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(courtesy Baltimore PD)

Fragile Baltimore Struggles to Heal After Deadly Police Encounter the New York Times headline proclaims. As you can see from our headline, the story offers some hard data in addition to its touchy-feely examination of post-Freddie Gray Baltimore’s black community. The stats provided by writer Sheryl Gay Stolberg indicate that the City’s police force are failing to keep a lid on crime, amidst allegations that they’ve backed off after six officers were charged with Mr. Gray’s homicide. Continuing to fail? Strangely . . .

the article never once uses the word “gang.”

The Greatest City in America is home to the Black Guerrilla Family, the Bloods and the Crips. They don’t like each other. At all. Gang members die in droves, thanks to rivalry-driven “gun violence.” You may recall the BPD’s public warning that the three gangs had declared a truce to go after cops after Freddie Gray’s death. Fabricated. Which gives us a good indication of the Baltimore police force’s level of professionalism and efficacy. Let’s put some numbers to that:

The homicide rate is soaring. Baltimore, with roughly 623,000 people, has had 270 homicides this year, almost as many as in New York, with 281 in a city of about 8.4 million. Nearly 100 people have been murdered in Baltimore in the last three months alone, eight in the last week . . .

The homicide “clearance rate,” the percentage of killings solved by the police, was 45.5 percent last year; today it is 32.8 percent, the police said. Nationally, the rate was 64 percent in 2013, the most recent year for which the Justice Department has statistics.

In response, the Rawlings-Blake administration has created a “war room” — a controversial term here, given tensions between the police and residents — where detectives, prosecutors and federal agents trace weapons and track down criminals. Mr. Davis, the police commissioner, says the team has identified 238 “gun toters,” all suspected of homicides or nonfatal shootings. None are behind bars.

Don’t get me wrong. The cops’ failure to shut down Baltimore’s gang-fuelled violence should not be seen in isolation. I grew up in a state (Rhode Island) that was owned and operated by the mafia. I know what Gotham or Baltimore-style corruption looks like. It’s a cancer that consumes every aspect of society: police, politics, the courts, teachers, businessmen, criminals, the media, taxpayers, everyone. At some point, there are more leeches than hosts.

“A lot of people in white and wealthy corporate America said, ‘What did we not do, to make these neighborhoods better?’ ” said Tessa Hill-Aston, the president of the Baltimore chapter of the N.A.A.C.P., who also attended the Johns Hopkins reception. “There’s not a corporate board meeting where Freddie Gray’s name doesn’t come out of everyone’s mouth.”

To Mr. Hickman, these are hopeful signs. But as he looked around Mr. Daniels’s elegantly appointed living room that evening — just hours after a judge had set Nov. 30 as the date for the first of the six trials in Mr. Gray’s death — he also felt a sense of unease as he contemplated the murky path forward.

“The city is definitely on hold,” the pastor said. “We’re on ‘pause,’ waiting to press ‘play.’ ”

Everything either grows or dies. Allegations of racist redlining aside, Baltimore is dying. Those who look at the City’s firearms-related homicides and focus on the guns – rather than the system surrounding and supporting the criminals using them – are on a fool’s errand. In fact, they’re helping to maintain the status quo. Just like The New York Times.

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  1. Just wait until next year when the NYT joins the rest of the media in blaming the gun industry for this rise in “gun violence” while ignoring their culpability in the rise of the incidental, headline grabbing race wars that they continue to fuel and help facilitate.

  2. Well said. Just as no one in the left-wing press will mention the gang word in The One’s hometown of Chiraq, the NYT wont touch the same in “Democrat ruled for 40 years” Baltimoristan, or address the underlying problem of dysfunctional black urban welfare dependency culture and black on black crime by “children” under 25.
    Look how much trouble Bloomberg got into for daring to say same in the Aspen Conference.

    Here is Heather MacDonald addressing Congress with the related facts on criminal justice, that the left wing press simply wont report, as it completely destroy’s the Narrative, and indicts the progressives agenda as the true cause of black victimhood.

  3. Here’s the answer: Just give the thugs more room to destroy and call it urban renewal. Fifty years from now, when a completely burned-out Baltimore is rebuilt from the foundation up, it will be the Mid-Atlantic’s shining star. Or we can just nuke it from space.

  4. Can’t we finally jump to the end of the argument and just call it what it is? Liberal POS-ness.

    If we don’t all fix it, it’ll be what we die of.

  5. Seems like there have been more murders solved this year than last, yet the writer appears hellbent on percentages. Did the number of cops increase? Did the number of man hours hours devoted to solving these murders increase? If not, isn’t it natural that with more murders and no more men or hours to solve them the percentage solved would go tend to go down even if the actual number “cleared” increased?

    Typical liberal spin written to spoon feed the mindless anti sheeple with debate gibberish.

    Given all of the circumstances that the BPD is working under, I think they are doing a fairly good job of defending that war zone.

    • “If not, isn’t it natural that with more murders and no more men or hours to solve them the percentage solved would go tend to go down even if the actual number “cleared” increased? “

      Not necessarily. Not all murders have the same “easiness” to solve. There are going to be fluctuations not only in number of murders but in clearance difficulty as well.

      They could have just happened to have a year of relatively “easy” murders (in terms of clearance numbers).

      Just as an example, consider a situation like Newtown, CT, where the number of murders in a year is typically pretty small. After the school shooting, the number of murders when up as did the clearance rate…the clearance increase was not due to increased police proficiency, manpower or anything. It’s because a bunch of that year’s murders were caused by one person so that solving one homicide equaled solving 26.

      Likewise in Baltimore…if by clearing one murder they cleared several (say, bad guy confesses to others as part of plea deal, for example), no additional manpower yields higher clearance and higher clearance percentage. If this happens to happen a lot more than typical years, the numbers can skew without manpower/effort increases.

      As in most things, there’s more underlying what is going on than just raw numbers OR percentages. But, the MSM and the left will never let understanding a problem get in the way of sensationalism. That much we can bet on.

  6. When I hear about violence that is “gang-driven” and “rivalry-driven,” what I hear is “war on drugs-driven.” Or, rather, simply driven by the fact that they’re illegal and there’s a massive black market for them.

    • Not to say that I don’t understand where you’re coming from, but it doesn’t seem like legalizing drugs is the magic bullet you’re looking for. It’s not as if the black market’s going to just give up and die off like the dinosaurs- if Colorado’s any example, government regulation will push to cost of rec drugs higher and the illegal stuff will still be cheap, dangerous, and in demand. Prohibition ended in the late 1920s, but organized crime’s still around.

      TL;DR: criminals will find a way.

      • +1

        If you look at historical murder rates the big jump occurred in the decade before Prohibition when sex, drugs and gambling were legal. And it didn’t fall because Prohibition ended. The murder rate fell because of the cartelization of organized crime. The spike at the end was the mafia’s version of corporate downsizing — concrete overshoes instead of a Golden Parachute. Don’t believe this then look at Chicago’s murder rate. It peaked In 1927
        What is significant about 1927? It’s the year Capone put the rival Moran gang out of business.

      • Drugs are currently the elephant in the gang-motivating room. I do believe that gang-on-gang crime and various south-of-the-border-spilling-over-into-the-US violence issues would be greatly alleviated were drugs legal. I see no scenario whatsoever where legalizing drugs would make the country worse off and only see potential net benefits. The people who want to do drugs do drugs. The law doesn’t stop a soul. Declaring war on the chosen vice of 30 million people doesn’t stop them, doesn’t help them, and very much harms the rest of us in many ways.

        There’s the related issue of the dissolution of the Fourth Amendment with no-knock raids and other egregious gov’t violations — civil forfeiture laws, corruption, etc — that have come directly out of the war on drugs.

        There’s the related issue that laws which are so widely ignored foment a complete disrespect for the law in general. e.g.:

        “The prestige of government has undoubtedly been lowered considerably by the Prohibition law. For nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced. It is an open secret that the dangerous increase of crime in this country is closely connected with this.”
        — Albert Einstein

        • We have been through this before. The data does not support your argument. When I get back from the gym I will post it for you.

          Tying the rise of organized crime to Prohibition is a romantic fairy tale not based on reality. Gambling and the associated loan sharking that went with it was always the lifeblood of organized crime not alcohol.

          The rise in violence was a result of the war between the rising Italio-Jewish mob displacing the Irish. It is probably true that Prohibition fostered the amalgamation of regional organized crime to a national cartel but that would have happened eventually anyway.

        • You consider inner city type gang violence to be “organized crime?” That’s generous. At any rate, as mentioned, it’s only a single aspect of what we suffer due to drugs being illegal. Even if the gangs continued being just as violent as they are now, the country would be financially better off and socially better off without the war on drugs. It has shredded parts of the constitution and filled the jails and prisons, and it isn’t worth it.

        • I have a couple concerns about your arguments. The idea that the law isn’t a deterrent is a false one. It may not be enough of a deterrent to prevent many drug users, but it is still a deterrent, and studies taken after Colorado’s marijuana legalization showed that people who didn’t smoke before began after. The overall rate of users increased by a significant amount.
          The Fourth Amendment concerns are something entirely separate from legalization. It is possible to maintain Constitutionality and still outlaw harmful substances. Put simply, statism gonna’ statist.
          And here’s the basic flaw in the Prohibition analogy: Prohibition isn’t equivalent to our stance on drugs, because it was enacted on a previously-legal substance. With out current situation, drugs were never legal, they simply became popular. A nation can’t bow to criminality or stop enforcing its own laws, simply because illegal behavior becomes commonplace.

        • Well Jeremy it seems that you have changed the subject on statistical grounds. It is not even clear how much increase in violence was due to Prohibition. Since the continued increase falls on the trendline. And the surge in violence at the end of the 20s and into the 30s comes at a time of decreasing competition in organized crime as the Italio-Jewish mob became a national cartel.

          Unlike previous incarnations of organized crime inner city gangs do not follow a business model. They are primarily a social phenomenon that developed from the collapse of the black family in the beginning in the mid 1960s. (Read Daniel Patrick Moynihan on the collapse of the black family.) Legalizing drugs will have zero impact on their behavior.

          The drug legalization movement is making policy recommdations based on a fairy tale written in the 1920s by the BATF.

        • ” It is possible to maintain Constitutionality and still outlaw harmful substances.”

          That statement contradicts itself.

          Where in the US Constitution is the government given authority to regulate “harmful substances?”

          This belies a bit of a Statist viewpoint, and a Nannyist one as well…that a proper role of government is to protect us from our own choices.

      • So ease up on the government regulation. Duh.

        Are illegal alcohol and tobacco big business? Is violence and criminality common in producers and distributors of those products? No and no. It’s true that criminal gangs didn’t go away, they shifted their operations to other black markets for products and services that are in high demand, but that legitimate business people can’t supply legally.

        If the market for drugs were truly free, then the producers would be major corporations, just like they are in the alcohol and tobacco industries. Prices would be too low to make significant black market operations worthwhile, and therefore the criminal element wouldn’t be involved the way it is now. Instead of Mexican cartels smuggling in pot, you’d have PhillipMorris growing different varieties and selling them at 7-11.

  7. Robert, the modern gang is not the mafia. The Mafia was a business. They didn’t shoot up the neighborhood. They meted out justice in private and secluded places. These gangs are warring tribes fighting for control of an ungoverned area. At the same time the political power structure uses these gangs to maintain social control by destroying economic, social and educational institutions to keep the people poor, ignorant, dependent and voting Democratic.

  8. Meh, Liberal cities are a lost cause. We lost control when we didn’t napalm the first batch of riotin animals as an example to others. Now they know that they can more or less pillage an urban center with zero repercussions.

  9. Actually the politicians in Chicago blame gangs all the time (along with guns) for the violence. It’s not really accurate. While ‘gangs’ are involved with a lot of the violence this spike isn’t about them, as much; it’s the inner-city society (not all gang-affiliated) that accepts violence and criminality as par for the course. While they’ll have a candlelight vigil once in awhile they won’t snitch on the offenders and they’ll do their best to disempower the police because they know that tomorrow the cops might find their son slinging dope on the corner. I was once in uniform taking a missing person report from two young black men and people started yelling from rooftops that they ‘dindonuthin!’ and that I needed to stop hassling them.

    The gangs are a symptom of the cultural disease in Baltimore, Chicago, etc, not the root cause.

    • “it’s the inner-city society (not all gang-affiliated) that accepts violence and criminality as par for the course.” Not just as par for the course, but as a primary form of entertainment and status-establishment. Feral predators committing random public violent attacks against the most defenseless innocents, as a form of video-recorded dance/theater, for no other apparent purpose than amusement. It’s like scenes out of Robocop or Robocop 2. It is anarchic societal collapse.

  10. Since Baltimore is in Maryland, private citizens, especially those who can’t afford to move to better neighborhoods, are helpless against the thugs.

  11. I don’t think I like the title of this one. “Baltimore Police’s Epic Fail.” Certainly it’s a failure, you could argue that it’s epic, but the police are doing exactly what they’re supposed to be doing. At least, according to the city government.

    It’s a matter of definitions. If you define arresting young black men as racist, then success in combating racism in police work is acheived by not arresting young black men. If you define investigating crime in black communities as unreasonably harassing and disrupting minority communities, then success is achieved by redirecting police resources to minimise harassment.

    It all works as long as you define the problem as institutional racism rather than violent crime. After all, the worst of the crimes, the murders? Those are defined as tragedy which can only be fought by common sense restrictions on rights.

  12. Racism, hell. Detroit and Flint alone account for a solid 60% of Michigan’s murder rate (using 2012 numbers – the latest year data is available for all three). It’s not the six white people left in either city that’s doing all the killing.

    Further investigation leads one to similar number that play out in every State that has at least one big city with a sizable African-American population.

    America doesn’t have a gun problem. It has a melanin problem.

    • Rather than take the easy approach and just insult you, I’ll give you an actual response.

      It’s possible to recognize the exceptionally high crime rate among young black men in this country without blaming it on their being either young, or black, or men. It’s culture. Huge amounts of people who happen to be young, black, and male, also happen to be born into a tragically self destructive culture which does not value the rule of law, does not take pride in meaningful accomplishment, or perhaps most important of all, the care of one’s own children.

      People of every color who are born into a culture like this are certainly capable of lifting themselves out of it, but when they grow up being told that this is a betrayal of everything around them, and that attempting to educate themselves in any significant way is as un-manly as wearing a ballerina’s point shoes to the basketball court, how many of them are really going to try?

      The problem is the social welfare state, and the resulting and somewhat systematic destruction of what was by comparison a vibrant and thriving black culture. Don’t you think the same thing will be done to the growing Hispanic population, given the way the Democrats are so hell bent on creating new immigration law by executive decree?

      Sure, people as worthless or terrible as Kanye West and Al Sharpton are black. Colin Powell and Condi Rice are black too. Ben Carson is black. I could list a hundred more on both sides, but I don’t really see the point. In the end, we still need to judge people not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. The counterpoint to that is that when we find someone wanting in character, we don’t excuse it because of the color of their skin.

      We don’t have a melanin problem at all. Our problem is we knowingly stopped teaching young Americans what it means to be an American.

    • By the way, I don’t really have anything against you or feel like you deserve an insult- but this being the internet, if you make comments about things like ‘a melanin problem,’ chances are you won’t get reasoned discussion in reply.

  13. “I grew up in a state (Rhode Island) that was owned and operated by the mafia.”

    Dude! Were you and Dave “Burger Chef” Codrea high-school buds or something?

    Pass me a Gansett and another stuffie!

  14. ARE YOU READY FOR THE TRUTH???? Divide and conquer thats what they are doing.
    I’ve had enough of someone else’s propaganda. I’m for truth, no matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it’s for or against. I’m a human being first and foremost, and as such I m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.
    Malcolm X
    Search for the truth. Them, government Versus us. No double standards put DC politicians on Obamacare and SS.Thanks for your support and vote.Pass the word.


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