Safety is students’ responsibility

Your parents dropped two grand on that Compaq Presario, and you promised them you’d guard it with your life. Or at least your roommate’s.

You tucked away last summer’s tips, and now you’ve got the tallest stack of DVDs on the hall.

You’ve invested thousands in CD players, DVD players, 27-inch Sonys, subwoofers, amplifiers, guitars, PDAs and cell phones. To squeeze a bed in your room, you store your CDs on the floorboard of your Camry.

So why in the Sam Goody would you leave your doors unlocked or windows down?

Sometimes, the pursuit of academic enlightenment leaves college students a little light-headed. And it’s easy to forget how easy it is to be ripped off — even in the typically friendly Western community.

Over the last two semesters, a number of Western students have been victims of break-ins and robberies, on-campus and off. Tens of thousands of dollars — maybe more — in students’ property has been stolen or damaged.

Occasionally there’s a big haul, such as the series of vehicle break-ins at South Campus parking lots in September that netted about $7,500 for the thieves.

But it’s the constant string of smaller robberies — $85 here, $250 there — that really begin to add up.

The victims aren’t to blame for the crimes, obviously, but the incidents should alarm the rest of us. It’s time to start paying attention to the security of our property.

There’s no way to tell who might be a thief — it could be that hottie from downstairs, that quiet one four doors down or that grubby guy loitering in the lobby — so the responsibility falls on us.

It’s not difficult. Just remember to lock your rooms and keep an eye on your keys. Roll the windows up and double-check all the doors on the Camry.

Thieves are lazy, which is precisely why they want to swipe your stuff instead of finding a job and paying for it themselves. A locked door or closed window might be all it takes for them to move along to a more vulnerable target.

You can take the time for these precautions or you can take your chances.

Pardon us for stealing the slogan of Kentucky’s legal form of robbery, but somebody’s got to lose.

If you’re not careful, it might as well be you.

This editorial represents the majority opinion of the Herald’s 10-member board of student editors.