A recent news report stated there had been some criticism of efforts by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to crack down on gangs. The target area this time around was middle Georgia — areas like Baldwin County and its county seat, Milledgeville.

The reason given for the criticism was a reduced crime rate. It had decreased by 13 percent. Apparently there are those who are satisfied living in a community where acts against civilized society fall by more than 14 percent.

Cheers to police and law-abiding citizens for the drop in crime rate. All should pat themselves on the back. It was their doing. Turn up the heat, make arrests and solid cases against felons and felons-in-training, and criminals will disappear. Those who escape the arm of the law will leave and nest elsewhere.

But jeers and a large thumbs down to anyone launching barbs at the actions of the GBI. For the record, there is never a bad time to fight gang activity, regardless of the area or frequency of crime. The mere presence of these do-what-Simon-sez thugs is always cause enough to fire up campaigns to eradicate them.

What possessed someone to utter such crass remarks, remarks that reflect a stance of being soft on crime or an eagerness to shield criminals from justice, is indeed baffling.

Brunswick and the Golden Isles would welcome a state campaign against gangs any day and anytime.

These organized circles of thugs are at the root of numerous crimes committed on our streets and in our neighborhoods, including drug trafficking, thefts and drive-by-shootings that continue to tragically take the lives of innocent victims, including children.

Residents can help rid their communities of this public nuisance and threat. They can by reporting suspicious activity or known gang members to police.

It’s our community, not theirs. This is the daily message every city and every county needs to etch into the mindset of those who corrupt our children, destroy our loved ones and create fear among families and the elderly.

More from this section

Opal Lee, a social impact leader known as the “Grandmother of Juneteenth,” will visit Brunswick this weekend to celebrate her years-long effort to raise awareness of the history and timeline of emancipation in the United States.

The Office Depot store in Brunswick is closing in November as part of a corporate decision to close 90 stores nationwide by the end of 2021.