Really, that should be the name of my autobiography. This story isn’t about me, though. It is about American society circa 1980. When I was in elementary school in Phoenix, we had this neighborhood ‘safe’ program. It went thusly:
If you were in any kind of danger as a child, you could look for a house with a big red ‘E’ in the front window. If you saw that, you could go there and ring the doorbell. You would be safe. So, if you were being chased, or molested, or flashed… or whatever… these houses would be safe. This is a great idea, because we all walked to school back then. So, everyone one of those things happened over time.
You may not relate, because you don’t even let your kids walk the bus stop. You are raising a bunch of pussies. That isn’t the issue here, I swear. We had one of those signs in our window, see. This is because we were nice and want you to be safe. Every good parent does. Here is my concern, though, as I look back.
There was no vetting process for who could place the ‘E’ (for Emergency) in the window. NONE. Do you see my concern here? What was to stop the rapists, flashers, and bullies from putting an ‘E’ in their window. Nothing. So, while there was good intentions… I think this was a terrible idea. You are welcome, again, America.
In Iowa they used red stars in the windows for the safe house. The star-houses always creeped me out because even back then in innocent corn-country in my innocent grade school years, I knew molesters were out there just waiting to prey on me.