The conditions in Spring Canyon above Helper have been a concern for a long time. There are a number of people who own land there, and they have faced the problem of vandalism and other illegal activities for years. Now the problem is coming to roost with the county government more and more.
The shooting damage to relatively new facilities and signage that was put in when the Spring Canyon trial was built is appalling. Some people blame kids, but my feeling is that while they may be involved, what is going on up there is more than just a juvenile outburst of destruction.
It's interesting that for some people anything with a flat surface and some paint on it becomes a target. The problem for most gun owners in this country is that these kinds of antics are some of what feed the anti-gun lobby. People from cities see the kind of thing that is going on in the canyon and say, "we need to take the guns away from these hicks before they shoot up the whole country!"
The only way it will stop is for someone with some courage to come forward and report who is doing the damage.
I remember sitting in my desk after school when I was in the third grade one day because some kid had made a big mess back by the sink with paint. Everyone in the classroom except the teacher knew who did it, but nobody wanted to tell her for fear of retribution from the culprit.
So there we sat, first for 15 minutes, then a half an hour. Finally at about 45 minutes the principal came down to the room because at that point parents we beginning to call to find out where their kids were. Some students had missed their bus, other had parents in the parking lot waiting for them. I was glad I was a walker, but it was getting long and old by the time the clock had hit 4 p.m. Finally one little girl stood up and told the teacher that she knew who did it, and so did everyone else, but they were all afraid of the boy who had done it.
Despite that fear, she turned around and pointed at him. The rest of us cheered as soon as she did it. She was the smallest person in the class, and probably more in danger than any of the rest of us. He was a bully and I had been harassed by him a couple of times. I was proud of her for doing what she did, but then I had to question myself as to why I hadn't been the one with the courage to stand and end everyones misery.
I just had to face it; I was chicken. Not only because of him, but because I didn't want to be known as a snitch. But that day did teach me a lesson I have held in my heart ever since.
While we all have to pick and choose our battles (or we would be inundated by them) we should all get involved, especially when it comes to the public good.
It's a sure thing someone knows who is shooting up the signs and restroom facilities in Spring Canyon. But it seems no one has stood up and pointed them out like that little girl did over 40 years ago.
It's time to stop being chicken.