As a child I was taught and believed that people knew the difference between right and wrong, that laws were not meant to be broken and that there were always consequences to our actions. As I get older however, I realize that possibly I believed in a fairy tale and that our society doesn’t work by such simple ideals.

When a criminal with repeated convictions, including felonies and violent crimes, keeps getting out of jail and committing more crimes, how am I supposed to believe in a fair justice system? Does the term Criminal Justice mean that there is justice for criminals instead of punishment?

A politician lies on a form about a critical piece of information and when the Board of Elections is questioned they simply change the information. Don’t they understand that the fine print clearly states that it is against the law to provide incorrect information? Who oversees this?

When a person destroys mailboxes and tosses them into the road, aren’t they breaking the law? Haven’t we all been taught that it is a federal offense to disturb or destroy mailboxes and the mail within? Apparently the government didn’t get the memo or due to budget cuts the “postal police” have been disbanded.

A young man, agitated and allegedly drunk, gets behind the wheel of a car and at a high rate of speed collides with another vehicle, killing the two innocent occupants. Don’t we have speed limits and laws against this type of behavior? How dare someone believe they are above the law! We don’t need to blame the automobile or the fact that the police were not present before the wreck to prevent it, we need to hold the person accountable for their actions.

An 8-year-old girl is alive today because of the fast actions of Clackamas County, Oregon deputies. They shot and killed a man who was in the process of choking her to death after killing her mother and 9 month old sister. Were there signs? Did her mother’s boyfriend suffer from mental illness that people chose to ignore? Perhaps we will never know since he also killed his own parents in the massacre.

A 21-year-old man randomly spots a 13-year-old girl standing at her bus stop and that one moment changes everything. He decides he’s going to abduct her and after making two failed attempts to go through with it, he finally succeeds. The young girl is woken by her dog barking and alerts her parents to someone lurking outside. Her father is shot through the front door and her mother is killed as she tries to protect her child. The young girl escapes 88 days later and is rescued, and the young man is arrested but remains void of emotion and confesses to everything. What happened to knowing right from wrong?

Perhaps ideals are more important than ever, but isn’t it terrible when everyday evidence is presented that shows us that people have become desensitized and no longer fear the consequences?

Remember knowledge is power and still believing in fairy tales may be vital to our survival.


Dorothy Royal is the owner of Surf City Guns and Ammo, mother of two wonderful children, ringmaster of a herd of miniature ponies and an avid member of the Surf City Writers Group and Topsail Book Club.