ETA: I don't see crime in Philadelphia going down any time soon. We had that dip after Johnson finally retired (thank God) but there is no way Ramsey is going to be able to counter the demographic changes that are coming our way.
The 26% of the city's population that has been financially underwater is moving closer to 40%, unemployment has nowhere to go but up, the City is insolvent and can't afford to pay its employees much pay 50% of its pension obligations, etc, etc.
Those promises over a year back about getting 200-300 more Philly cops on the streets is long gone. Now we're looking at a loss of officers.
And we still have the same craptastic set of judges trying cases as we had before.
And we have not yet one single more prison bed than before when Street was mayor.
This isn't good. All the more reason to have CCW if you don't already.
I'm with toxigirl & CrazyIvan. How often are folks killed with their own guns, as was apparently the case with Saturday's victim?
Has anyone heard anything more about the meeting promised after Vernon Price's office canceled last week's vigil?
Last edited by nola; 07-21-2009 at 12:17 AM. Reason: broken link
I think (at least, I hope) the remark about "if we're all packing heat the world will be a safer place" might have been a joke that flew under our radar. If it wasn't, then I want to know where the guy lives so I don't run the risk of taking two in the chest when I'm walking my dog at night
My wife and I moved to Allens Ln last year. We came from Chapel Hill, NC, where we lived in a subdivision where not a whole lot happened. We were there 19 years and got to know only a couple of our neighbors. It was safe, it was a good location relative to town, and ultimately it became kind of numbing. We decided to "go urban" and did a lot of research on locations throughout the country, finally settling on Mt Airy for its affordability, national rep for racial harmony, combination of natural & man-made beauty, etc. People in Chapel Hill thought we were out of our minds.
One of the things we've learned over the last year is safety. My wife took a "Safe in the City" course at MALT (excellent, as are all their offerings). My sensitivity to "situations" is greater. We have and use our home alarm. We don't keep valuables in our cars when they're parked outside our garage, and so on. Having police patrols in the neighborhood would be wonderful, of course, but safety and community starts with individuals. My wife and I are more street smart than a year ago, and our block is informally organized (we'll send emails about "events'). I've been in the neighborhood at all hours with my dog (a Schnauzer, not a dog that can be used as a weapon) and I've never, ever felt uneasy about a situation.
The only Situation (note the case) where I was victimized happened a few weeks ago. My car was stolen out of my driveway (during the day, when both my wife and I were home, no less). It happened on the 1 year anniversary of our moving to Philly, and so gave the appearance of "ha! your 1 year good will policy has expired!" We recovered the car, and the 1 year-old perp is in custody.
Here's my point: we did nothing wrong (car was locked, nothing was in it) and the crime still happened. Still, I strongly feel that I'd rather deal with the occasional property crime than to flee back to the safe but ultimately less interesting and less environmentally sustainable lifestyle of the burbs. We love the neighborhood, and if you love something you should make the effort (individually and collectively) to preserve it and make it an even better place to live.
He's not joking. It makes some people feel safer to carry a gun, although statistically it does nothing and actually is likely to make you more unsafe -- have the gun used against you, escalate a situation to where the bad guy feels like he has to use his weapon, etc. There will now be a series of posts about his lightning-quick reflexes and exactly what he would do if confronted with a bad guy in an alley, or came upon a woman being raped, blah, blah, blah.
Great post. Sorry about your car...but was the perp really 1 year old?
Sorry, I didn't proofread. He was 16 (at the trial it came out that his mother died 5 years ago, his father was nowhere to be found, and the kid was living with his brother, who didn't accompany the kid to court). The judge flipped through several pages of documentation of prior arrests before she started the proceedings, later (needlessly) saying "he's a troubled young man."
This is a very interesting read for someone like myself who is considering a move there from my relatively dense, urban neighborhood much closer to Center City. I carry mace at all times when I walk my dogs...to protect my dogs from other loose dogs because my dog got attacked by a gentrifier's Pit Bull rescue that darted out of her house last year and after you see a dog tear off your dog's ear, you get a little paranoid.
Here, the crimes I usually hear and/or see are graffiti, the common city smash and grab into cars...maybe a car theft here or there. (Like my friend's around the corner that ended up going on a joy ride to 4th and Westmoreland the month she paid it off!) Every now and again, some kids decide to beat up a newbie, most likely drunk and wearing an iPod...
Two weeks ago, I got home to find that someone tried to break into my house and apparently were thwarted by two large, barking dog heads in the window. Mission aborted. Still, thinking about installing security.
I'm aware of city crime and the fact that it will be on the rise--people, as I alluded to above, get desperate when times are desperate. I grew up in a lovely suburb and my family was still victims of crime in a handful of times like getting our gas tanks drained, our garage robbed...a good friend of my mom's a few blocks away got her house ransacked and robbed while she was on vacation and across the street? The woman and her child were unfortunate enough to be home when the perps entered and she and her daughter were bound, beaten and raped.
Crime happens everywhere. It just destroys my "grass is always greener" picture of Mt. Airy I'll be able to go, relax on some hammock on the backyard and breathe perfectly clean air and otherwise be in a bubble.
Incidentally, I am getting much more pro-gun as I get older. I am convinced you need one more the less people are around though because there are less people to help you, more likely police are very far away. (Like I would have one in an instant in the country.)
Licensed Pennsylvania Real Estate Salesperson and inactive and happily non-practicing Attorney, CITYSPACE
I like to say that I piss off both sides of the gun control debate, by being both in favor of fairly strict gun control laws, yet an NRA-accredited Sharpshooter, 1st bar. I consider myself to be a pro-2nd Amendment liberal.
After my daughter was born, I went through my old things + found the NRA medals which I won for riflery in HS. I intend to have them mounted prominently near the door so that any of my daughter's dates can see that, if I so desire, I could give them a shave from down the block. They don't need to know that I don't actually *have* a rifle, after all...
Case in point: I had initially tried to register for PhillyBlog in early March after I had to call the police one night. My bedroom window overlooks an intersection and, one night at 11:30, I awoke because some a^^hole was standing under my window (I'm on the 2nd floor of my building) firing a gun into the air. Come to find out when the police arrived: the dude with the gun had been WANDERING around on the first floor of my building, waving his gun around. The girl in the apartment under me was too scared to a)call the cops or b) give them a better description than I could from my awkward angle out my bedroom window. She literally saw his face thru her peephole but wouldn't give a description.
In 2001, while a student at Temple, I was mugged at gunpoint on campus. When the police eventually got the 2 guys (my then-boyfriend and I spent hours in the middle of the night looking thru mugshots to ID them), we found out that the same 2 had robbed a bunch of kids in off-campus housing two days before they got us. The kids were walking out of their house and were forced back in and robbed. 6 people were there...none of them could or would ID the guys, yet I was able to pick them out of a lineup after a minute-long mugging on a darkened street corner.
The point: to me, this isn't a gun-v-anti gun issue. It's all about being aware of your surroundings and acting accordingly. You know when something is wrong...you can feel it. People need to trust their instincts and make the neighborhood safer for everyone.
There have been 2 murders in East Mt. Airy w/in the last 3 weeks, and I think that's 2 far too many. But it's not forcing me to leave the area. It's still lovely, and peaceful, and for the most part, clean and inviting.
as the owner of a rescued pit mix, i hate when people who have them dont' keep them propery secured. but that goes for all dogs. i admit, i don't walk my dogs much because i'm scared of a run-in with an off-leash animal.
Whatever the reason for crime - people with ill intent, the economy, etc - one thing you can do is become more aware of your surroundings and how to avoid or react to dangerous situations. My wife took a short but very helpful course called "Safer in the City" offered by MALT last Spring. Here's the Spring 09 catalog link: http://www.mtairylearningtree.org/im...g09Catalog.pdf Look at the course description on page 13. It reads in part:
My wife was very impressed with the instructor and the material. After the second class she more or less dared me to try to put her in a headlock. Having read the materials from the first class I knew what to expect, and graciously declined.The first evening Sensei John King shows you how to be “Safer In The City” and reduce your risk of becoming a victim. Learn easy ways to make yourself a difficult target for criminals. Crime prevention and crime avoidance are simple once you know what criminals are looking for and how they operate. Gain confidence, increase your awareness, and decrease your vulnerability.
Personal safety is not physically defending yourself. It is the practice of taking steps to avoid placing yourself in harm’s way in the first place.
The second session called “No-Nonsense Self-Defense” is the hands-on workshop that picks up where “Safer In The City” leaves off. Practice and
learn simple, effective defense techniques against attacks including punches, kicks, grabs, chokes, headlocks, headbutts, bearhugs, and more.