He’s committed to a safer Franklin

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 29, 2007

After scanning my local media and pondering about how to make this place a better place to live, I agree fully with Sharon Brown’s letter in our local The Tidewater News dated Aug. 19 (&uot;Neighborhood watch groups work but we need more&uot;).

As a community, we need to come together on one accord, and that is to help clean our community, as well as our city, of &uot;polluted illegal situations.&uot;

Brown’s letter stated many important criteria in helping to heal our communities. It is impossible to sit back in our comfortable homes and churches and not feel the heat from our streets.

The elderly are afraid to attend church functions after dark. We are &uot;almost&uot; afraid to get back into the rigorous exercises and walking techniques.

Something has to be done.

The Franklin Police Department can’t do this alone; and we are not going to let them do it alone.

On Aug. 7 on National Night Out, we met at Franklin Presbyterian Church on Lee Street. What a &uot;fun&uot; night out with several police officers taking part in &uot;dunking&uot; and Cpl. Rose’s invitation to introduce the importance of the neighborhoods here in our city.

Sgt. Mark Cornell was very instrumental in getting this Night Out started within the city. More is needed, and more is to come.

We cannot take our communities back without the help of &uot;you.&uot; Your ears and eyes are very important, Cpl. Rose stated, and they are.

We need to be more involved, watching as well as noticing &uot;negative&uot; aspects of our communities.

I’ve been in Franklin all my life —

but not to witness what we witnessed: the murder of a young man in my community. This has prompted me and others to &uot;step up to the plate&uot; and complete the full course.

We will not have our community taken over by violence, crime, drugs and other illegal endeavors. As Cpl. Rose spoke out at the vigil for the young slain man he noted that he grew up in this community and his mother and family reside here. &uot;We will not let our community succumb to violence.&uot;

I’ve been out talking and walking with various homeowners in Ward 4, my ward. We feel that this has to stop. The majority of this violence stems from other wards of our city, migrating from ward to ward, creating violence.

I feel that some of you are very reluctant to attend meetings, voice your opinions, call 911, or even take part in our Neighborhood Watch, but believe me, it’s important.

In the near future, I will be meeting with Ward 4 councilwomen and others to bring these situations together. We are about to rebuild our wards and are looking forward to meeting some real carpenters whom we can help build our wards together. The area of Wards 3, 4 and 5 will be a better and beautiful place to live.

Again, Sgt. Cornell and Cpl. Rose, thank you a lot for your enthusiasm; we are with you, and we are not going to let the department down.

I believe that the City Council will be very pleased and helpful in encouraging better judgment about our city and local community.

My Ward 4 has been under the &uot;Neighborhood Watch&uot; group for more than 15 years but inactive lately due to busy schedules.

Speak up and speak out. We need that &uot;watch group.&uot;

JOHN ROSE III lives in Franklin. He is the Ward 4 chairperson for the Neighborhood Watch committee.