My friend’s car was broken into last week.
The rear windscreen was smashed while it was parked in the centre of town one evening.
They took her backpack with her work laptop, which means she lost some important data.
A few days later, my car was broken into while it was parked outside my house.
I don’t really keep much in my car, but they did get my gym bag containing a really nice shower gel, which I got as a Christmas gift last year.
And, also, they cleaned out my cubby hole, making off with at least 10 pairs of 3D movie specs.
Those things were starting to irritate me, so I hope the thief finds good use for them.
I have been a burglary victim dozens of times and I no longer feel violated.
But it does annoy me having to jump through insurance hoops and then to find the time to have my window fixed again.
Anyway, this is nothing compared to the crime that seems to be enveloping us at the moment and that makes me a whole lot more nervous.
The train torching doesn’t seem to be stopping and truckers are putting their lives at risk simply for using the N3 in KZN, where several have been attacked, shot at or set alight.
Initially the attacks were linked to unhappiness over the employment of foreign truck drivers.
But now it appears that it’s just another element of crime.
Closer to home, farm attacks have reared its ugly head in the Stellenbosch area, where the community is justifiably nervous about individual safety.
On the Cape Flats where individual safety is something of a pipedream, gang violence and murders continue unabated, despite the lofty claims and promises made before the elections.
I’m reading about a 12-year-old boy shot 11 times and 14 murders in 24 hours on the Cape Flats, bringing the province to nearly 1900 murders in the past six months.
Last week it was announced that the City of Cape Town’s new budget allows for one Law Enforcement officer per ward going forward, which is excellent news, but obviously not enough.
We are going to need every one of us to stop complaining and doing our bit if we are going to beat this.
When armed men enter a school in broad daylight, assault the teacher and make off with the cellphone of each one of the traumatised kids writing the exam, there are people who know who they are.
Their parents would’ve suspected something that evening, but they also don’t want to know what their kids may have done.
Here’s the thing. We are not going to win this war against gangsterism and crime if we rely on government alone to do all the dirty work.
We don’t want to get our hands dirty, so we keep demanding that government and SAPS do more to tackle the escalating crime in our neighbourhoods, as if it is some abstract force that’s responsible for it.
We know the people responsible for the shootings, the robberies, the rapes, the murders and the drug dealing.
This is where we stop listening and being reasonable.
Because we don’t want to hear that it’s our own kids; our cousins; our neighbours’ kids - people we know, who are responsible.
It is what academics call cognitive dissonance.
That’s when you know something is true, but you can’t bring yourself to believe it.
You know your son is a gangster and is doing terrible things to people when he’s not home, because you can feel the illegal gun on his hip is still hot when he kisses you hello; but he’s also your poenang, darling angel, whose plate of food must be kept warm for later.
Accept that you are a co- accused by virtue of your silence.
So let’s just be honest with ourselves. We’ve become so used to handouts, that we want government to give us peace as well.
Just as long as we don’t have to incriminate our own!