Sunday, October 23rd, 2016

Blaming the weapon


From April 22, 2005:

Looking for clues

The Milwaukee Police Department and other agencies have formed a task force to discover the underlying causes to the increasing number of murders in this city. Here’s a Karnak-like prediction: The study will find that the easy accessibility of handguns in the community leads to violence, and there will be no mention of personal responsibility.

As for original sin being a factor….

Milwaukee Police Chief Nan Hegerty at The Milwaukee Press Club newsmaker luncheon:

Hegerty said MPD is searching for other factors that spark homicides. “We recently started a Homicide Review Commission that is looking at every individual homicide,” she said. “So we are learning a lot about homicides. One of the things we learned is that of those 122 homicides committed last year, 77 percent – 94 of them – were committed by firearms.”

To be fair, she named cocaine as the biggest factor, and also mentioned the loss of manufacturing jobs. Since she’s not an economist but only plays one at luncheons, we might ask her if the dismantling of the gang crimes unit is still a factor, since that is a factor that she can control. Maybe having police officers harass innocent taverns on “over occupancy” rather than looking for actual criminal activity, maybe that’s something she wants to look at, too.

But if we to look at some big sociological factor rather than at the particulars, the destruction of the family unit continues to have fallout in the African American community. Couple that with a failed educational system (hint, hint Governor Doyle) and you get a deadly mixture producing a violent anarchy.

Order needs to be restored in the short term. Yes, more cops, stiffer sentences, more people in prison. In the long term we need to look at a variety of factors. But blaming the weapon used for the crime isn’t going to solve any problems.

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