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Lake Geneva remains peaceful and the many people who visit from Illinois, some say to ‘get away from it all’ these days, have not come like flocks of locust or even murder bees.  What Chicago citizens may be fleeing is the runaway looting and violence that has recently taken throughout their downtown area.  With thirteen police officers hurt, and at least one citizen shot, the Miracle Mile has turned into a tour through one of the layers of Dante’s Inferno.  That such things are not happening in Lake Geneva, admittedly a city of tiny size compared to Chicago is a rare blessing in this country where counting one’s blessings these days can mostly be done on one hand.

The Lake Geneva Police and Fire Departments are prepared but very quiet in doing their jobs.  They are all over on patrol and looking for trouble, which happens to be their job, but they are not making trouble and they are not being aggressive when discharging their more ‘normal’ duties, like traffic control or emergency medical work.  The citizens of Lake Geneva are, almost down to a single person, proud and happy to have such representation.  This does not mean that trouble cannot come to visit Lake Geneva from the outside.

The downtown of Chicago has not been torn apart because regular citizens came in from the suburbs and acted as those people acted. What swept into that downtown area swept in by design.  That ‘design’ was formed in the minds of certain violent activists and criminals prior to the event.  They got what they wanted and left the downtown Magnificent Mile a shambles behind them. There can be little or no sympathy for such bad actors.  The business areas of every city, village, and town across America have been devastated by the nation’s response to the virus.  Those businesses that are closed, awaiting reopening, or struggling along (open but barely doing business) do not need to have their doors broken down, their windows smashed and what inventory they still have on the shelves looted by people who, by and large, probably have little use for what they are stealing. Looting after national disasters used to be punishable by getting shot on the scene, and that kind of shooting was deemed to be quite legal and approved of, by the police, the courts, and the general population that suffers when such acts are allowed.

It is not the business of the Geneva Shore Report to alter or make rules about the punishments assigned to certain crimes, so what happened in the past is neither condoned nor encouraged in this newspaper, but consideration about what might be done to stop the spread of this kind of activity is within that realm of rationality.  Black Lives Matter and the Defund the Police movements (however misnamed that movement might be) lose impetus and power when the Miracle Mile garbage occurs, which can also be one of the points that the bad actors might have had, and have, in mind.  The fact that here, in Lake Geneva, and the other communities surrounding the Geneva Lake, we do not have one whiff of this kind of activity is a compliment to how well and ‘gently’ run these communities really are.   There is a ton of work that the city governmental teams put into making everything organized and functional.  The police and fire departments are well run and very well-led.  That is the design coming from the other side.  The side of order, peace, and gathered group survival.

It is incumbent upon all the citizens around Geneva Lake to support those efforts.  Road rage is way up.  Don’t participate personally in that.  The rage expressed over the wearing or not wearing of masks is way up.  Don’t participate personally in that.  The mask rules are there for all of us as are the traffic rules.  We all need to follow our own rules.  Social distancing is unnatural and difficult on all of us but that rule is there for a really good reason.  Lake Geneva has very few cases of the virus, and it has no looting or gangs of violent bad actors running through the streets.  Let’s keep it that way.


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