Karl Holmgren’s letter to the editor (5 January) concerned me as he seems to suggest that the wheels of civilization will come off because of his perception that NMMI exhibits a “less-than-Christian behavior” in asking that police protect their property by ticketing people who “salvage” (read that steal) pecans.
I find it interesting that he should choose the “less-than-Christian behavior” argument in apparently defending theft, or degrees of theft, and its consequences. There’s a commandment that says, “Thou shall not steal.”
Mr. Holmgren, as is his right, ignores the elephant that seems to be everywhere throughout our community and nation. Theft is theft! And, it doesn’t matter if it’s your or another’s pecans, decorative Christmas lights and yard ornaments, packages off a front porch, or the contents of a car’s glove box, or the mailbox. Theft is theft. Mr. Holmgren would have us believe that it is we who are the root cause — remember his view that NMMI lacks a “moral framework” and exhibits “less-than-Christian behavior.” We should ignore the transgression because we somehow fail those two tests. Phooey. All he’s saying is that we are the bad guy, that it’s somehow our fault someone stole from us and that we had the misplaced audacity to want to “protect” our property.
In perspective, reader, your son or daughter has a bicycle, bought by you, they use to deliver newspapers. The bike is stolen and your child can’t deliver papers, thus they can’t make any money from their paper route until they or you buy a new bike. Simple I know, but now that $100 bike expenditure has increased to $200 to help your child continue to earn (but not recover the loss of) a few dollars and feel the exhilaration of independence and earning their own money. Thus, the bike thief has taken more from your child and you than you may ever realize — even if you turn over the theft to the police.
Theft is theft. We label it “property crime” and ignore it. NMMI and its cadets don’t ignore it and should be commended. Holmgren ignored that fact; thus, his perspective is exceedingly narrow, ill-formed and focused in the wrong direction, but it does speak to the larger issue of permitting and enabling our own victimization.