By TNH Editorial Staff
The town of Durham, and the University of New Hampshire community, seems to be caught between two worlds.
On one hand, the community has been recognized as the second safest town in the state by Safe Choice Security. In addition, the UNH Police Department was recently acknowledged for its excellence in utilizing social media to stay in touch with the community it serves.
But with the incidents that have littered the UNH campus over the last few weeks — reports of assault, an attempted abduction, and an armed robbery to name a few — it is not so easy to say this community accurately reflects what it has been recognized as.
A surge in violent crimes these first few weeks of the academic year have prompted students to take measures to further protect themselves, such as considering self-defense classes.
There is no one to blame for this violent environment other than the criminals themselves. The police are not the problem. UNHPD does a great job at keeping students informed — Chief Paul Dean has proven to be very Twitter-savvy and posts alerts and updates no matter the hour of the day or night.
UNH is by no means drastically unsafe, but as our phones and email inboxes continue to light up with alerts, students — and parents as well — are questioning their own safety.
It is common to see students going for late-night jogs or walking alone from Dimond Library after closing, but now they may be walking home with their eyes on the lookout.
We, the UNH students, make up the vast majority of this community. It is our attitude that most influences the environment we live in. We must make better choices and avoid violence, but we also must look out for our fellow Wildcats. We’re all in this community together and we can protect each other, whether it is from another student or an outsider looking to stir trouble. If you see something that doesn’t seem right, call it in.
The police logs are not longer than they have been in previous semesters. As usual, they are mostly made up with students and others arrested for small crimes such as alcohol possession, but violent crimes will always stand out and make the headlines.
We commend the community for making an effort to help students combat this violence, but we need to do more than just fight it.
We must end it.