Why does Englewood fester?

In the 20 square block world of Englewood last year, there were more half of the number of murders that took place in all of Washington,D.C.

Quickly shrinking Englewood, down to about 30,000 persons, had less than a third of of the total murders in Houston, a city of 2.6 million.

What does this say about the violence there.?

It tells us only that it is victim to an exceptional degree of lethal violence.

But why and why after folks have fretted about it for so many years?

The Associated Press story, from which the above stats come, searched for some explanations.

They boiled down to an explosion of abandoned houses, an influx of gang members and the flight of families who had lived in the single-family hours.

Those make sense. But do they explain everything?

I don’t think so.

I wonder about how the gangs operates and who joins the gangs. How about the gang wannabes and the folks who just break the law. I’d like to know about the level of day to day violence that traumatizes and leaves the walking wounded waiting to deal with their fate.

I’d like to know about the social services agenies, the community groups, and the police in Englewood. What’s different today than a decade ago?

I wonder about who moved into the houses left behind by the families racing towards a haven elsewhere. I’d like to know about the poverty and what are the needs of the folks there.

Crime doesn’t fall randomly from the sky.

It comes the other way. From the ground up, and that’s what we need to report on and to explain.

If you have any thoughts about how to report this story so we can move it ahead and not get stuck in stereotypes, talk to me.

steve@chicagoisgtheworld.org

 


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Written by on May 14, 2012

Filed Under: News Coverage



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