Be aware of your surroundings

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 12, 2005

I want to go to war.

That’s right, I said it. I want to go to war right here in our backyard, in the comfortable confines of our American borders.

I want to go to war against the predators that take our children, commit unbelievable and heinous crimes, and kill them.

I want to pass legislation that is so tough that these convicted sex offenders will never have the opportunity to commit a crime against a child again.

This is a subject that is painful to watch and talk about.

I am tired of turning on the television and there is a new story about an abducted child every week. I am tired of seeing grieving parents searching for their children, wondering where they are and what they are going through. I am tired of reading about convicted sex offenders like James Edward Duncan in Idaho being allowed to roam the streets, looking for his next victim.

I am tired of seeing the faces of people like John Couey, who sexually molested Jessica Lunsford and then buried her alive.

I am tired of seeing parents of missing children, like Mark Lunsford in Florida, pleading for a safe return only to find out that some scumbag excuse of a human being had killed their child.

I am tired of waiting for human remains, like those of Dylan Groene, to be identified as a missing and molested child.

The people that have proven themselves to be a danger to our children have no business roaming the streets of our neighborhoods.

Look at the two most recent and most visible cases, the Groene case in Idaho and the Lunsford case in Florida. The two people that committed these unimaginable crimes are both multiple-time convicted molesters. Neither of these men should have seen the light of day after being convicted of sex crimes against children.

Information on the whereabouts of sex offenders is available to you. Megan’s Law was passed in 1996 to provide broad-based community notification of sex offenders released back into our neighborhoods. Megan Kanka, a seven-year-old who was brutally killed and raped in 1994, is the namesake of this necessary and useful registration process. You can learn more about this process and access the list of the 8,287 sex offenders registered in North Carolina by visiting and clicking on Megan’s Law on the left side of the site.

We, as parents, must be aware of our surroundings and watch out for our children. We must not take anything for granted; we must protect our children. Take a minute to talk to your children about what to do when strangers approach.

Please access the list of registered offenders and know who is living around you. This is not a call to be paranoid of frightened, it is a call to be aware and educated.

If we don’t protect our children, then no one else will either.