The way I see it
TWO NEWS items caught my attention over the Easter period. On Easter Monday librarian Liz Turley received serious injuries as her car was stolen in Dublin. The woman was driving into her gated complex when a woman and a man set on her and took her car. She seemingly gave chase, she was pushed to the ground and sustained head injuries.
In Cork on Good Friday Garda Michael Twomey was knocked off his bike by a van, which had been stolen by two young men.
Ms Turley was returning from visiting relatives on Easter Monday and Garda Michael Twomey was at work on his garda bike, indeed, he was in the process of protecting motorists from the stolen van.
Both these innocent people received injuries at the hands of young criminals.
Imagine the upset and sadness that has caused their families and friends. Anyone who has been close to someone who has suffered traumatic injuries will have an inkling of how the Turley and Twomey families have now been engulfed.
And all for what? This sort of insane crime is going on every day, here and all over the world. When we read about it in the papers it is usually just a news item but when it touches us personally it is disastrous. What’s to be done, how can we try to stop it? There are those who will say that we must go harder on criminals, others will say it has to do with deprivation and poverty. If anything, I am inclined to think that if people are marginalised and feel alienated then they have a far greater propensity to go down the road of the criminal. No, don’t jump at me. It is not at all as simple as that.
On Monday before Easter I was coming back to my bicycle, which was locked to a lamppost, when I noticed a young man in his 20s bending down at my bicycle. I thought he was removing the other bike which was also tied to the pole. And then I saw him walking away with my front wheel.
I’m not the quietest of souls. I can get irritated. Peo- ple often accuse me of being abrasive. Obviously I easily get excited. But when I saw this gent walk away with my wheel, instead of roaring and shouting at him I went up to him and suggested that he might have the wheel of my bike and if I could have it back. Maybe it was that I was frightened. But the young man uttered a few words under his breath, left the wheel down on the ground and quietly walked away. I was shocked. Shocked for all sorts of reasons.
I have since removed the quick release mechanism on the wheels and replaced them with standard nuts.
The most he would have got for the wheel was €20. Is that what his life is about? From the quick look I got of him he may well have been on drugs. What a waste of a life. Where did it begin, how did it happen?
What am I doing to prevent people from getting involved in crime? What are we all doing to make our society a safer and better place?
“Can we actually help people or will certain people always be victims of their circumstances? It’s a question I often ask as I sit in court watching the same young people come back time and time again,” words from a friend of mine when we were discussing the topic.
But I’m back thinking of Liz Turley and Michael Twomey and their family and friends.