The Streets Are Over…
While your local news channel might display violence and crime within the black community, the crime rate and street activity has been on a steady decline.
Metropolitan’s around the United States have seen a decrease in violent crimes compared to 2009, and in many cases compared to 2000, even though numerous cities have had a rise in homicides.
Metropolitan areas include Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Charleston, SC, Cincinnati, Columbia, SC, Detroit, Houston, Jacksonville, Las Vegas, New York City, Orlando, Sacramento, San Diego, Oakland, Washington DC (DMV), and Tampa.
There are some cities that have seen a rise in violent crimes like Denver, Milwaukee, Phoenix, Montgomery, Albany, GA, Albuquerque, Alexandria, LA, Charleston, WV, Corpus Cristi, Florence, CA, Fort Smith, Huntsville, AL, Pine Bluff, and Wichita.
Cities like Los Angeles, New Orleans, Nashville, Omaha, Portland and Chattanooga have seen their violent crime rate decreased since 2000, but the crime rate has stayed the same since 2009.
Miami-Dade County went from a violent crime rate of 1,207.4 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2000 to 524.6 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2017, which was one of the largest declines in the country.
The Memphis metropolitan has one the highest violent crime rates in the country, but mainly because much of the metropolitan lies within the city limits of Memphis, while other cities metropolitan statistics include the neighboring suburban cities.
Previous Years of Decline
This is not the first decline in the crime rate within the black community as the late 1990s and most of the 2000s had a low violent crime rate compared to previous years.
With the introduction to drugs during the 1980s, the 1990s saw a large increase in violence within the urban communities due to drug and turf wars, retaliations, gangs and other aspects within the streets.
After Bill Clinton’s “Three Strikes Law”, street activity declined by the late 1990s as a law enforcement crackdown led to the increase of incarceration for drug offenses, along with longer years in prison sentences.
The crime bill that Bill Clinton signed led to a steep drop in crime in the urban neighborhoods, but unfortunately led to many non-violent offenders to be sentenced to a number of years that did not match their crime.
Unfortunately, the trend of a low number of violent crimes did not last long as the late 2000s, going into the 2010s, saw a rise in violence within the urban communities of cities across the country.
A Rise in Homicides
Even though violent crimes have been decreasing, which is the reason for the national trend of a declining violent crime rate, there has been a spike in homicide’s in most cities throughout the United States.
The rise in homicides are troubling since there is no reasonable excuse for the killings in the black and urban communities as at times the community seems to destroy itself.
Provided by STLToday.com, the city of St. Louis had the highest homicide rate in 2017.
While Chicago gets the most attention for violence within the urban communities, the city of Chicago has one of the lowest homicide rates as their number shootings outnumber the amount of homicides.
Eventually, homicides in cities around the country will soon decline, as they always do, with new generations and new eras come into the mix, which often develops a new mindset and new way people conduct themselves.
The Streets of Today
Like how the “Crack Era” affected the black community during the 1980s and 1990s, by changing how people interact in the streets, the era after President Obama’s election had similar affects.
The new era led to the streets to become less profitable as many people have been turning away from street crimes and narcotic sales, while the days of running the streets are over with.
People who were once in the streets know have legitimate jobs, before Donald Trump became president, or have some sort of legal hustle to support themselves.
Sadly, the rise in homicides can be attributed for some reasons that are known and some unknown, but all reasons are for the wrong reason.
Reasons may include an easier access to firearms, influences from social media and today’s rap culture, the lack of guidance, and the absence of activities that will keep people occupied as the saying goes ideal mind is the devil’s playground.
In the city of Chicago, there are more shootings now in the 2010s but less homicides compared to the 1990s when there were less shootings, this proves that another problem is the fear of properly dealing conflicts in a more common-sense way.
When conflict or confrontation does erupt the first idea is to grab a gun, for the reasons stated above, which is the cause for so many homicides that have escalated from the slightest conflict and from the pettiest reason.
Fortunately, many in the black community are becoming less involved in street activity as this is a new era for African-Americans, an era that has the community wanting more.
The days of depending on entitlement programs like “Section 8”, which some considered trapped the community from advancing, are over as African-Americans are striving for me.
Today’s African-Americans are aiming for better communities, whether it is moving into the suburbs or rebuilding their own community despite the local efforts of gentrification.
Altogether, many have recognized that there is more than being in the streets, depending on welfare programs, and not progressing as having ambition and doing anything positive has much rewards.