What’s a ‘normal’ level of crime?

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 29, 2007

To the Editor:

I have voted for Congressman Artur Davis twice (separate elections) and while his politics are often too liberal for me, he impresses me as being basically honest and sincere.

However, I was extremely disappointed to read his comments at the Monday night Town Hall meeting.

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It appears he has joined a long list of liberal politicians, some local, who whenever asked about the growing problem of crime in our cities, can offer nothing more than to say “every community in this state has a crime problem.”

What does that mean? That’s all you hear from the liberal (excuse me “progressive”) side of the Selma City Council when asked about crime, they say “crime is everywhere.”

What does that mean?

Does that mean that if we buy a home or invest in a business, we should expect it to be burglarized because the next town has the same problem?

Do they not know or not care that if your standard of measurement changes daily, only the criminals win? Let’s use as an example the year 1950, and say that Selma, Montgomery and Birmingham each have zero burglaries and all have the same population.

Let’s say by 1990, the number of burglaries has risen to 15 percent of the homes in Selma, 10 percent in Montgomery, and 20 percent in Birmingham. The average is 15 percent.

So if asked about the crime, the “progressives” on the city council can say, “we have a normal level of crime for a city our size.”

But let’s say in 2007, the burglary rate in Selma is 30 percent, 30 percent in Montgomery and 40 percent in Birmingham.

The number of burglaries has now more than tripled to 30 percent in Selma with an average of 33 percent among the other cities.

So you go to the City Council and ask, what is the city going to do about the increase in crime?

The “progressive” members will say, “everybody has the same problem, we have the same average level of crime as everybody else” so what does Selma do, they reduce the police force from 70 to 40 policeman and use the money for more urgent projects such as paying city lawyers to sue the county for building a greatly needed 911 emergency tower and filing groundless losing appeals.

Yes, the “progressive” politicians can say and will say we have a “normal” level of crime for a city our size.

So by 2020, when the level of burglaries has risen to 100 percent in all three cities, you can go to your “progressive” city council person and mayor and ask, what is the city going to do about crime?

And they can once again say, “we have the same level of crime as other cities our size.”

And as before, nothing will be done, so the 30 people left in Selma by 2020 will awake each day and go to work for the city’s BuildDisTrust Department, posting citations on the 10,000 abandoned houses for having overgrown weeds and unsightly debris around the premises.

That is, unless future elections bring about some major and greatly needed changes in our city government!

B. Kincey Green Jr.