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In the report above, a concerned Florida father is fed up with gunfire in his neighborhood. He’s moving. It must be said that some economically challenged Americans don’t have that luxury. And staying close to family and your community is an issue. Then again, when your life and the life of your loved ones is at risk, why wouldn’t you move hell and earth to get the hell out of Dodge?

That’s easy enough for me to say. I’ve never lived in a neighborhood war zone. My current digs are as quiet as quiet can be (although a neighbor’s son shot himself in the head). So have you ever been in that position? If not, if you were, would you move?

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  1. A few weeks after we moved out of our older intercity neighborhood to the burbs, a guy was shot walking down our old street with an AK.

  2. Good “prepping” is not just having some ammo, gasoline, bottled water and Hormel canned goods on hand. It’s also planning your life so you have the most options. True, I live in a place where CC is virtually prohibited (NY), but I don’t live in any of the places where it’s virtually necessary.

  3. I lived in a not so nice area of a college town when I did my 4 years. It was not the worst but the worst “apartment complex” in the town was right across the street. Right after I left someone was shot in the middle of the road that divided the two with a Draco pistol.

  4. Yep. It wasn’t just the violence though. And I say violence because there were plenty of stabbings and beatings. It was the piss poor school system, rampant drug use, theft of anything not bolted down (and sometimes even that), city property taxes, and general stressful city life. The biggest thing of all was never being able to relax while you weren’t home, because you were constantly worried you were going to come home to a house that’s been ransacked. While home at least you could defend it. Though while at home it was hard to relax, as I always had a fully loaded AK with combat load with in arms reach of me incase of home invasion. Within one mile of where I lived there had been multiple triple homicides involving home invasions, involving multiple attackers. Usually it was all gang related, but that doesn’t mean they don’t target the wrong house on accasion.

    • ^ ^ ^ This. Its not just crime, its everything that goes along with much of urban living. Especially when you are raising a kid, its not only the crime that you worry about. If I lived alone, I am less worried about having to take care of just myself.

      Can we please stop playing into the “gun crime” vocabulary? Just like “assault weapons”, the guns are neither committing any crime nor are the weapons assaulting anyone. You are just as dead whether they shot you, beat you, stabbed you, lit you on fire, etc. Murder is murder, robbery is robbery, home invasion is home invasion, crime is crime. Either you committed a crime or you didn’t. Don’t make it about the guns and play into the anti’s hands.

      • Indeed. The worst part is worrying if your children or wife is going to get robbed, car jacked, or catch a round in between two gang bangers who can’t aim for Shit. If it was just me, I have no problem fighting those bastards when they come knocking. But you can’t be everywhere with your family. Especially when right as we moved, a gang issued a race war proclamation claiming that they were purposely going to seek out random white people to kill: and that’s the stuff the media will never report.

    • ” The biggest thing of all was never being able to relax while you weren’t home, because you were constantly worried you were going to come home to a house that’s been ransacked.”

      Unless you haven’t bothered or have been unwilling or unable to make friends or hire someone in the area you live, make arrangements with someone on an exchange basis for them to watch your place and you to watch theirs while you or they are away.

      House-sitting is indeed a thing…

      • We had neighbors we got along with and friends that stopped by to check on it while we were gone, but it did little to ease our minds. Police response time could be 30 minutes or longer.

        • I’m not talking about someone dropping by now and then. I’m talking about someone (or a couple) staying there from the time you left until you got back.

          I’ve done this for folks I know. One of them, the lady across the street stayed there until I got off work, then I stayed there until next morning, when I left for work.

          Rinse, lather, repeat.

          House sitting, just like baby-sitting, but for homes-apartments.

          You could also consider a protective good-sized dog…

        • Geoff, you can do that but who wants to? If it’s shitty and you can move.

        • “Geoff, you can do that but who wants to?

          Who wants to is anyone who would like an expectation their home won’t be ransacked while they are out of town.

          “If it’s shitty and you can move.”

          Joe, I’m speaking to those where moving isn’t an option at the present time.

          Understand that. Lots of folks can’t “just move”…

        • Oh we have 3 big dogs. And yes they really do work to prevent most trespassers. But remember where I lived, we had the real threat of multiple armed attackers. I didn’t want my dogs getting shot either. And paying someone time to hang out at our house everyday while we were at work is just absurd. Anyone who’s got that kind of time has a job themselves. Anyway, we actually got the chance to get out, so we did. And “white flight” is bullshit. Every single person that lived there got the hell out as soon as they could regardless of skin color. In fact, as a large number of latinos started moving in, the black population started to move out in droves and people then bitched about “black flight.”

  5. I haven’t moved, but south Chicago (and it’s ‘gun crime’) has been spreading all over the mid-west.

    • Bumper sticker seen on a telephone pole in Detroit:

      “Don’t Chicago my Detroit.”

  6. I live in a free state so I don’t worry too much about those criminals wearing suits.

  7. We have had a recent string of killings in my normally peaceful neighborhood of Beaverdale in Des Moines, IA. We have a year to date total for the city that equals last year’s year end total. The majority is gang related, with a few domestic cases. We are still much better than most cities, but a couple shootings are within blocks of my house and church. We have been in this house for 20 years without any trouble, but I am watching to see if this is a short term anomaly or a long term trend.

    • Pretty much the same deal in Ames. They’ve been tearing down the projects in Chicago and giving them housing vouchers instead and some of the people have taken them out of state. Same I think with Fort Dodge. A few months ago there was a drive by shooting in campus town and the perps turned out to be from Chicago but living in Fort Dodge. 9 times out of 10 it seems like they’re Chicago transplants.

  8. I’ve moved away from ‘Crime’.

    I’ve moved away from a shifting neighborhood demographic that brought with it a huge increase in crime.

    • “I’ve moved away from a shifting neighborhood demographic that brought with it a huge increase in crime.”

      Be advised, the “shifting demographic” can work both ways. The folks I house-sat for that I mentioned above, they bought it for $40,000 and sold it for $115,000 12 years later.

      The tough part is finding a ‘hood on the way up. In the example I mentioned, a few blocks over, things got worse. Where they lived, the downtown expanded south and property values rose with it…

      • Ours was going the opposite way.

        New neighborhood ~2000, then the bubble came, people went crazy and just shy of half the houses in the development were foreclosed and some just abandoned. With rare exception, the replacement neighbors were bad. Really, really bad. Either scooped up then rented out at a sub-par rate (usually the home was trashed), or picked up by a family group of dirtbags (who often thought that parking 6 shit heaps in their front yard along with a ratty couch to drink all night on was an okay thing…these are 5000-5500 sqft lots here). Then around 2010’ish the area became popular for a refugee group that pushed the rest off a cliff.

        With groups wandering in packs, and corner hangouts (as there was little employment) where people would get harassed if they pulled into a shop for gas, neighbors children getting roughed up by the displaced youths that came with their parents, and trash piling up in people’s yards (the list goes on from there). Real crime (particularly burglaries, auto theft, battery, assault, and domestic violence) had more than septupled. Real estate prices were frozen or dropping as one look at the area and buyers would flee. It was time to leave for many reasons.

        This is the SW US.

  9. No. Pretty quiet neighborhood. Actually, a pretty quiet town.
    I like not having that kind of stress. You couldn’t pay me to live in or near Portland.

  10. I have often marveled at how strong a hold external things are to some people. The idea that family, job, school, friends and neighborhood are more important than your life, or your family’s survival is just bizarre. Even dirt poor people can be dirt poor in another city or town. Fear of leaving the familiar seems to drive out common sense is too many. Maybe I am the bizarre one because I have never “put down roots”, anywhere. No job is worth losing a family (with which I am all to experienced). No location is worth losing your life.

    • I don’t disagree, but it’s easier said than done in many areas.

      The job they have is the *only* job they have, and the prospects for another are slim…

      • The decision to move is the key. The rest becomes “details”. Fear of change is strong. Got caught up in the “dot bomb” era, always the new guy when the biz died or sold. In 7 years I had 4 jobs, each in an industry different from the one before. Each in a different city. The job searches were always somewhere other than where I was. Move, or hope someday, somehow, something…?

        Do I know how difficult it is to face change? Yes. I knew many co-workers who refused to leave “home” and family, no matter what, then complain they couldn’t find the same job they lost. Talked with laid-off friends who refused to drive to work any farther than they did to the job they lost. Listened to people who refused to take any job that did not pay as much as they made before losing the job.

        My take? As a people, we are too comfortable, too averse to inconvenience, too insistent all the answers lie within arms reach. Fact, if the welfare programs of today had existed during the great depression, Californication would still be a bunch of orange groves and oil wells. The east coast would contain 200 million desperate people, and we would still have dust bowls in the middle. This country was settled and developed largely through a huge migration west in search of jobs. And a larger portion of the populace was “dirt poor” than now.

    • Youre not the only bizarre one, I’ve lived in three states in two years and had 4 jobs along the way. I’ve always been a bit of a wanderer looking for the next opportunity

      My mother in law had almost nothing and picked up everything and ran when her life was threatened, lived dirt floor poor for a while but now makes bank. All because she got out of an area with rampant crime, drugs and no opportunity for advancement. No doubt it was and still is the most difficult decision but I’d say they are better off now

      • Compadre.

        When people face stark choices, but hesitate while hoping for the best, they are so deep into denial and self-doubt that they may be entirely without hope.

        Hooray for your M-I-L !

  11. No, no one really paid all that much attention to the crime problem, even though it existed. We moved away from the filth and homeless lining the streets in downtown San Francisco, and the fact that we could not possibly afford to buy a house within a 90 minute drive (or more) of The City, which is where I was working at the time. That was 1989. Although my wife loved (and loves) The City, I have never looked back after moving over 200 miles north. Here I can get a CCW; in SF, not only “not so much,” but not at all. Neither the city Chief nor the Sheriff have issued a CCW to a citizen since DiFi, and in fact take pride in the fact that they refuse to do so. (Last I saw stats, there were only 2 issued licenses, and both were for employees of the sheriff’s department and the SFPD, respectively.)

  12. I have not, no.

    A problem, though, is that the family that moves, also needs to leave behind the things that made life dangerous in the old neighborhood. Having a kid that’s a drug user or dealer, for instance, will likely bring some of the bad stuff along for the ride.

  13. Moving from a low-crime high-income county in a slave state, to a higher-crime lower-income town in a free state, you could make a reasonable argument that I moved toward gun crime.

    Freedom is scary. I don’t regret my decision.

    • A “slave state”?

      Please, do elaborate, which state in this union still has slavery?

      • Examples – California, Rhode Island, etc.

        A ‘Slave state’ doesn’t mean simply indentued servitude, it means being denied your civil right of armed self-defense…

        • Well, being that some of the first acts of gun control in this nation were aimed at depriving slaves of arms, I see your point…

        • Thank you for explaining it to Zoss, Geoff. I apply the term pretty liberally to places where freedom is curtailed. Plus, people are drawn to the apparent hyberbole, giving conversational opportunities to explain what you said so well.

          • Can I try one?

            A “slave state” is anywhere one must ask permission to exercise any fundamental and constitutionally protected right.

        • Things can get a bit fuzzy, there, AnyMouse.

          A whole lot of places POTG consider ‘free’, permits are required in cities for a protest march…

  14. I did once — I packed my stuff (this was when everything I owned fit in a large station wagon) and left right after one of the kids from the church youth group literally tackled me and dragged me behind the couch because a bullet had just transited the living room through the front window screen; he and another kid and I stayed there while two more bullets perforated my screen, the wall behind us, and the bathroom wall on the way to the alley behind.

  15. Yes. We moved because the city moved a crime syndicate (subsidized housing) within 1/4 mile of us and crime immediately grew from nothing to a frequent occurrence culminating with a neighbor two doors down getting shot in his living room during a home invasion. Wife and I both packed heat at all times until we got moved to a rural area where gunshots are frequent but criminals are not.

  16. I moved to it and then away from it. Call it a “transitional period” where I was “finding myself”.

    Kinda like my cousin going going to India for a year but without the money required to actually go to India or actually going to India and, really, a lot less safe than India in general.

  17. “Gun crime” ?

    So its the firearms themselves that are joining gangs, selling drugs, and perpetrating drive by shootings?

    I don’t think so.

    Put the blame where it belongs, not on inanimate objects.

  18. Where I live isn’t exactly the safest city in the state. However the town (a rural college town) that I do live in is essentially segregated and most of the crime in the area is the trash taking itself out- bad guys preying on other bad guys. Local PD and Sheriff are very pro-gun as is the DA.

  19. We moved for better schools ( which wasn’t hard since the city’s are one of the worst in the country ) crime was a secondary concern .

  20. I moved from Apartheid Chicago to NE Ohio in 1986. It was one of the smartest things I’ve ever done.

    I moved for a job, but no decent, clear thinking person would CHOOSE to live in Apartheid Chicago.

    The gun laws are odious, but are merely a symptom of a much larger, more fundamental rot.

    Chicago is a cesspool of organized criminal activity because both the police and city council profit from it. There isn’t ANY doubt who the criminals are or where they are. But with the police involved in armed robberies, kidnappings and drug dealing, and the aldermen involved in similar criminal enterprises and using known gang members in their political campaigns, why would anyone expect that the gangs would be targeted?

    For 20+ years, the motto of the Chicago Police Department and the city “government” was, “We don’t have to protect you and we won’t LET you protect yourself.”

    I feel the same way about Apartheid Chicago that Helmut Dantine felt about Austria. It’s good to be FROM Chicago… as FAR from it as possible.

  21. Haven’t moved BECAUSE of crime yet. It’s on the table. What’s pathetic is so-called safe places near me(like Naperville or Hinsdale,IL) have murder/mayhem lately…there’s NO SAFE PLACE.

    • True no place is truely safe… but there’s a big difference between hearing shots fired and looking to see who got their deer or finding a covered smoking spot because your last one got shot up last night.

      • My neighborhood features very frequent gunfire, at multiple distances and from multiple directions, all weekend long. Through the the week the fireing is mostly confined to the evening hours.

        Since my place is 14 acres, and some of the others around are larger, the volume on most of the fire is low, but it’s not uncommon to hear hundreds of shots over a weekend.

        Of course, all of that firing is just my neighbors target practicing safely and enjoying their arms, or the guy way down over the hill who has converted part of his home to a gun shop and teaches CCW classes. He has a completely covered outdoor pistol range. That direction racks up some serious round count, sometimes I’m jealous.

        Then again, I’m sure my neighbors say that about me. There is a 50′ pistol range complete with dueling tree and target stands in the front of the house and a 125 yard rifle range out back. I think over the last holiday weekend we had about 1000 rounds fired at our place.

        Just last Wednesday a fellow came buy to attempt a trade on a Savage .22 with bump fire stock.
        I don’t know that I want it, but we were able to coax some good bursts out of it in the driveway.

        I don’t know that we have any ‘gun crime’ here. I mean, I’m sure there is some, but I’d imagine it’s the administrative, rather than violent kind.

        I’ve never moved specifically to escape crime, but I do live where I do in part because there is no serious crime.

  22. Yes and I don’t mind saying so… St. Paul, MN (northern cusp of frog town, right behind divas and a few other places on the east side which frankly SUCKED).

    It wasn’t just the crime but when the economy tanked I relocated North Dakota and have never regretted it.

  23. I’d say a fair number of people are moving out of Colorado, and in fact Magpul moved, lock-stock-and barrel, from Colorado, because of gun crime. Oh, you meant crimes perpetrated with the aid of a gun? Not crimes perpetrated by legislators on the gun-owning populace? Nevermind!

  24. Have You Moved Away from Gun Crime?

    All of the guns in my old Bronx neighborhood were law abiding, but some of the people who owned them were real scumbags. So, no.

    Then I moved to Brooklyn, where my then-GF was raped, and later my wife was robbed at knifepoint. But I stayed on for years afterward until the wife and I split up.

    And after I moved out of NYC, most of the neighborhoods that I lived in in CT, RI and MA were kinda toney and crime was petty.

  25. I got my wife out of a rough(ish) neighborhood in Philadelphia in 1976. At the time our best option was central NJ because I had just gotten a pretty good job in that area. In 1980 we left the People’s Republic and moved to Norman Oklahoma and its been home ever since. I have to deal with the looney tunes from the University but Norman is a pretty quiet place. There is a strong gang presence in some Oklahoma City neighborhoods – and not surprisingly the gangs are encroaching on some very nice areas in the south west side of the city, but life is pretty good where I’m at.

  26. Found the money to move out of an older early 50’s neighborhood in Dallas back in the early 90’s when the gang tagging and the gun shots started to become more prominent. I travel for a living and I didn’t want her in the “hood” alone while I was on the road. Told her I wouldn’t even look at anything in Dallas county. Kept driving north till we found an area we felt very comfortable in.

    Been here 25 years and the only gun shots so far have been the Pakistani man who killed his wife and daughters for becoming “too” American on the street behind us.

    We did what we had to do, my wife’s safety and security trumped everything else.

  27. Found the money to move out of our 50’s starter home in East Dallas back in the early 90’s when we started seeing gang tagging and hearing more than the occasional gun shot at night. Started traveling for a living and I wasn’t comfortable with her in the “hood” alone when I was on the road.

    We wouldn’t even look at anything in Dallas County. Kept heading north till we found someplace we both loved and felt comfortable in. Only gunshots we’ve ever heard here was when a Pakistani gentleman on the street behind us killed his wife and daughters for becoming “too” American.

    You make your priorities, find the money, and take care of family first.

  28. I have moved away from crime. Not necessarily gun crime.

    I lived in the same town for 28 years, and watched my nice middle-class neighborhood blossom and fade as “gang bang” type incidents became common. In 1992 I moved to a rural/agricultural community 7 miles away, and for the next 11 years I raised a family, farmed some, and kept chickens and goats. By 2003 the big town had cooled off, so we moved back there and watched as apartment complexes were taken over by trash, and rent houses popped up on every street. When I started seeing hobos and weirdos wandering the streets I began searching for a better location. That meant moving to another county because the city government had been taken over by people more concerned with hiring their relatives and covering their asses than in doing their job.

    So I landed in another residential/agricultural area. Been here two years and I like it. Everybody (everybody!) works. The local K-12 school is the highest rated in the state, and the kids still play ball, do 4H, and rodeo! I wish I had moved here in 1992 because the big town schools like to have ruined my kids!


  29. I lived in a neighborhood in the late 80s to early 90s as a kid that turned to hell due to drugs nearly overnight. We had guns and baseball bats around the house due to the insanity we dealt with. There were fights, screaming, and yelling early in the morning. We eventually were able to move, but it was awful for the few years we lived there. No gunfire or anything like that. It got so bad the cops wouldn’t even respond half the time because there were too many calls to the neighborhood.

  30. I grew up in San Bernardino, CA in the 80’s and early 90’s. We moved in part because of the crime. Heard automatic fire quite often and “regular” gunfire on a near daily basis. Heard a few people get shot to death. It did not seem that bad then but if I were raising a kid in that I would more than a little worried.

  31. Never moved away from gun crime but have moved away from something worse.
    Moved away from municipal taxes. Moved away from failing school districts. Moved away from inflated property valuation.
    Criminals don’t scare me. Government scares me.

  32. Whenever the subject of crime comes up on TTAG, posters dance around the true issue. “Economically disadvantaged—-gang bangers—-failing school districts—crime syndicate—affordable housing…”.

    We all know what those are code for.

    Black people in the US are synonymous with crime when they gather in sizable numbers.

    It’s a damned shame when you can predict whether an area is safe by how close it is to MLK Boulevard.

    Violent crime is OVERWHELMINGLY a black thing in America.

    The “why” is up for debate. It could be the broken black family, the poor nutrition during childhood, the constant barrage of anti-social hip hop culture, the lead paint in the projects, genetically low average IQ, or a combination of all of them. But everybody knows the bad side of town is usually the black side of town.

    When an area becomes more than about 20 percent black, crime skyrockets, and white people leave.

    • MS-13 makes Haitian and Russian mobs look like school children. The people you are identifying as the most criminal aren’t even close.

        • Not concerned with racism, just evaluating the threat. Local gangs may knock-over several local stores at night, but MS-13 will kill you, your dog, your family, your neighbors, all just to make a point. MS-13 recruits from the same type demographic you identify for removal, not the same demo, but the same demo type. Focusing on one “race” does not solve the problem (if it is ever solvable).

          The viciousness of MS-13 has no analog in other gangs.

        • This does beg the question of who in government would profit from their crimes.

          They would not, for example, be able to operate in Chicago unless someone in the municipal government deals them in. Certainly they would not be able to challenge the Vice Lords or Black Gangster Disciples.

      • Want to compare numbers? 51% of the murders in America are committed by 13% of the population.

        People like you are a joke. You are soooooo conditioned to not be “racist” that when confronted with cold, hard facts, you divert attention. “What about MS-13?”

        MS-13 doesn’t hold a candle to the South side of Chicago on an average Friday night.

        Crime in America is OVERWHELMINGLY a “black thing”. If the crimes committed by black people are removed from the overall number, America is less violent than Europe.

        • The American population is 300 million.

          13% of 300 million is 39 million.

          39 million is half of 78 million.

          I am certain there were not 78 million murders in the U.S. last year.

      • Since I can’t reply to your inane comment in the previous thread,I’ll just leave this here.

        “The analysis

        It’s true that around 13 per cent of Americans are black, according to the latest estimates from the US Census Bureau.

        And yes, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, black offenders committed 52 per cent of homicides recorded in the data between 1980 and 2008. Only 45 per cent of the offenders were white. Homicide is a broader category than “murder” but let’s not split hairs.


        Blacks were disproportionately likely to commit homicide and to be the victims. In 2008 the offending rate for blacks was seven times higher than for whites and the victimisation rate was six times higher.”

        You’re welcome.

  33. I don’t have to, as far as I know everyone around here has guns so there are very few soft targets.

  34. We thought we could be ‘urban pioneers’ in Dayton, Ohio. Lessons learned? Dogs, guns, locks and chains on everything. Became very active in neighborhood/local governance. Wrote zoning overlays for planning districts in order to halt and reverse urban decay. Labeled ‘raciss’ for trying to enforce people maintaining their housing to existing code.
    Gunfire after dark became common. Police officer murdered two blocks from the house. Drugs, thumping stereo’s, loitering, littering, and petty theft became all too frequent. When bandaids like speedbumps began to appear on the neighborhood streets I knew all was lost. 10 years wasted.
    Bailed out 15 years ago. Living now in a ‘forgotten’ suburb that is bounded by property zoned for agriculture. No serious crime to speak of. Still, we have dogs, guns, locks and chains on everything. Crime can travel.

  35. We moved out of Chicago to suburbs twelve years ago. Not because of the crime and violence. Still, it’s a plus.

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