Athens Review, Athens, Texas

Opinion

April 27, 2013

EDITORIAL: We’ve never been so happy to be blue

ATHENS — It isn’t unusual for us to turn on the television and see tragedies like the Boston Marathon bombings and comfort ourselves by thinking, “That kind of stuff doesn’t happen here.”

We have no such comforts when it comes to child abuse in Henderson County.

The state average for the number of abused children is 11.2 per 1,000. According to the Athens-based HELP Center and its Child Advocacy Center, that number is three times as high — 30.2 abused children per 1,000 — right here in Henderson County.

Of the 18,311 children in the county, 31.2 percent have been the victim of a confirmed case of abuse or neglect through Child Protective Services (and for the record, 28.1 percent live in poverty).

According to the most recent statistics, Henderson County officials received 1,034 cases of alleged abuse in 2009. Of those, 894 were assigned to a case worker, 674 progressed to an investigation and 354 resulted in a confirmed case of abuse or neglect.

Let those numbers sink in for a minute. A child living within the boundaries of Henderson County is three times as likely to be abused as the average child in Texas. Nearly one child out of every three here will be the victim of child abuse.

That’s what makes this such an important month. April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and our county’s child advocates annually spring into action to make sure their cause is heard.

Child abuse, they remind us, isn’t merely physical. It can be emotional, verbal or sexual in nature. Neglect — failing to provide children with even the most basic daily needs — counts, too.  

This Tuesday, April 30, has been declared “Go Blue Day” in Henderson County. Throughout the month, blue T-shirts have been sold in anticipation of this day so we can band together and make a statement against child abuse.

Printed on the shirts is a simple phrase: “Have a heart. Do your part. Prevent child abuse.”

Our employees will proudly wear these blue shirts on Tuesday to make that public statement, and we’ll be joined by hundreds and hundreds of others who will do the same.

We vigorously applaud our law enforcement officials, our prosecutors and our child advocacy agencies that work together to prevent abuse when possible and deal with it through the appropriate channels when necessary.

Our part, as a community, is to report abuse when we see it and do everything in our power to raise awareness. The often-silent victims are likely closer than you think. They are sitting in your classrooms, in your church pews and next to you at the ballgame.

That means child abuse isn’t someone else’s problem. It’s our problem.

— Athens Review

 

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Wilson mug.JPG Rolling into something new

    She did it.
    My baby girl rolled over for the first time this past week while daddy and mommy were watching closely.
    As other major news broke across the county, watching my baby roll over for the first time was by far the biggest news of the week for me. Odd.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joe new mug.jpg Fanfare is a time to prepare for another season

    I love to see the talent our student athletes have across Henderson County. To know that each player puts in the blood, sweat and tears to play for a district championship and hopefully a state title is something special to see.
    Another great in the world of sports is a player who is retiring this season in New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.
    Jeter once said, “There may be people who have more talent than you, but there's no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do — and I believe that.”

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • kathi New  copy.jpeg The greatest country in the world has hungry children

    No child should go hungry. We are the greatest country in the world, yet we have hungry children.
    An article I recently read said that if a child in school can't afford lunch, they will be given a sandwich and water. I was told the sandwich is cheese between two pieces of bread.
    I hope everyone realizes that is what they serve in the county jail. Not that I know this from personal experience. I was told from someone who did know from experience.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase

    Hakuna Matata! What a wonderful phrase.
    Hakuna Matata! Ain't no passing craze.
    It means no worries for the rest of your days.
    It's our problem-free philosophy.
    Hakuna Matata!
    Congratulations, if you have watched the Lion King a couple of times you now have this song stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jeff's mug.jpg It was a week in the depth of heat, then cooler

    Sunday and Monday of this week have been very uncomfortable.  The air conditioner at our house has been down, and the temperature outside and in the house have been way up.
    Thank God for the blessing of the cool temperatures and the rain that fell on Tuesday, then on Wednesday.  It changed things just a little bit.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Time away is necessary for everyone

    I can remember as a kid writing essays on “How I Spent My Summer Vacation.” As the years pass, and we are more in-tune with the workplace, those vacations get shorter and shorter.
    Do you ever have those days  when you just need a vacation? Sometimes you just need to get away.
    Taking time off work should be fun and rejuvenating. We all need a recharge every now and then. But vacations aren't what they use to be. We rarely disconnect ourselves from our jobs.

    July 12, 2014

  • Joe new mug.jpg Student athletes: Time to wake up and get to work

    Hey student athletes, it is about time for you to wake up and get to work.
    Your summer is coming to an end, and the early morning wake up calls for practices are right around the corner.
    I am talking to the football players, volleyball players, cross country kids, band members, drill team members and cheerleaders.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wilson mug.JPG Remember who you are

    Are you running so fast that you have forgotten why you started the race in the first place?
    Life moving at a blistering pace that it is tough to keep up?
    Maybe it is time to stop, take a deep look into the pool of water and remember. Remember who you are.
    On numerous occasions, I have had to do just that. Ironically, various movies have caused me to look inside.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jeff's mug.jpg CSUMC provided a memorable experience

    My wife Jean and I went to a very interesting, and what I consider a very unique event last Saturday night.
    I had heard that the church where we are members, Carroll Springs United Methodist Church, was having an event in which people sitting in the audience would sing their favorite hymns into a microphone.

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rich mug.jpg Independence ultimately won on battlefield

    I always enjoy celebrating Independence Day, and hearing some of the stirring words written in the Declaration of Independence.
    Thomas Jefferson wrote that our Creator has given us certain rights, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The way I see it, if I have life and liberty, that gives me a pretty good start on the third one.
    But as eloquent as our founding fathers were, and how moving the texts they left behind, one fact can’t be overlooked. Our independence was ultimately won and secured on the battlefield.

    July 3, 2014 1 Photo

Biz Marquee
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA