Black-On-Black Crime, Which Is At Epidemic Proportions, Could Get Even Worse

 What Critics, Who Don’t Have Any Real Solutions, Are Not Telling You About the Policy!

By Charles Fisher and Randy Fisher @HHSYC


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Actor and former Obama administration aide Kal Penn supports Stop & Frisk

Over the last year there have been so many discussions and statistics floating around on Stop, Question & Frisk that not even Dustin Hoffman’s character from the “Rain Man” movie could figure out all the facts.  What we want to do is analyze the data, quotes and statements pertaining to Stop, Question & Frisk and assess if the policy is making this a better and safer city.  But again we have been distracted by outside forces that don’t want to focus on the real problems around gun violence, which happens to be Black-on-Black crime.  One reason why Stop, Question & Frisk gets all the attention is because no one has a clue on how to solve a problem that has been fostering for decades.  If you want Stop, Question & Frisk out of your community all you have to do is put an end to Black-on-Black crime—it’s that simple.  Can all concerned parties get together around the main reason why we even have Stop, Question & Frisk?


We are sensitive to those that have been disrespected by a few unprofessional officers who have abused the policy and will be dealt with by the Commissioner, but can we allow the mistakes of a few to compromise the intent and results of the policy?  There are always a few bad apples in every agency.  What we need to do is identify them and have them removed as opposed to a policy that unfortunately at this moment seems to be our only answer to Black-on-Black crime.

There is nothing more dangerous than a Pedophile stalking children, drug dealers around our schools, and illegal guns in our community.  Each has to go, by any means necessary.  We hope all the critics of Stop, Question and Frisk have real solutions to improve public safety and reduce Black-on-Black crime.  If not you will become the new target for opening “Pandora’s Box.”  You know the saying “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.”  At least not until you have a proven better solution to the problem because we have no time to experiment with precious human lives.  As a city have we become so desensitized to violence that the loss of 419 lives is a small drop in the bucket?  Moses parted the Red Sea and many Egyptians died when the water clasped.  Will a Red Sea of Blood clasp our communities if we part with Stop, Question & Frisk?  Let’s take a look at some facts and you make your own decision.

StopFrisk2Racial Profiling In A Majority Minority Community

The question of racial profiling is at the center of this debate but how can we have racial profiling in a community when nearly all of the residents are minority and are committing the crimes?  Why would we ask NYPD to go into a community where crime does not exist?  That would not be a wise use of resources.  The police are supposed to go where the criminals are, not crime free districts.  We have to question this aspect of the issue because Black-on-Black and Hispanic-on-Hispanic crime is what is destroying our communities.  If you don’t target these groups who do you go after in minority communities?


The federal data shows teens carrying guns in the city reached an all-time low of 2.3%, which are less than half the overall national average of 5.1% and a decline of 36% since 2001.


Any policy that can help reduce the number of teens carrying a gun has to be a winner within itself.  Teens are now smarter and have stash spots for their guns, but what is more important is we have them thinking about the consequences of carrying a gun and that is the first step towards getting them to remove the thought of carrying or owning a gun out of their lives.  Not having a gun on your waist also prevents a heat of the moment shooting.


The city also released a report showing murders in New York City during 2012 fell by more than 19% from 2011 (515 to 419) and that 96% of that decline can be attributed to fewer Black and Hispanic murder victims compared to 2011.  Last year the NYPD cut the murder rates to a new record low of 419, they saved 96 lives compared to the year before, and since 2002, they have saved 7,364 lives.  We have come a long way since the record 2,245 murders in 1990.


StopFrisk3Being that 96% of gun crimes are amongst Black and Hispanics and 90% of all murders are amongst the same group anything that we do to stop gun violence will save minority lives.  Black-on-Black crime is a problem in NYC and other cities and if we could put the same energy into preventing the problem as we put into Stop, Question & Frisk maybe we would see crime go down in minority communities.  How many decades will it take for a solution to be implemented?  Does anyone really care?  Where is the movement to stop Black-on-Black crime like we have to eliminate Stop, Question & Frisk?  Which issue is more important to you?


In New York City in 2012, 57% of murders occur with a gun.  In Washington, DC, it was 66%.  In Baltimore, 84%.  In Detroit and Philadelphia, 86%.  In Chicago, the percentage of those murdered by guns was 87%.  And all of these cities also have much higher murder rates than NYC.


This is why we have to do all we can to get guns off the street and until the critics come up with a working solution we must move forward with our efforts to get guns out of the hands of the criminals while also deterring them from carrying them at all through policies like Stop, Question & Frisk.


As of April 30th of 2013, murder was down 32% compared to last year’s record low of 419 – It’s down 30-odd percent from when Commissioner Kelly took office.  If you compare the first-third of this year to when the Commissioner came into office, it’s down 56%.  And shootings are also down 22% compared to last year’s record low.  New York City has never been safer during modern times.


Thanks to the NYPD, Stop, Question & Frisk, and community groups like Cure Violence, Harlem Mothers SAVE, Man Up and the Hip-Hop Summit Youth Council we have a safer city.  At the end of the day the NYPD and community groups must work as a team to end gun violence.


StopFrisk4A separate detailed report released by the New York Civil Liberties Union showed that of the 56% of the stops that resulted in a search, only 1.9% was found with a weapon.


The agency means well, but they should not be thinking about the 1.9 figure, but more on the pain each gun would have inflicted on some family.  We are quite sure that out of the 1.9 weapons seized many gun crimes and murders were prevented.  1.9 guns may appear to be a low number if you live in a “crime free community,” but if you live in a “Hot Spot” you know a lot of lives were saved.


In 2003, New York City police officers confiscated 604 guns through 160,851 Stop-and-Frisk encounters; a success rate of one gun for every 266 stops.  Last year, the police seized 780 guns in 685,724 Stop-and-Frisks, meaning that officers made 879 stops for each gun found, says the New York Times.  Critics of the police street-stop tactics said the falling gun recovery rate was a sign that the Department was stopping too many innocent people as it made an increasing number of street stops in minority neighborhoods.  


Our response to the critics is that gun carriers are getting wiser and that until another solution is presented to keep guns off the street we have to keep the pressure on.  We all are aware of our Constitutional rights, but in order to take back our country the innocent have to realize that this is for the protection of our children, youth, seniors, and those of us that don’t carry illegal weapons.  We are not living in the 50’s where you could leave your door open and not worry about getting robbed.  Gun crimes were not common occurrences back then as they are now.  There was a time when neighbors looked out for each other.  We really cared and did not fear the thugs and gangsters when it came to protecting our property, family and friends.  Today people live in fear of retaliation and that is understood.  We now live by new rules like “snitches get stitches” and the only protection between the community and the criminals is NYPD because they are paid to carry guns and law-abiding citizens do not.


Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Kelly seized upon a comment from suspect Campbell of Rock Hill, S.C. who was caught on wiretap saying he didn’t want to bring guns to Brooklyn for fear they would be discovered if he were stopped and frisked.  “I’m in Brownsville,” Kelly quoted Campbell as saying.  “We got like, umm, uh, whatchamacallit, stop and frisk.”


Any smart gun-totting criminal will say the same thing because no one wants to go into a “Hot Spot” and risk going to prison.  Yes, Stop, Question and Frisk is a deterrent and any criminal will verify that.  Only those that have another agenda or who are far removed from the realities of the inner cities will see different.  Community policing, Check Points, and Stop, Question and Frisk are a criminal’s worst nightmare.  This is a fact we have verified on the streets where it all goes down.  Until we can stop the guns from coming into our community we need to do any and everything within our power to get them off the street.  So far no one has come up with a plan that works better than Stop, Question and Frisk.  If some one has a plan, it should be tested in a small area first because we don’t need to lose lives on some experiment gone sour.  We can’t place a value on human life and have to be sure that whatever the new policy is, that is better than what we have today.  “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”


Mayor Bloomberg credited the city’s stop-and-frisk laws with taking 8,000 guns off the street.


At an average of 6 bullets per gun, or 48,000 bullets, that is a lot of families that did not have to attend a funeral.  How many critics of Stop, Question & Frisk have lost a loved one to Gun Violence, live in a High Crime District, or was a victim of a gun crime?


StopFrisk5“These numbers show that the NYPD continues to stop, interrogate and humiliate innocent people far too frequently and that New Yorkers of color continue to bear the brunt of this indignity,” said NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman.  Lieberman also said, “guns were found in only .01% of stops,” calling the figure “an unbelievably poor yield rate for such an intrusive, wasteful and humiliating police action.”


We know she means well, but 780 guns equates to a lot of people dying in “High Crime Districts”.  We respect Constitutional rights, but the right to live in safety is even more important, just ask the parents that have been victims of gun crimes.  We are living in an age of “global and domestic terrorism” and the rules of the Constitution may have to be temporarily amended as they were with the Patriot Act to catch the terrorist when you are in a state of war.  After 911, this nation has not been the same and we can’t use 20th century policies to protect citizens in the 21st century.  The terrorists and criminals are smart and we have to be smarter to win the domestic war.


The Center for Constitutional Rights claims stop-and-frisk violates the Constitution’s 4th Amendment, which prohibits illegal searches and seizures as well as the equal-protection clause of the 14th Amendment, which is often invoked to fight laws seen as racially discriminatory. 


Well again we respect the Constitution and during normal times they should be applied, but we are at war and just like new boarding policies at the Airports, we are all causalities of war.  What we need to do is look at every community as if it were an airplane and know that before you can step foot in our precious space you would have to be searched.   The same rules apply to our courthouses and federal buildings.  You don’t see them compromising their safety to a society of criminals and mentally ill citizens who have no respect for human life.  For those that want to take an important safety net away from our cities, you should try spending a year in a “High Crime District” or a Public Housing Development.  Then maybe you have a right to cast a vote pertaining to public safety and Stop, Question & Frisk.  We must think outside of the box when it comes to protecting our community, saving lives and the U.S. Constitution.  We can’t let the criminals hide behind laws created for normal people, who also have to realize that we are living in new times.


When you have cancer they prescribe Chemotherapy, which kills all the good and bad cells in the body, allowing your system a chance to replenish and grow new cells.  Well, if we applied that same concept to public safety and searched good and bad citizens for weapons like what is being done with Stop, Question and Frisk, we would be on our way to curing the cancer in our crime-infested communities.  During Chemo, the good cells are sacrificed to save the patient.  We are sure they don’t like the terms of the treatment, but giving the patient a chance to live is more important than their individual desires.  We have to think about WE and not ME.  No one wants to be searched, but if it prevents one life from being lost, then honest people who are not doing anything wrong should have no problem getting searched every day if it will help reduce gun crimes and murders.  This is not the type of life that we desire, but we can’t allow the criminals to take over our city as well.

The question that we should be asking is what human body would have felt the impact of the bullets tearing through their flesh from the 780 guns seized?  Who would break the news to the grieving family?  We may have the toughest gun laws in the country, but until Congress can protect us from the out-of-state gun pipeline that continues to flood our communities with guns we have to fight the cancer by all means necessary.  Don’t blame NYPD; get with your local elected officials and tell them to pass real legislation that will protect citizens in the inner-cities from illegal handguns.

We Need Unity To Win

StopFrisk6We all want the same thing, but some one wants the little people at the bottom to continue to fight one another while the real killers in Washington go free.  NYPD is not the problem, but Congress and weak gun laws are.  Don’t let anyone distract you from the real criminal here.  If gun law reform got as much attention as Stop, Question & Frisk, we may have passed some laws with teeth, not the watered down drinks they keep serving up.  And what do we do—attack Stop, Question & Frisk.

If we could take all the energy that we put into addressing Stop, Question & Frisk and apply that to new federal gun laws we could make a difference, but here we are divided and conquered again.  At the end of the day, only those innocent citizens that don’t carry guns suffer.  As long as we have gun laws that keep the game of “Musical Chairs” in motion, we are all losers, except those that make money from draconian laws and a Congress that is too powerless to change legislation that contributes to the killing of 33 citizens every day.

Congress Has To Step Up To The Plate and Finally Do Their Job

NYPD does not control Congress and taking away Stop, Question and Frisk is not going to stop the flow of guns from coming into a city of 8.2 million citizens where hiding a gun is not that hard.  Be careful of what you ask for, because none of us asked to be in this situation, but this is the hand that has been dealt so let’s try to make the best of it and improve upon what we have that is working.  That includes real gun law reform in Washington, so get on your horse and contact those who can make a change.

A lot of chatter is going on about the dangers of Stop, Question & Frisk, but we also need to think about the safety and protection of our children, youth, young adults and seniors who are vulnerable to gun violence.  We have all seen or heard about the Wild West shootouts that take place in the ‘Hood, but what are we going to do if we eliminate Stop, Question, & Frisk?  Who is gong to stop the criminals fast enough to ensure that we don’t go back to the days of the Crack epidemic when the blood flowed in this city like a severed artery?


Don’t Let Them Bamboozle You Into Giving The Criminals The Advantage

Malcolm would say don’t be “Bamboozled” into thinking that someone wants to do you a favor because since the reform of the Rockefeller Drug Laws groups like ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) and their affiliates have been looking for a way to refill the prisons once again.  We are not mad at them because we understand that this is their job.  ALEC is a group that uses its influence to support some policies associated with mass incarceration and the Prison Industrial Complex.

The best way for them to prosper is to keep the prisons full; gun violence plays a key role.  Private Prisons are big business and their stocks are being traded on the NY Stock Exchange.  We are sure that after the judge’s ruling the private prison stocks have increased.  Sometimes it’s the job of groups like ALEC to handicap law enforcement agencies so that officers can’t properly do their job.  When you take Stop, Question & Frisk off the street the criminals can once again take control of your community causing chaos and conflict which leads to gun violence.  Now remember we are not living in the 60’s anymore so what would make you believe that being stopped by the cops is worse than being stopped and shot by a thug?

Slumping Upstate Economy Will Get Some Help With The End of Stop, Question & Frisk

If you don’t think there is a correlation between Stop, Question & Frisk, the end of the Rockefeller Drug laws, a slumping Upstate Prison System, and a slow job growth Upstate as well you need to look at this recent report by the Albany-based Fiscal Policy Institute.  According to the report Upstate New York has seen a total job growth of 1.2% over the past four years, while the nation has seen a growth rate of nearly three times that.  Meanwhile, median wages have fallen nearly 7% for men and 1% for women over the past 10 years, according to the report.  “Yes, New York state is in recovery, but we’re still not able to walk across the room without crutches, not to mention start training for a marathon,” said James Parrott, the Think Tank’s deputy director and chief economist.  You don’t have to believe us, but don’t believe the hype either, do your homework and read the report.  The best way to stimulate that market is through the mass incarceration of NYC residents who have always been the backbone of the NYS Prison economy.

Being An Officer And A Citizen In A Tough Crazy City Is A Hard Job

Is it wise to remove the only real line of defense between you and the killers?  Are you not playing into the hands of those that will do you 10 times as much harm as NYPD?   We all know that the local thug will shoot you for a pair of sneakers, wearing the wrong colors, being in the wrong community, or looking at him/her the wrong way.  At the end of the day law abiding citizens don’t carry guns to defend themselves and we need someone to keep a check and balance in place that the criminals may not like, but do respect to some degree.  As we said previously, none of us wants to be searched, but we don’t want the criminals running wild with guns either.  Guess it boils down to who do you trust more, the thugs or NYPD?  Most officers we know have families and want to get home safe after their shift.  Yes there are a few that need more training or to be fired, but a majority do follow the law and those are the ones we have to support, while we go after those that are compromising the safety of their fellow officers by not respecting the communities they serve.  NYPD is the greatest Police Department in the world and no one has the right to put on a uniform and shame the name and reputation of an agency that many sacrificed their life for in the line of duty.


Serve, Protect And Respect The Uniform; Both Officers And Citizens Who Care

We all have to step up our game and work as a team to keep our communities safe, respect each other, and do everything we can to protect law abiding citizens not only from the criminals, but also from any officer that does not understand the unique value of being a part of the NYPD brand.  A police officer’s job is to protect and serve and this is not an easy task because there are a lot of criminals, thugs and mentally ill people that have no respect for life running loose on the street.

That is why we have to understand that we are all in this together.  We can’t fall victim to the divide and conquer game that is being played on us all.  At the end of the day we are in the trenches and the 1% is enjoying their life because there is a lot of profit in war, crime and violence.  The question is when will we wake up and realize that all of us at the bottom are not the enemy, maybe they are.  Or maybe we are our worse enemy and until we can look at the man in the mirror, the world will never change.

The opinions in this report are those of the writers and not the Source Magazine.

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