ONE VERY DISTRESSING SIGN of the times is this: It is not
automatically newsworthy any more when a do-good organization gets
It used to be, you know. Editors, who love irony the way
headline writers love puns, would get all excited if an
organization that provided services to the poor got burglarized.
No more. Just as the cops won't even send an officer to your
house if your car gets stolen - what's the big deal? - the
newspaper no longer automatically covers crimes against do-gooders.
Occasionally, if it's a slow day, a reporter will get assigned
to such a story. That's why you might have seen the story last
Saturday of a food pantry that had been burglarized. It was a fine,
But mostly, these things get ignored.
So let me tell you about a couple of recent incidents that
would have been "news" in the good old days.
The most recent one occurred on the night of May 18. A fellow
broke a window to gain entry into the Crusaders 4-H Club on
Louisiana Avenue. He stole an electric typewriter and an answering
Oddly enough, the club had been burglarized less than 48 hours
earlier, and the thief got a computer, a microwave, a color
television and an electric guitar. What's more, it was the same
burglar. We know that from the fingerprints. And in that first
incident, he had gained entry by breaking a window.
Lest you think, however, that this is one clever criminal -
after all, he was repeating a method that had worked once - let me
assure you that our burglar is anything but clever. After stealing
the electric typewriter, he knocked on the door of a nearby
residence at approximately midnight, and asked the startled
resident if she would be interested in purchasing a used typewriter.
Furthermore, other residents in the neighborhood had seen him
wandering around carrying stuff, including a guitar, in the early
morning hours two days earlier, which, as it turns out, was just
after the first break-in.
Based on the fingerprints and the eyewitness accounts, police
are looking for a suspect. The fellow they are looking for has no
home address, but he periodically washes onto the shores of justice.
Meanwhile, the Crusaders 4-H Club carries on.
It is not a big or fancy place. It's just a double-wide
storefront in the 3300 block of Louisiana. On weekdays, it gives
the neighborhood kids a place to go after school, and it has a more
structured program on Saturdays. …