The data in the new paper is equally fascinating, and on one level, as you might expect, quite troubling. To begin with, the dramatic disparities the rates of nonfatal gunshot injury: overall it’s 46.5 per 100,000 for the city as a whole from 2006-2012. It’s 1.62 per 100,000 for whites; 28.72 for Hispanics, and 112.83 for blacks.For black folks there are war zones that are probably safer than Chicago. I would think this would be of more interest than the ramblings of a now ex-basketball team owner.
For all males, it’s 44.68 per 100,000; 239.77 for black males, and for black males from 18-34 it’s 599.65. As Papachristos and co-authors Christopher Wildeman and Elizabeth Roberto point out, that’s a staggering one in 200.
One of the things that had me a little anxious in the first paper was that the gang member variable wasn’t significant. And I hypothesized that it was because there was so much uniformity in the data in the West Side.So it's not gangs. It's not "the projects". What is it then?
In the AJPH study, everyone was black, 40 percent were gang members, and they were all young men; they were all exposed to the same neighborhood conditions as well. When you expand to the whole city, you get Rogers Park, you get Englewood, you get Little Village. You get different types of conditions—housing projects, no housing projects. And that puts a lot more variation in people, and they’re exposed to different things. If everybody’s coming from the West Side, there’s still some variation, but by and large they have the same institutions and sorts of structures.
This is a great example of how we think about health care and health. This last series of mass shooters—the discussion went to mental health, for good reason. We don’t want crazy people with guns; that discussion should be had. But the real reason we should be talking about mental health is, what does the mental health of, say, mothers does for their families. Even in adverse conditions, even in high-crime communities, high-poverty communities, disadvantaged communities, if the mother of the child is mentally stable and healthy, the child does better. We know this. We know this from clinical trials. We know this from all sorts of things. Yet we never discuss that as part of safety and childhood well-being. [my underlines]Mother? Ok. And so we'll just pretend that women conceive all by themselves.
And that the same time we want them out there building community, preventing crime, which is not really what policing is designed to do, though that’s what they spend a lot of time doing.I see this same thing. I recently had a "disagreement" in regards to the concept of "self-defense" where the other person was of the opinion that because there is "security" that an individual does not "need" to think of self-defense. This is the "police prevents crime" attitude. Police are almost always "after the fact". A person who thinks like this is actually saying that they are a willing victim of crime and simply hope to survive it. However; beyond self-defense, in a community setting such an idea, that it is the police's job, meaning the state's job to "prevent" crime is one of the bigger problems in black communities. It is actually the community member's jobs to prevent crime by not tolerating the presence of members who commit crime and by raising the new members (children) to be morally against committing crime.
But we don’t really look at how health centers or schools can prevent crime. This is the one thing with school violence are about preventing crime tomorrow.Yes schools can be very helpful in re-enforcing the morality of a community. The think is that when we see massive drop out rates we know that a large number of those who would enter a life of crime are not exactly known for paying attention to teachers.