Readers’ Forum June 29

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BYU: Make safety awareness a priority

Many LDS youth grow up their whole life dreaming of some day attending BYU and experiencing its safe college atmosphere. For me, after serving a mission in Costa Rica, this dream ultimately came true — except for the safe part. I managed to never encounter theft in the time that I lived in a developing country, but the moment I returned, I was unexpectedly robbed. In reality, crime is inevitable and it is time to make a change. BYU ought to provide seminars on safety awareness because it will protect students now and even beyond their university experience.

The seminars could help understand not only how to avoid dangerous situations, but what to do once one has occurred. For example, explaining who to report it to and if it needs to be reported to the university. BYU could invite former victims, facilitate panels with the police, and even coordinate self-defense classes. If we teach the students what is occurring, inform them on what they can do to avoid it and what to do when they are confronted with crime, BYU will be a safer, more unified school.

— Anna Fowler

Bountiful, Utah

Be charitable to the homeless 

I, like many others who have had the privilege of driving just about anywhere in town, often come across signs from the homeless and needy that say “Anything helps” or “Veteran, in need of food.” Upon first glance one might be overcome with feelings of sadness or pity. After becoming accustomed to such practices, however, it seems that a hardness of heart and an unwillingness to give has rendered itself as the “appropriate” response to such people. This is guided by the mindset that these less-fortunate came to that point somehow because of drugs or abuse, and any charity would simply continue to fuel such destructive practices.

From an ethical standpoint, it is human decency to give and look after each other, even if it’s simply sharing half the pack of granola bars you just purchased. How could one human possibly be so presumptuous to think that they know all the details in a stranger’s life?

Now, from a logical standpoint where the economy is viewed as a whole, sharing is not only caring for each other, but for yourself. By showing concern, we show love — the most powerful motivator and a factor that testifies that life can be great and there is something to strive for.

This (assumption) falls on the basis that individuals want to take care of themselves, their families, and their friends by reaching out. Showing love and helping our brothers and sisters in rough times is a much more effective tool than the cold shoulder could ever be.

— Edie Hall

Kailua­-Kona, Hawaii

 

Couples: Wait to set the date

We all know that student couple at BYU that met at the mix ‘n mingle three weeks ago, went on a few dates, and found themselves engaged within less than a month of knowing each other. It is evident that the LDS faith emphasizes the importance of seeking a happy marriage. For example, in the most recent General Conference, President Henry B. Eyring stated; “Everything we do should have celestial marriage as its focus and purpose.” However, does that mean we should be so hasty in making the decision? Absolutely not.

In the state of Utah, the divorce rate stands at an astounding 58 percent and continues to rise. BYU’s culture does not help with the issue. With an on-campus culture of feeling the pressure to marry as soon as possible, students end up making this crucial decision without the necessary thought and consideration. The Institute for Family Studies declares that the number one measure to prevent broken families and heartbreak is to truly get to know the person that you are dating through an adequate courtship period.

We understand the urgency of the matter. We all want an eternal family. We know how important this is. However, we need the proper amount of time to get to know our eternal spouse.

— Felice An, Taipei, Taiwan;

William Cordova, San Vicente, El Salvador;

Kaitlin Hallam, Spanish Fork, Utah;

Michael Padgett, Winter Haven, Florida;

Michael Knapp, Cedar Hills, Utah;

Hope Merrill, American Fork, Utah;

Jared Curtis, Guyton, Georgia

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