When darkness is in our backyards, let's turn on the light


It shakes a person's world when something happens like the murder/womb raiding of 22-year-old Savanna LaFontain-Greywind of Fargo. One of the people arrested for that crime is Brooke Crews, who spent time living in the Perham area. The arrest is fresh—she has not been convicted—but this story has made people question the world in which we live in and to question humanity. When it becomes obvious that evil can lurk in your own backyard, it has the ability to change the way you look at things. The world can most certainly appear darker and more hopeless.

Perhaps there are people around the Perham area who knew Crews when she lived there who are now trying to recall their own interactions with her. Could she have done this? Maybe they're stuck comparing the person they knew to the person police believe murdered an 8-month pregnant woman to get her baby and then disposed of the young woman in the river. How does one reconcile that? It's Perham...Turtle Fest Perham. Yellowjackets Perham. Quaint downtown, beautiful lakes, down-to-earth people Perham. Does any of this make any sense? The criminal accusations leveled against Crews has a lot of people questioning so much.

Something similar happened in Detroit Lakes (albeit the person was convicted in this case) when Joseph Duncan III kidnapped two children from their Idaho home after killing their brother, mother and her boyfriend. He continually molested the siblings, 8-year-old Shasta Groene and 9-year-old Dylan Groene, before killing Dylan in front of his little sister. Unspeakable. Stomach-turning. People around Detroit Lakes were sick at the thought that not too long before that, Duncan had been roaming the streets of Detroit Lakes, where he was charged with molesting a small child at a playground. He had been out on bail in 2005 when he ran to Idaho to murder a random family.

There will always be these grotesque reminders that sick, evil people live among us. This has always been the case throughout time though, and we mustn't let it change us for the worse because for every deranged psychopath we hear about, there are exponentially more who are good. Instead of hardening up and retreating to avoid the darkness, perhaps we should be doing more to become the light in our communities. Smile more. Judge less. Make it to church or a social gathering more often. Pitch in to volunteer for good causes. Get to know your neighbor and be the sort of person who is ready to help when needed. When we look around and wonder how the world has gone so crazy, let's keep turning our heads to get a full view of the world and the good that also lies within.