Here's a common city story I've heard recounted on several occasions: a person used to live in St. Louis or any other big city for that matter. They say they had to leave because the crime just got too bad. They would have loved to stay. Everything they liked to do was so close and affordable. They loved the house, the neighborhood had such character...so on and so on.
Here's how I read that story: You compromised and ran (cut & run). You quit. You lost. You gave up the neighborhood to thugs. You let them take over. You were a visitor. You are part of the problem. You perpetuate and tolerate violence, crime and rude citizen behavior by allowing it to intimidate you, scare you and eventually make you disinvest yourself from the city. Strong words, yes. But:
If you love something, you've got to fight for it. City people in 2009 seem to love their homes, neighborhoods and city. I vow to always fight for my neighborhood. If there are nuisance neighbors or thugs roaming in your neck of the woods, call the cops. Confront them yourself. Make it known that they don't belong. City people love their neighborhoods and put up with things many in the burbs don't deal with. That means we are willing to fight for them and keep them and improve them. Make them places where all people can succeed and pursue their personal dreams. Don't pull a baby-boomer and run for the hills. Pull a Gen-X, Gen-Y and call bullshit on thugs and thieves. Don't be scared of people who are different looking, or posturing, or lurking. Do be scared of people who are threatening to our peaceful, active existence. Take action against them.
I hope I don't come across as a tough guy, or a conservative, gun-happy hypocrite. We've been victims of crime here, no doubt. Minor crime in the big picture, but we still followed through with them with the police and NSOs and aldermen. If my wife or I were ever mugged, personally accosted, or worse, I know what she'd do, I think I know what I'd do. We'd surrender in the moment to save our souls and lives. I'm not a conceal and carry kind of guy, I'll give it up. But look out on the rebound. I will fight. I won't run. I will cry out and try to take the thugs down systematically and collectively.
Call me a wuss, I don't care. I'll give it up to avoid confrontation. My wealth does not lie in my pockets. You can have anything on me. However, I won't run. That's the true loser. There are many who have chosen to run in our history. Many of them are residing in the suburbs of the region. Many hate or fear the city because they ran, they don't get it. I'm kind of glad they're gone. Now the city is ours. Let's keep it and grow it. Stay and fight for this place, it's worth it.
Go Blues! Vancouver can fall. We are strong and have momentum. Fear the underdog.