Last week, Andy Uria ’05 railed against Public Safety for a supposedly lax job in capturing the burglar who plagued the townhouses earlier this year. According to Mr. Uria, the $6,000 spent to change “Security” to “Public Safety” was money that hindered the force and their ability to nab the perpetrator. Uria also went on to blast Dean of Students Mark Reed for his lack of compassion for the students who were robbed.

It is too easy to complain about Public Safety and the job they do. Inevitably, you will get a ticket in your four years here. The reason for this ticket is that, quite simply, you broke the rules and you knew the consequences. For Mr. Uria to complain that this is Public Safety’s main goal is simply ridiculous. Public Safety has many tasks on campus; parking just happens to be the most apparent to students. And did you ever think that perhaps when they are checking for illegally parked cars they are also looking to see if a suspicious, illegally parked car warrants attention? We know the rules about parking and we know the consequences.

To say that an allotment of $6,000 somehow changed the ability of our policing force is laughable. First of all, the change occurred in the summertime when few students were around. Secondly, this is a paltry amount for a whole school police force.

Mr. Uria also fails to take into consideration efforts by officers to tighten security in each townhouse. Officers would just walk into unlocked houses to urge students to keep their doors locked. Also, to deter thefts via window break-ins (which was this particular burglar’s method), rods to lock the windows more securely were distributed.

As for Dean Reed, his job is to cater to students’ needs. Frankly, I would be shocked if he was somehow less than sympathetic. However, was there any expectation that he would serve as loco parentis for you and hold you in your time of need? Dean Reed is limited in the response he can take. Public Safety was the organization charged with catching the crook, and they did.

The bottom line in all of this is that it is imperative to lock our windows and our doors at all times, across North Benson this would be a no-brainer. Why in a very similar set-up should we expect things to be different? If you want a truly “closed” campus then we need to erect jail-like walls complete with barbed wire. Maybe then we could leave our doors open with impunity.

As for the negative rap on Public Safety, I urge you to chew on this. Get caught drinking by Public Safety and you end up getting written up and perhaps having your housing changed. Get caught by the Fairfield or the Bridgeport Police Department and get a record and spend a night in jail. Hmm, I think I would rather deal with an occasional parking problem than have the police tapping on my party’s door.

For once, I believe it is apt for this well-known critic to look on the bright side of things. Cheer up, Mr. Uria. (Oh, and I’ll have Dean Reed come by and give you those hugs.)

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