Friday, February 23, 2007

Crime - Carbondale Times does nice job on Candidate forum

I don't think they have a website, so you might go pick up a copy at your local newsstand. I think Rosetta News still had some yesterday afternoon. I have often felt that the Carbondale Times had the best coverage of local Carbondale politics, the same what that I think Caleb Hale at the SI does the best job covering SIU. Good work on this article Jerry and the gang. One issue that I might not have written about, without reading their account, is crime in Carbondale.

Crime in Carbondale is driven by drug use. Illegal drug addiction and the costs of getting those highly addictive drugs are driving crime in Carbondale. From the guys who sell out of their white Chevy in the gravel alley just West of the Hookia station on E. Main and Wall (that accesses from the street behind), to the homeless who steal everything that isn't tied down in the TIF district all summer, to the young men of the North East who are drinking malt in the early afternoon and really getting rowdy some nights, it is all about drugs and their high prices. In the 1920 we had gangs running moonshine, carrying Tommy guns and making huge amounts of money because of prohibition. Today Al Capone has been replaced by Mexican and Columbian drug lords. The crime problems we see are from the Northeast side poor district, our newly annexed trailer court, our gang banger imports from Chicago at SIU and other areas that are inhabited by the poor. The poor are being robbed by the drug addicts who live among them. This is simple capitalism, the profits in illegal drugs are so good that it drives the motivated to sell drugs. The need for money to buy the very high priced drugs, drives their users to steal. The drug war is over and the good guys have lost. It is time to try something else.

I know it isn't popular to talk about drugs driving the crime problems in the USA, but they are. Not that I expect anyone to say that when running for office, but isn't it time we stopped kidding ourselves?