No matter what the outcome of this post, I will be putting this through the steps of discernment and much prayer.
Being scrupulous, I decided to put different areas through the ringer for sex offenders. I mean, what responsible parent wouldn't?
Here's the sex offender ratios, resident to offender:
Memphis, population 655,155. 316:1
Cape Girardeau, population 38, 544. 339:1
Fredericktown, population 4,069. 88:1
This is what we like about Fredericktown- straight shot from Cape, surrounded by Mark Twain Nat'l Forest in the Ozark foothills. Beautiful. Newly remodeled house for $650, less than we are paying now. Random chicken laying eggs in the backyard!! Here's the map of the neighborhood, with the street we're looking at tomorrow circled in green:
Those red dots? Sex offenders. Most of them child molestors. All of the victims girls. Some of the ones I looked at had no activity on their records for a long time. Some within the last 5 years. The one closest to the possible new place, the one 2 blocks over- 19 years since convicted.
Here is Cape- again, green equals potential house, red is SO, and again, a lot of kids falling prey. The distance between house and offender is much greater. Potential house is in a nice looking neighborhood, good school literally around the corner. Nearby national parks and conservation sites. $750/mo, a little more than what we pay now.
Compare these to Memphis. Same explanation. We have to move so none of the details matter other than how much we love our neighbors and wish we could bring them with us. The fat green dots are SOs, but of the ones I checked out none of them hurt any kids that we know of. We're surrounded.
So am I psyching myself out? Would you live in a place like Fredericktown and be hyper-vigilant? Or in Cape, where the nearest offender is farther away than the nearest one in Memphis? Again, lots of prayer and thought going into this. But I want feedback, and plenty of it.