The One Gun Violence Statistic that No One Wants to Talk About

A pretty telling chart.  (Photo: CDC)

A pretty telling chart. (Photo: CDC)

Everyone involved in the great gun debate wants to reduce firearm-related violence. Of course, the two sides differ on solutions to the problem. To oversimplify for the sake of brevity, the National Rifle Association wants to put guns in the hands of more law-abiding citizens in the hope that an armed society creates a politer society, whereas Everytown for Gun Safety wants to restrict access to guns in the hope that it keeps them from falling into the wrong hands.

However, truth be told, neither solution really addresses the elephant in the room which is that gun-related violence is an epidemic in the African American community. To quote from a recent Pew Study:

“A disproportionate share of gun homicide victims are black (55% in 2010, compared with the 13% black share of the population). Whites were 25% of victims but 65% of the population in 2010. Hispanics were 17% of victims and 16% of the population in 2010.”

"The most recent figures provided by law enforcement are 46 percent Hispanic/Latino gang members, 35 percent African-American/black gang members, more than 11 percent white gang members, and 7 percent other race/ethnicity of gang members." (National Gang Center.gov)

“The most recent figures provided by law enforcement are 46 percent Hispanic/Latino gang members, 35 percent African-American/black gang members, more than 11 percent white gang members, and 7 percent other race/ethnicity of gang members.” (Photo: NationalGangCenter.gov)

It should be noted that men and boys make up the vast majority (84% in 2010) of gun homicide victims, as the Pew study reported. To give one an idea on how all that translates, while the No. 1 cause of death is car accidents for adults between the ages of 20 and 24, for black men the No. 1 cause of death is gun violence. Put another way, black males are four times more likely to be fatally shot than die in a car accident, according to the CDC.

Compared to their white peers, young black men are five times more likely to be gunned downed. Since most crime is black on black, white on white, Hispanic on Hispanic we have to ask ourselves, honestly, what’s going on in the African-American community? Moreover, what solutions will actually help to reduce gun deaths in those communities?

One major problem the African American community faces is gangs. According to an FBI estimate, gangs account for around 13 percent of all homicides annually. Roughly 2,000 gang-related homicides against 15,500 total homicides nationwide between 2007 and 2011. That’s all homicides, though, not strictly gun homicides.

I’d wager to guess that the majority of gang homicides were perpetrated with firearms, which if that’s the case, would probably suggest that gangs are responsible for a larger percent of gun-related homicides, which account for 11,000 of the total 15,500 homicides per year. Conservatively speaking, I’d bet that of the 2,000 gang homicides each year at least 80 percent or around 1,650 involved firearms.

There is no clear answer as to how many of those gang-related gun homicides involved black folks, but since 55 percent of gun homicide victims are black we can safely estimate that it is close to a majority.

How criminals get their guns.  Needless to say, they don't often buy them at gun stores.

How criminals get their guns. Needless to say, they don’t often buy them at gun stores. (Photo: Cook County Jail Survey)

I’m going to do some rough estimates for the sake of simplicity. So, there are 11,000 gun homicides per year, on average, 15 percent or 1,650 of which are gang-related and maybe half of which or 825 involve black people. To put that in perspective, roughly 7.5 percent of the total number of gun homicides per year are black victims as a result of gang violence.

I’m not a social scientist and I’m not 100 percent confident in my math or my rough approximations, but the point I’m trying to make is that black people, specifically, young black men are disproportionately affected by gun violence as a result of gang activity. Forget the numbers for a moment, but if we accept this premise then we can come up with better solutions to solve the problem because arming more good guys won’t directly reduce gang participation (It’s not that I don’t support arming more good guys, I’m all for it, it’s just that as a gang-reducing enterprise I have my doubts about its efficacy) nor will inane policy measures like universal background checks (A recent study showed that criminals don’t typically purchase guns at gun stores, they use straw purchasers, borrow them from friends, steal them, etc.).

Factors that influence gang violence.

Factors that influence gang violence. (Photo: NationalGangCenter.gov)

If we really believe, to use a popular phrase, “Black Lives Matter” then we ought to start having real conversations about how to save black lives. Sure, police brutality is an issue — the main focus of the BLM movement — but it’s not close to being on par with gang violence. I’m not saying police brutality shouldn’t be addressed and handled just that too often the debate centers around topics that don’t address major contributing factors. To be frank, instead of talking about gun control, we ought to be talking about gang control. How do we keep young people from joining gangs? How do rehabilitate those who are in gangs? How to we do a better job of incarcerating those gang members who are beyond help?

Those are the questions we should be asking ourselves. Of course, there are other issues too that plague not only the African American community but all of us. Addiction. Addiction not just to illicit drugs but legal drugs as well. Alcohol, for example, is a real problem for many. Research shows that for the 40% of convicted murderers being held in either jail or State prison, alcohol use was a factor in the homicide. Are we doing all we can to treat addicts? Are we doing enough to educate youth about the dangers of addiction? Are the current drug laws in this country creating more problems than solutions?

Number of Gang Related Homicides (Photo:

Number of Gang-Related Homicides (Photo: NationalGangCenter.gov)

Anyways, I don’t want this article to get misconstrued. I don’t think that all black people are drug-addled gangsters. Not at all. I’m just trying to start an honest conversation about the realities of crime statistics and acknowledge what no one wants to talk about, the fact that when it comes to talking about gun violence gun-control advocates and Second Amendment supporters too often ignore the plight of black people and the struggles they face within their communities.

What are your thoughts on this issue?  What do you propose we do to address gang activity?

{ 57 comments… add one }
  • Greg October 14, 2016, 10:56 am

    One thing I would like the author and readers to comprehend is that all murders are homicides, but not all homicides are murder. The semantics here lead to about a 2000 death change in the primary statistic of total homicides. Like it or not, society WANTED those 2000 people to die. This is because those had to be justifiable homicides and the alternate outcome would have been the police officer or the citizen getting killed, which WOULD have been another murder. People shot by police in the line of duty, homeowners defending their own homes, etc. The last year of FBI figures for MURDER by firearm was around 8300 people nationwide. If Gangs are responsible for about 1/4 of that, then the general population loses about 6000 people per year to gun murder.

  • Flprida Mikey September 26, 2016, 8:43 am

    One of the most sane discussions I have ever read on this issue. Thank you all.

    I was surprised at this curiosity in the article: “Hispanics were 17% of victims and 16% of the population in 2010.” Why not a higher percent of victims if their percentage of gang membership is so high? I am scratching my head over this one.

  • paul November 13, 2015, 8:14 pm

    There are many countries that pay pensions or old age benefits starting at 55. If the older generation was able to move along to be replaced by younger workers, there would be jobs for them. It is almost impossable to get hired in a long term situation unless you are over 25 years old. The requirement of a peice of paper to work in a car rental agency (wash and deliver cars) is just nuts. Many people in the 40s and 50s started work in a “real” job when they were 18 or 19. We have no means of trade training anymore. These programs were considered “tracking” which means the children of the blue collar class should also perform these jobs. So, we do not allow teaching for these, shop classes are almost non existant in high schools. Where are these young want to be workers going to work. In Mexico, an 8th grade education is considered enough for most. They can read, figure out basic math and can sign contracts, just like our grandparents did. We demand that our students stay in school(keeping them out of the labor market), and further put off thier lives. The problem here is that many have sired children and would like to have a job where they can get and apartment and live the American dream.
    Sending all of our factory jobs out of the country and training them our technology has not helped this. Expecting our workers to live the slaves’ life that China and other Asian countries allow is not right eighter. We must buy products made to our standards and with workers that live the same way. As long as we allow these imports into our country, we lose.

  • frank September 12, 2015, 7:47 pm

    The economic conditions in the inner cities needs to change. Everywhere for that matter.
    Thanks to NAFTA, tax credits were given to send millions of jobs overseas. Those same tax credits would be better served in this country, particularly inner cities. Now the profits are to great to get those jobs back.
    Where do you go, particularly in the inner city, if there is nowhere to turn….no future….no way out?

  • Roy Swank September 12, 2015, 3:33 am

    Violent crime statistic are unreliable for making astute, informed arguments regarding the racial component in crime rates. As an example, where I live those of the Hispanic race make up about 35% to 40% of the population yet there is no mention of the race in crime report unless it is particularly heinous or a description of the perpetrator is given in a crime alert as “Hispanic male/female” in an effort to employ the public in hopes of identifying a particular subject. However, if one spends some time researching jail and arrest record it becomes apparent that Hispanics commit (in my area, anyway) a disproportionate number of crime, particularly violent crime, than the 35 or so percentage of population would indicate if crime were proportional. So where is the problem? Well, the problem is that Hispanics in the criminal justice system are considered white/Caucasian. In FBI and state criminal records there are categories for blacks, whites, Asians, native Americans, and a few others but none for Hispanics. The bottom line is that whites are blamed for a disproportionate number of violent crimes that were actually committed by Hispanic drug gangs and the machismo culture that spawns turf wars and the need for “respect.” Murders, particularly multiple murders, and drive by shootings by Hispanics have gotten to be all to common in my area and it is time the Hispanic race is added to the crime reporting statistics. The current system that lumps Hispanic crime in with white crime creates a false argument that whites are committing more crimes than Hispanics and this need to end. It may be that political correctness is to blame…or that the Hispanics have a great lobby in WDC…but it needs to be fixed and the statistics need to be updated to show the truth.

  • Bob Fairlane September 8, 2015, 7:50 pm

    Gun violence is just carrying on a tradition of Africans in America. It’s one of their great achievements. We should celebrate this relevant cultural enrichment and embrace our brothers of color when they eliminate each other with firearms.

    • NOt Bob October 20, 2017, 7:13 pm

      It is comments like this that add nothing to the conversation, except stupidity and ignorance.

  • Bobolow September 8, 2015, 6:43 pm

    I agree that there is value to arming more law-abiding citizens. And I think that the 2nd Amendment crowd realistically feels a limited time for response and say-so in the media which might explain their apparent ignoring of the plight of back people and their struggles.
    We certainly would do well to speak more realistically, more wholly, about the issue; including what are the greatest contributing factors for the development of gangs in society?
    We need to talk about the cheapening of marriage through No Fault Divorce, Fatherless homes with the break-up of the Traditional family, Fantasy escapes provided by Hollywood, Honoring a full hard day’s work, Excessive government regulations making it difficult for the Little Guy to get ahead.

  • LAH053 September 8, 2015, 1:03 pm

    I read the comments and find that those who advocate for the legalization of drugs sound like drug users rather than reasonable and responsible citizens. I ask you how would you like to fly on a plane or even drive a car that had been fixed by a drug user who used recreational drugs for the weekend? Now keep in mind hat the residual drugs stay in the system for up to and sometime more than 30 days. If it is in the system that they are still under it’s influence. And another statistic these people continue to deny is that the recreational use of Pot is sky rocketing amongst our youth, especially in states where it had been decriminalized.. These drugs steal the users ability to pay attention to the finer details of their jobs and if that happens to be fixing the brakes on a car or the engines and/or other systems of an aircraft oh well it’s legal. Maybe they are under the influence while they are taking of your babies or educating them. I say to these people grow up and face it the right things are usually the hardest to admit or commit to. These attitudes come from why can’t I do what I want to when I want to do it. I say to you grow a backbone and do what it the right thing but by now your minds are probably so drug altered you cannot see or face the truth of this argument.

    • Aaron September 8, 2015, 5:33 pm

      You’re derailing the conversation.

      But, I respect where you’re coming from. If you’re a religious person, please open and read thefirst chapter of genesis.

      If you’re scientifically minded, please look up data from Colorado and Portugal.

      Colorado doesn’t have the issues Portugal does. Far more students graduate from high school in Colorado. Very fit and healthy population. But they’ve had similar success in reducing harm of dangerous drugs, despite your gut reaction about the result of partial legislation.

      Narcotics and cannabis were made illegal because our thirteenth amendment grants the right for the government to enslave citizens. Look it up. Lincoln didn’t abolish slavery. It is legal. Drugs and weapons laws are the best way for minorities to become slaves, after their conviction of a crime.

      Keep your fear, if you want it. It promotes slavery, racism and the destruction of our republic. But it makes democrats billions of dollars. So keep supporting the progressive movement with your fear.

      Do me a favor and please read the thirteenth amendment and genesis 1:12 -17. Please.

      • Dan Forbey August 26, 2016, 9:29 pm

        Name one single successful society that has embraced drug culture. There isn’t one. The moral fiber of a group of people is shot once they decide it’s more important to get high than to produce. It has nothing to do with the 13th Amendment or slavery, and the finest legal mind in High Times can’t stretch that argument to make it fit. This whole problem has to do with replacement of traditional American values with acceptance of the thugs life.

    • Ronnie October 15, 2017, 4:49 pm

      To LAH053. I have just one question for you(and no I’ m not a drug user) have you had a drink of alcohol today or in the last 7 days? If your answer is “No” then I will give your comment some merit. It just seems that most people that I’ve met that are opposed to receational drug use are OKto receational or (politically correct) social drinking.

  • Cobb September 8, 2015, 12:30 pm

    Why can we not talk about the black on black issue is simple. Someones “feelings may be hurt”. The biggest Hate Group in the USA Today is the Politically correct group. They prevent us from stating the obvious facts in any human related issues. Because of being afraid of offending some one. Okay let’s face facts I am old, short, balding and fat. Not youth deprived, vertically challenged, follicle challenged, and slightly over weight.

  • Aaron September 8, 2015, 12:11 pm

    Look up the rates of lead poisoning in children. It almost completely explains the disparate rates of violence.

    Violent crime has dropped in populations that reduced lead poisoning in children. There is one population that hasn’t had a drop in lead poisoning.

    Could get into why the lead is in their environment, but it is complicated. Cdc has done a massive set of studies and the data is incontrovertible.

    • Dan Forbey August 26, 2016, 9:31 pm

      CDC also advocates confiscation of firearms. I’m not sure “incontrovertible” means what you think it means.

  • JOHN September 8, 2015, 8:52 am

    How about this:

    Why are drugs illegal?

    Except for the psychotropics which drive you crazy and want to kill someone.

    You say but drugs ruin peoples lives.

    NO – what ruins peoples lives is they go broke trying to afford “illegal drugs”.

    What ruins peoples lives is gang wars.

    Most all drugs used to be legal.

    Legalize them all again. Empty the jails. It also stops the drug gang killing.

    Treat them like we do alcohol. Tax it.

    Tax drugs and balance the budget. This also cuts the throat of the Cartels.

    They don’t fear the DEA, what they truly fear is legalizing drugs.

    The DEA also fears making drugs legal, wonder why? Uhh – they too have to find a another job.

    This also has the advantage of ensuring quality and people don’t get bad/deadly drugs.

    This would stop the gang violence, stop the cartels, empty the jails, help the nat’l budget, and more.

    Non of your damn business what drug I may want to use as long as I don’t hurt you.

    • Doug Tally September 8, 2015, 11:27 am

      Share other things to… what about a list of things in your own home as long as it doesn’t hurt others. Let ’em know…

    • Ronnie October 15, 2017, 4:52 pm

      Couldn’t been said better!

  • Chris September 8, 2015, 8:50 am

    There are some definite changes we as a country could do to darn near wipe out gun crime. Securing the borders is a great place to start, while simultaneously waging war on these out-of-control, violence-driven gangs. If our police and government don’t have a clue who these thugs are and where they ‘hole up’ at, then I’d like to know what the frig we’re paying them for.

    Another side to this story that the Obama admin owns direct blame for is punitive action taken on perps and making the sentence fit the crime. They love to blabber mouth about gun violence yet they have the lowest record of prosecutions of any other administration from what I’ve read. Prosecute these thugs till they puke at the mere thought of committing a crime – and if they’re found DNA-proven guilty of rape or murder – kill them. While that may sound harsh, these people need to see that we as a society mean business and being violently taken out of this world is all these types understand. So slaughter them in their thousands. Doing so will save untold lives and shattered dreams of people who will ultimately be victimized by these base thugs this current administration seems so gutless to punish.

    Finally, given that most people w/ common sense understand that these ‘mass shootings’ are perpetrated by criminal maniacs, laws should be written to report these types to the NICS database. They shouldn’t have access to firearms so the laws should possibly extend to requiring family members to have their firearms locked up and kept beyond reach of anyone deemed unstable.

    I’m sure we can all think of many examples in the news in just the last few years where these types of changes would have saved many, many lives.

    • Ronnie October 15, 2017, 4:59 pm

      Your theory is flawed. A spouse or other family member could erroneously file a report on you. There should be an investigation and a ruling before you let someone ruin your name.

  • no September 8, 2015, 8:41 am

    Why such a clickbait-y news title?

  • PaulD September 8, 2015, 6:59 am

    “So, there are 11,000 gun homicides per year,”

    According to the FBI UCR data, the gun related homicide number is 8400 out of 12k total murders. I believe your data came from the CDC, but frankly, I trust the FBI on this more than the CDC.

    https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2013/crime-in-the-u.s.-2013/offenses-known-to-law-enforcement/expanded-homicide/expanded_homicide_data_table_11_murder_circumstances_by_weapon_2013.xls

  • Brad in California September 7, 2015, 8:00 pm

    One issue I see becoming more prevalent, is we are not identifying ourselves as Americans first. We are all ONE people. We should all be protected by the one American constitution/Bill of Rights and all be proud to live here and be willing to fight to protect OUR rights. Fight to the death, if need be. Our government sponsors too many special interests. Like you’re an African-American first, and just happen to be living here in the USA. You’re an illegal alien with special rights, not like us “normal” Americans. You’re a low income person or family, so you get special treatments. There should be lots and lots of entry level jobs for anyone willing to get started that’s willing to work hard. We should be making opportunities for advancement, not increasing the minimum wage. We need to all work together, and fight anything that divides us as one people.

  • SkipNclair September 7, 2015, 5:08 pm

    Its an agenda by the evil ptb to make sure gun violence is on the front burner, while they have many agendas , all are geared towards the same thing, and that is the destruction of this nation, and to enslave all mankind. The only thing stopping them from doing this around the world is this nation and our guns.

  • Frederick September 7, 2015, 4:23 pm

    I know I’m showing my age but there was a time in America when we used the word “shame”. If a high school girl got pregnant her whole family felt the shame. Now days the family is happy for the girl. They have baby showers for them, the whole concept of shame has gone the same direction as the concept of “wrong”. What can we do about it? We can start by bringing Jesus Christ back into our society!

    • rouge1 September 7, 2015, 5:55 pm

      Fredrick or it could be like an acquaintance of mine where he is taking someone’s daughter to get an abortion so his kid isnt burdened by a baby. Im sure her parents would like to know but the government and abortion mills are now complicit. We’ve come a long way baby.

    • Joe September 7, 2015, 10:47 pm

      There has always been only one true answer, and you have learned well what that answer is. Most people nowdays are just too “smart” to see that answer. Yes Fred, Jesus is the answer.

      • tweedmus December 17, 2016, 5:42 am

        If that’s the answer, what was the question?

  • Tim September 7, 2015, 4:09 pm

    Until the black community takes responsibility for themselves there will be no solution. The black community refuses to police themselves. Making excuses and blaming everyone else will not work.

    The problem is a small group of people are ruining things for everyone else. Minority rule instead of majority rule. Letting the weak control the strong.

    • Jim September 8, 2015, 8:25 am

      I have said it before, pull up your pants and civilize your culture. Who wants to see the design on your underware?

  • george from fort worth September 7, 2015, 3:42 pm

    i don’t get it. why are 2A supporters responsible for shifting gun control focus to solving a problem for the “black community”? why are 2A supporters responsible for somehow using their RTKBA as a vehicle for solving a problem the “black community” does not care about? why are 2A supporters supposed to even take notice of which ethnic group behaves in the most destructive manner? shouldn’t the problem of b on b crime be solved by the bleeding heard liberals and progressives? isn’t the rescuing the “black community” the raison d’eter for liberals and progressives? protecting and upholding the 2A is not an exercise in race relations (all races have the same 2A rights !). the problem with gun violence in the “black community” is reliance on government to solve all of life’s problems; too few law-abiding black residents are sufficiently armed to change the calculus of the gangs and criminals.

  • Pat Bryan September 7, 2015, 12:45 pm

    It is real easy to slip into the veiled racism of the Southern Strategy. And by making it a “Negro problem”, conservative totalitarian politicians can engage in all sorts of mischief. I think that by pointing out that it is a gang problem and also a drug problem and also an addiction problem you are surrounding the true problem. Drugs for pleasure are illegal to sell. However, making those drugs illegal has not lessened their desire for use. The gang homicides described in this article are certainly attached to the business of the distribution and sales of recreational drugs.
    The next sound you hear is the scoffing of conservatives presuming an argument for the legalization of recreational drugs.
    However, this is been found very successful in Portugal where legalization of recreational drugs has actually lessened their use, where oddly criminalization had increased their use.
    Our “war on drugs” has been proven to be race-based and a failure. The legalization of recreational drugs, and the mainstreaming of the drug business will eliminate the economic incentive for these gangs to exist.

    • Joe September 7, 2015, 10:40 pm

      Pat, not only are you wrong, you are bad wrong. You have all the evidence you need to see it, but you post lunacy such as this. You claim Portugal as a success story? REALLY????

      • Aaron September 8, 2015, 10:55 am

        I am not commenting in support of pat. This person is spreading lies about the nature of American history.

        But the evidence out of Portugal is readily available. Similar data is now coming out of Colorado.

        Drug overdose deaths decrease, er admission rates drop. I suggest you look it up, because it has given me hope about the future. Even with people like pat around.

        Also, look up Genesis 1:12-17

        Judaism, Christianity and Islam all support the sanctity of the plants on this earth. So if you think drug legalization is bad, is it because you worship Satan? Because that view point spreads evil, destroys lives for profit and enables tyranny by our government. Sounds satanic to me.

    • Doug Tally September 8, 2015, 11:06 am

      I spoke too soon with compliments to all within my off-topic reply to Chemiker. Now I read ‘Pat’ and it’s a dissapointment but Pat’s Pat and everyone has an ‘opinion’. Let’s move on…

  • Dan September 7, 2015, 11:28 am

    Ladies, what do you think? Let’s hear from some of the females in this country !

  • Tom September 7, 2015, 11:11 am

    So, why wouldn’t the NRA’s position help? It would at least give the law abiding a fighting chance.

  • Walter September 7, 2015, 10:03 am

    I am a criminal defense attorney and the father of six sons. I’m white and I live in the Detroit area. None of my sons is doing anywhere near as well as I was able to do at their age and the reason is no good full time jobs. When I was a kid you could get an auto plant job for the asking. You worked too many hours to get into trouble, could support a family on one income, send your kids to college, and retire to your place up north with dignity. This was true regardless of race.

    Those jobs are gone, or at least very rare. Sadly I don’t have an answer. Foreign competition is not going to vanish and the robots in the plants are here to stay. Not everyone would make, or even want to be, a IT technician. Any ideas? It’s not young black men that are the problem. It’s all young men with no job to anchor them with the ability to earn money and earn self respect.

    • Rufus T Beauregard September 7, 2015, 8:30 pm

      My retired father is an attorney. I could have stayed home and ‘inherited’ his business, but I went into manufacturing and went where the jobs were, which took me 1200 miles from home. Maybe your children need to go where the jobs are and leave Detroit behind.

    • Chemiker September 7, 2015, 9:12 pm

      I, too, grew up in Detroit. However, I left when it became obvious that the city was not viable. The political hacks who came after Mayors Miriani and Cobo helped to destroy the city. Some were white and some were black, but all were crooks, and Democrats. The last time that I was in Detroit for a case, and wanted to see my childhood home. When I was part way there, I took the wise move and turned around on Six Mile and left. The city is a pitiful mess. It once was great and beautiful.

      • Walter September 8, 2015, 8:15 am

        Good point about moving to get jobs. In order of age; Albuquerque, Lansing, MI, Santa Fe, Denver, Durham, NC, and Ann Arbor, MI. Sadly, my point still holds true.

        We need good jobs that pay well and I have no idea how to achieve this in today’s world. The college grads are underemployed too.

      • Doug Tally September 8, 2015, 10:57 am

        Hey Chemiker, I’ve lived in Chicago for 30 years following Detroit and I’ve been back. Before I get started sharing with you… let me applaud the contributions, for what I’ve read is really bright thinking, articulate, thoughtful, Sorry I have to deviated off topic but I’m an expert on Detroit ‘before’ and ‘after’ so I get a little excited to tell everyone that will listen. But I’ll stay topical and leave the deep-deep core planning and execution underway for another day.

        Chemiker, start at Wayne State University with a campus tour to reorient yourself M-F 10a & 2p meet at the Welcome Center Warren w/o Woodward, double check it has not changed, http://www.wayne.edu/admissions look for tours.

        You remember the 60-70s, the Medical Corridor was envisioned out of Harper Hospital and Wayne State University Medical School… its an incredible reality now and larger than the dream as WSU Medical School is the largest single campus medical school in the country,

        The core of long term sustainable growth and redevelopment began with the oldest institutions ‘still standing’: WSU is 150 years come 2018, DIA, Detroit Public Library, Science Center, Historical Musem, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, FOX Theatre restored to original glory, major league venues relocated or returning to Woodward and the M1 light rail trolley work-in-progress to transport folks from Dan Gilbert’s (WSU alum, founder-Quicken Loans) downtown renewal, the major league venues, theatres, restaurants and pubs, residential neighborhoods and through WSU campus to the Boulevard and the Hotel St. Regis, still as quaint and boutique as ever and at WSU’s rate, about half the casino hotel hotel charge.

        You’ll find 13 theatrical theaters, 3 of which belong to WSU all public performances, lots of new restaurants and pubs and some still in the same location around WSU and there for decades and decades. If you know ‘Parks Ribs’ from the 70s your my era (I’m 66) and you will be thrilled with the neighborhood. The John R, 2nd, Seldon as you may recall them are long gone, you wouldn’t mind your kids (or grandchildren) renting at 2nd and Seldon and walking to classes at WSU or working in the areas many new jobs come to the area for folks to live near where they work and feel they belong to a neighborhood… it happened. Imagine Starbucks and Whole Foods… you know you made it as an upscale neighborhood with those two on the block. the neighborhood identity is WSU students faculty and staff, the medical center docs nurses and admin, corporate headquarters employees, and with all the entertainment of theatres, major league sports, cultural center venues and many other draws it’s become a entertainment district.

        On safety, no parent would worry about their student attending MSU or UM, nor do metro D folks worry about safety in Midtown D. WSU and the surrounding area of Cultural Center, major league sports, medical corroridor, corporate headquarters, residential neighborhood(s) cause the area to be safer than either MSU or UM campus. WSU has 55 officers all with Bachelor or Masters degrees patroling on foot, segway, bike, patrol car and with K9 unit. They have the same training D officers and MSP recruits get and they have authority off campus. So there is mutual support between DPD and WSU coppers. So now you know, you are safter going to Midtown for entertainment or sending you student to college at WSU than either of you would be on the campus of MSU or UM. WSU and Midtown just doesn’t have the life changing criminal acts, but it’s not perfect, it has petty theft, thefts from a cars and a few students doing something stupid, but at worst it’s offensive, not violent or personal.

        Go Back!

  • Ken September 7, 2015, 8:51 am

    You cannot talk about problems in the black Community with out being called a racist this is why we can never have a honest talk about race problems.
    Personal responsibility has to be at the top of the list. It is the right thing to do as a man saying yes I did it and I will take the consequences for my action.
    Instead all you hear is its not his fault he is a good boy was just trying to get by.
    Education Is free get out of bed get involved in your school District be a parent and most of all a roll model.

  • Jay September 7, 2015, 8:14 am

    This is not something new. If we talk about the truth of the matter, people just sluff it off as irrelevant because most people simply cant handle the truth! Facing the truth means they have to show responsibility for their own actions. Violence is a symptom of failure. Even a small child can become violent, throw a tantrum, when something doesn’t go their way. Violence takes very little skill and or mentality to perform. If we as a society don’t punish violence, then in the eyes of those causing the violence, they are validated in their actions and it is repeated until the ultimate goal is achieved!

  • Larry C. September 7, 2015, 8:13 am

    When a child does not feel a belonging at home because there are not two parents in the home with loving support, that child will find another place of belonging. That other place then become the street and the gang. “Rocky” does have a solution but that will not be accepted by our politicians and society at present. There also is a total lack of moral compass which then allows procreating children without responsibility. If only we can bring back a true moral compass and two parent families the gang issue would minimize if not disappear.

  • Jeff Scudder September 7, 2015, 6:40 am

    While there is never one single thing that can be done to solve the very large and complicated problem addressed in this article, there is on solution that can make a dent….EDUCATION and JOB TRAINING. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that all people need is hope. Give some one a fighting chance at an education or teach them a skill and watch what can happen. This has already been done successfully. The problem is many politicians have attacked our education system by pulling funding, punishing teachers and pointing fingers. Does the system need help? Yes….but destroying it is not helping it. Funding has dwindled to the point of no return for some systems. Colleges of Education across the nation are shutting down. Many are under enrolled to the point of shutting done. You want to see gun violence among blacks and lower socioeconomic persons escalate? Take public education away. It’s being done as we speak. In Florida, our government has already made the decision to build more prisons and under fund the education system. We spend seven thousand two hundred per student but thirteen thousand seven hundred per prisoner. Ten years ago the spending was very close to being equal. This has happened in many states that have “privatized” their prisons. This will also happen to our education system very soon. Public education dollars will be moved to the private sector. The rich will control who gets a good education and who does not. Watch gang violence escalate to levels never thought of.

    • Rufus T Beauregard September 7, 2015, 8:12 am

      Education and job training are already available … and free! Well, ‘free’ in the sense that people who work for a living and pay their taxes, like me, provide it for others. ‘Education and job training’ have been more and more available since the late ’60s and ’70s when ‘career development centers’ began popping up inside the high schools. If the thugs and gangstas don’t want an education and don’t want vocational training, it doesn’t matter how much taxpayer money you throw at the problem. ‘Give someone a fighting chance at an education?’ We’re already providing it. All you have to do is show up and apply yourself. All you have to do is take advantage of it. The notion that we aren’t spending enough on education is ridiculous. A huge percentage of ‘education dollars’ goes to teachers unions and bureaucracy, sucked into the black hole of gubment. Education should be privatized. The ‘professional educators’ and unions have screwed up primary and secondary education pretty good; time to give someone else a try. But if the wannabe thugs and gangstas don’t want an education, there’s nothing that can be done to make them get one. Colleges shutting down? Do you mean like South Carolina State, an historically black college that is rotten with malfeasance and corruption? It should be shut down. Colleges are under-enrolled? So what’s your answer? Force people to attend bad schools? A market-based approach would do a tremendous amount of good for higher education. Bad schools would and should go away. You can blame most of what ails our education system on the fact that it is government-controlled and publicly funded. And more government influence will only make it worse. If you want a better education system, eliminate the DOE, eliminate federal influence and go back to local funding and local control.

      • Joe September 7, 2015, 10:32 pm

        Amen Rufus. Double Amen.

    • Bob September 7, 2015, 9:20 am

      Sorry Jeff but I do believe you are putting the cart before the horse. People that have grown up in homes that did not encourage and support their child’s education will not view education as a means to obtain a good job and support themselves. These same people who are 2nd, 3rd and 4th generation welfare recipients don’t know what work is. They are not interested in working when the can sit at home and live off the hard working taxpayers. They want money, but they don’t want to actually work for it. They view the gangster lifestyle as an acceptable means to achieve success and status which in their minds is clothing, jewelry and cars. Based on your comments I would be willing to state that you are a frustrated teacher and taking this opportunity to air your grievences against the government for cutbacks in education funding which really doesn’t address the problem of gun violence in the black community.

  • Rocky September 7, 2015, 3:50 am

    Draino pretty much hit the nail on the head, but… he left out the effects of entitlement mentality upon the black community. A great many of the black children fathered, do not have a father living in the home because they wouldn’t qualify for welfare if they did. A great many of the black children fathered, do not have a father even named on the birth certificate, because child support would be demanded if they did. A great many black children born to welfare mothers, would not be born were those mothers forced to support their own children, or if government support of children were cut off after 2, or even 1, to unwed mothers.

    As long as we continue to pay women to be black baby factories, it’s going to continue. As long as it continues, young black males without fathers will be recruited by gangs to commit any number of crimes, (dealing drugs, committing thefts, murdering other gang members, whatever), because they are juveniles, they typically get a slap on the wrist in comparison to committing the same crime as an adult, and their records are sealed, except to the courts themselves. By the same respect, fatherless young black juveniles turn to the gangs as male role models. They have (at least in their eyes) respect amongst the community (loosely translated gangs, other gangs, hos, and children), and they have money.

    The first step in curtailing gang participation, is to put fathers back into the black family, and the first step in doing that is to curtail entitlements. Next in line would be the elimination of glorifying gang violence by Hollywood, and the music industry. Rap music is top of the list there.

    Finally, given the number of black prisoners in our prison system, are we creating a datbase of DNA? If so, can that database be use to identify black fathers? Can they be held responsible for supporting their own children?? Since most of them don’t have real jobs, if they could be identified, call in child support and create labor camps where they are forced to show up for work and work XX hours per week, per child, to support their children. Or, provide proof of a more promising job outside the labor camp, with wage withholding for support implemented. If they refuse, castrate them! Yes, I do know the difference, and no, I did not say give them a vasectomy; I said castrate them. It wouldn’t take but a few, and the remainder would get the idea and begin acting more responsibly. Likewise, if they ran, the DNA markers could be used to track them down, if they sired any more children. As long as they are allowed to skate through life partying and making babies, without repurcussion, and the mothers are getting payed to raised those babies, things are not going to change.

    No one is going to act responsibly, as long as the government rewards them for behaving irresponsibly.

    • Abner T September 7, 2015, 9:15 am

      Agreed on everything, except the ‘father’ conclusion. A better choice might be “father figure”… someone who exerts a positive influence on a kid before they hit 16.

      Most fathers who bailed are useless and detrimental anyway.

    • Larry September 8, 2015, 12:55 pm

      The very first step should be to dig up LBJ & kick his butt for being the “father” of the “Great Society”. It has been all downhill since this monstrosity was begun 50 years ago.

    • Jon September 9, 2015, 5:44 pm

      Tubal Ligation for irresponsible mama’s, black, white, brown…all colors sounds like a feasible solution!

    • Wranger September 12, 2015, 10:08 am

      I agree that we need to change or reverse policies that have torn down a 2 parent family structure.
      Today’s policies (via the LBJ administration) reward/encourage single mother family units and were intended well but have the results we see today in our nation.
      I truly believe most mothers want good things and futures for their children as the result of natural instincts of protection for their children. The failure as stated above is the lack of a male role model (father/male role model) or not having a traditional family unit. Without this father role the young children fill this void by entering gangs to find this support they are lacking. Gangs recognize this and capitalize on it. Once in this gang (family support) atmosphere their needs are satisfied and they become the violence problem this article has initiated the discussion about.
      With this said there are family units who now have an entitlement approach to survival in their daily lives. These families and their young people will need close support from local leaders to begin to learn ways to support themselves as business owners or employees.
      I heard of a good example of this around Cleveland, Ohio on a radio program. Their community young adult support program is being sponsored by several church leaders in this neighborhood community. Searching out good examples of how to provide this mentoring and spreading it across the country will help to turn the tide.
      The only way to make a large impact in dramatic fashion is to create new national policies that REWARD a 2 parent family structure. These policy changes will also need to discontinue the financial rewarding of unwed mothers having baby after baby without fathers who can support them. I don’t blame them, this is what society has encouraged and rewards with current national policy.
      My 2 cents.

  • DRAINO September 4, 2015, 9:43 pm

    I agree that most of the topics on the news these days don’t address the real issues in the black community. Alcohol, drugs, gangs….all very serious issues that need to be dealt with specifically among the black community. Another issue that needs to be dealt with is teen pregnancies. Another is personal responsibility. Yet another is the deterioration of the family and family values(piggy-backing on teen pregnancies). But unfortunately, if you aren’t black, or at least half black….you are considered prejudice for even having an opinion on these issues, you don’t know what you are talking about and you don’t think black lives matter(or any lives apparently). If you are black or a qualifying degree of black, you are an “Uncle Tom” or have been corrupted by the white folk if you try to discuss or even have any opinion other than that of the “popular” black civil rights leaders(Al Sharpton) and Hollywood talking heads(Kanye West…or should I say, Kardashian). I don’t know the answer but I agree that these issues NEED addressed. But until you get some prominent black “Men” to stand up and take the lead….like another M.L. King (who would be rolling over in his grave if he knew how his dream has been perverted by a lot of black folks today) there will not likely be a change any time soon. But I earnestly pray that I am mistaken. I really do. It is a sad state of affairs we are currently in.

    • Joe September 7, 2015, 10:28 pm

      Solve the issue of deterioration of the family, and all the other problems will no longer be an issue. A father and mother that do their job is the foundation for EVERYTHING.

      • Dr Strangelove September 12, 2015, 10:24 pm

        Bingo!

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