The recent terrorist attacks in Norway, which killed close to 100 people, mostly youth, sends the message that peaceful countries are not immune to terrorist attacks, and not all attackers are Muslim terrorists.
This time the suspected attacker is a young Norwegian who is said to be an anti-Muslim conservative Christian. According to reports, he is believed to object so strongly to his country’s immigration policy that he was willing to kill innocent people to make his point. Could there be persons with similar convictions in Canada?
Governments at all levels spend considerable time, money and energy trying to stop criminals, but the issue may be solving itself. According to recent reports, the overall crime rates in both Canada and the U.S. have been dropping over the last 10 years, and have decreased by a significant five per cent this last year. B&Es, thefts, mischief, even violent crimes are down.
Oddly enough, crime “experts” can’t explain why this is happening. None of the usual reasons fit. (Is it an aging population? Are all the bad guys in jail?) Whatever, it is good news. It might convince Prime Minister Harper to reconsider his billion-dollar, jail-building plan and put the money into reducing child poverty instead. And maybe the argument of which city council did the most to stop local crime can come off the agenda for Williams Lake mayoralty candidates.
This will be of interest only to those who have teenagers around. A young person related to me who sat in line for hours to see the Harry Potter film has recently spent her spare moments glued to the TV watching the SpongeBob SquarePants marathon. For an entire week Channel 135 has been showing every episode of the cartoon series which began in 1999. GD #5 became enamoured of SpongeBob when she was three. I think this latest binge is pure nostalgia.
Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is a former Tribune editor, retired teacher, historian, and book author.