Pandemic mandates, a pandemonium of violence, Russian troops on the move, rampant voter suppression, Oath Keepers and Proud Boys still at large, a persistence of inflation, the supply chain of goods stalled, widespread mental illness and homelessness, and we are sure you have concerns you can add to this misery index.
Some of these issues are so deep and systemic that no amount of rhetoric will make them disappear. That is certainly true of gun violence, and we have two recommendations on this problem that have been put forth from generation to generation.
First of all, something of a radical nature has to be done on the state and federal level to intercept, if not eradicate, the flow of weapons, especially highly lethal assault weapons. We were appalled by the arsenal at the disposal of 47-year-old Lashawn McNeil, including an AR-15 and Glock 45, which he used in killing police officers Jason Rivera and Wilbert Mora. A good number of the guns that arrive in the city, according to sources familiar with the flow, make their way along the so-called “Iron Pipeline,” that I-95 corridor between southeast and northern U.S.
According to one report, more than 6,000 illegal guns were seized by the NYPD last year, the bulk of them traveling along the corridor. If you know the trail, you would think the states and the federal government would hatch a plan to intercept the flow. Of course, we know that would require a serious commitment that at this time does not exist.
What the feds and the municipalities can do without too much political haggling is empower a few of the community groups who have been steadfast in their dedication to halt the violence and ensure safe streets. It was particularly heartwarming to see Iesha Sekou, the founder and chief executive officer of Street Corner Resources, still on the beat. Her group and a few others need the funds and means necessary to make their objectives more substantial and accomplished.
There are no easy solutions to these problems, but it’s good to hear Mayor Adams step up to the plate and propose plans to offset the scourge of violence, particularly the officers whose lives were lost, deaths that must have had personal impact on a man who once wore the uniform.
As always, we welcome you to join this conversation, and even more to the point, find a way in which you can help put an end to these problems that are as universal as they are personal.