City Council member Carl Stokes said Thursday he does not entirely agree that the crime in Baltimore can be blamed on the proliferation of drug dealing.
“It is not simply a matter of more prescription drugs on the streets,” he said.
“Baltimore has always had a very high homicide rate for many years.”
The law enforcement official agreed, telling CNN that while some of the violence is a byproduct of the looting, it is by no means all-inclusive.
Two members of the Bloods gang in Baltimore told CNN they are being unfairly blamed by police for the violence.
“What they’re trying to do is take the fire and heat off of them,” said one gang member, who goes by Bones.
Stokes said the problem is more complex.
“There’s more opportunity for the criminals in this city to do what they’re doing because leadership is failing and, frankly, because the Fraternal Order of Police — if they didn’t order it they have given some, again, not an order, but to say to their rank and file you don’t have to work as hard as you should be working, you don’t have to live up to your oath to serve and protect. … I think we have a horrible situation going on in this town,” Stokes said.
He added that neighborhoods that are wracked with crime are now facing an even tougher situation.
“I know that the police officers have lost confidence and respect for their commander,” Stokes said, adding that he believes the majority of Baltimore residents have respect for and confidence in the police.
Stokes said he’s troubled by stories he’s heard from residents who he said have told him in the past few days that police in their neighborhoods are doing less.
“Unfortunately and crazily, police officers are actually telling average citizens, ‘We’re not doing all of the extra things that we used to do, we’re not doing it and we’re not doing it because we’re upset with our leadership.'”
Stokes offered to bring those residents who’ve told him this on CNN’s air.
“What I would welcome is that we had a leader, a commander, who knew what the hell was going on with his troops,” said Stokes. “Because he has lost the confidence and respect of the police officers on the streets. He has lost the streets entirely in terms of the criminals out there.”So Baltimore's tourist attractions (tax-producing businesses) are empty, while black Baltimore elected officials continue to throw the Baltimore Police Department under the bus for failing to keep blacks from killing one another... all the while an executive for Under Armour is planning to fund a program ensuring every officer of the Baltimore Police Department spends time with black city youth in a "team-building" program. [Under Armour executive funds program to create police-youth ties, Baltimore Sun, 6-3-15]:
Every Baltimore police officer will spend a day with city youths through an expanded “team-building” program to be funded by a top Under Armour executive.
“To me, this is the positive story out of the riots,” said Ginger Mihalik, executive director of the Baltimore Chesapeake Bay Outward Bound School. “‘A business leader in Baltimore is stepping up.”
The contribution of Kip Fulks, Under Armour’s president of footwear and innovation, will allow the Outward Bound school’s Police and Youth Program to grow significantly.In recent years, the one-day program - held at the school's Leakin Park campus - has been limited to about 160 police cadets.
With Fulks’ contribution, “it’s going to go to 3,000 officers – the entire force,” Mihalik said. Under the program, about 30 officers and 30 youths spend a day together.“We play name games where they have to learn each other’s names. Then we start to break down the barriers,” Mihalik said.
“The whole point is to create a safer Baltimore. You want the kids trusting the cops and the cops trusting the kids.”It is expected to take two years for all of the officers to cycle through the program.Tourist attractions in 65 percent black Baltimore are empty.
Black elected officials, like Councilman Stokes, continue to promote the interests of their black constituents and find fault in the police for failing to restrain black people from showcasing their lack of impulse control and future time-orientation (i.e., stop them from killing one another).
How long until Baltimore is completely empty of any white people?