, it is a necessity to the safety and well-being of the residents of many a neighborhood.

Our streets have become as frightening as a war zone, with gang activities involving drugs, prostitution and random shootings. The outrageous number of child predators, many registered, but just as many who manage to evade the system, live amongst law-abiding families on every block.

On a daily basis, much to our horror and disbelief, the news media brings us reports of missing women and children. More often than not, the outcome is too gruesome for us to fathom. Concern and worry can consume us. What do we do? How do we fight back against the monsters who place no value on human life in general....who creep among the shadows to do harm to our most precious and vulnerable?

As citizens and in particular, as parents, we've grown fearful of our own shadows. Gone is the expectation of feeling safe or protected in our towns and cities, our homes and even in our schools.

It is important to look seriously at the abuse of a Neighborhood Watch Program. A tragic example we should all be aware of at this point, is the George Zimmerman--Trayvon Martin case of Florida. There can be no tolerance of vigilantism.

Cases such as this one speaks strongly of the necessity of neighborhood groups to organize and train their active community members and to work closely with city governement and law enforcement.




community playground
community playground
Adult supevision
Adult supevision
Kids learning safety in numbers.  Playing & Staying together
Kids learning safety in numbers. Playing & Staying together

Empowerment and Unity

I grew up in the 50's/60's. Yes, a very long time ago. Not only long ago in years, but to be perfectly frank, it looks to me as though I grew up in another world altogether. Today, I do not recognize any reality around us that I can even begin to relate to my Baby Boomer generation childhood.

Granted my little world in smalltown, USA, just after World War II, was all I knew, but I don't remember such chaos and fear. My parents never sat me down to explain about evil that lurked on every corner. We could go about our fun and frolic, ride our bikes, go to our friend's two blocks away. There were no policemen at our schools or auto-locks to keep us in and all others out.

We surely didn't establish an official Neighborhood Watch Program. All the neighbors, all the parents....they just kept their eyes on us and helped us if we needed them.

I remember our Dad joking that if any one ever broke into our house or tried to harm anyone in our family, our nosy neighbor Helen could give the cops every last, fine detail. At the time, I guess I thought my Dad was saying something wonderful about her.

Our Constitutional Rights
Our Constitutional Rights
We want our children to be safe
We want our children to be safe
Establish one in your neighborhood.
Establish one in your neighborhood.

This is another time, Another world

The hard core fact of Reality in today's world, the year 2012, is that awareness and action is tantamount to protect the areas and space we call home. Neighborhood Watch should exist and spread to as many towns in our country as feel the need to establish it within their own neighborhoods.. Tax payers have the right to feel safe. We all have the responsibility to our children as well as one another to strive to protect and defend against those who thrive on crime. The disruption of our peace and freedoms cannot and should not be tolerated for a moment.

Like so many things that make our lives better and more peaceful, it is up to us to use our energies and talents to accomplish what can make this happen. There truly is power and strength in numbers. When the hearts and minds of men and woman come together for a common goal, there can be no limit to what may be achieved.

Our Brother's Keeper?

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Comments 37 comments

fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 22 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Your question was removed? Hmmm, I surely don't know why. If you need to know, just email the team......but make sure it's gone before you ask them.


peachpurple profile image

peachpurple 22 months ago from Home Sweet Home

we used to have neighbor watch night before the security guard arrived. Btw, thanks for your answer to my Red Skull hub question. I voted yours as best answer. Why is the question removed from HP?


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Another high-profile trial, finally over, gf. And another "split," in terms of reactions and opinions. Nothing new......nor is any of it helpful. It's fairly apparent we NEVER LEARN much from these tragedies. No one wins...we all lose. The world stays on the same track...and just goes on.


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 3 years ago from Orlando, FL

So far 13 hours of deliberations. That's more than Casey Anthony's jury needed. We won't even go there.

Mark NeJame joked on Facebook that one of the jurors has 8 kids at home, she's probably holding up the other jurors because she's enjoying her break. Ha!!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

GF....I said I probably wasn't going to "follow" this trial, but I watched for a while and got pulled right in! After these trials, (eg. Anthony, Arias, Peterson, etc).....I find myself struggling between what I HOPE the verdict will be...and what I realize, rationally & legally, that it will more than likely BE. (Need I mention the "Anthony Trial," again?)

For this one.....I waffled more than once throughout the trial. I suppose a lot of people did. I am sad that this ever occurred. My heart aches for the Martins.

Bottom line? I can't help but think that the verdict will be Not Guilty....but I'm not at all sure that I believe it should be. Thanks for the visit, gf.


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 3 years ago from Orlando, FL

As Central Florida and most of the country awaits the verdict of George Zimmerman I thought I'd stop by and visit your hub once again. I, for one will be glad when this trial is over. It's been on every major TV station for the past month. I'm also glad I'm not George. My predication is "not guilty for reason of stupidity" What happened was an unfortunate accident.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

You live in a great neighborhood, Alocsin!


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

This is an excellent and low-cost idea, which is why it has spread throughout many communities. Our neighborhood watch group takes the time to put up "Children Playing" signs on nice summer days when the kids are out in the cul-de-sac. It encourages everybody to slow down. Voting this Up and Interesting.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Sharyn....Mr. Rogers would be so proud of you! You're a GOOD neighbor....won't you be my neigbor? You'd love it where I live!!


Sharyn's Slant profile image

Sharyn's Slant 4 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

Great topic Paula! It was very different many years ago. It is scary to think how things have changed. Although we do not have an official "neighborhood watch" where I live, I have always "watched out for my neighbors." Having worked for many elderly people on and off over the years, I would make it my responsibility when driving by their homes to make sure that everything looks okay at their house. No lurkers, broken windows, etc. Stay safe!

Sharyn


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Martie, my friend...(gorgeous new bio pic, sexy mama!) I don't think anyone in the world needs to feel only their country has serious problems...it's a sad, sad state of affairs everywhere, is it not? And the "drastic," that is needed is up to us.....you and me and good, solid, smart individulas who see what's wrong and will do something about it!

We just need more and more people to wake up and take a stand. We just can't ever forget what's most important to our peace and happiness and well-being!! Take care!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jason I appreciate your comment very much....no need at all to apologize...You are absolutely correct. I agree 100%.

Millionairetips...

Exactly! Unfortunately, somewhere, somehow...between the good old days when we could be less paranoid...and today....that horrible attitude of, "I DON'T WANT TO GET INVOLVED..."....surfaced. Well..that sure as hell didn't work well, now did it? Now, everyone is scrambling. We humans have issues....and it's a shame! Thank you for your awesome comment!


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 4 years ago from South Africa

This is indeed another time, another world. Neighborhood Watch became a necessity down here in certain areas and particularly on farms - the target of idiotic, blood-thirsty, revengeful criminals. Our crime rate is of the highest in the world, if not the highest.

fpherj, I am so sorry about your crime and the problems you have to face, but at the same time it is so good for me to know that you guys up there are experiencing the same problems we are facing - it keeps me from believing my country sucks.

The world sucks! Too many people, not enough work, not enough food. Something drastic has to be done about this. But by whom?

We are living in a jungle. Only the strong survive. But look at the past. Who were the 'strong'. Great civilizations were destroyed by the hoipoloi... barbarians. Strength lies in crowds - the intellects will always be the smallest of all crowds.

Therefor I live from day to day, enjoying every minute, trying to be responsible, protective and always alert.

Great hub! Take care!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

awww....what a sweetheart you are....I'm sure the metal helped, even if it had to go toward bond. I guess we don't know what the warrants were for.

I actually had a friend who had a warrant out on her for some UN-returned movies!!! Now, there's a real hardened criminal if ever there was one, don't ya think? Lock her up in solitary confinement!


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

They were nice and I felt bad for them, lost their jobs and struggling to make ends meet as they were. They still got the metal so maybe that helped out with her bond- oh brother where art thou.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Alastar.....No, we didn't need all the hoopla that is necessary today, that's for sure. It was an entirely different era, attitude and lifestyle. (in my opinion, the BEST)

How great that someone in your neighborhood called the law so quickly and they were on it in minutes!! That is comforting. HA! I guess it wasn't comforting for the young lady with the warrants!!


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

We didn't really need any Neighborhood Watch back in the growing up days of the 60s did we fpher. A young couple came to the door recently wanting an old treadmill outside that was waiting to be hauled off. They wanted the metal in it. I said sure and went back in. Within 6 or 7 minutes a deputy was at the door asking if I had given them permission for it. He said you sure do have a sharp Neighbor Watch here. Anyway the girl had warrants out so I guess they picked the wrong 'hood to be asking for freebies.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Thanks so much, Ruchira.....I wish you happiness and safety always. Neighbors can be our comfort.


Ruchira profile image

Ruchira 4 years ago from United States

beautiful hub fpherj.

numbers sure make us feel strong. united we stand strong and if alone (divided) we fall.

We too have a neighborhood program where we feel safe when any episode occurs.

good pointers and totally agree with you!

voted up as useful


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Sunshine....I have no doubt you would be an active, involved neighbor....especially with regard to keeping up with the kids. Any Gram is always watching out for the little ones....and it sure is more and more important these days to be on our toes! Faith is lucky to have a ROCK STAR for a Grandma!! LOL Peace, GF


Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

Times certainly have changed. In the past the neighborhood watched out for each other without having to make it a formal organization. Now we know more about the bad things that happen and worry so much more. We live in a world of fear.

Now we have to make it a neighborhood watch formal and assign people to do it. I personally think the police and justice system need to do more. There are usually just a few bad apples out there, and if we can get them out, then the neighborhood is much safer.

We do need to be careful to not take the neighborhood watch too far. If we are fearful of strangers, we don't learn that most of them are really pretty good people. I lived in fear too, but I learned that sometimes all it takes for the neighborhood to be nicer is to change my attitude, and all of a sudden it was a much better place.

Thanks for bringing up this important subject. Voted up.


Jason R. Manning profile image

Jason R. Manning 4 years ago from Sacramento, California

Great hub, and very timely in light of the Trevon case. It is sad to think that something like a neighborhood watch will become scrutinized as another paranoid group looking out for their own interests. Our Police departments are swamped with too much crime and too little staff. Instead of government officials taking pay freezes and reducing headcount, they take it straight off the top of public safety. Why, well they all live in very safe upscale neighborhoods of course. Sorry to politicize your hub Paula, it is too obvious why our society is screwed up; all we have left is each other to put the pieces back together. I keep waiting for the pendulum to swing back the right way. Maybe our children will get a chance to experience a wholesome childhood, instead of only reading about them. Cheers.


Healthy Pursuits profile image

Healthy Pursuits 4 years ago from Oregon

I'm glad you wrote this hub. Neighborhood Watch is important for unifying a neighborhood against crime. I'm still lucky in that I can walk my dog any time day or night and feel safe in this neighborhood. There are many dog walkers here with our cell phones in hand, and most of the houses are owned, so between those two things we are lucky enough to have a pretty stable neighborhood that's watched.

I live in Oregon and saw how things were going downhill - more theft, more muggings, more child abuse - when crack was easier to get, then settled down again when new measures were put in place to reduce that availability. The criminal element is all too often involved with either running drugs or needing drugs, or both. Clearly, just criminalizing drugs and warehousing people in jails is not the answer.

I also feel that we allow way too much violence into our homes via the TV, video games and the internet. Studies proved years ago that when children see violence on TV and in the movies, they are more aggressive in real life. So what must the influence be when they are able to repeatedly interact with violent video games?

PUDump. (That was the sound of me hopping off my soapbox.) Anyway, I enjoyed your hub.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Nell Rose...No need to apologize....most adults would totally agree with you. The world of technology has certainly changed our entire lives, as well as lifestyles. It's nearly impossible to keep up with, for one thing and even more difficult to attempt to try to combat what it is people are experiencing. Thanks you for your input......Oh and thanks for explaining the "Brit" thing.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi, we have neighborhood watch over here too. I remember seeing it for many years. I think the trouble started when the World suddenly became a bigger place. For example, when I was growing up in the sixties we didn't have anything violent on the TV, the Cinema was practically based on kids films or adults over 18. and looking back, the over 18 films were so tame they were laughable. Kids only see what's shown to them, and with violent pc and xbox games, computers and so much violence, real and 'entertainment' they can see and learn so much more that is bad. The governments and TV are always talking about gang wars, fighting etc and then carry on by showing it on the TV! for goodness sake! I actually thought this a couple of days ago, when they kept televising the fact that a terrorist was going to be extradited and then he wasn't and so on. Why do they tell the World? its asking for trouble! sorry for going on, but it does make me so mad! they show the kids then moan that they are doing it! great hub, thanks nell


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

teaches.....You are so right. "Different times," to say the least. I like the idea of citizen patrol. Any type of keeping watch over one another is a PLUS. Thanks for stopping by. Peace!

Jaye

Yes, I have heard the news this morning. It's another child or another woman every single day. It is beyond outrageous, and anyone who remains with their head in the sand is simply foolish.

When children are not safe in their own homes with Mom & Dad in the next room......what can possibly be worse?

We must all be on alert and willing to pool our efforts. I have 10 grandchildren. It's enough to make a Grandmother crazy....seriously. Stay safe always, Jaye.


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

I've become used to Neighborhood Watches since I moved to Orlando (25 yrs ago). We are your regular mom, dad, granny and grandpa. Yes, this granny does her part in the watch. I have a two block radius, but always keep an eye out for the entire community. We are a middle class neighborhood that has it's share of bored teens. These teens break into cars, houses, set fires. We gotta do what we gotta do to protect our kinfolk and property. Possibly if the parents did their job correctly their kids would be better behaved. Excellent hub! Have a great day!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

The content of your hub resonated in my mind this morning as I read a news update about the six-year-old girl missing from her bedroom in Arizona and presumed abducted. No matter how careful people are, with locks, security alarms, watchdogs, etc. to protect their homes and families, there are others who are evil enough to overcome those protective measures and cause harm. Children, in particular, are so vulnerable, and it's heartbreaking when something bad happens to an innocent child.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

We do live in different times, it seems as if the change has taken place over the past decade. We live in a neighborhood that provides citizen patrol and it is a comfort to the community. When neighbors pull together it makes for a safer and better life for all. Thanks for posting this topic, well done.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

Jaye...your mailman is absolutely right. I love the fact that our 2 canine kids bark bark bark....nice and loud and "crazy-like." lol....They in fact, would not hurt a fly, but they sound ferocious and that's what I'm looking for. By the way...no one ever asks us why we don't have a door bell!!


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

This is "continued" from my previous comment. I inadvertently posted it before finishing, then wrote for more than the allowable edit time and got "timed out." If I haven't lost my train of thought, I'll try again.

Life as we know it now is too fraught with dangers for us to become complacent, even when we are at home. I know some, but not all of my neighbors on this block. Most of them own their own homes, and they are a mixture of younger families with children and older retirees such as myself. I'm thankful we have a Neighborhood Watch Program in place, because, even though there have been no "home invasions" in the immediate vicinity, some elderly residents of another neighborhood a few miles away have been attacked in their own homes in broad daylight.

If I noticed someone suspicious on a neighbor's property while that neighbor was at work, I'd call the neighbor if I knew how to contact him or her. If necessary, I'd call the police and ask them to investigate. I think that's one good turn we retirees can do for our neighbors who still leave home to work every day. Most would do the same for me...I think. Of course, I have my barking dog to alert me and a monitored security alarm system, not to mention deadbolt locks on all exterior doors.

When I think about living in that "other world" back in the '50s, when we hardly ever locked our doors before it got dark, that world and its natural feeling of security seems like a dream.

Our brothers' and sisters' keeper? And they, ours? We must be in order to have peace of mind in this scary time in which we live. Life will never again feel as simple and safe as it did in the '50s, but with neighbors watching out for each other, at least we need not live in fear.

Very good hub, and voted UP, USEFUL (very) and INTERESTING.

Jaye


JayeWisdom profile image

JayeWisdom 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

You are so right that it was a different world when we grew up. Even when my children were small (and they're now middle-aged), and as parents we knew to warn them against strangers, our neighborhoods still felt much more safe than today's.

I gripe about where I live, but do not feel as unsafe in my immediate neighborhood as I would even ten blocks away, where "home invasions" of the elderly have taken place. My little dog is very good at her "watchdog" duties, and barks loud and long when someone unknown comes into the yard....She even barks at the mail carrier who comes six days a week, but he tells me not to scold her.

"She's just doing her job, and that's good," he says.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

bill...you and I grew up at precisely the same time and as I recall from your hub about your old neighborhood...we had that similarity as well.

There simply were no creepy things to haunt us...period. Believe me, my parents were protective of my sister and I. Had they felt concerns, we'd have been duly warned, repeatedly. It didn't exist.

Now...even in the SAME hometown I raised my sons in, my son and daughter-in-law are like "maniacs" (seriously) and I do not blame them in the least. In fact, I'm relieved they are so over the top.

If you are breathing and thinking in this world today...you would be a complete moron to disregard the serious and continual threats our little ones are exposed to, daily.

And like you, I can't imagine not automatically keeping my eyes open and watching to prevent a possible tragedy to anyone. Hopefully...long gone is the "I don't want to get involved attitude!" Anymore, do we have a choice?

As I'm sure you guessed, it's not my usual thing to write on such somber topics....but the big hoopla in the news lately (with the incident in Florida) just brings a lot of fears to the surface.

I wouldn't touch that particular case with a ten foot pole at this point. Too soon....not enough true and accurate info and a whole slew of controversy. We're in for another historical court case and I will be watching as much as possible. I'm leaning in a direction at this point, but my lips are sealed. I learned my lesson with the Casey Anthony case....THAT damned FIASCO!! thanks for stopping by. Amen.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York Author

ann...thanks for visiting. You can never be too safe nor prepared for unpleasant surprises....ESPECIALLY if you have a child and are responsible for their welfare as well as your own.

I was accused of being "paranoid" and overly-cautious when my boys were little....and maybe I was, but we all made it through safe and sound with all our appendages in tact!! LOL Thanks again.

Oh Skarlet

do we EVER live in scary times....all the things I never had to be concerned with as a child and just the minor change during the years I raised my own troops...with was a little less carefree......I now have 10 grandchildren!! Good Grief!! This is just ONE of the reasons they call me, "Gram-Dawg!!" lol


billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Paula, you and I grew up about the same time in the same type of neighborhood. It was just assumed that you were safe when we were kids. Now I make no such assumptions and that is sad....but....I can't even waste time feeling sad about it. I just need to be smart and safeguard my family and loved ones and look out for others in our neighborhood.

Great hub, great message my friend.

bill


Skarlet profile image

Skarlet 4 years ago from California

Love it, excellent job! We live in scary times. What you were saying about how you feel like you grew up in another world is something I have been thinking about a lot lately. People have changed. When I was growing up people were morale, and the world felt a lot safer.


anndavis25 profile image

anndavis25 4 years ago from Clearwater, Fl.

OH, looky here. I'm the first to comment. This is a great hub. And so true. We have to get paranoid about things these days. Here in Florida, we have home invasions. Especially in the older neighborhoods where senior citizens live. They just bang the door down, and rush in while the resident is confused, and steal. I have double locks on my doors. A phone by my bedside, and a planned escape. Now that sounds paranoid, I know, but you only have to hear the morning news to keep you frightened. Wonderful hub. Ann up and awesome

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