My Take On Race and MIlwaukee's Problems
I received several comments to recent posts, including yesterday's take on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's editorial, which I called a Typical Reaction Violence. Many anonymous comments chastised me for either not offering any solutions (Yes, leave it to the bloggers to be our leaders) or for being a racist for any of a variety of thinly-argued reasons.
So, in a nutshell, what is my take on the violence in Milwaukee?
Until residents of Milwaukee, regardless of color, take their city back, we'll have these problems.
The city gets taken back when people, regardless of their color, assist the police in investigations, and when people, regardless of the color of their skin, reject movements that encourage their peers to ' stop snitchin'.'
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back by its residents of all colors when they consistently elect leaders of character and vision and when they hold their elected officials accountable.
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back by its residents of all colors when they ensure their own children attend school and when they have the opportunity and choice to send their kids to schools that educate them, not warehouse them.
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back when its residents of all colors make sure their kids stay out of gangs and don't become parents while they themselves are children.
The city gets taken back when hardworking men and women, those that play by the rules (including ministers, firefighters, police officers and sheriff's deputies) are the ones that are looked up to by people of all races. Rather than cultivating a situation where people of any race idolize the high school drop out with a nice set of wheels and a lot of money and guns obtained through nefarious means.
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back when its residents of all colors respect all women as much as they do their own mothers, when they teach their kids to reject misogynist music and the 'stars' who make millions degrading women.
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back when bureaucrats and elected officials quit demeaning the 'quality' of temporary and entry-level jobs that suburban business are willing to relocate into the inner city.
The city of Milwaukee gets taken back when existing laws are prosecuted to their fullest extent, and the revolving doors for juvenile offenders and drug and gun-related criminals are permanently closed.
That's my take.
This doesn't require a new government program or additional subsidies; and it could happen immediately.
I believe it is racist to have lower expectations or lower standards of behavior for any segment of society based on their color of their skin.
We're neighbors. 'Their' problems are 'our' problems.
The sooner we face these facts the sooner things will improve.
We don't need a new commission, blue ribbon panel or 10 point plan to figure that out.
I chose to locate my business in downtown Milwaukee because I want to be a part of the solution. I was born in this city and I believe in it and its people.
But with every shooting, with every investigation that gets stymied by a lack of cooperation, with every tire slashing, with every unenforced or weakly-prosecuted law believing in this city and its potential becomes harder and harder.