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Editorial: Bad news isn't unique to Hastings

On Sunday evening, as word spread in Hastings about a sad story involving a shoeless 2-year-old child being found while carrying two bottles of alcohol, eyes began to roll.

"Hastings is back in the news," residents were heard saying as Twin Cities television stations and the big daily newspapers picked up the story.

While the case is certainly a sad one, some perspective must be gained in relation to Hastings' place in the news.

We don't make the news any more than any other suburb our outlying area. It seems like that, of course, because we only perk up when we hear our city's name called.

Meanwhile, the other countless nights where Hastings isn't mentioned, the stations are covering news in Apple Valley or Shorewood or some other city. That night, you can be assured that residents of those cities are saying, "Oh, great, we made the news again."

Hastings has its problems, and what happened here on Sunday was awful. That said, every community struggles with many of the same problems we do. Problems aren't unique to Hastings. Crime isn't unique to Hastings. Tragedies aren't unique to Hastings.

It also must be said that many times, Hastings is mentioned in reference to criminal cases that have nothing to do with our city.

Since the county courthouse is located here, the datelines for many stories is Hastings. On countless occasions, we have had residents call us and ask us to investigate a criminal case that had taken place in Hastings, only to find that the trial was here but that there was no other tie to the city.

Please keep this in mind when reading the day's news online or in print.

We understand there are serious challenges facing our fine city. The same can be said for every other city in the state, and every other city in the nation.