July 30, 2003

Why does the world seem so insane?

I just got back from the store, only the second time I have left the house, and likely this computer for more than 10 minutes, all day. Jeez, but do I have a pathetic life or what? Anyway, what urged me to run right home and post was that I caught a glimpse of the front page of the Dallas Morning News. Big headline: Dallas has No. 1 big-city crime rate. I thought, wow, that is very alarming, especially since Dallas, is what? like only the 7th largest city in the US. Then I read the story on the web [linked above] and it begins with:

Dallas is on pace to have the highest crime rate among the nation's largest cities for the sixth year in a row, fueled in part by a 72 percent spike in homicides, according to statistics for the first half of this year.
Up until a little three years ago, I was a resident and a criminal defender in Dallas, and I was not aware that Dallas' crime rate was so high. This leads me to two conclusions:
  1. There might be a valid reason why Texas leads the nation in the number of people executed; and
  2. Executing all of those people does not seem to be causing the murder rate, at least in Dallas, to decline.
What is the answer? I still think that decriminalizing substance use and thereby closing the black market trafficking of such products is part of the solution. We have too many officers running around trying to sniff out who has some rocks of crack cocaine in their pocket instead of patrolling the streets looking for real crime.

Posted by Tiger at July 30, 2003 05:41 PM