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Community Problems - Our Responsibility

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Many people believe that our government should do more to solve our problems. Yet, when we expect our government, rather than ourselves, to come up with solutions for both our communities' and nations' ills, we have walked down a path which leads us away from being self-reliant and independent. Why can we not affect changes in our communities to everyone's benefit when it is within our abilities? Why must we always ask the government for help to solve community problems when there are more serious national problems to be dealt with? These community problems would ultimately distract the government from focusing on national problems. Indeed, each community must be more responsible for their problems, for example, crime, local pollution, inadequate transportation, and education.

Crimes including burglaries, robberies, mugging, and car theft can disrupt and destroy communities. Such crimes can be prevented by effectively by recruiting more police officers to patrol streets, improving security with CCTV and locks within buildings, and increasing the citizens' awareness on how to protect themselves. Advertisements and lectures by the police or local community centers may help to raise awareness so that the local residents would know how to prevent thefts. Since there is a possibility that thefts may often be carried out by teenagers who have nothing to do during the day, youth centers may be set up by the local community using donations so that teenagers may have free recreational activities to keep them occupied.

Apart from relying on the construction of youth centers, parents must realize that they are also responsible for their children's actions. By spending more time with their children and caring more about their personal life, parents may play an active role in decreasing the rate of teenage crimes since the teenagers would have adults to turn to when they meet financial and psychological difficulties. Apart from preventing crimes, parents' care may also help improve the education of the next generation. Likewise, inappropriate teaching methods such as wrong punishments may lead to crimes. Examples of children resenting their parents' inappropriate methods of teaching such as brutality and unreasonable punishments and turning to committing crimes in the end can often be seen in literatures and movies. In Dave Pelzer's autobiography "A Child Called It", David, the protagonist, was forced to commit thefts and steal from local shops in order to cure his hunger due to his mother's abuse.

Yet, many parents, who do not realize their role in their children's developments, would still blame schools for any wrongdoings of their children. Having enough good schools in each district to support the children's needs of education is another crucial factor to preventing teenage crimes. Besides, the schools must be able to provide good facilities in order for the students to have a good and happy learning environment and learn well from different types of appropriate, safe, helpful, and creative methods such as experiments, chants, songs, and high-tech facilities including computer programs, animations, movies, and audios. Good library resources may help students gain some background knowledge on topics to be learnt in class, and extra knowledge if they wish to explore certain topics to a further extent. Only good facilities would not ensure children to have an easy learning path; good teachers are also essential. Without good teachers, students would not be able to learn the required knowledge in class, which would result in them having to spend a lot of extra time trying to obtain the required knowledge through various methods such as tutoring, asking parents for help, and searching for information on the internet or in the library. Children may gradually feel loss due to their inability to cope with course work, view themselves as failures, and see no signs of hope in life. As a result, they may eventually turn to crimes for tastes of self-satisfaction.

National problems, such as unemployment, national disasters, and international trade and politics, are much more significant than community problems; national problems overshadow community problems. National problems always require the government to solve because the government is better equipped with resources and manpower, and has more influence and power to bring solutions to the political, economical, and social affairs of the country. The national government appreciates that the armed forces' role of protecting the country from invasions. Therefore, the government would constantly have to ensure that the armed forces are prepared and well-equipped, and supplies the armed forces with money for advanced equipment. Furthermore, the government would carry out intelligence gathering at home and abroad. The national government would also be capable of recovering the nation from economic problems such as mass unemployment. After the Wall Street stock market crash, mass unemployment spread across the United States. The problem was resolved when the U.S. government began to invest in public works to create more employment by stimulating manufactures and creating more jobs. Likewise in Germany, Hitler pursued similar policies and created jobs successfully by expanding the arms industry.

When other types of disasters such as natural or man-made disasters strike the country, the government would provide the affected regions with health care and financial support. In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, the U.S. government helped create shelter for evacuees, whom were evacuated to half of the residential postal zones in the 50 states of the U.S. In addition, President Bush enlisted the help of former presidents to raise additional voluntary contributions. Likewise, when man-made disaster of 9-11 struck New York, the government provided rescue workers and tracked the hijackers and mastermind behind the attack.

In our lives, there are many problems waiting for us to solve. Whether it is within our abilities or not, we must always try to take part in solving them. If the community problems are not solved by us, it would eventually become unmanageable for us and it would land as the government's burden. This would ultimately distract the government's original priorities, and affect the entire country. We always have the ability to solve our own problems, it is only whether we wish to handle them or not.

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