Posted by Watcher, a resident of East Palo Alto, on Dec 29, 2011 at 8:36 pm
Blake, respectfully, I suggest you don't believe everything that you read. The reporting is slanted - from the latest stories, it would seem that this town is full of danger, but that's just not the case. Most of what's going on now is criminal on criminal crime. If you're not a criminal, you're much less likely to run into trouble.
Posted by Blake, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Dec 29, 2011 at 10:46 pm
I'm sure that's true Watcher, but I would hate to get caught up in the crossfire. That will sadly be the case, respectfully, as long as there is a disproportionate number of gangs, drug dealing, and street crime in East Palo Alto. I know that the majority of your citizens are hard working and law abiding, however, the facts and circumstances cannot be rationalized away.
Posted by Watcher, a resident of East Palo Alto, on Dec 30, 2011 at 10:53 am
How many crime victims are the ones who get caught in the crossfire? Thankfully, very few. EPA is much better than it was 15-20 years ago during the holidays. This story is one more way for the police chief to get attention, to warn the public not to misbehave and of course, to build EPA's mythology - even if that's unintentional. In many cities, people complain about the police budget being so high, but here no one blinks due to the crime rates, so headlines like these go hand in hand with that perspective.
Posted by Blake, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Dec 30, 2011 at 11:32 am
Watcher, tell that to the parents of the three month old child that was shot and killed in his car seat earlier this year. Again, with all due respect, it's hard to minimize or justify the widely disproportionate level of street crime and gang activity that still exists in your city. It wouldn't provide me with any sense of comfort or peace of mind to believe that the majority of shootings and other violent acts take place exclusively amongst criminals.
With that said, I agree with you that East Palo Alto has made some progress over the past decade in becoming a more stable, safer community. It is very apparent however that there is much more work to be done. The role of your police department and their ability to mobilize the community will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in this process. I really don't believe that your police chief is using this as just an opportunity to get attention or build a mythology, but to respond to a legitimate public safety concern. This seems like a very reasonable approach that you as a citizen should be supporting wholeheartedly.