Mount Pleasant needs to wake up.

Violence has become commonplace in Mount Pleasant and the surrounding area. Wednesday night's abduction outside of the Student Activity Center is the latest and arguably most appalling in a string of violent crimes the community has endured over the past year.

While we will never know what was going through Eric Lee Ramsey's head when he decided to abduct that woman Wednesday night, the only shred of good that has come out of this horrific event is the newfound awareness in the Mount Pleasant community.

Since June, several violent crimes have occurred: the murder of 4-year-old Carnel Chamberlain, the Sept. 16 stabbing of two victims at Deerfield Apartments, the Oct. 31 murder of Rebekah Jane Gay, the Nov. 3 stabbing at Washington Street, the Nov. 24 fatal stabbing on Main Street, and we can't forget the Nov. 4 alleged poisoning of a CMU students' roommate, as well as many alleged aggravated assaults and acts of criminal sexual conduct.

All of these incidents, with the exception of the poisoning, were allegedly committed by those with a troubled past.

It's time we realize that the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior.

We need to remember this because we've been exposed to violence, national and locally. And now we've become desensitized to the gravity of these situations.

However, when an instance hit so close to home, the CMU community couldn't avoid it. It's traumatic, scary and real. But it shouldn't have taken so long for CMU to feel truly shaken up by tragic events.

We need action. We need to respect each other and, rather than committing random acts of violence, we should strive for acts of kindness.

We need to express empathy and gratitude without expecting anything in return.

Our neighbors should be more than people we say 'hello' to when we see them in our residence halls and apartment complexes.

CMU has previously advocated a "Take Care" initiative; stressing the importance of using the buddy system, being aware of our surroundings and being ready and willing to lend a helping hand to somebody in need.

But no one has paid attention to this until now. For months, maybe even semesters, it's been a logo etched and screen printed on a free shirt handed out at MAINstage.

We need to stop, focus and be more kind or we're going to run our generation into a socially secluded ground.


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