Thursday afternoon, a very important event it taking place in Honesdale but is for all of Wayne County and beyond.
The annual "Take Back the Night" program will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday at The Cooperage.
This annual event is presented by the Victims Intervention Program and attempts to raise awareness about abuse. All forms of abuse.
It is very well known that reported cases of abuse have been growing year after year. The high-profile case of pedophile Jerry Sandusky at Penn State University brought the issue into the world spotlight.
What is so touching about Take Back the Night is how the program somehow takes the darkest side of human behavior and gives hope to everyone in attendance.
It is very moving and difficult to watch victims of abuse stand up in public and describe their situations and how they are fighting for their dignity and, in some cases, their lives.
Public speaking is one thing. Airing your darkest, deepest secrets is quite another.
But it's all part of the healing process and are some of the most moving words you will ever hear in a public forum.
The VIP program in Wayne County does an invaluable service for this community.
The give hope where there seems to be none. They help people overcome the most difficult obstacles they will ever face in their lives. They can even help prevent abuse if the warning signs are there.
No price can be placed on this service. No amount of money could be given to the people who make this all happen.
Abuse, no matter its nature, is wrong. Nobody should have to go through what happens to people are abused.
Yet it happens all of the time. Way too much.
And it happens right here.
Some people like to sweep this under the rug and deny we have such problems. Those people are not living in reality.
Abuse happens in Honesdale. Abuse happens in White Mills. Abuse happens in Damascus. In Gouldsboro. In Starrucca.
It's all around us whether we want to believe that or not.
That's why events like Take Back the Night are so important. They allow us to learn more about such horrible problems and, most importantly, get involved and take action.
Abuse will likely never go away. It's an unfortunate trait among some in our society.
But it can be curbed.
One way is for law enforcement officials and judges to get tough on those who commit abuse. That's where the rubber hits the road and these officials need to ramp up their roles in preventing these crimes.
Page 2 of 2 - It's almost criminal to think that some people go to prison for having a small amount of marijuana while some abusers walk free and are granted probation.
That should be crime in itself.
Our society has been way too tolerant for way too long. We can no longer sit on the sidelines and think abuse won't impact our lives. Everyone, in some way or another, is impacted.
We encourage everyone in this area to take an hour or so of your time tomorrow afternoon and go to Take Back the Night.
It will make you sad and likely make you cry.
Sometimes, that's what it takes to make us take action.