Trying to make a difference in Franklin that counts

Published 7:53 am Wednesday, September 9, 2009

When Franklin Police Chief Phil Hardison made his public presentation to the Franklin City Council regarding our local gang problem, he requested that the city hire more officers in order to beef up local law enforcement with the goal of stopping the advance of gang activity within the community.

Chief Hardison asked for what he needed to get the job done for the citizens of Franklin, however, his request for more officers was too costly for the City Council to spend money on additional officers to protect us from shootings, robberies, murders and drug deals.

Well, I’ve been waiting for some other public official to step up with a solution that may be more acceptable to the city council since our gang problem is still with us and growing.

I haven’t seen anybody yet, but I’m guessing that the local government will reintroduce old ideas for boosting boot camps, Neighborhood Watch programs and drug education classes for children. But, I don’t think the community should wait for them this time.

We can unite and start a grassroots effort that will produce real crime prevention that will reduce our risks from future crimes and victimizations.

I’ve been working on establishing a community marching band with the goal of getting at least 150 kids off the streets.

It has become clear to me that God is opening doors and making this band possible, and I ask everyone in support of a community marching band to pray for a successful effort, and give God all the glory for the progress that has been made so far.

Here’s an update on the marching band: The Franklin Armory has agreed to allow the band to have access to the building, so it will have an area big enough to march around and practice in during bad weather. The City of Franklin’s Recreation Department has agreed to allow the band to hold organizational meetings at the Martin Luther King Center.

The city’s Recreation Department has also agreed to allow anyone interested in participating to sign up at the Martin Luther King Center located on Oak Street.

What we need to know is do we have enough kids and adults willing to do a band. If we can determine that at least thirty kids are willing to march, we can move forward with them as a core group. So, anybody willing to support a community band should let the following individuals know:

Ray Morings — 569-9526

Dollie Wright — 569-8910

Pecola Councill — 562-4291

Thomas H. Councill, Jr. —

Anyone interested in marching or participating in a band auxiliary (i.e., flag team, step team, majorettes, etc.) should sign up at the Martin Luther King Center on Oak Street.

Let’s come together and make a difference in our community.