A Statement from the City Manager
There are some thoughts I would like to share about Social Circle, during these tumultuous times. The comments I have heard from members of the community during the last few weeks distinguish our little City from so many other places. We are not perfect, but we are blessed to have so many residents, business owners, staff, elected officials, police officers, and others who truly love what they do, love their community, and love their neighbors. This is the community spirit that keeps families here for generations, keeps community groups and churches coming together for events and benefits, and which demonstrates so many examples of sharing in times of need.
While Social Circle is not immune from the challenges of the world we live in, this is a community with great heart. People here share a little extra kindness, try harder to understand what is not familiar, and offer a larger helping of grace to each other. We are not so anonymous or callous that harsh words don’t leave wounds, yet there is such a well of forgiveness and openness to build bridges.
Racism is real, and has shaped the experience of all. Current and past generations had opportunities or did not, received consideration or did not, based upon others perceptions and biases. We grieve for unnecessary deaths, and are appalled at hateful or harmful actions taken against people based upon assumptions or false perceptions.
What I know about our community is that the relationships in this City are better than what we see on today’s news, yet we do still have far to go. I hear in these conversations desire to move into the future together, a willingness to listen, an openness to accept that our experiences are not the same– and thus we need to reconsider some of our judgements and conclusions.
Our Social Circle Police Department is also far better than what we are seeing on the news these days. Our professional, skilled, and dedicated group of men and women are here because they have a heart for this community and a heart for protecting and serving the people in this City. We embrace a guardian approach, not a warrior mentality. Their services enhance the safety of our residents and protect lives and property through fostering communication and offering respect in their interactions. This is not new, this has been the culture of the Police for several years. This career is not one chosen for money, and Social Circle is not a fit for Police Officers that are hardened to the humanity of the people with whom they interact. Our Police Officers thrive on the personal touches of serving in the schools, providing birthday visits, and offering comfort and support to the frightened or victims of crime, while also working diligently to enforce laws and solve crimes. It is a difficult time to be a Police Officer, and making negative assumptions about all Police Officers is no more accurate than racist conclusions. Please join me in commending and appreciating the service of these dedicated officers who chose this profession, and this City, for the right reasons.
In this country, there should not be disparity in the treatment of people of color by those who hold power, and there certainly will not be in this City. Our Police Chief and Police Officers share this commitment with all the City staff for the benefit of all our residents.
Social Circle has a rich history in the Civil rights movement, and I am inspired by the emphasis of our residents on peaceful, demonstrations for positive change.
With the involvement of all who love this place, Social Circle is on the path of being the best kind of community we can imagine, a City where we respect the humanity of each other and where everyone can prosper.