Letter: Vandalism has no place here

By SPECIAL TO PINEBELT NEWS,

Dear Editor:

We were so dismayed when we drove down S. 40th Avenue recently and read the sign, stating that “The Grinch Stole Halloween “where a fabulous, whimsical display once stood.
This is NOT our Hattiesburg. Hattiesburg is the warmest, friendliest, most giving community in the world.
Theft, vandalism, auto break-Ins and window-smashing are not the spirit nor the heart of our family-focused City – not our Hattiesburg.
In Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point, the author contends that tolerance of small disruptive, lawless incidents as an invitation for the entire neighborhood-or Community- to crumble from inside out.
Yet, in blighted Communities, great positive progress can be made by patiently tackling and improving one block at a time, until the blight is gradually, faithfully turned away, and the Community proudly thrives once again.
We must continue to have faith in our excellent law enforcement professionals to bring those responsible for these destructive, infectious actions to light and to justice.
Meanwhile, we as a deeply committed Hattiesburg Community Family must do our part to not turn from our devoted tasks of being proud, of clearing litter, rubbish, blight and any erosive beginnings of a negative “tipping point.”
Otherwise, these terrible, lawless actions will not be our only enemy - our apathy will be.
With gratitude for all the best our community has to offer.

Rita Mitchell
Hattiesburg, MS