Recently I’ve considered packing up and leaving the city where I’ve lived, gone to school, and worked in for my entire life. I love this town and think it gets a bad rap, but have gotten bored because I am so familiar with it. It’s as if the city has become a safety blanket for me. I’ve become comfortable and content and Ive always felt those were somewhat bad feelings to have. Now it seems I have more reason to leave this city and this state.
Since Sunday 3 police officers have been shot in Philadelphia (29 officers have been shot at this year). Philadelphia police have fatally shot 14 people this year. Last year, 20 people were killed in the city in police shootings, the most since 1980, according to FBI statistics. There have been 333 homicides in Philadelphia as of Monday. Because of the NRA and the idiots that think taking a gun to shoot a deer is a sport, the state and more importantly the city are awash in guns. And as importantly, the city is awash in dangerous people who are willing to brazenly use these weapons. Authorities talk about “no respect for authority” – it goes beyond that, there’s no respect for human life. It literally has become the wild, wild west here. I have never feared for the safety of friends and family, but I now believe that to naive if not outright foolish.
I have a lot of hope for Michael Nutter as the incoming mayor – the policing strategy has got to change, but there needs to be a response from this state that does something about the guns on the street. The fact that they don’t do anything in light of the people being killed in increasing numbers shows what they feel about the residents of this city – but I know rural Republicans support the police – let’s see if they leave the people that put their lives on the line to protect others hanging.
As for my friends and family, you can’t hide from violence, but be careful what areas of Philadelphia you visit. Be mindful of your surroundings. I guess this is good advice anywhere.