CLINTON"S CONUNDRUMS: Small town thinking in a big world

If you have been watching the news you have noticed that more and more crime is happening in your local area. And crime does not discriminate between sizes of towns or how good the people are in it.I live in a town with a population of approximately 3,415 people. But the crime rate has risen each year by at least 20 percent over the last 10 years. Some people blame the local drug issue but that has not been proven at this point. Others believe that low income is to blame. Both are viable points and very likely to be an influence in crime rates rising.Although kidnapping and child abduction are not reported to be an issue locally, I believe it is only a matter of time before that changes. That is my point in this article. I am wondering every day when the small town attitude will conspire to invite the unthinkable into our lives.Think about this for a moment; in small towns people are less likely to lock the car doors or even home doors. This has definitely influenced the robbery and breaking and entering numbers over the years. I mean why work when you can run down to “Bill’s” house and take everything out of the truck including his radio and anything else that is accessible. Then a couple nights later go back while he is still at work and rampage the house. Take all his belongings that he paid for and sell them for whatever people will give you…it’s not like you paid for them and every cent you make off his stuff is profit! All in a day’s work right? Now, go to the ball field and look around. Kids are running back and forth between the concession stand, the bathroom and their parents. The parents are either on their phones or engrossed in local gossip with other parents. Walmart and the Dollar Stores are the same way. Parents think since it’s a small town nothing will happen. Now I know, trust me, that kids can get on our nerves and sometimes their running around is the only down time we get as parents. But ask yourself, is it worth it? And last but not least, I want to know if I am the ONLY one who gets confused as to whether I am looking at a group of teenage girls or a group of hookers standing together. I mean really people! Yes, all girls want to be pretty. But sexy and pretty are two different things. Girls should not be sexy until they are old enough to demand the respect that is deserved by every woman, no matter how she is dressed. This less-is-more way of dressing is inviting unwanted attention from men and boys of all ages. Yes, it is wrong for a grown man to look at a girl that way. But that doesn’t mean that some don’t. Rule at my house is, if Mom wouldn’t wear it in public, neither do the girls.You can call me old fashioned or uptight or paranoid. But the one thing you can’t call me is naïve. And that is saying something in my opinion. I believe that each of us work too hard for our material things, love our children dearly and hope for our daughters to be respected in life like they deserve to be. I think we should do all we can to protect each of those points of our lives. Small towns are not immune to these and other horrible crimes. We should all be aware of the inevitable issues that may arise and take some precautionary measures before we have to find out the hard way! So please people, no matter how big or small the area you live in, lock your doors and keep your children clothed and close!Take my opinion with a grain of salt; just don’t get blisters on your tongue!Mandy Clinton is a graduate of Heavener High School and a wife and mother of four children. She writes children’s books as well as horror and romance novels. She studied allied health at Carl Albert State College. She can be reached by email at