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Gun violence: Be a part of the solution

Police need community’s assistance

Published: Friday, Aug. 8, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT

Several Danville neighborhoods – along with those in Champaign, Urbana, Chicago and other cities – know the sound of gunfire all too well. Just last week, Danville police investigated another shooting incident.

Rightly so, many people speak out against the violence. But then when police start their investigations, far too few offer any substantial help.

The violence won’t stop until the whole community – especially those who know the identities of the gunmen involved – step up to present a united front.

It’s difficult for those who did not grow up or who do not live in the same circumstances as those responsible for the shootings, to understand how someone could decide picking up a gun and firing randomly at a rival is the right thing to do.

Stories [abound] about innocent people being hit by stray bullets or caught in a crossfire.

And one shooting often leads to another, as retaliation leads to retaliation leads to retaliation – all the while as the list of victims grows.

The decision to use a gun puts everyone at risk. Those not involved in any way with the conflict can end up wounded or dead. The same goes for intended targets.

And the one pulling the trigger can spend his or her life in prison or become the next target, and for what reason? None come to mind that make the consequences of gun violence acceptable.

Police officers need the community’s help to stop the gunfire and make our neighborhoods safe places in which to raise our families. Witnesses and those with information can use the local Crime Stoppers program anonymously if they fear retaliation for their cooperation.

It’s easy to make snarky comments in social media. It’s much more difficult to step forward to be part of the solution.

Will you stand up? You? Or will the violence continue due to our silence?

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