"The Flint Murder Map bothers me on a couple levels. I hate the catastrophic loss of life, of course. San Francisco has murders every day, too, but the Chronicle and Examiner don't document every crime that is committed. I was mugged twice in SF. Once on the bus (broke my baby finger but kept my purse). The second time was a block from my 5th Avenue and Lake Street apartment. No injuries, but my purse was stolen. The cops shrugged their shoulders, and I had to write up my own police report.
"Ironically, I've never been a victim of crime in . (Oops, I just remembered the vandalism to my Chevy Chevette 30 years ago. The driver's side window was shot out when I was living at 3rd Street and Grand Traverse, and someone tried to steal or destroy the antenna. It might have been the "firethorn" color that enraged the perpetrators.) I don't have an overwhelming sense of impending danger when I leave home, though. But if I'd been mugged in Flint (unlike SF), there would have been stories in the in The . It's a question of scale. Anything that happens to anybody is news in Flint. Tragedy sells newspapers wherever one lives.
"I know some of the jaded readers will think I'm a Pollyanna. Nothing will change if people don't believe it can. I'm not even talking about the power of positive thinking. Places can be revitalized and reborn. As long as Flint doesn't hang all its hope and grief on General Motors, it can move forward. Biogas will not be the savior, but it could be a little piece of the puzzle for getting Flint back on its feet."
Monday, September 29, 2008
Crime and Punishment (and media coverage)
Mary — who grew up in Flint, moved to San Francisco, and then returned to the Vehicle City — reflects on how crime is covered in the two cities: