Changing our culture
Fourty-two homicides in Durham during 2015 and seven more incidents involving firearms with at least two deaths through Jan. 7. What does that say about the city we live in and our combined community efforts to stop the killing? Apparently and thankfully Mayor Bill Bell, Sheriff Mike Andrews and Interim Police Chief Larry Smith have seen enough. All of us – and in my strongly held opinion this includes anyone who voiced concerns about use of excessive force by our city's law enforcement officers – must back the efforts announced at a press conference Jan. 7 (DN, http://nando.com/38l).
Durham’s business, community and government leaders have worked hard to change this city’s culture and image only to be faced with a rash of killings that hamper efforts to bring new jobs, businesses and residents here. We might as well be known as Camden or Newark south. As the Rev. William Barber, president of the North Carolina Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, said at the recent Emancipation Day memorial service for Maleah Williams at St. Joseph CME Church in Chapel Hill, “why in the hell are you participating in your own genocide? It is time to shut some of this stuff down.”
Indeed it is past time. If focusing on a changing list of persons with known criminal backgrounds who may be involved in these murders is the best plan of attack, go for it! It is time for community leaders to engage and encourage both the public and police to rid Durham of the senseless and unwanted murders for both the health and economic prosperity of the Bull City. It is also time for prosecutors to ask for the severest punishment for those found both responsible and guilty at trials.
Mark G. Rodin
Go, Durham Tech!
Regarding Manju Rajendran’s column “Wait, hold still, breathe, build” (DN http://nando.com/38k)
Very good! Not only am I am happy that Manju is taking carpentry, I am VERY happy to hear that Durham Tech has a female carpentry instructor!
When I was doing hands-on stuff, like carpentry, over 30 years ago, there wasn't much female company in that. I felt pretty lonely.