City has an obligation to patrol riverPublished 12:03am Thursday, July 19, 2012
The independent American spirit in us wishes our country didn’t have to have laws to protect people from doing foolish things.examples
But the common sense side of us also knows that laws are required to protect some people from harming themselves, harming others and foolishly putting people in harm’s way.
That’s why we have speed limits and laws prohibiting discharge of firearms in close proximity to others, such as within the city limits.
It’s also why local leaders have threatened to cite residents who are seen playing along the dramatically lowered banks of the Mississippi River.
They’re not trying to ruin anyone’s fun, but simply trying to keep people safe.
We wish it were safe for residents to head down to the banks of the Mississippi River.
We wish they could safely walk along the edges of the river and enjoy its beauty, gazing up at the banks and wondering with amazement just how much the river level can change in a year’s time.
Just more than a year ago the Mighty Mississippi crested at a new high. Today, the river’s surface is approximately 50 feet lower, and experts tell us it may drop further.
As tempting as it can be, please be aware of the dangers and heed the warnings. Some residents may not remember, but it hasn’t been all that long ago one of The Natchez Democrat’s own employees, Danny Richardson, was swept to his death while walking along a sandbar on the river’s edge.
The danger is real, and the warnings are for your own good — and to avoid sending rescue workers in to save you or recover you if you fall into the water.