Ripples in the pond

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The stories in the newspaper, grouped together on Page 1, would make any parent cringe, and could lead some to believe that society's moral fabric is collapsing.

The separate news accounts summarized alleged offenses against children, a controversial decision by the district attorney's office, a family's fight for justice and a police investigation that ended in tragedy.

It has indeed been a rough beginning to 2007 for Craig and Moffat County, and January likely is a month many wouldn't mind forgetting.

Each of these stories grabbed the attention of outside media outlets, momentarily shading our area in a cloak of negative publicity. Judging only by these stories, it would be easy for outsiders to believe our community is full of miscreants and riff raff.

But, the editorial board would like to point out, just because a story captures the attention of outside media outlets increasingly geared toward the 'if it bleeds, it leads' mentality, it doesn't mean those stories exemplify the community as a whole.

In fact, this editorial board contends, it's important to understand these occurrences are atypical. They are not the standard or the norm, but ripples in the pond -- small shock waves that upset the collective consciousness for a brief flicker in time before cresting into oblivion.

Other stories from January, albeit ones that gained less attention from the public, paint the local community in a more accurate light than the aforementioned accounts.

Stories like "Miracle on East Victory Way," a feature story recapping the first baby born in 2007; "Student singers prepare to take state stage," a feature previewing the high school choir prepping for the gubernatorial inauguration in Denver; and "Fighting for Family," an in depth, three-part profile detailing how a local family has banded together in light of a father's illness ...

Those are the stories that the editorial board believes capsulate the traits, personality and character of the majority of local residents.

The editorial board believes it's important to remember that in times like these, when our knee-jerk reaction to shock or outrage is to withdraw trust of our neighbors and be suspicious of anyone and everyone, it's all the more important to remember our true identity.

To remember that Craig and Moffat County isn't a haven of negativity, but a safe and friendly place to work, own a business and raise a family. And that we live in a close-knit community quick to help people in need and surrounded by people who are more likely to treat us as family than to harm us.

The editorial board believes these reminders are important.

Please do not allow a few bumps in the road, a few negative blimps, shatter that truth.

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