Things have been pretty tough in east Charlotte recently. Each day seems to bring another news report about a crime or some other depressing story involving our side of town.
Dozens of east Charlotte residents who lived in either the Cavalier or Doral apartment complexes were forced from their homes last month in the wake of flooding from Tropical Storm Fay. Many are still trying to rebuild their lives and are in desperate need of such basic things such as clothes, furniture and appliances, items that were lost to water damage.
The sad stories don't stop there. Just last week someone torched the Central United Methodist Church on Albemarle Road, causing about $50,000 in damages to the building, home to several faith-based organizations. Authorities believe arson is to blame. A $10,000 reward is being offered for information.
On the same day of the fire, a manhunt was under way for a gunman who shot two people at the Delta Crossing Apartments on East W.T. Harris. I could list a few other stories that will probably make you hang your head, but you get the point.
To borrow the title from a Marvin Gaye song, what's going on? With our neighborhoods? To an area of Charlotte that offers the most eclectic blend of ethnicities, restaurants and businesses the city has to offer?
Sure, things are tough all over – in Charlotte, throughout the state, and across the country. But I live on the east side. I tend to be more concerned about what's happening around me, just like most people.
I've listened to Police Chief Rodney Monroe, council member Nancy Carter and other civic leaders talk about east Charlotte. They all seem to be doing their best to make life more livable on the east side.
But about what us? What are we doing?
Is anyone holding a clothing and appliance drive for the folks at the Cavalier and Doral apartments? Surely someone knows something about that church fire. How about helping police nab the scoundrel.
And no doubt somebody saw something during that apartment shooting. Why not give Crime Stoppers a call (704-334-1600)?
Bad things are bound to happen. Floods, fires, shootings, you name it. But, like the Good Book says – and I'm paraphrasing – the way to overcome evil, or bad, is with good. Still another part says something about doing unto others.
People say the media is only interested in reporting the bad – if it bleeds it leads.
I'm not buying it. I'd like to hear about something someone is doing to make east Charlotte a better place to live. Something good.
E-mail me the details. I'll check it out and write about it. We all can stand a dose of good news.