Letter to the Editor

Terrible act appalling

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

To the Editor:

As you may have seen on the local Terre Haute news, there has been a terrible act of criminal vandalism inflicted on an area residence a few weeks ago.

The crime was committed on a house recently purchased by a company called ResCare. If you're not familiar with this company, let me tell you a little bit about it.

ResCare is a nonprofit organization committed to providing group homes and assistance to adults with Developmental Disabilities. These people are kind-hearted, innocent folks that simply do not have the self-help skills necessary to thrive in our world without a little aid.

The company name itself is comprised of two words: Respect and Care. As a provider of these essential elements, ResCare and its clients deserve some respect and care in return for all the hard work they do.

Due to the flooding that occurred earlier this summer, many area residents were forced by Mother Nature to relocate or salvage their homes if possible. Friends, family and relief agencies aided flood victims in their time of need. Most would say that our community really pulled together to overcome this tragedy.

ResCare owned two houses that were destroyed by the natural disaster. Thankfully, our local Days Inn was kind enough to accommodate the needs of the clients that were left homeless as a result of the rising waters. The residents have patiently been waiting for two months to move into their new homes. Finally, a home was purchased in a subdivision in the southeastern part of Terre Haute. The neighbors were not happy.

Community meetings were scheduled to discuss the neighborhood's concerns regarding the arrival of the ResCare clients. ResCare's director was invited but, due to a schedule conflict, was unable to attend. Days later, when ResCare employees visited the house to make final preparations, another flood had damaged the house and delayed the move in date. This time, however, the flooding was an act of man, not an act of God. One friendly neighbor had broken a window, inserted a garden hose and turned it on.

The estimated damage is in the $10,000 range. Let me ask you this Brazil: What kind of inhumane person would do something like that just to deter a group from moving into their neighborhood? This is a hate crime and the perpetrator needs to be punished accordingly. These people have endured enough injustice throughout their lives to be tormented by unwelcoming homeowners.

As a stepmother of a child with cerebral palsy, I have encountered hurdles upon hurdles trying to ensure that my son is treated with the same dignity and respect other children his age receive. These kids grow up eventually and although some may only age chronologically, the individuals with special needs are entitled to the same human rights as anyone else, regardless of their mental age or level of functionality.

Let us find the criminal responsible and bring him or her to justice. If you have any information regarding this matter, contact Crime Stoppers at 812-238-STOP. Help us keep our community safe for all its citizens.

Amanda Truax,